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Solar schedule for non morning people

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Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby baldeagle » Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:04 am

I have a question re's solar schedule and thought I'd start another thread.

As I work from home and I am naturally a night owl (maybe I should be looking at adopting an owl?) I tend to awaken fairly late - 8-9pm most mornings. I'm wondering if this conflicts with keeping birds on a solar schedule?

If I were to adopt two parrots they'd be in their own room when it's dark. I think it'd be fairly easy to get an electric blackout blind that operates on a schedule so that it closes just after sunset and opens before sunrise.

As I understand it -- from reading posts on here -- birds need to be exposed to sunset and sunrise wavelengths whilst ensuring that it remains dark (no stray light from cars, etc.) during night time.

Would this work? Would they need feeding when they awaken? Also the room I'd intend to keep them in would be next to my bedroom! Maybe sleeping in when they are making a load of noise at first light would be difficult ... :lol:
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby Pajarita » Wed Jul 03, 2019 8:56 am

Well, if there are no lights coming through the window, you can just leave the drapes, blinds or whatever off so they wake up with dawn and go to bed with dusk and just put the artificial lights (ceiling fixture with full spectrum lights) on timers (that's what I used to do when I lived in Pennsylvania because the house was in the middle of a forest so there were no lights anywhere). And, depending on the species and always with the right care, there are amazons that are very quiet (the Bluefronts are a bit more noisy, in my opinion) but even the ones that make morning and evening calls are not THAT loud or persistent with them (just a couple and they call it a day). I have a yellow front that talks and sings in the early morning but whether this would be bothersome to you, I don't know (I love it and laugh like a loon with her antics because she loves to sing TRA LA LA but she can't follow a tune if her life depended on it :lol: )

Only thing is, yes, you need to feed them at dawn but it would only be a hardship in the summer (when it's a hardship for everybody, I think, because I always wake up on my own at dawn but getting up before 5 am is hard even or me). In the winter, feeding them at 8 am would be just fine. Maybe you can leave the food prepared the night before, get up, give it to them and go back to sleep - my husband can do that, I can't - once I get up, I am up.
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby baldeagle » Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:19 pm

The only real light coming through the window would be from lights in other rooms reflecting out and back through the bedroom window. This can be quite significant - but I guess it's something under my control.

It seems do-able, particularly if the food is prepared, and I could keep a small fridge in the bird room.

I think listening to an amazon parrot singing badly early in the morning would be hilarious.

What do you recommend in terms of full-spectrum light? And if they are out of their cage all day, would there need to be additional lights above their play gyms/java stands, etc?

Also in terms of feeding, I assume leaving a bowl of pellets in the cage is not ideal? I have seen some bird owners suggest feeding pellets for one meal and then fresh produce for their other meal.
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby Pajarita » Thu Jul 04, 2019 9:07 am

You have to be careful with full spectrum lights because, at least here in the States, the industry is unregulated and the manufacturers can claim things that are not true so they call their lights full spectrum, Day Light, Natural Light or whatever that implies something that resembles the natural light of the sun when, in reality, it does not - AT ALL! So, what you need to do is find the specifications and it needs to be a CRI (Color Rendering Index - which is the degree to which that light projects colors more or less accurately with 100 being perfect) of, at least, 93 and a KTemp (Kelvin Temperature is actually a thermodynamic temperature scale but it's used for color because the bodies that emit light have all different temperatures and, because of this, the color changes) of around 5500. Of course, if you could find a light bulb that having these two specifications, also gives you a good, even spectral distribution, it would be GREAT but, here, we can't get that information although I am sure that the manufacturers do have it.

