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Dear Parrots magazine,

Responsible Breeding

I remember quite a few years ago that breeding parrots was very popular as those who had just developed an interest thought they could be on a good money spinner. Taking eggs and artificially incubating them seemed the way to go and hand-rearing would produce lovely cuddly tame babies that would earn a good price.

But as time went by, these ‘parrot entrepreneurs’ found this breeding business wasn’t quite what they had expected, and rearing chicks was a 24/7 process, with much of it taking place in the early hours of the morning. What happened then was that the chicks would not be properly cared for with the result that they could be malnourished with ongoing problems for the rest of their lives. Of course, we must remember that there were responsible breeders who would get up in the middle of the night to feed and look after their chicks.

As the years passed, these ‘amateurs’ would slowly disappear leaving experienced breeders to take on the challenges. However, parrot breeding has turned another corner with the more popular view that producing good quality birds would be best left to the parents. Perhaps I was one of those early ‘entrepreneurs’, but would like to add that I consider I have learned the lessons, spoke and listened to the experts and can now produce healthy and good quality Ring-necked Parakeets.

I just hope the breeders of today take the responsibility of breeding parrots seriously when getting involved with our precious wildlife and don’t see it as earning a quick buck, rather than a labour of love and privilege, which it clearly is.

David Farmer, by email

 


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