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What you need to know about keeping pet birds

Before owning pet birds, there are a few things that you should know before buying a bird:

  • Birds are noisy

Depending on the type of bird that you are looking to purchase. Birds will always ‘chatter’ but there

are some breeds which are much louder and will screech and scream the house down when they are

bored and want attention

  • They are companion animals

Birds are rarely seen alone in the wild so it is natural for a bird to be with a partner or companion. If

it is a single hand reared bird that you’re after, they will require a lot more attention than an aviary

bird as they’ve spent most of their life with humans and want human interaction.

  • They like to chew things and be destructive

It is in a bird’s nature to chew and destroy wood. Providing safe toys for your birds is a great way to

eliminate boredom and to allow them to chew things inside their cage instead of picture frames and

other items around the house.

  • They are messy

Along with birds destroying toys, birds will flick their seed around in the cage and out of the cage in

order to find the seed that they want. If there are too many husks on top of their seed they will

usually flick this off as well. Birds also go to the toilet where they please which creates a very gross

and messy bottom of the cage if it is not cleaned regularly. Birds will also drop their feathers when

they are moulting and the small fluffy feathers will fly all around the cage and around the house if

they aren’t cleaned up.

  • They need an appropriate sized cage

Birds need a decent sized cage so that they can stretch their wings. Some small birds like finches and

canaries aren’t often trained so they spend their whole life in their cage so they need enough room

so that they can exercise within their cage if they aren’t let out regularly. The bigger the bird the

bigger the cage needs to be. You also need to think about the space once you put their food and

water bowls in, toys, and some perches.

  • They are sensitive to smells

Birds have a very sensitive respiratory system that makes them vulnerable to chemicals and other

fumes in the environment. Scented candles, oils, air fresheners and non-stick and Teflon pans all

pose health risks to birds, along with other items in the environment.

  • They live for a long time

Birds have a long life span. Each bird has a different average life span but the average budgie will live

for around 10 years, whereas a macaw can live up to 80 years!

Birds are a long term commitment so lots of research and preparation should go into owning one.

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