A cage is a thing that is destined to become home to your feathered pet, so you need to choose it very carefully.
The first criterion to be guided in choosing is the size of the cell. Many beginners believe that since in nature birds are not limited in space, then in captivity the cage should be as spacious as possible. In fact, many birds prefer secluded small places, but in excessively spacious cages they begin to run wild, feel uncomfortable.
At the same time, the cage should not be too small – the bird should move freely and fully open its wings, without touching the walls of the aviary. For example, the minimum cage size for a budgerigar is 25x40x40 cm. Briefly about the cell volumes for parrots and other birds, then:
- for a canary it is 10 liters, for a pair – 20 liters;
- for a budgie 15 liters – for one, 20 liters – for a pair;
- Lovebirds – for a pair of 30 liters;
- Corella – for one individual 30 liters, for a couple – 45-50 liters, in addition, the cage should be high and wide enough.
For large birds like cockatoo, macaw, jaco and others, the cage should be large. If the "home" is small, let your pet fly around the apartment more often.
Making a cage is not the most important part of our conversation: yes, you can choose a beautiful cage, but it should be, first of all, comfortable for a bird. The “abode” should correspond to the way of life of the feathered pet: if the bird is inclined to fly upward (these are larks, starlings, quail, nightingales), the top of the cage is made not of rods, but of foam rubber or soft cloth in order to avoid injuries.
Molds, materials, bars for cages
A high-quality cage should be strong, made of non-toxic materials (if you see galvanized or copper rods – leave this product away, it will oxidize and emit toxins harmful to the bird), not have sharp corners and edges. Choose a design that is convenient for cleaning and maintaining the cage.
The shape of the cage may be different, but most owners prefer the usual rectangular products: in a round cage, parrots and other birds can lose their orientation, feel restless, they cannot hide in the far corner due to the lack of them, and a toy or a perch in such a cage to fix is problematic. If the cage is round, then the roof should be horizontal so that you can fix poles, swings and other entertainments on it.
It is not advisable that the lattice be located at the bottom of the cage – it will be difficult for the bird to move along it, the parrot may get stuck in the bars of the lattice and injure the foot. Best of all is a retractable bottom (plastic or metal), washed river sand or sawdust, absorbent paper and other fillers are poured onto the bottom of the cage.
The distance between the rods and their thickness is another important factor. For budgies, the distance between the rods should be no more than 15 mm, and the diameter of the rods should be 1.5-2 millimeters. For larger bird species, the diameter of the rods increases to 3-4 mm; they should be made of stainless steel wire.
Wooden rods are not the best choice: firstly, insects can hit them, and secondly, large breeds of parrots are able to gnaw them with their powerful beak. In addition, a tree treated with varnish or fungicidal agents poses a danger to birds, since during processing and disinfection of cells, toxic substances can be released. Galvanized or copper rods also oxidize and affect the health of pets: they can not attach pieces of juicy food (fruits, vegetables), because when interacting with moisture, the oxidation process begins, and you must take care of such a cage with extreme caution.
Also pay attention to the cell door, it can open:
- From top to bottom, by analogy with the bridge, a moat is needed;
- Down up;
- Sideways horizontally, an ordinary hinged door;
- Sliding up and down door.
The first three types of doors have a big drawback: the owners can simply forget to close them. With the second type you need to be careful – the door may fall under the weight, but it can’t close the latch, the best option is 4 or 3 type. This is especially important if you have a large parrot in your house: the lock on the door must also be impressive so that the pet cannot open it.
Before settling pets in a cage, be sure to disinfect it and thoroughly wash it. Some elements must be present in the bird’s dwelling: first of all, it’s poles. Plastic poles are not the best option, a powerful beak of parrots can easily crush plastic, as a result, the surface becomes stiff, with sharp edges – and the bird can damage its legs. A universal option is rounded wooden poles with the bark removed, however, be careful when choosing a diameter. A feathered pet’s foot should occupy two-thirds of the perch, and a third should remain in reserve.
The perch can be crimped or straight, but by no means thin. The best option is a perch of fruit trees, mountain ash, birch, linden, plane tree. Make sure that the tree from which the perches are made is not saturated with chemicals, thoroughly wash the places of the cuts and treat them with boiling water. Two birds are enough for one bird.
Just want to remind about the location of the cell: it should be away from drafts, approximately at the level of your chest. At night, the cell is covered, daylight hours vary from 10 to 14 hours. The feeder should be deep, with a dome or roof (so that no debris gets on top), it should be easy to wash. Mineral fodder must be in one feeder, cereals in the other, fruits and greens can be attached to the cell wall using special clothespins. Rinse the feeders daily, add boiling water. Drinking bowls are also desirable closed, the best option is automatic, with a small nose for the beak of a bird. They are easy to clean with a bottle brush; change the water daily. Before you buy an auto-drinker, think about the method of fastening it – it depends on how the rods are located in the cage (vertically or horizontally).
And finally, the toys. The main criterion for their choice – they must be durable (many birds like to bite them), as well as easy to wash. Toys are often placed on the walls or under the roof of the cage. Mirror, if there are two or more birds, it is not recommended to use.
It is advisable to carry out spring cleaning in the cage once every 10-15 days, but clean the pallet daily, wash drinking bowls and feeders, do not forget to let feathered friends fly around the apartment. Take care of the pets – and they will definitely answer you with love and affection!