Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Routine Adult Canary Care

This older German Roller cock has an overgrown beak. Using Trim nail clippers carefully cut the overgrown tip off. If left unattended, the beak tip will continue growing and may develop an abnormal twisted shape that will impair the birds cracking seed.

Note the scale build up on the feet and leg. If unattended the scale build up will restrict joint movement and eventually the band will not move and scales continue to build up under the band till it will finally shut off circulation to the foot. Nails that are not trimmed will curl and twist.

Most scales actually come off fairly easily.

Nice shot of the cleaned foot showing the blood vein in the bottom claw. When trimming nails, avoid cutting the nail vein or bleeding will result. Nail bleeding is easily stopped, however, with quik stop or plain flour.

Trim Beak/Nails and Remove Excess Foot/Leg Scales

Birds periodically need to have their beaks trimmed. The higher the protein in the diet, the faster the beaks and nails grow. Using good lighting, trim off the overgrown tip. On occasion, young birds that are fed a high protein diet may also need beak trimming.

During breeding season, I leave the nails a little longer so that the hen and cock have better grip for mating. But now it is time to trim all the older birds nails. Using a strong light, identify the nail vein and using trim nail clipper, cut off the excess nail without cutting the vein.

Excess scales likewise need to be removed. Care should be taken to not go too deep as this will cause bleeding. If the feet should bleed, after removing scales, just dip the bleeding foot in betadine (iodine) and they will heal nicely.

If you want scales to come off easily try a two day approach. On the first day, put a very little oil on your finger and then gently rub your oiled finger over the birds feet being careful not to use too much oil or get the oil on the birds feathers. On the next day, gently lift off the excess scales with your fingernails.

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