Adopting a Rescue Parrot

April 9, 2015 by  
Filed under Pet Birds

Normally, if you are planning to add a new bird to your family, you have a specific species in mind, because, after all, a parakeet is quite different from a macaw. You might look for someone with a good reputation who breeds this species. This is one of the most popular ways to obtain a bird. However, there is another great way to find a feathered friend or friends- through a shelter or a parrot rescue.

Many people find themselves unable to care for a parrot once they buy one. Perhaps they are too messy, or too loud, or not social enough. Other times, the owner may have financial or health problems, and as much as they love their bird, they truly can no longer care for him or her. These parrots usually do not end up in a parrot rescue; instead, they are usually turned in to a local animal shelter. Generally, shelters are not good environments for parrots – they are very loud, the employees are generally not able to give the birds a lot of attention, and they are very rarely able to provide toys or treats. That is where a parrot rescue comes in. They take the animal from the shelter, and put them either in their own facility, or in a foster home. Either way, they are generally able to provide the level of care that the bird needs. Many potential parrot owners prefer to adopt from parrot rescues rather than animal shelters, because the rescues generally are able to spend time with their birds and are able to provide a better description of their behaviors and personalities.

If you decide to adopt from a shelter rather than a rescue, be careful. Although your bird may have been turned in for no fault of its own, and it could be a perfectly nice pet, he also could have been surrendered for various behavior problems. Ask an employee if they know what the reason for surrender was, or if they have noticed any behavior problems during the birds’ time at the shelter. Ask them if you can spend a little time with the bird; sometimes, a shelter will have a ‘visitation room,’ where you can spend some time alone with your potential new best friend. Remember, sometimes birds will act up in the shelter – they may be frightened and screech loudly, or they could be so scared that they shy away from human contact. The shelter environment is loud and frightening, especially to a small bird like a parakeet, cockatiel or parrotlet. However, even the biggest macaw may act unusually in this loud and scary place.

You may find that you don’t want to adopt from a shelter after all. You might want to adopt from a breeder, where they have truly known the bird its whole life, and can tell you practically everything about it. But remember- if you adopt a bird from a scary situation, you are their hero. Even though you might not realize it, your friend will feel grateful. If you are considering a new avian friend, please consider dropping by a shelter or parrot rescue before you buy from a breeder.

Article contributed by Eliza Kuklinski

Attracting Birds

February 9, 2009 by  
Filed under

Attracting birds to your garden can be a most rewarding activity, providing countless opportunities to enjoy bird watching in your own back yard. There is no need for a bird cage to gain pleasure from viewing and listening to these beautiful winged creatures.

There are three basic requirements for attracting birds to your garden, namely: Food, water and shelter.

Food for garden birds can be provided in two complimentary ways. First, is by the use of a bird feeder or a bird table. Consider the species you would like to attract to your garden and provide feed accordingly. A variety of bird feeders spread throughout the garden will encourage a wider variety of birds to visit. Consider a bird table for ground feeding birds; a hanging feeder for perching birds and a suet feeder for insect eating birds. Pet shops, garden centers and even some supermarkets will sell a range of bird feeders as well as a variety of foods suitable for different types of birds. Consult a good bird guide to get an idea as to what certain birds will be interested in i.e. are they seed eaters, insect eaters, nectar eaters etc. Secondly, consider planting a bird-friendly garden. Visit your local garden centre and look for indigenous plants that will produce berries, nuts, seeds and other food all year round. Such plants will meet the needs of local garden birds. Indigenous plants will also attract insects on which insect-eating birds can feed. Avoid the use of insecticides as these may end up poisoning the very birds you have invited to your garden.

Next to consider is water. Birds will thoroughly enjoy splashing around in a water feature. A bird bath will be just as much appreciated. When purchasing a bird bath, ensure that the surface is rough so that the birds will have something to grip onto. Remember to keep the bird bath or water feature clean so that the bird’s health will not be adversely affected.

Shelter can be provided in the form of a bird house (nesting box) or by planting indigenous trees and shrubbery. Pet shops and garden centers should be able to provide you with a suitable bird house for the different species.

By meeting these three basic requirements, you can enjoy bird watching from the comfort of your home.