For amazons, you have to be VERY careful about protein and fat because they are VERY prone to hepatic lipidosis (fatty liver disease) so you can't free-feed any protein food or you mess them up. I've done research on parrots natural diets for over 25 years and have reached the conclusion a long time ago that pellets are not and never will be the best dietary option for parrots so I feed mine gloop accompanied by raw produce in the morning and a mixtures of seeds and nuts for dinner (for my zons, that means one tablespoon of a cockatiel seed mix (very little sunflowers and only the grey striped kind) with nuts - the nuts vary from batch to batch but I always have three different kinds so, right now, each of them is getting half a medium size pecan, one small almond and one quarter English nut. It's always better to feed the protein food for dinner because the nights during the winter are long and the body takes longer to digest protein so they feel full for a longer period of time during the night, AND also because they are hungriest in the morning so you want to give them their healthy food then (no better sauce than hunger, right?). PLUS, if you give them just a small portion of seeds/nuts in the morning, they'll end up having nothing to eat for hours and hours because they will fill themselves up with the protein food as fast as they can and not eat enough produce.
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby baldeagle » Sun Jul 07, 2019 6:42 pm

Thanks, Pajarita. So much useful knowledge. Have you considered writing a book on "parrot first" parrot care? It'd be really great to have all of your knowledge in one place.

This may sound naive, but what do you mean by 'free feeding'? Does this mean leaving a bowl of food in the cage all the time, or feeding ad hoc? What is it about free feeding that leads to overfeeding protein?
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby Pajarita » Mon Jul 08, 2019 8:36 am

Free-feeding means putting out a bowl of food in the morning and leaving it there all day long. And the reason why free-feeding protein leads to the parrot eating too much of it (with the consequences of fatty liver, kidney disease, obesity, cardiovascular disease, etc) is that parrots are hard-wired to crave protein. Let me explain. Animals are made to crave what they need for survival (life, reproduction) but it's not easily found in their natural habitat. There are no natural sources of protein that are available all year round and in abundance in nature (well, there is animal protein but, with the exception of two species and possibly a third one and contrary to what most sites say about parrots, all the companion species are stricly herbivore and not omnivore - not my opinion, it's the way ornithologists classify them based on their diet) so nature gave them a craving for it and, once they find a source (say, for example a palm tree or a small grove of them that bears nuts - which is only once a year), they eat and eat and eat until they can't eat no more. It's like people with fat and salt. They are necessary for life so evolution makes us crave them and, because of this, we tend to overeat (who wants to eat just a couple of potato chips or just 1/2 slice of bacon?).

Different birds have different cravings - for example, canaries are passerines that are natural grass seed eaters and when you put out, say, a romaine lettuce leaf, a slice of apple and a bowl of canary seed mix, the canary will always go first for the lettuce, then for the apple and last the seed (why? because, in their natural habitat -although canaries are a domesticated species- they don't get fresh greens or fruits all year round, only during spring and summer, but they do find grass seed almost all year round). But, feed a parrot the same thing and he will eat seed until his crop is full and maybe later he will have a bite of two of the apple and not touch the lettuce at all. The whole thing has to do with evolution, their dietary ecology and what is easily available in their natural habitat so in order for us to feed parrots correctly, we need to feed them in such a way that we end up emulating the 'final result' of their dietary ecology although we use a completely different method for it (because, let's face it, nobody is going to deprive them of a certain kind of food for months out of the year). So, at dawn, when the parrot is at its hungriest, I feed the raw produce. Then I wait about half an hour or so and then and only then feed them the gloop and, because they all love it, they will eat quite a bit of it. But, because it's cooked whole grains (translation: high moisture as the grain becomes imbued with water as it cooks, and high natural fiber, little protein and almost no fat) mixed with veggies, it's not fattening at all so they can eat all they want of it and never get fat.
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby baldeagle » Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:32 pm

This makes perfect sense. Thanks.

If only salad was the deficient substance in humanoid diets, instead of fat/sugar/salt...
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Re: Solar schedule for non morning people

Postby Pajarita » Sat Jul 13, 2019 8:24 am

:lol: Yes, that would be great, wouldn't it? But, in reality, if we ate the way that we evolved to eat (hunting, gathering, foraging) we would crave salads big time at the end of the winter. If you read historical accounts of, say, the pioneers in USA or the sailors in the UK in the 1600 and 1700's, you will find that the cravings for fresh produce can be very real (that's why sailors were called limeys :D )
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 15423
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
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