Friday, August 8, 2008

Dry Food for Oriental White-eye by Jeffrey Low

Canary wrote:-
Just one question from me, as everyone know, pellet food serve as a main diet for most the bird kept in captivity (Owl, eagle & other meat eaten birds excluded). So very naturally, we must try to give our bird the best pellet food as possible. Among the commercial puteh pellet, which one is the best in term of nutritious & good for maintaining the puteh in good form all year long ? If someone have secret recipe are most welcome to share.

Jeffrey Low's post

I do not know what are the brands available to you over your side but you may want to consider the following when selecting one:

1) The brand should preferably be one that is already in the market for a very long time. It takes a long time to prove that a product is of any good or without ill effects to the bird. A new product is risky in this sense.

2) If possible, maker of this brand of food is a well known puteh keeper.

3) Manufacturer of this brand of food must be proven to be able to supply from batch to batch, very consistent product. Any inconsistency can be stressful to the digestive system of the bird. For this same reason, You should not switch brands unneccesarily and abruptly as it will cause great stress to the bird especially one that has been on a certain brand for a long time. Old timers during the early days, take great pain to ensure consistency when making their own mix. Not only consistency in the exact proportion of ingredients but even to the exact number of minutes it takes to fry the mix. When a bird is subject to sudden change of diet (or inconsistency) you will notice some of this :

a) going into molt even if it is not time yet for molting.
b) sudden drop in form
c) watery droppings.

Such is the importance placed on consistency of food that hobbyist will go to the extend of keeping some dry food from the batch they are currently feeding their bird, to mix into a newly purchased packet even if it is the same brand so as to minimise or lessen any effect should there be any inconsistency. For newly acquired wild birds, changing brands or some inconsistency during the initial period is ok because they have to go through the same stress anyway to acclimatize to captive food. (New birds during this period of adjustment to captive food should be given more fruits to help them during the transition).

4) The dry food should preferably be in granules rather than powdered form. Powdered form adhere to beaks sometimes and when the bird sip from the water cup, this will contaminate the water (it may take sometime before your next change of water). There is also a possibility that some powdered food may irritate the nose or eyes (some birds got bad feeding habit and like to stir and dig into the cup). It is also much easier for the bird to pick up granules one by one than to grab a mouthful of powder and try to swallow it, inevitably dropping some over the cage floor or the surrounding area under the cage.

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