Victims of the Exotic Pet Trade

Read the full story 5 Animals That are Victims of the Exotic Pet Trade
via One Green Planet

The wild at heart do not belong in a cage. Owning your own bird, hedgehog, lizard or monkey might seem striking, it might even add a certain color to your personality; but, it is wrong and unfair to keep an exotic animal in your home. No matter how you may try to replicate their environment, their natural instinct is to live in the wild, not amongst four brick walls. Some humans readily believe that they can provide all the care necessary to make exotic animals “happy” and feel “at home,” but the fact remains: wild animals belong in the wild.

Birds Rank #2
Ten to twenty percent of wild birds that are caught and confined to a small cage die because of the shock of losing their freedom. The next time you look at a bird in a cage, don’t just see the bird, see what the bird sees.

Imagine if someone stuck you in a tiny shower cubicle for the rest of your life; you can’t reach your arms or legs out fully and you cannot walk far. Would you call this a life?

Breeders claim birds bred in captivity protect the species, but the reality is one-third of all parrot species worldwide are close to extinction due to the exotic bird trade. Recent statistics show over150,000 parrots are smuggled into the U.S. every year. Birds should be in the sky, not in a prison.

Many diseases can be caught from keeping pet birds. The most common is the parrot fever which causes pneumonia. If the owner inhales dry dropping, they are far more likely to catch it.

Why Do you Need Full Spectrum Lighting?

via Pacificparrotlet

Due to a bird’s internal structure and natural habitat they desperately need natural or “avian full spectrum” lighting in order to survive.  The amount of benefits natural lighting has on birds is so great I’m only going to detail a few!

"Glass windows filter out up to 90% of the beneficial UV spectrum unless that glass was made pre 1939. Aluminum screening used can filter out 30% or more UV light. High-grade acrylic (cages) filters out less than 5% of the UV light." [x] Sitting in front of a window doesn’t count!  Modern day windows are created in a way which filters out the UV rays that birds need! In order for your bird to properly absorb these rays you either need a special UV full spectrum bulb/lamp or you need to get your bird in a cage, harnessed and outside for at least an hour a day.

If you do put your bird outside in a cage make sure they’ve got a towel blocking out the sun on one half of the cage so they don’t overheat!  The water should be kept shaded as well and they should be supervised at all times.  My birds like to pick at the cage doors so as an added precaution I clip the doors she with clothspegs or put small locks on their doors.  The cage should not be placed directly in grass or on the floor, they need to be up off the ground so that bugs and predators can not easily get to them.

Lamps and UV bulbs should be positioned towards the bird, leaving areas for shade and should not be within the bird’s reach.  Bulbs can get very hot, the last thing you want is to be rushing down to the vet.

So what’s the point of natural sunlight anyways?
Not only does the natural UV lighting help to bring out the natural colouring of objects which creates a more natural, interesting environment for them and can aid in helping picky eaters (the blue bird pictured above refused to eat fresh foods unless they had UV lighting on them) but there are enormous health effects.

The natural lighting helps to stimulate a bird’s natural synthesis to absorb and regulate vitamin doses. Without natural lighting bird’s can not properly absorb the nutrients from their foods.  While you may believe you are giving them a proper dose of each vitamin they are only absorbing a minimal amount of those nutrients.  In turn a bird will develop hypovitmainosis, fatty liver disease, egg bonding and other nutritional deficiencies.
This lighting also plays a critical role in skin/ feather health and is incredibly important for preening regulation. “If a bird’s system is not stimulated through adequate environmental lighting to maintain proper endocrine function, it may become lethargic and not continue normal preening behaviors.” [x]

Other Major Benefits
  • Prepares bird for seasonal changes
  • Strengthens immune system
  • Lowers obsessive/compulsive behavior frequencies
  • Relieves psychological distress
  • Mimics a bird’s natural environment
  • Aids in Vitamin D Synthesis
  • Maintains constant environmental temperature
  • Aids a bird’s visual acuity
  • Increases the longevity of the captive bird [x]

Adoptable: Sara Cockatoo

EMAIL: for inquiries.

"Abandoned Ducorps cockatoo named is Sara, sex not confirmed. She was abandoned at our clinic in a plastic trash can with a perch mounted inside. Typical cockatoo likes to be out of the cage all day. We put her in her cage at night and she will eat while she’s in there, but I’m not sure she even sleeps because when I let her out in the mornings, she goes to sleep on her perch. She will not relieve herself in her cage. She waits until she is out on her perch. She needs a lot of work. She will sit on my arm and will let me rub her head, but she’s not to friendly with anyone else. It’s taken about 4 months to get this far.

