As springtime goes into full swing, and we all have new bird cages to decorate, let’s shower our birds with new perches in April! We are not just bird cages at Bird Cages 4 Less. We have a great selection of perches in many different styles, and in every size you can imagine. So, invite your companion parrot to sit on your shoulder – his favorite perch – and learn something new about the perches your feathered friend should have!
While some owners have never thought much about their parrot’s perches, many parronts are aware of the physical and mental benefits of using a many types of perches in their bird’s cage. One particular point of contention is the use of dowel rod perches. This is the perch usually included with your new cage purchase. I use the dowel rods in my cages for my boys because they are easy to attach, easy to clean, and easy for them to perch upon! There are quite a few benefits to the dowel perch, such as being sturdy and dense, thus hard to break. The included perch is typically the appropriate size for your bird as they are matched up with the bar spacing of the cage, making it an easy fit. And, of course, it’s free! The drawbacks include the perch being slippery as it is a uniform, smooth surface with no variation; this factor may make it difficult for some birds to sit comfortably on a dowel rod. If it is the only perch used in the cage, it lends to pressure sores and arthritis due to the uniform surface. While it is up to you whether to utilize the dowel rod or toss it in the garbage, you have a few other options for wooden perches including full-length perches, and bolt-on styles!
A great replacement option for the dowel rod that comes standard with your cage purchase is a custom-cut dragonwood perch. There is a size to suit every cage width, and a diameter to suit most birds from African Greys to Macaws! Dragonwood is dense, strong, and resistant to persistent beaks. You’ll also be happy to hear that it is completely non-toxic, thus safe for your bird to chew on. Since the perch is made from a natural tree branch, it has natural bark which will peel and provide an engaging toy for your birds. The varying diameter and texture which will keep your bird’s feet strong and busy. Full-length perches are also commonly available in Manzanita wood. This is another great material as it is strong and naturally varied in shape and texture.
If you aren’t looking for a full-length perch, but still want one made of natural wood, take a peek at our java wood branches. These are each unique, so they’ll vary in how many perching spots exist. They’re great for birds who are likely to be adventurous and playful! For smaller birds, this could be used instead of a central perch that spans the entire width in order to promote flying and exercise. For larger birds, this can be attached at the back of the cage towards the top to provide a perfect vantage point.
I use a manzanita perch on the outside of my birds’ cage so they have multiple options of where to perch. Symon, my Congo African Grey (pictured left) loves to sit on the manzanita and will often bicker with his brother Murphy to claim it. This is Symon’s favorite spot to sing and have a dance party – and a frequent scene for his many Snapchat videos! The perch diameter is a bit larger than recommended to allow his toes to stretch, and help exercise his foot muscles. At 18 years old, Symon has some callouses on his toes from poor perches used in his previous home. Nowadays, he enjoys a multitude of perch varieties and his feet are stronger and healthier than ever!
How do you use natural wood perches in your cages? Post a picture in the comments and share your ideas! Pooling our ideas helps all parronts and parrots – who knows what one parront is doing that you never thought to do?
Make sure you take a look at our full selection of perches on our full site, and keep popping into the blog all month long for more information on all of the perches we have to offer!
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