Hand-rearing: Some simple basics by Tony Silva The breeding season has started. This is evident by the number of messages that I receive each week discussing issues that are being faced by individuals hand-rearing young parrots. This quest for information is the subject of this article. Hand-rearing is a rewarding, challenging, time consuming and frustrating…

Lessons in aviculture By Tony Silva When I was a kid, I periodically visited the now vanished Sedgewick Studio, a bird store owned by the eccentric Erling Kjelland. He believed in ´witching´– the process of sexing birds by suspending a pendulum over its head. If the pendulum swung back and forth, it was one gender;…

Hand-rearing parrots: some basic guidelines By Tony Silva After the essentials of proper bird care, the next biggest source of questions I receive on a daily basis involves hand-rearing. The types of queries typically suggest a misunderstanding of heat requirements, diet, hygiene and weaning.  Many aviculturists also erringly believe that all species can be treated…

I sat quietly on the ground, behind a short bush. The White-bellied Caiques Pionites leucogaster were in a dead Bertholletia excelsa sapling whose trunk had been broken about 18 feet from the ground by a larger, falling branch from an adjacent tree.  The scenario was typical. The fight in the Brazilian Amazon between trees is…

My avicultural career spans more than four decades. During this time, I have kept and bred a huge array of species, many of which have disappeared from aviculture or have always been very rare. These species have ranged from the Spix´s Macaw Cyanopsitta spixii to the Prioniturus parrots. During these more than 40 years of…

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