Saturday, June 26, 2010

Weaning Love Birdies Abundantly

By Eduardo Gonzalez

Newly born love birdies are fed formulated food with a syringe. But after five or six weeks, they will get irritated at being fed the same food all the time. Never force the birdies to do something against their will. Start giving them a wider array of foods when this happens.

This is called abundance weaning, and it is the trend in birdie raising nowadays.  Experienced owners and breeders find it easier to do abundance weaning and it is more beneficial for the love birdies, too.

By contrast forced weaning—where humans control everything—involves giving love birdies a scheduled eating time and provides a set amount of food. In abundance weaning the love birdies are given different kinds of food like tinges of veggies and fruits that are always available.
At the same time the human continues to hand feed the birdies, so that they will develop faith and trust in their humans. As mutual respect and trust sets in, the beginning of a long-term relationship takes hold.

Abundance weaning starts out for the love birdies’ nutrition but ultimately it will also provide emotional relief and security. Never let them go hungry. Always offer them new choices of food on hand. 

Weaning birdies in this way builds their inner confidence and they will remain secure in their new environment. It will also provide them the intellectual and emotional development that they are in dire need of.
It will show the love birdies that their humans are aware of their love birdies’ needs. The love birdies will determine for themselves when the hand feeding should stop.
Many breeders have said that abundance breeding is the best way to wean grown up love birds, too. They like having the freedom to do what they want, and abundance weaning allows this.

When love birds have their own birdies, they will not need their human’s help in rearing their young. This is in their character--they want to make choices on their own. Need I belabor? Abundance weaning is good for these love birdies.

Do be watchful and make sure that the love birdies do not lose too much weight. They are not like other birds that eat to their hearts’ content when they are being weaned. Love birds tend to eat little by little rather than stuff themselves all at once. It is only during parenting when they will eat heavily.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Do’s and Don’ts for new Love Birds

By Eduardo Gonzalez

Here are some things that new owners of love birds can do to keep their birds safe.
1.     Separate your new love birds from any other love birds you may already have for at least a month. This will prevent the unnecessary spread of unknown sicknesses, since your new birds must still be checked by an avian vet.

2.     Give your new love birds time to rest, free from the noise of other pets. Also, don’t rush taming and training them. They need to be eased into their new home, and giving them space facilitates this. Let them feel comfortable in their cages or aviaries.  Their first flock is themselves and their humans.

3.     Change your clothes and have them washed every time you visit your new love birds. This will help to contain the spread of disease.

4.     Never use round cages for love birds--it can make them frantic. The cage must  be considerably huge in size--at least three feet and a half inches by three feet and two inches by two feet. The perches should be placed in a way that their tail feathers won’t be disturbed.  Also, hang cages at eye level in a corner of the room. This makes the love birds feel secure.

1.     Keep the temperature stable, at least close to 27 degrees centigrade for the first 25-30 days in their new home. Heat lamps or infrared lamps are good for these purposes. Gradually accustom them to room temperature after a month, but do so slowly, over a period of 15-20 days.

  What not to do:

1.     Don’t change their diet abruptly. Do it gradually over 2-3weeks. A sudden change in diet can affect their digestive tracts and they could fall ill.

2.     Don’t hang their cage in an area where they can be hit by wind drafts. Box type cages are impenetrable by strong winds, and may be better. These are made of thin metal or wood. Be sure there is good ventilation.

3.     Don’t give them grit for at least 10-15 days. They might experience mental or physical tension from their new environment, and they could express this through overeating. This can lead to severe health concerns.

4.     Don’t leave their wings unclipped.   Love birds are prone to flapping their wings and if their wings are not clipped, they seriously injure themselves causing stress for them.
5.     Don’t leave them in total darkness.  Give them proper lighting at night. A seven watt night light will do. At night they need to go to their perches, drink or eat. They must have 10-12 hours of rest, and they need fresh food and water to drink.

6.     Don’t leave any chemicals near the birds.

7.     Don’t leave windows open, and never expose them to too much sunlight.

8.     Don’t give them unwashed veggies and fruits, and remove all moldy grains and rotten drinking water. Spring water is best for them when they are staying in rooms.

Follow this advice and everything will turn out nice.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Some Truths About Love Birds

By Eduardo Gonzalez

There are nine species of love birds in the world, and eight of these species are found in Africa.  They became popular because of European bird enthusiasts and writers who visited the continent and fell in love with them.

The scientific surname of Love Birds is Psittacidae and their group is called Psittaculini.  They belong to the Agapomis class.

The old Alfred Hitchcock thriller, “The Birds” brought a lot of attention to love birds because the main character, a woman, bought a pair of them to give to a child in a small town that she was visiting.

When she arrived with the love birds, the town was attacked by wild birds by the hundreds who targeted people and homes like giant killer bees, killing many and leaving destruction in their wake.

In its time the movie caused quite a stir and some people illogically presumed that the love birds caused all the other birds in the town to go wild.  This is because the movie never explained what caused the attacks. 

Poor love birds.  The truth is, these lovable birds are great pets because they don’t take up much space, making them great for condominium living or small homes.  They also love the attention of their humans, so you need never feel lonely. 

They will climb on your finger and despite their short, sturdy bodies they can do a lot.  Sometimes they will dance for you.  They love to investigate their surroundings, and in general they are very playful.  They have a lovely chirping voice.  Life is not boring with love birds.

There are nine species of love birds: The Madagascar, the Red Face, the Abyssinian, the Black Colored Los, the Peach Face, the Nyasa,  the Black Cheek, the Fischer’s and the Masked Love Birds. Using just their names alone you could write a fictional adventure novel.

The most common pet love birds are the Peach Faced lovebirds, Fischer’s love birds and Masked love birds.  In general, love birds are smart and have similar capabilities to larger parrots.

 Warning—NEVER cross – bred these birds, or they will be infertile.  If you take good care of your birds, the will live from 15-20 years—longer than dogs.  Like dogs, these parakeets need your commitment.  You have to invest time to make them feel accepted and loved.   

You also need to take time to train them.  If you do, these love birds will make great pets and they will give you many years of happiness. 

We found a seven minute video of love birds that shows them at play: