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Tips to Encourage Bird Foraging Behaviors


Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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Tips to Encourage Bird Foraging Behaviors s your bird living the easy life? Unlike their wild counterparts, many captive birds do not have to work for a meal. Their food and treats are put in a dish directly in front of them. They can often eat as much as they desire, whenever they want. But the good life has its drawbacks. In fact, it could affect your bird's health.

Most wild birds spend the majority of their waking hours foraging for food. But while the ultimate goal of foraging is to eat, the actual act of searching for and finding food is how birds exercise, play, and stimulate their minds. Caged birds need similar stimulation. Without it, obesity, boredom, and undesirable behavior could result. It is easy, however, to encourage your bird’s natural foraging instincts:

Wrap treats in a coffee filter or large lettuce leaf and suspend in his cage.
Bury food beneath polished stones, wood, or beads that are too large to eat.
Cover his food dish with a paper towel or coffee filter.
Hide his favorite treats in the cavities of cholla, wood beads, or foraging toys.
Weave small sprays of millet, fresh fruit, or vegetables between the cage bars.

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Treat Cage with Toys

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