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Dear Parrots magazine,

Is all the zinc that bad?

Over the years I have read a lot about zinc and its dangers to our birds, but am still puzzled and confused.

I was at a meeting some years ago and the avian vet who was there said zinc can be very harmful to our birds and in some cases can cause death. Naturally, this was quite frightening as I have several aviaries with galvanised wire that the birds often climb on. I would have thought if zinc was that bad, why do bird keepers build their aviaries using galvanised weldmesh.

I also know many hobbyists who use a lot of zinc plated utensils and feeding pots and am unaware of any problems. Of course, we all suffer with deaths of our birds from time to time and often do not know the causes unless with a post mortem. Could some deaths have been caused by zinc poisoning?
It would be good if we could have a detailed article from an avian vet to explain the issues that surround potential hazards of zinc.

Bill Watkinson, by email




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