Ideally, her new parent(s) will not have other pets and will have a work at home job or have a job where she can go to work too and be out all day. She is a beautiful little cockatoo and has not picked or self-mutilated. She’s very quiet and will warble when she wants to be let out or wants to be rubbed. I am very protective of her and want a home for her that will be perfect. Please let me know if you know of anyone."

Mosquitos & Birds

Help me! Can Mosquitos harm budgies? There was a mosquito in my room last night and I tried baiting it but all in vain. This morning I uncovered my daughter and OUT CAME THE DAMN MOSQUITO FROM HER CAGE. Actually just now I killed it and no blood but still, should I worry?
 ANSWER via Biologybeep:
Mosquito vectors cause diseases in birds just as they do in humans. Most prominently is avian pox virus (Avipoxvirus spp.), which presents as large tumors typically of the bare parts: legs, beak, nares, or eyes. More rarely it takes a diphtheritic form (infecting the lung/GI epithelia) which is more severe. Viremia (infection of the blood) is universally fatal within days.
Avian pox virus is more prevalent in big cities (Giraudeau et al. 2014). I am not aware of the phylogenetics of pox viruses that infect parrots, only passerines, but the virus family is diverse and it wouldn’t surprise me.

Project Green Cross

We’ve been getting calls from loving families falling on hard times with companion parrots in need of emergency care.
This puts us in a bind. We WANT birds to stay with the families that love them, but financially, we’ll go under if we said yes to everyone. That’s where you can help. 
Many of us know what it’s like to endure barren times financially. We’re hoping with your help, we can say to families enduring hardship, “Ok, send your bird over to our vet.”
Project Green Cross is derived from the American Red Cross, borrowing from their mission statement:
 ”No Feather Left Behind’s, Project Green Cross prevents and alleviates avian suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of our veterinarians, volunteers, and the generosity of donors.”
To see updates on the birds we have helped, check out No Feather Left Behind’s Facebook page.  
Our vet partners are Backos Bird Clinic and Broward Avian & Exotic, FL.
Thank you! | DONATION PAGE

NFLB: PROJECT GREEN CROSS | 2nd Recipient, Miss Peeps

She has been egg bound since last Thursday and her family can’t afford the surgery due to health issues, but they love her dearly.
8/26/14 Miss Peeps made it thru the surgery, they removed the bottom egg (see x-ray), that was too big for her to pass. They will wait to see if the 2nd egg, which is still soft, will form correctly and pass naturally. Rescuer Mimi will get another update soon and pass along.
She is being cared for by Backos Bird Clinic, FL.
If you could, please click or share the link below so we can help more birds like Miss Peeps, dog-bite victim Cosmo the budgie, and their families!

Say No To Sand Perches

How would you like to be walking on sandpaper all day?

The companies that are still selling these need to be boycotted. This is a matter of profits over ethics. If people are still buying them, they're going to keep selling them, they won't just take them off the market, because BUSINESS. Speak with your dollar and yell at anyone you see buying this cruel devices.
You want your birds' beaks and nails filed and trimmed? You can go to your vet. It should not run you more than 15$.

Birds should have at least 3 different varieties of tree branch-like perches. Those dowels are garbage. Throw them out. When standing on them, they hit the same pressure points on the feet, nature didn't intend that. 

We have taken them from the wild, let's treat them the best we can.

BIRD CARE | Proper Bird Holding

by a-fierce-macaw

DO NOT hold a bird like this for more than a few moments, if that. Birds do not have a diaphragm. They expand their lungs by raising their entire ribcage, and a hold like this — especially on a tiny bird like a budgie — could easily suffocate them accidentally.

If you do need to hold or restrain a budgie for any reason, you should use the bander’s grip, which looks about like this:
(source, also shows a variety of less-secure holds for other purposes)
This hold, done right, puts no pressure on a budgie’s ribcage, allowing them to breathe freely and you to hold your bird safely! and safety is the most important thing for our small birdie friends.

If you want to kiss your bird, try taming them! It requires more time and patience, and that your bird cooperates and is in the right frame of mind (gee, how about that?) but it’ll be a lot more rewarding and won’t traumatize or injure your budgie! Even if your budgie doesn’t warm up to kissing, they’ll be much happier if you work to make them comfortable around you, and happier budgies mean happier budgie owners!