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Healthy Parrots, Sunlamps and Kibbles


John DaviesWritten by William John Davies MRCVS BVM&S

I see quite a lot of poorly parrots with diseases that could have been easily prevented by correct feeding and by using bird sunlamps!

Parrots (including budgies and cockatiels) should eat a balanced diet. Birds are often provided with a seed mix to eat, unfortunately birds will pick out their favourite seeds and eat these, usually the peanut or sunflower components. Sunflower seeds and peanuts are high in energy but low in nutrients. They are the avian equivalent of dumplings. Over long periods of time (4-5 years) birds gradually become less healthy eating like this. They develop vitamin imbalances, which cause overgrown beaks and nails, poor feathers, respiratory blockages and infections, feather loss and much more. 

Parrots should eat a balanced dietAvoid seed mixes and provide your bird with one of the modern kibble foods such as Harrison’s, Lafeber or Roudybush bird foods. These all in one foods are ideal for birds. These foods are balanced diets and prevent a bird from picking out the bits that they want. These can be purchased online or from the surgery. They are far superior nutritionally to the seed mixes. Getting your bird to eat these foods can be tricky to start with but well worth it in the end as your bird will receive a balanced diet and avoid the problems described above. (See http://www.harrisonsbirdfoods.com for help in changing your bird’s diet).

parrot in cageIt has recently been discovered that our pet birds need regular unfiltered sunlight to remain healthy. Birds, just like us, require sunlight to convert some vitamins into their active forms. The weather of Blackburn cannot provide enough sun and besides, sunlight through the window is not enough, as the glass filters out the sun’s beneficial rays. The answer is to provide your bird with a bird sun lamp. There are many types available, made by companies such as Arcadia, Trixie or Zoomed. These can be purchased online. (See http://www.arcadia-aquatic.com/birdproduct/ for example)

Providing our parrots with modern kibble foods and sun lamps will prevent lots of common illnesses that I see, almost on a daily basis.

William John Davies, Daisy Street Vets, Blackburn. Oct 2014.

15th October 2014, 12:23
Page updated 14th Oct 2016, 08:33
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