01 Jun Choosing the right pet bird for you
Choosing the right pet bird for you isn’t always easy.
It happens more than you think. Someone walks into their local pet store, spots a vibrant macaw bird who greets them with a perky ‘hello!’ and minutes later they’re heading home with a pet bird they have no idea how to take care of.
Did you know that macaws can live for nearly 100 years? Many don’t. Did you know that many birds can have complex dietary requirements, or that they require daily attention and exercise? Common misconceptions between bird breeds often lead to unhappy owners – as well as unhappy and unwanted birds. To avoid this happening to you and your family, check out these tips on choosing the right pet bird for you.
What size bird is best for you?
If you’re looking for a general rule, the easiest to remember is this: the bigger the bird, the bigger the commitment. Large birds are great, but they often have larger personalities. Think loud, and much more demanding. So, if it’s your first bird, starting out with a smaller species might be a better idea.
Behaviour and temperament
Have you had a think about how you’d prefer your bird to behave? Would you like them to be social? Or would you like a pet that prefers not to be touched? It’s important to understand your preferences and the breeds that align with them. An African Grey will behave quite differently from a Canary, for example. Those interested in a companion bird should make sure to research the species they’re interested in, in order to guarantee they’re choosing a bird with a compatible personality to their own.
Nutrition and maintenence
There are a couple of bird breeds that require specific diets or other special care. Lories, for example, are beautiful, medium-sized birds admired around the world for their striking colours. They have highly specialised digestive systems, however, which require them to be fed a diet of pollen, nectar, and fruit. This, in turn, causes them to produce liquid droppings making it necessary to clean their cages more frequently than those of other species. While there are countless good reasons to buy a pet bird, issues like this are why it is so important for potential owners to learn as much as they can about their favourite species before bringing one home.
Budget and finances
The financial burden of a bird largely depends on the species. Larger birds sometimes have an initial purchase price of thousands of dollars. These species generally require costly cages and accessories that boost the bill even higher. Even smaller birds, while often initially less expensive, still present their owners with various financial obligations. Some birds can live a very long time, and those that care for them are responsible for feeding, housing, and providing them with veterinary care throughout their lives. All of these factors should be considered when choosing a bird so that you end up with a pet whose upkeep you can afford.
If you put a little time into choosing and finding the perfect bird for you, it can be an extremely enriching experience and relationship. Do your due diligence and ensure you have all of the tools you need to create the ideal connection with your feathered friend. Our tip? Adopt a bird so that you have the support of the adoption and education foundation you adopted from to help you with successfully learning to care for these wonderful companions.
Ready to get a bird of your own? Adopt one through the RSPCA today.
Find more articles about birds in the Baxta Blog.