Archive for June, 2009


More then bird food

posted by Gudrun @ 13:06 PM
June 29, 2009

bird foodI created this blog to write mainly about parrot nutrition. Though bird food is only one part of a healthy happy parrot life. So, every once in a while I will share information which I find important for parrot owners. 

Today I got the newsletter from PEAC (parrot education and adoption center). A good part of it is about educational events and parrots that need a home. Though there are always some very good information about living with parrots. In this issue e.g. they have an article from Dr Susan Friedman. Whenever I saw her speaking or read an article from her, I think, “doooo, can it get more obviously”. It seems there are many things, which are so right in our face, but we don’t see them. Somebody has to point them out to us. Thanks to Dr Friedman and the PEAC newsletter to bring this awareness to us, so we can create a happier life for our birds. Which means a happier life for us too.

To read the newsletter, here is the link:

http://www.peac-newsletter.info/QTR3-2009.pdf


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Sunday morning organic parrot food breakfast recipe

posted by Gudrun @ 16:23 PM
June 28, 2009

organic parrot foodSunday mornings I often make omelets for my birds. I wanted to do that today. Without thinking much I started to cut a clove of fresh garlic, throw it in some olive oil and started frying it. Then I cut a carrot, a piece of fennel and celery and added them too. It smelled so good and instead doing my usual Sunday morning omelet, I just added a handful of quinoa flakes and a tablespoon of organic goat yogurt. Some fresh lovage from the porch and a delicious Sunday morning breakfast was ready

I just wanted to share this organic parrot food breakfast recipe with you, because my birds, which always love their breakfast, specially relished this one. It became very quiet in the bird room and the bowls were all empty after 10 minutes.


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Arugola – organic parrot food on our porch

posted by Gudrun @ 13:38 PM
June 24, 2009

organic parrot foodThere is one green I just can’t pass by. Arugola!

Since I lived in Italy it became my absolute favorite. It is slightly organic parrot foodbitter and a bit spicy, like it would contain a little cayenne pepper. You find it as part of many salads today. But I can eat a salad made just from it.  After finding out that it also has a lot of beneficial properties, it became one of my most favorite organic parrot foods  too.  Arugola is a good source of calcium, vitamin C and K and beta-carotene and omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.

It is really easy to grow. I start with seeds any time during spring and summer and just let them grow. It is so easy to go out on the porch, cut some arugola, and ad it to the soaked All-in-One Mix or the cooked quinoa or whatever the menu of my organic parrot food for that day is.

 In case you want to know more about its health properties, here is a good site:

http://www.dolenutrition.com/articleDetails.aspx?RecId=137


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Which organic bird food

posted by Gudrun @ 14:44 PM
June 20, 2009

 

Before I go on with my parrot food on our porch, I want to share something; I spoke about with one of our customers. Do all foods we feed toorganic bird food our birds have to be organic?  Some people tell me they buy only organic fruits and vegetables of which they know are heavily sprayed. They think it is not necessary to feed all organic bird food and it is ok to use lightly sprayed, non-organic foods. If it would just be for the herbicides, fungicides and pesticides I maybe agree.

But there is another issue to consider, GMO. We get told there are no side efforts. Why then, are there so many countries, which don’t allow it? Because they think long-term effects cannot be seen yet. Our birds are living a long time. Do we want to wait 10 years or more and then maybe find out there are problems caused by long term feeding of GMO foods? How then can we avoid GMO vegetables and fruits? Very easy, organic foods are not allowed to contain GMO. So, I rather be save than sorry and feed all organic bird food.

 If you want to know more, here is a very informative site, which contains a lot of information on GMO:

 http://www.responsibletechnology.org/GMFree/Home/index.cfm


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Mints – Parrot food on our porch

posted by Gudrun @ 12:47 PM
June 17, 2009

parrot foodHere is another easy to grow, very tasty and beneficial parrot food; the mint family. In my pots you will find Spearmint, parrot foodPeppermint and Melissa, also called Lemon Balm. I have them in pots, because otherwise they take over the garden in no time. Which can be a good thing, because you can freely harvest the branches as a parrot food  and toy.

 Both Peppermint and Spearmint are considered to be soothing for the digestive system, to strengthen the entire body, specially the heart muscles. Melissa has calming properties. So, a bird that is on the nervous site can greatly benefit from chewing on some sprigs woven through the cage bars or bound into a bushel, hanging on its perch.

 The dried or fresh leaves spread or planted in an out door aviary will keep mice away, because they do not like the smell.

 I love having such wonderful smelling plants, which enhance the taste of my salads, produce refreshing teas during the summer and are so beneficial used as parrot food. And at the same time give the birds something to do.


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Be Aware of Pet Food Recalls

posted by Parrot-Friend @ 14:34 PM
June 15, 2009

birdfood

If you’re a pet owner and purchase your food from retailers, it’s important that you keep your eyes and ears open for pet food related news. To that end, one of the most common pieces of news that’s relevant to pet owners is a pet food recall. While it’s not a common occurrence, recalls do happen, and you need to be aware if they affect you or not. If you’re a bird owner, be particularly aware of salmonella outbreaks.

