What I would do different

For questions about finch enclosures (cages & aviaries).
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annague
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Re: What I would do different

Post by annague » Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:46 pm

Sally, I'm sorry for getting off subject! :oops: The idea of being able to design a near-perfect aviary is so intriguing to me -- I guess I was looking for a place to include ideas along with specifics.... don't know if that would also be another thread? :oops:
Anna

Lots of Red Throat Parrot Finches, Forbes, Gouldians, BCCB's, RCCB's, Owls, Societies, and BB Fires. Plus, one wonderful 15 year old son, one wonderful husband and two rotten-to-the-core Border Terriers.

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Sally
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Re: What I would do different

Post by Sally » Sun Jan 16, 2011 7:55 pm

Oh no, Anna, I just started another thread on those cages because they aren't really available anymore, unless you can find some used ones, so they wouldn't help anyone planning an aviary or a bird room. I think for most people who are breeding, they need a combination of aviary/flights and cages. While everyone is going to have different needs, I think we can all learn from others, take a little bit here, a little bit there, tweak it, and come up with a very good setup.
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annague
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Re: What I would do different

Post by annague » Sun Jan 16, 2011 9:21 pm

So, is this a thread where people can also talk about things that they did that they really liked for the aviary and other ideas for an aviary?
Anna

Lots of Red Throat Parrot Finches, Forbes, Gouldians, BCCB's, RCCB's, Owls, Societies, and BB Fires. Plus, one wonderful 15 year old son, one wonderful husband and two rotten-to-the-core Border Terriers.

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Re: What I would do different

Post by MLaRue » Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:49 am

annague wrote:So, Misty, how big is a big enough breeding cage (in your opinion) for the average waxbill -- say a Cordon Bleu maybe?


In my opinion the optimal space for waxbills is 4' x 2' x 2' this allows for real flying not just jumping back and forth on perches.

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MLaRue
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Re: What I would do different

Post by MLaRue » Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:59 am

annague wrote:I've often wondered if, in the optimal aviary setting, one can fix a way to feed and water with great convenience? For instance, using pvc piping fed into a drinking valve for each cage as well as a bath bowl -- and what about seed? Chicken farms use troughs and fill them up from the outside --

What about nesting? Is it possible to fix a camera system for each boxed nest and be able to access them from the walkway?

Cleaning the cages? It would be great if there were a way to design an aviary so that drainage allowed for use of a high-powered spray to clean the cages -- cages would have to be built so that you could partition off parts of them to clean and to capture, etc.


Anna,

In truth all these questions or many like them is what took me so long to make any final decisions with my bird house.

I keep using water bottles because I hear more often than not that people have the hardest time keeping water lines clean as in preventing horrible problems like pseudomonas.

All the feeding and watering devices I use are all easily removed since I can't stand not to run something thru the dishwasher to be cleaned. I can't clean by wiping something down - it has to be taken and scrubbed and disinfected. Water lines, tubing and seed troughs are not easily removed to be cleaned and you face using harsh chemicals in the water lines to keep them clean from horrible bacteria.

All my cages are taken outside and pressure washed after a pair is down breeding. Or every 3 to 6 months depending on who is in the cage.

I'm still trying to talk my husband into making the ideal breeding cages - he certainly could do it. :wink:

I can't stand the cages we buy from China for dirt cheap - as Sally and I have pointed out we make several changes to them and still we could make more...

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Re: What I would do different

Post by bluebutterfly213 » Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:48 pm

bluebutterfly213 wrote:Positively, absolutely, definitely have a safety cage on every aviary!
Ursula wrote:When you say "safety cage" do you mean a double door where you have a small extra space to go in before you enter the aviary?


:D Yes, thats it. I know a lot of you have your birds indoors, but for those with outdoor aviaries they are invaluable. I couldnt imagine anything worse than standing there watching a bird disappear into the wild blue yonder knowing that it probably wont survive :cry:
This is my offending aviary!
This is my offending aviary!

This is one of the newest aviaries just after we had finished putting it together, since then its had the wire painted black.
This is one of the newest aviaries just after we had finished putting it together, since then its had the wire painted black.

This is one of the new ones with the all important safety cage. I now have two of these, this one outside the dining room window for the gouldian cocks, and other one to the left of this one outside the kitchen window for the gouldian hens. The third one, arriving in a couple of weeks will have the safety cage on the other side, with three doors in the safety cage. One to enter from outside into the safety area, one to enter the smaller aviary and the third to enter into the aviary in the first pic at the furthest point from the camera.

