Monday, June 25, 2007

How To Raise A Well Adjusted African Grey Parrot

How To Raise A Well Adjusted African Grey Parrot

I’ve recently been handling lots of new clients in my parrot training business, coaching them through issues and spending a lot of time thinking about why parrots end up having problems when it hit me… African Grey Parrots are the 2nd most likely parrot to develop behavior problems; Second only to the Cockatoo. But unlike Cockatoo’s who are in my opinion are not a good bird for the regular parrot owner to own because of it’s nature… African grey Parrots don’t share the Cockatoo’s same nature. So why do I have so many clients who’s African Grey’s have problems?
So I thought I’d share some of my thoughts on this topic with you…
There are a lot of things involved in keeping an African Grey Parrot happy than
normal people would like to believe. Most of my clients think they can just walk
into any pet shop that sells hand fed baby African Grey’s and think their bird
will end up being perfect. Oh… if they only knew how much more was involved.
African Grey’s can tend to be a skittish type of parrot that spooks easily, gets
stressed easily and develops lots of phobias and behavior issues. But there also
the smartest breed of bird and through proper handling, similar to the ones
described in this article and on my website at, can be nothing short of amazing.
So even though I could sit here for weeks writing 743 articles on all the
different things you need to do to make sure your African Grey Parrot is happy.
But instead I’m going to focus on just one thing… TOYS!
Now don’t go clicking off the page just yet because you think you know that your
African Grey needs toys. I’m not trying to be condescending, and I know you
already know that toys are important.But do you know how often your African Grey’s toys should be rotated or changed? And better yet are you changing your birds toysfrequently? Has your African Grey had a toy in his cage for longer than a month or two? These are all important questions to ask, because African Grey Parrots are
extremely intelligent and need to be placed in stimulating environments to
remain happy.This means they need their toys constantly rotated in and out of their cages. They need their toys hung from different parts of their cage.
You should be constantly searching for different shapes and textures of toy for
your African grey to interact with. Toys that are chewable, destructible, touch
to chew, easy to chew etc.The key to a great stimulating environment boils down to rotating your African Grey’s toys at least ever 2 weeks. And if you see a toy isn’t being touched or destroyed first see if changing up it’s placement in the cageworks… often that’s enough to get the bird to start playing with it.
If rotating the toys location doesn’t work, and you still don’t see the toy
getting destroyed, than you should give up on that toy, remove it from his cage
and replace with something different. If you don’t… you risk the chance of an otherwise intelligent creature getting manic and bored and a bit psycho on you in the near future.

About the Author:

Chet Womach owns and operates a parrot training newsletter packed with tips
for African Grey owners which can be found at

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Canada Geese

Canada Geese

By Emma Snow [ 19/12/2006 ]
[ viewed 103 times ]

Canada Geese are more family-oriented than many other species of waterfowl. Adults mate for life, although a widow will often choose another mate. Pairs look for appropriate nesting sites in early spring, just as soon as there is open water for mating, and snow-free sites for nesting. Together, they use grass and plant material to build their nests, lining it with feather down. When the nest is ready, the male, called a gander, will guard the area as his mate lays her eggs. An average clutch is five to seven eggs, but it can be as low as two or as high as twelve. Each egg will take a day of more to lay, and incubation lasts about a month.

Both goose and gander are present when the eggs begin to hatch. Goslings use their sharp egg teeth to peck their way out of their shells, an arduous task that can take a full day or two. These newly hatched babies resemble ducklings, with yellow and gray feathers and dark bills; but within a week they will have changed into awkward-looking, fuzzy gray birds. Once out of their eggs, goslings are able to swim immediately, and will enter the water accompanied by both parents. There they will begin their first task of diving and eating. They must eat continually in order to grow sufficiently for their first flight. Newly-hatched goslings can dive 30-40 feet underwater for nutritious, aquatic plants.

At nine or ten weeks of age, goslings have grown their flight feathers and look like smaller versions of their parents. Canada Geese are easily identifiable with their long black necks and heads and contrasting white cheek and throats. Their back, upper wings, and flank areas are brown capes draped over nearly white breasts and bellies. Short black tails, black legs and black webbed feet are visible when they waddle across an open field. While Canada Geese range in size, they are typically 20-50 inches long, with a 50-68 inch wingspan. The largest varieties are called honkers, while smaller geese, one fourth the size, are called cacklers.

The first two months of a gosling's life its entire goose family is earth-bound. Ganders molt directly after mating, and geese molt shortly after her eggs hatch. Unable to fly, the family abandons the nest on foot to find better feeding areas. Adults will have re-grown their new feathers just in time to give their young their first flying lesson.

Few birds are as vocal as Canada Geese, and some say they encourage each other as they take their challenging journey. If you listen carefully, you can determine the gender of the goose by their vocalizations. Ganders speak in a low-pitched honk, while geese use a high-pitched hink. Goslings have a soft, wheezy call.

The journey is made easier by flying in V-formation. By flying in formation, the flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone. As each goose flaps its wings, it creates uplift for those following behind. The geese take turns in the point position, as tired birds rotate back. If a goose is wounded or falls out of formation for any other reason, two of its flock will stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then they will join another formation or catch up with their flock.

Canaa Geese, though common, are fascinating creatures. In the words of Milton Olson, we can learn a lot from a goose!

About the Author
Emma Snow has always adored wild animals. Emma provides content for Wildlife Animals and Riding Stable

Birding-Where to find the Birds

Birding – Where to Find the Birds

By rick chapo [ 26/08/2006 ]
[ viewed 218 times ]

Once you catch the bird watching fever, you are doomed. You will always find yourself looking for new viewing spots. Here is a quick primer on where to find them.

Birding – Where to Find the Birds

Whether you are traveling to a far off land or just walking around your neighborhood, you can find prime bird watching spots by following a few general rules. Birds tend to be creatures of habit [or habitat] much like humans. Specifically, certain birds always seem to show up in the same types of places. This gives you a little insight to when and where you can catch a view of them.

Alas, wooded areas are harder and harder to find as civilization spreads its winds in community developments. Urban sprawl has definitely taken a bit out of natural wooded areas. If you are fortunate enough to still live near some, you can find a bevy of sightings along the border of such areas. Obviously, bird species are different in every part of the country, but you can expect to see at least some of the following species – flycatchers, warblers, owls and the occasional hawk.

If you live along the coast of the ocean, you probably already know that sightings are as easy as heading to the beach. Since you need to go early for the best sightings, you get the extra advantage of finding a prime parking spot during the busy summer months. Depending on the habitat along your coast, you can expect to see some form of sandpipers, plovers and many other shorebirds. If you are lucky, herons and egrets may be in your area as well.

If you live near marshes or flooded areas, you are probably sick of mosquitoes and the like. The good news is you are in prime birding land. Where there are bugs, there are birds galore. You can expect to see species such as bitterns, blackbirds, wrens, sparrows, flycatchers and warblers. Just make sure you take the bug repellant with you!

As an aside, there are some man made areas that are excellent for birding. If you live near a dam, winter viewing can be excellent. For non-migratory birds, the flowing water around dams is an attraction.

Finally, there is one thing you can do when all else fails. Just get out there and start looking around. About the author:

Rick Chapo is with Nomad Journals - makers of bird watching journals.

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