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Lovebirds, Cockatiels and Budgerigars

Parrots magazine issue 156

Lovebirds, Cockatiels and Budgerigars - a perfect choice for learning the basics

Pam Ellerton explains

Every budding bird-keeper has to start somewhere, and what could be better than a colony of lovebirds, cockatiels or budgerigars? These are all species that are easy to care for, breed easily, are inexpensive, and will provide the hobbyist, who has aspirations of keeping the larger more exotic parrot species in the future, with good basic, sound knowledge and experience.

But, never underestimate the fun of breeding multi-coloured nests of lovebirds, the endearing friendliness of cockatiels, and the wonderful chatter of a colony of budgies. Any of these species, will prove to be hugely enjoyable, and can offer as many challenges as your imagination will allow. I started out with a pair of lovebirds and ended up with 100, of every colour under the sun, and all eight species, so I should warn novices that this hobby is extremely addictive!

But, when keeping birds in a colony, there are certain rules that have to be adhered to, and these apply to all three species: (i) pairs should be bonded before putting them into the flight, (ii) they should all be introduced into the colony at the same time, in late spring, (iii) there must be equal numbers of each sex, (iv) all nest-boxes should be identical, and placed at the same height, (v) all birds should be a year old before being bred, and (vi) nest-boxes should all be removed at the same time, after a maximum of two nests.

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