Sunday, May 16, 2010

Questions and Tips for Big Bird!

Please use this post for your tips and questions this week.


Tips

Wednesday

Getting Young Birds Onto Seed

Richard's Roost shared this great tip: "Shelled/crushed fresh hemp is one of my/birds favorites too. Another trick I use is to take their seed mixed and put it in a coffee grinder. I make it coarser as the days by."

Sunday

Dry Nestling Food




KJ and Linda Brown of Jeepers/Peppers Aviary shared their dry nestling food recipe October 28, 2009. Take a look at the full article in the old posts, they raise hundreds of canaries and finches using only this dry nestling food.

I have used it this season as a supplement to my regular foods although I have no doubt that it would work as the only nestling food if the birds are use to it. My birds were already nesting when I finally got it made up.

I made 30 lbs (it was so much I had to mix it in a wash tub!) and packed it in Ziploc gallon bags. All but the bag I am using from is kept in the freezer.

Click on the Jeepers/Peepers recipe for easy reading.


Questions


Monday

1. I have had an bacterial infection causing me to lose chicks. Some of my hens like to dip egg food into water and then eat on it later out of the water. Even though I change the water daily, how can I keep the hens from dipping egg and dropping it in the water without going out and buying new water dispensers?

2. Laurie Seals writes that she need a Parisian Frill male to go with her two hens. E-mail sugrpootsmom@yahoo.com or 919 805-0137 She lives in North Carolina...


Sunday

1. Dear Big Bird,

In a few weeks I have to leave for 2 days. I will have canary chicks of all ages at that point. My birds are used to getting fresh egg food at 6 AM, noon, and 5 PM.

During the days I have to be gone I can get someone to come in once a day. Is there something I can leave out in quantity that will still work for the chicks since they will be getting only one fresh egg food meal per day? Please recommend a brand. I've tried a few egg foods that weren't that well received.

Thank you Big Bird. I appreciate all of your expertise!

Janie Jones
Montana

8 comments:

Linda Hogan said...

Dear Big Bird,

In a few weeks I have to leave for 2 days. I will have canary chicks of all ages at that point. My birds are used to getting fresh egg food at 6 AM, noon, and 5 PM.

During the days I have to be gone I can get someone to come in once a day. Is there something I can leave out in quantity that will still work for the chicks since they will be getting only one fresh egg food meal per day? Please recommend a brand. I've tried a few egg foods that weren't that well received.

Thank you Big Bird. I appreciate all of your expertise!

Janie Jones
Montana

Linda Hogan said...

Janie,

Boy is that a tough question and I am sure you will hardly rest till you get back to your babies! But rest assured hens will take care of the chicks well without you!

I would offer dishes of extras and I would start it now to get them used to more variety. I would offer dishes of dry oatmeal, dry nestling food (mine like proteen 25 or plain ABBA green), 50/50 mix of petamine breeding formula with Harrisons high potency mash, Purina flock raiser, sidekick seed mix, thistle mixed with bee pollen and sunflower pieces, and KJ and Linda Browns dry nestling mix (recipe was published last Fall, I'll look it up and give you the date.

The Brown's only use their dry nestling mix and raise hundreds of canaries and finches with it each year. The important thing is to get it made soon and in their cages!!

I and many busy breeders, have on occasion found nests of chicks which we did not know about that are banding age or even bigger which have been raised by the parents with only canary mix!!

Last season, I found a next of four bronze chicks that I could barely band they were so big! The hen had raised only two on her first round with all my help!!

Hens will feed what is available!!

Linda Hogan said...

Janie:

I would be comfortable with a large dish of Jeepers/Peepers dry nestling food in the cage to cover the lack of extra feedings.

I can not depend on my husband to feed for me. I try to call and give him a reminder but my work can be hectic and on more than one occasion, I have suddenly looked at the clock and realized I have been unable to call, just too many stabbings, ATV wrecks, gunshots, murder cycle or donor cycle wrecks, car wrecks, pedestrian versus motor vehicle, bleeding in surgery, assaults etc..

The next morning when I feed, I will notice that they fed up the dry nestling food to cover for what was not given them.

So guess something similar happens to me by accident ever so often...

Linda Hogan said...

This mornings phone call:

Last weeks discussion on infection:
Water is the number one source of bacterial infection for our birds.

If infection is an issue, buy gallons of distilled water. This gives you a pure source to start with and not some other towns water. We discussed that last week and after switching to distilled the infections have stopped.

Hens loading the water container with egg food:

I have not had this happen, on occasion they put peas or corn in it but this is a new one for me...

My first thought is how easy is it for the hens to do this? His response was that the water and food are next to each other only separated by a perch....

OK..let's make it difficult. Move water up high and food to open dish on the floor...so that they are far apart and at different heights! I am hoping the hens will not go to the effort but they have a mind of their own, at least mine do!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for all of your ideas. I have some of the things you mentioned but I'll get more on order and get them used to some dry food ASAP.

Janie

Richard's Roost said...

Thanks! I am facing the same challenge. We are flying to a memorial service, and the birds will be on their own for a day. Like you say, I will worry until I see everything is okay.

Anonymous said...

Linda,

I took your advice and made the Jeepers Peepers recipe and also had dishes of the Proteen 25, Harrison's mash in the cages for my 2 day absence. I had my niece come in once a day to give fresh water and fresh egg food. But the birds did great without me. There are 24 chicks with the youngest being 4 days old when I left. I didn't lose a single chick and in fact it seems that they grew faster with these dry additions in their cages. I like the convenience of only serving fresh egg food once a day...even though I work from home and can give egg food several times a day. I think I'll keep up this new routine.

Thanks again for excellent advice!

Janie
Montana

Anonymous said...

I have been using the water bottle since I first started with canaries
they are great, They have a flat side, and a double ball design. I got mine at local pet shops, all birds can use them, and no one can put stuff in the water, gotta make sure the ball is down and water is flowing but I love them, only thing I dont like about them is they drip if you dont get the vacuum started inside.

Gwen