A BIRD’S CAGE — A HOME OR A CASTLE?
Once you have purchased your BIRD, there are other COSTS. You will need a cage, large enough for your BIRD to move about in comfort. If you purchase a pair of birds, space is even more important. Don’t be short-sighted here. Before you invest in a CAGE decide whether you should buy a bigger one as the bird grows, or start out with a larger cage. The cost of the CAGE is usually based on two factors: SIZE and ACCESSORIES. SIZE must be related to the actual BIRD as well as the number of BIRDS to be housed. ACCESSORIES means those things you will purchase to make your BIRD comfortable, neat, and happy. Don’t be persuaded to acquire more than you need.
Most pet stores and pet supply houses on the Internet will have the type of cage you are looking for, or you can also build your own (usually done for outside aviaries). If you decide to build your own cage make sure that it’s “peck proof”. Some BIRDS have the capability and the inclination to “peck their way to freedom”. CAGES made of wood may be only temporary.
Here are some normal recommended bird cage sizes as provided by exoticpets at ask.com
|Species||Minimum Cage Size (inches)||Bar Spacing|
|Finches||18x30x18||1/4 to 1/2|
|Canaries||18x24x18||1/4 to 1/2|
|Cockatiels||20x20x24||1/2 to 5/8|
|Ringneck Parakeets||24x24x36||1/2 to 5/8|
|Conures Poicephalus||24x24x24||5/8 to 3/4|
|Caiques, Pionus, Jardine’s||24x24x36||5/8 to 3/4|
|Amazons, Mini Macaws, Goffin’s Cockatoos, African Greys||24x36x48||3/4 x 1|
|Large Cockatoos||36x48x48||1 to 1 1/2|
|Large Macaws||36x48x60||1 to 1 1/2|
|Doves and Pigeons||see below||1/2 to 5/8|
Doves and Pigeons: Doves need daily flight time so should either be kept in a flight cage or given daily flight time outside of the cage. With time outside of the cage for exercise, diamond doves can be kept in a cage 24″x24″x24″ with bar spacing of no more than 1/2″ and ringneck doves in a slightly larger cage (for example, 24″x36″x24″). Pigeons are most often kept in outdoor flights but if kept indoors need a large cage and daily flight time as well.
Remember, if you plan to house more than one bird per cage, verify with the breeder, or other owners, that you are getting the correct size cage.
Things absolutely needed in the cage are water and food containers, perches, and a viable clean-out tray. Most cages include these items, but make sure they meet the needs of your particular BIRD, and yourself (so it’s easy to clean, and you have several views into the cage to observe your BIRD). You also may want something for the bird to peck or play with. A good hint is to observe the cages that you breeder keeps. See what’s in each, and maybe, more importantly…what’s not!
Written by Ron Lueth, Pet Guardian Angels of America