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In issue 309 -
When an Older Parrot Has Never Learned Skilful Flight – Complete Psittacine by Eb Cravens
In issue 309 -
Scarlet Macaws – were they really bred by indigenous people in the 12th century? Rosemary Low asks the question
In issue 309 -
Understanding the link between nutrition, hormonal behaviours and the avian endocrine system, Part 1 – The Holistic Parrot by Leslie Moran
In issue 309 -
The Yellow-eared Parrot – continues to expand its range in Colombia. By David Waugh, Correspondent, Loro Parque Fundación
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Disorders of the Beak

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Thomas Dutton BVM&S CertAVP(ZM) DipECZM(avian) MRCVS European Specialist Avian Medicine, RCVS Specialist in Zoological Medicine
Dr Tariq Abou-Zahr CertAVP(ZooMed) ECZM(Avian) Resident MRCVS

The parrot beak is a highly specialised organ and is constructed of modified skin supported on the maxillary (upper) and mandibular (lower) bones. It is strong and designed to withstand the incredible force generated by the muscles of mastication.

Beak disorders can have a wide range of underlying causes. Nutrition and husbandry are both important in beak development and maintenance. Poor hand-rearing techniques can lead to developmental beak abnormalities and is a common cause of scissor beak. Poor nutrition leads to poor beak development – leading to weak and sometimes overgrown beak tissue. Providing sufficient enrichment to parrots is important to allow adequate beak wear and reduce the requirement for routine beak trims/burrs. Traumatic injuries are the most common acute beak injuries with bites from other parrots being the most common cause. When they fight, parrots will frequently bite an opponent’s beak and feet. Flying injuries (window strikes) and bites from other domestic pets are also frequently reported as a cause of beak injury.

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