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            Amazon parrots are highly intelligent birds, very outgoing and renowned talkers. They adapt well to captivity, adjusting easily to their cage or aviary. Amazons require a great deal of mental stimulation. Without the proper attention, social interaction and toys, an Amazon parrot is prone to behavioral problems. People who are willing to devote a considerable amount of time to their parrots will have a delightful companion pet for many decades.

            Biological Facts

            • Over 30 Amazona species described
            • Those commonly seen in practice include
              • Blue-fronted Amazon (Amazona aestiva)
              • Orange-winged Amazon (Amazona amazonica)
              • Double Yellow-headed Amazon (Amazona oratrix)
              • Yellow-naped Amazon (Amazona auropalliata)
              • Red-lored Amazon (Amazona autumnalis)
              • White-fronted Amazon (Amazona albifrons)
            • Young Amazon parrots have a gray-brown iris. This changes within 2-3 years to a red, red-orange, or chestnut-brown. After that age it is very difficult to determine an Amazon’s age.
            • Weight: 350-600 gm
            • Sexual maturity: 4-6 years
            • Males and females look alike in most cases. A simple blood test can determine the gender of your bird
            • Avg. life span: 40-50 years
            • Maximum recorded life span: 80+ years
            • Origins: Central and South America, Islands of the Caribbean

            Behavior

            • Highly intelligent and curious; Amazons love to explore their surroundings
            • Considered by many to be the most trainable of all parrots
            • Have the capacity to learn a large vocabulary
            • Tamed birds readily adapt to new surroundings and activities; expose early to daily activities in your household as well as to other pets
            • Need environmental enrichment, interesting toys, and foraging exercises to reduce the chance of behavioral problems.
            • Can be very noisy and destructive

            Diet

            • Amazons in the wild feed on a variety of seeds, fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
            • Seed-based diets are not recommended as they permit pet birds to select an imbalanced diet from what is offered.
            • Formulated diets (“pellets” or “crumbles”) provide more complete and balanced nutrition, do not allow selective feeding, and should comprise about 75% of the diet
            • Dark leafy greens, vegetables, and fruits can make up 20-25% of diet
            • Treats should be limited to only 5% of the diet
            • Clean, fresh water should be provided daily

            Environment

            • Enclosures should be as large as possible, such that the bird is able to fully extend it’s wings and flap without touching the cage walls
            • Cage should be clean, secure, safe and constructed of durable, non-toxic materials
            • Perches should be of variable widths, heights, and textures. Also provide a concrete perch to help to maintain the toenails.
            • Avoid placing perches directly over food or water to prevent contamination
            • Access to natural light is preferred
            • Avoid drafty areas.
            • Parrots should stay in their cage or a “bird safe” room when they are not under direct supervision.
            • Birds with unrestricted access to the home are at risk for accidents such as toxin ingestion, electrocution, pet attacks, and drowning.

            Preventive Care

            • Physical examinations every 6-12 months
              • Consult a veterinarian with experience in avian medicine if you have any questions or concerns about your bird’s health.
            • Annual fecal examination for parasites, yeast, and bacteria
            • Vaccination for Polyomavirus, as directed by your veterinarian
            • Routine blood testing
            • Wing, nail trimming as needed

            Common Medical Disorders

            • Obesity
            • Atherosclerosis
            • Respiratory infections
            • Discolored feathers (hepatopathy or malnutrition)
            • Foot necrosis
            • Chlamydiosis (rhinitis, sinusitis, enteritis)
            • Fatty liver disease
            • Papillomatosis
            • Chronic sinus infection
            • Egg-binding

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