Sally......Im from that area in England, Durham was a day trip for me when we lived in England, its one of the places we went to when we went back for a holiday, beautiful city, the river walk is stunning.
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annague
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Re: What I would do different

Post by annague » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:53 pm

Hmmm... so many challenges to overcome... :? I know people have trouble with psuedomonas (sp?) in hot tubs.

So, do you have a separate dishwasher for your bird dishes?
Anna

Lots of Red Throat Parrot Finches, Forbes, Gouldians, BCCB's, RCCB's, Owls, Societies, and BB Fires. Plus, one wonderful 15 year old son, one wonderful husband and two rotten-to-the-core Border Terriers.

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Re: What I would do different

Post by 6finchfriends » Wed Apr 20, 2011 10:37 pm

This is a wonderful thread. =D> I'm learning a lot so I hope more people will contribute. Some day I might make one of the rooms in our basement an aviary so I am very interested. However for now I'm having my husband make me some larger cages. The cage he is making me now is 3&1/2' x 2 1/2' &3ft tall. This cage will be for my 7 Societies after the babies are on their own and I can move the family. Would this be a big enough cage for a pair of owls? When I purchase them this fall I want to make sure I have my ducks in a row (or my finches) so they will have a healthy environment. I don't want to make the mistake of making their home too small.
Trish
8 adorable Society finch ~ 4 beautiful Gouldian finch
~1 Cockatoo~1 Sun Conure~1 Green Cheek Conure~1 Parotlet~1 dog~ many pond fish & a 7ft Red Tailed Boa, Little Niki

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Re: What I would do different

Post by G8love4finches » Thu Apr 21, 2011 11:28 am

You might want to consider separating sexes in your family of Societies....They will breed father/daughter or mother/son....Maybe a divider in your cage would be a great addition
...DeBBie...
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6finchfriends
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Re: What I would do different

Post by 6finchfriends » Thu Apr 21, 2011 11:37 am

I was hoping taking the nest out when I moved them would keep them from breeding but I guess a divider would be better. Would it still be large enough for them all?
Trish
8 adorable Society finch ~ 4 beautiful Gouldian finch
~1 Cockatoo~1 Sun Conure~1 Green Cheek Conure~1 Parotlet~1 dog~ many pond fish & a 7ft Red Tailed Boa, Little Niki

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Re: What I would do different

Post by Firefinch » Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:50 pm

Every time after I've built or had an aviary
built for me I ask myself this question and I'm always tweaking something for the next one.
A friend of mine who has over 50 aviaries was having rodent problems and his biggest regret was that he hadn't used the wire with the thinner spacing, which he was now slowly replacing the old wire on his aviaries with at great expense.
I thought I'd take a lesson from him here and have some breeding flights built with the wire with the smaller spacing instead.
I also laid down solid concrete floors so that the flights are completely rodent proof.

The problem is I'm not really sure it was the right thing to do because:
a) it makes it more difficult to view the birds through the thinner spacing
b) it will make it more difficult to sell the flights should I ever decide to because the thinner
spaced wire isn't really suitable for parrots so I'll be restricted to selling it to finch keepers.
c) I'm not sure how needed this was anyway as my dachshund is a better ratter than 10 cats and can sniff out a rat or mouse from a mile away!

So even when you think you're improving on previous designs, you may find that there's a trade-off!
I have a community display aviary next to the flights and this has the regular sized spacing and a soil floor which is planted with shrubs - it is much nicer to sit and watch the going-ons in this aviary, not just because it holds more birds but because they're so much easier to view and it looks much more natural without the concrete floor (even though the flights do have plants in pots inside).

That's maybe another thing I would have done differently - more mixed communal aviaries
rather than the single species, single pair flights I have now.
It would have meant less pairs of twinspots and cordon bleus (which have always been my favourite and I've housed them in individual pairs in the hopes of having success with them).
Individual pairs = more flights, more costs + more work feeding and watering.

I think that perhaps if I was to start again all over from scratch I'd go the route of a few very large communal aviaries instead and enjoy birds interacting together in a natural setting while having less work to do at the same time :)
There may be some however (like my friend with the rodent problem) that think I've gone about it the right way.
Whatever the case, I think my aviaries are an asset to me and perhaps the most important thing is to look after them well so that they can bring me many more years of joy and wonder!

