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Dear Parrots magazine,

Cockatiel nest boxes

We have read Jim Hayward’s article ‘Starting out with Cockatiels’ and are concerned about some of his advice, particularly regarding the dimensions of a suitable nest box. I appreciate that he has taken the trouble to try and help beginners, but his ideal nest box for cockatiels could cause problems. It is far too small. He recommends 7 inch square at the base, many on sale are 8 inch square, both are too small. Our boxes are 11 inch square, quite a difference. The nest box needs to accommodate both the breeding pair, most will together, brood both eggs and chicks, and a possible 5-7 growing youngsters. His advice on diet is fine for non-breeding cockatiels, but not for pairs feeding a growing family. There is no mention of a good quality egg food to provide the necessary protein that enables youngsters to grow to their full potential. Wholemeal bread, moistened with water and a little soya milk, will definitely not provide enough nourishment for growing chicks.

We’re sorry to be critical, especially when Jim has taken the trouble to try and advise newcomers.

Jennifer and Christine, by email

 


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