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Baby green cheek

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Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:36 am

Hi everybody,

I got an unweaned green cheek from a breeder who seems knowledgeable and taught me what to do. He answers my questions if I call since he knows I don't know what im doing completely. I would like another source of information though because part of me also thinks it is irresponsible to make it sound like anybody could do this. I don't think he will take the bird back and wean it for me.

so anyways I have a 4 or 5 week old green cheek who I was told to feed three times a day. I feed the bird at 6 or 7, 2 or 3, and 10 pm. The bird seems to empty its crop though im no expert and be begging for food like every 6 hours does that mean I should feed it four times a day instead?

I read that it takes 5-6 hrs for the crop to look empty and another 2 for it to actually be empty if this is true maybe the baby just feels hungry but can really go the 8 hrs

Also I don't know whether to keep the bird heated with th heating pad still during the day the house is like 80 degrees so sometimes I turn it off at night its been cooler so I have had it on. if I could watch the bird I could tell if its cold or hot but at night im not there. about what ambient temp can the heating pad go off?

thank you for all your help everyone I know its not ideal getting a baby and I should have researched better however I do feel like I can do this but its just going to be stressful and I have to be on top of it
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:55 am

I also have no idea how to really wean well. the breeder said to supply food like soaked pellets cheerios fruits veggies and when its eating those well cut out the midday feeding but how can I tell if its eating enough solid foods to cut out the midday feeding... will it just refuse formula?
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby Pajarita » Mon Apr 20, 2020 9:13 am

Hi, Isa, and welcome to the forum. I am afraid that your instincts are 100% correct and it IS irresponsible to sell unweaned baby birds because, as you have noted yourself, this is something that requires hands-on experience PLUS it's also not good for a baby bird to be by itself (meaning without siblings and/or parents). Unfortunately, and as much as they would argue about it, breeders don't really love birds - if they did, they would not use them as merchandise and selling young babies is better for them because they can put the parents to breed again and make more money out of the season (and that's only if they don't breed them all year round, as some of them do). But don't feel bad about making the mistake of buying a baby - we all made and continue to make mistakes when it comes to caring for our birds. The important thing is that you realized it and are now learning from it and trying to correct the situation. It's not the 'not making a mistake' that makes us good birdkeepers, it's the wisdom of admitting to it, learning from them and not repeating them.

Now, you will find many different opinions on this - they will talk about a certain number of hours in between, a certain number of CCs per feeding, etc, but, personally, I would feed the baby until the crop is full and do it every time it asks for it, leaving a single period of 6 hours during the night (I don't really have any true experience on feeding baby parrots because I am against buying babies but I have raised many wild baby birds and a couple of canaries successfully and that is the way I've always done it). The crop does not take 6 hours to empty, it takes much less than that -even in adult birds. Sheesh! adult birds take about 2 hours from feeding to pooping that same food so, obviously, it does not take 6 hours for a baby. Please make sure the baby does not go hungry because there are studies that tell us that birds that are under stress while still very young (and going hungry is not only very detrimental to their health is also terribly traumatic for a baby) remain high-strung for the rest of their lives.

As to weaning it, yes, eventually, the baby will reject the hand-feeding and what you need to do is to offer it two different kinds of soft food served warm and fresh twice a day (once in the am and once in the pm). What we, birdkeepers, call soft food is, basically, food that is the equivalent for birds of what we would feed a toddler: soft, nutritious and easy to digest. I always recommend gloop as one of the soft foods because that is what I recommend everybody feed their adult bird so it only makes sense that they start as babies and get used to it. But there are other things you can use.. things like polenta, whole grain cous cous, pastina, Irish oatmeal (you can also use the regular plain old-fashioned oatmeal but I find it too messy) cooked and mixed with fruits and/or veggies puree (as in the baby food jars). The baby should also have some sort of soft seed -like millet- all the time but this is not something you should continue once the baby is a juvenile. NO CHEERIOS!!!! No human cereal, as a matter of fact, because this are foods that were formulated for human consumption and the dietary needs of humans are not the same as birds. Especially in iron content of which humans need a lot and birds need VERY little. If you look at the nutritional label of Cheerios, you will see that most of the varieties offered have about 40% iron which is WAAAAYYY too high for a bird (they require a max of 2% and the excess -which cannot be eliminated naturally by the body- ends up in their livers and causes a fatal, incurable condition called hemochromatosis).