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Re: What I would do different

Post by Brenda C » Sat Mar 01, 2014 7:33 pm

I made my gazebo into an aviary and have two curtain overlapping just inside the door. I can go in close the door and still be behind the curtain, made of sun screen material so the wind blows thru. I am working on that PVC idea.
A=aviary Zebra Finch
C=Crazy Zebra Finch owner (me)
H=Zebra Finch in house
R=Zebra Finch I am hand raising

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Re: What I would do different

Post by Jen » Sat Mar 08, 2014 11:41 am

Great subject here. I've been thinking about building an outdoor aviary and would like to start on it this spring. I would love to see photos to get some ideas on what works best. My biggest question is the flooring??? I feel like I need to keep the bottom closed all around to keep snakes and critters out, so how do you clean out the fallen seed, hulls, droppings if the bottom is enclosed? I've looked on the internet for photos and ideas, but haven't had much luck. Does anyone have sites that they've found to be helpful? Or photos of their aviary?

I'll keep searching and reading from this thread. Thanks everyone for great information and ideas!


Jenny

Gouldians, Red Cheek Cordon Blue family, Gold Breasted Waxbills, Fire Finches, Owl finches, Yellow Face & Red Face Star Finches, Lavender Finches, Society Finches, Canary,Rosey Bourke, Scarlet Chested Grasskeets, Cockatiels, too many Guineas, Izzy my 16 year old cute doggie dog, two spoiled kitties!

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Re: What I would do different

Post by TailFeathers » Mon Mar 09, 2015 8:49 pm

MLaRue wrote: I'm going to write this in phases since there is so much to talk about not just in design but in regards to the species of birds you keep as well.

Let me start with space regarding species.

As many of you know I have several different species - everything from Waxbills to the silly little Societies. What each species needs in order to be successful varies greatly. Societies are happy in a small space and don't mind huddling - in fact they love to huddle. I find 10 Societies on one perch stacked like a pyramid every night even though they have 10 perches. They don't require huge open spaces for flying, breeding, or conditioning. But the Waxbills do - not only do they require huge spaces for flying and conditioning but also require ample space for breeding. Gouldians, Parrot Finches and many other species require ample space for conditioning but not necessarily for breeding itself.

My bird house was not designed to allow for many breeding cages and certainly not for large breeding cages that would best suit the Waxbills. My birds have 24' long spaces to fly with them being 8' tall and 4' wide. The flights were split into 4 flights. My original thinking was females Gouldians in one, Males in another and the other two were going to be used for other species and juveniles. But remember we started this "house" before I seriously got involved with Waxbills. Back to my breeding cages... Originally I was never going to have more than 12 going at any time and gave that space in the bird house but these breeder cages are only good for Societies, Zeebs, and Gouldians not nearly large enough for Waxbills. Since I do not breed for quantity but quality I felt 12 cages was more than enough for a season. WRONG! You see I kept thinking my Gouldians would breed in the fall as they normally do and my other species would breed in the spring. Rotation at its best. Wrong again! What I am finding is that all my birds want to breed whenever the hell they want to and do it without my say so as I proved with my Gouldians. No nests... no problem they really don't care as they will find a way to breed.

So, what would I change to accommodate my species and breeding space?

I would have made the flights narrower or the building wider to allow for specific breeding space of cages for any species ready to breed.

What was my walk space between flights and counters is now lined with my normal 12 breeding cages. The corner that was originally designed for my normal breeding cages now has 3 large breeding cages on one wall and 2 large breeding cages on the other. But I was still short space for the large breeding cages - I needed 4 more cages. So they are in front of a window and in front of the aviary flight. Looks like hell and is unorganized looking and for those that know me - order is imperative for me.

With Waxbills when they are ready to breed you make room, waiting could mean a whole breeding season gone.

Take note of the species you are working with and if you have ample enough space for the required breeding cages. This is of course if you are going to utilize breeding cages and not your flights.

Hello,

Do you mind sharing photos and whether or not the aviary is indoor or outdoor? I'm assuming it's indoor. If so, you would've miscalculated breeding not because they want to whenever but because they are on a light with a timer, plus correct temp and highly nutritious food which is needed a few weeks before and during the breeding season?

Please get back.

Thanks

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Re: What I would do different

Post by lovezebs » Mon Mar 09, 2015 11:54 pm

Hello TailFeathers.

Once again, this original post is over four years old. Check with Sally, to see if this member is still on this Forum.
~Elana~

Linnies~ Canaries ~ Zebras ~ Societies ~ Gouldians ~ Orange Cheeks ~ Shaft Tails ~ Strawberries ~ Red Cheek Cordon Bleu ~ Goldbreasts ~ Red Brows ~ Owls ~ Budgies ~ Diamond Firetails ~ Javas ~ Forbes Parrot Finches ~

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