Feeding Schedules

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Q: How often should I feed my breeding pairs? I get different answers to this question, and all the explanations sound logical. The three most common answers that I get are: once every two days, once a day, and twice a day. The person who feeds once every two days claims that he gets better production by entering the bird room only every other day. He claims that the less frequent the interruptions, the better the production. What do you recommend?

A: Supplying fresh food and water to your birds, if done on a regular schedule, is never a negative influence on production. Repairing, rearranging, cleaning and entering at times other than your regularly “scheduled” visits have a negative influence.

It is always best to feed and water twice a day if you have the time to do so. This mimics the natural habits that the birds have in the wild. In their natural habitat, they fly from their roosting sites first thing in the morning. They follow a loosely predetermined flight path in order to forage for food. Their flight path will lead them to their midday roosting sites. There they will take a midday nap. After the midday heat dissipates, they will begin to fly back to their nighttime roosting sites. Again, they will follow a loosely predetermined flight path that they believe will yield the food that they desire to fill up with before going to roost for the night.

Receiving fresh food and water is something that your birds truly look forward to. If you enter your aviary at regular times and confine your actions to food and water delivery only, your birds will look forward to your visit. Feeding twice a day allows you to enter your aviary in a positive way. This, in turn, allows you a greater opportunity to notice anything that might need attention, yet is not considered by the birds as a negative interruption. Feeding only once a day is a highly acceptable practice, and many successful aviaries do so. However, if you have the time and wish to go the extra mile to ensure your success, feeding twice a day is the way to go.