As to the temperature, I would use the heating pad and I will tell you why. When birds are sick, they need to be kept at a high temperature for their bodies to be able to heal themselves - and when I say a 'high temperature' I mean 90 - 95 degrees. I am not saying your baby is sick but all babies require a higher temperature than adults because a) their body mass is smaller and b) they cannot regulate their internal temperature as well (I am raising feral kittens right now and they have a heating pad in their basket 24/7 even though the temperature inside my house is a very comfortable 70 degrees). Parrot babies are born in cavities that do not open directly to the outside -which makes it easy for the environment to stay a constant, higher temperature- and mother birds lay on them to give them their body heat. Birds body temperature varies by species but it's between 101 and 105 degrees so, to them, 90 degrees is really not hot but very comfortable.

Let us know if there is anything else we can help you with -and tell us what the baby's name is - we all think of our birds as our babies :D
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 17012
Location: NE New Jersey
Number of Birds Owned: 30
Types of Birds Owned: Toos, grays, zons, canaries, finches, cardinals, senegals, jardine, redbelly, sun conure, button quail, GCC, PFC, lovebirds
Flight: Yes

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:39 pm

Thanks so much for your answer! My birds name is sprite.
Its very adorable! Not sure what sex. Ok good to know about the cheerios!
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Mon Apr 20, 2020 3:05 pm

Another question what type of bedding do you suggest right now im using a towel and paper towels on top of it and changing out the paper towel layer pretty often is there better bedding? Whats something the baby wont try to eat
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Mon Apr 20, 2020 8:21 pm

Just hope i can get this baby through adulthood and beyond.... Until then its def stressful i dont recommend
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby Pajarita » Tue Apr 21, 2020 9:11 am

Yes, the towel for softness with the paper towels on top to keep it clean is good (as long as you keep on finding enough paper towel rolls available).

And yes, hand-feeding and raising a baby bird is EXTREMELY stressful and difficult - even for people with lots of experience. This is one of the reasons why people like me, animal right activists, have been fighting for a law that makes it illegal for breeders to sell unweaned babies. It is considered animal cruelty for dogs and cats to be sold/adopted out/rehomed, etc under 6 weeks of age but there is nothing for birds which are much more difficult to raise than a mammal - which makes no sense, if you think about it. But the pet industry has a very powerful (read super rich) lobbying arm and every time we try to improve the cruelty or animal husbandry laws in USA, they put out this HUGE campaigns telling people to contact their representatives to vote no because, if they don't, the government will come and take away their pets - and people believe it... as if any animal lover would want to do that!
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 17012
Location: NE New Jersey
Number of Birds Owned: 30
Types of Birds Owned: Toos, grays, zons, canaries, finches, cardinals, senegals, jardine, redbelly, sun conure, button quail, GCC, PFC, lovebirds
Flight: Yes

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Fri Apr 24, 2020 10:33 pm

Hi its about ten days later my bird is still alive and seems to be fine... Its starting to only take 8 ml of food instead of ten per feeding but im not sure its eating enough without a scale any way to tell? Its starting to eat solid food apples brown rice and carrot is what ive given plus pellet and seed. But i cant tell if its esting enough to make up for the two ml loss in formula any ideas what quantity it should be eating? Thanks
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby Pajarita » Sat Apr 25, 2020 8:35 am

No brown rice unless it's Basmati or Jazmine and grown either in India or Indonesia, the US brown rice has too much arsenic in it.

You should have gotten a scale because it's imperative to know if the bird is gaining weight regularly when you are hand-feeding and there is no other sure way of doing this. Aside from this, you use the baby's weight and age to determine how much the baby will be eating at each feeding (babies that are younger than 8 weeks would take about 12 - 15% of their weight at each feeding). You need to weigh them every day, at the same time - usually, in the early morning so you can determine how much the feeding should be. So, please, order one at Amazon or some other place that sells them online. But, in the meantime, check regularly to see that there is enough poop (little poop means the bird is not eating enough) and its breast (if you can feel the keelbone sticking out a lot, it's too skinny). I do not recommend feeding any bird (well, except for chickens) pellets but, if you do, make sure they are softened with water before you serve them. And use something else other than rice for grains - rice is not really very nutritious... even the brown rice.
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 17012
Location: NE New Jersey
Number of Birds Owned: 30
Types of Birds Owned: Toos, grays, zons, canaries, finches, cardinals, senegals, jardine, redbelly, sun conure, button quail, GCC, PFC, lovebirds
Flight: Yes

Re: Baby green cheek

Postby isa » Sat Apr 25, 2020 3:09 pm

Oh shit well i bought lentils and quinoa as well. Ok ill have to get a scale... Until i cook the lentils and quinoa ill give pellets and millet. Ill cook those today
isa
Parrotlet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 16
Number of Birds Owned: 0
Types of Birds Owned: green cheek conure
Flight: No

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