Salmonella, after all, is one of the most common problems that can occur within bird food varieties. This issue is particularly serious, because salmonella can actually prove fatal in certain birds. If you find that your bird is reacting strangely in any way to a new food, discontinue the use of the food immediately. If the bizarre or erratic behavior continues, take him or her into the vet as soon as possible.


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Lovage – parrot food on our porch

posted by Gudrun @ 13:45 PM
June 13, 2009

parrot foodAnd here is out second parrot food on the porch – lovage.parrot food

It belongs to the same family as parsley. But it smells and taste fresher and lighter. For me a real summer taste. When I was a child we had a huge bush in our garden and used it on salad, over vegetables and in soups.

Why do I use herbs with my parrot food?  Because I think parrots like variety in tastes as much as we humans do. Most people think of herbs as a remedy when there is a health problem. And almost all herbs have medical values. For example, the lovage, is used to relive digestive problems, have cleansing effect on liver and kidneys, some antibiotic properties”.

Using herbs in small amounts in our own and our daily parrot food can keep us healthy and prevent to have to use them as medicine.


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Sweet Basil – Parrot food on our porch

posted by Gudrun @ 14:55 PM
June 9, 2009

parrot foodHerbs are wonderful parrot food.

Hippocrates (the father of medicine) said already over 2000 years ago: let food be your medicine and medicine be your food. Many herbs are healing and nutritious at the same time. So, why not grow them at home as parrot food.

 Some people are happy enough to have a garden; others have to do with a porch, balcony or even a windowsill. But where there is a will, there is space for a few pots of herbs. When it comes to growing plants, it just takes a small space and some light.  In my next blogs I will share some of the wonderful uses of herbs as parrot food and toys.

 Lets start right away with the easy to grow, yummy, and healthy sweet basil. Every spring it is one of the first ones when grown indoors from seeds or to find at the stores in pots. I really love the smell. But mosquitoes don’t. So, there is the first great thing about it, it keeps mosquitoes away.

Excerpt from my book ‘What Happened to my Peanuts’:

Basil enhances the flavor of a dish, and at the same time supports the digestive system. It calms an upset stomach, is a good remedy for nausea and is said to prevent peptic ulcers and other stress-related conditions like hypertension. It is also known for its anti-microbial, anti-bacterial and fungicidal properties. Its leaves can be applied to itchy skin, insect bites and skin problems. Medicinally, it is mostly useful for its ability to reduce blood sugar levels. 

I always sprinkle it over the fresh parrot food I make daily for my birds. When the bushes become really full and large, I take branches and wave them in the cage bars or in the forage toys. Especially my cockatoo thinks I am doing the waving wrong. He finds always better ways to wrap them around his perches, toys, cage bars, etc.

But all 11 of my birds think it is a wonderful toy to shred and make a mess.

Lets start to implement natural,  if possible organic, fresh herbs into our parrot food.


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Weeds as parrot food

posted by Gudrun @ 16:15 PM
June 3, 2009

parrot foodSome weeds make a great parrot food. Do you have dandelion in your yard? If you don’t spray your garden, dandelion make a great parrot food and toy. Why should we pull out such a nutritious and healthy plant, which the settlers valued so highly, that they brought it over from Europe? The Native Americans realized its qualities and integrated it fast in their diet and as medicine. Many people are not aware that they have such a great parrot food in their yards. They usually try to get rid of it. I am looking forward to early spring to be able to start feeding the leafs. Dandelion leafs contain many minerals and vitamins and are very blood cleansing. I ad the leafs  to my fresh parrot food, pureed, cookes and hang them on the side of the cages. Later on the birds love to play with and eat the flowers.

 

parrot foodPlantain is another ‘weed’, the settler brought over to America. Then it was called the ‘mother of herbs’. It is not the banana, but these green, flat plants, which grow all over our yard and everybody tries to get rid of. Plantain, like dandelion is both a food and an herb. It is very nourishing and has many healing properties. I use it not only as parrot food, but for many other things. For example when I have a wound I simmer a leaf for a while and put it on the wound. It takes the pain away almost immediately and speeds up the healing.

 You can find more detailed information about these two herbs and many other in my book “What Happened to my Peanuts”.


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Finding the Right Parrot Diet

posted by Parrot-Friend @ 14:34 PM
June 1, 2009

parrot

The first thing to realize when you’re dealing with a parrot’s diet is to recognize how many different unique species of parrot there are. To that end, there are approximately 300 species of parrot, and almost half of those are species kept as pets within the United States. Typically, parrots are herbivores, but there is a very select group of parrots that do eat insects during breeding season.

On the whole, however, feeding your parrots from the plant family will be your best bet. The most common types of parrot food are seed diets, pellet diets, and cooked diets. On the whole, a strictly seed-based diet is considered lacking in many essential vitamins and nutrients. Seeds can be incorporated into the diet, of course, but they shouldn’t be relied upon entirely. Every diet, however, has its pros and cons, so it’s necessary to do some basic research. Figure out what’s easy and financially viable for you as well as what’s nutritious for your parrot.


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