Domesticated Birds – Interesting Facts and History!

Domesticated birds have been popular as pets for more than 4000 years dating back to the time of the ancient Egyptians. Even today there appeal as companions to humans spans the globe.

The talking abilities of parrots enchants there owners, even one’s living in stylish apartments in New York, Paris and London to tribes people living in scattered village communities across the Amazon basin or in the rain forests of West Africa.

Why Do We Love Keeping Domesticated Birds?

When the European settlers arrived in Australia in the 1700s they started to keep one of the smaller native parakeets as pets. Since then, these birds, better known as budgerigars, have become the most widely kept pet birds in the world.

domesticated birdsHowever, it is not only a parakeets power of mimicry that have attracted people to keeping birds as companions, but also there loving and cute characters.

The song of the canary was responsible for the introduction of these rather plain-colored, greenish finches to Europe in the late 1400s, from the Canary Islands off the west coast of Africa. Now, domestic canaries possess singing abilities that are vastly superior to those of there wilder relatives.

Canaries since have also evolved into birds displaying a wide range of colors, and many distinctive varieties have been developed by breeders which are popular in bird shows and exhibitions.

The exotic appearance and coloration of soft bills and finches underlies there popularity. They are a constant source of fascination in a suitable aviary, and the challenge of breeding such birds successfully appeals to many people. The same applies to pheasants and doves and these all thrive in a planted aviary.

Caring for domesticated birds has become a lot more straight forward over recent years, thanks to a better understanding of their nutritional needs. Special foods for all types of birds, ranging from hummingbirds to flamingos are produced commercially, with each one formulated to match particular needs.

This, in turn, has been valuable in persuading parrots to breed successfully.

Better general health means that if a bird does fall ill there is a greater change of making a full recovery.

Even advances in the field of equipment have helped to revolutionize the housing of birds, which also contributes to there overall well-being.

Many people start out with a single pet bird (like myself), and before long decide to construct an aviary. The exhibition side of the hobby often appeals to people once they have experience with bird breeding.

Local clubs, catering for all types of birds provide ideal ways to meet fellow-enthusiasts in there area, even to those not interested in exhibiting. There are also national groups that cater for particular types of birds such as parrots or budgerigars, and the larger one’s may operate through local branches. They also produce newsletters or magazines for there members that keep them up to date with the latest bird trends and shows.

Starting Out With Birds

Once you have decided to keep a bird as a pet, it is vital to consider the options before committing yourself to a particular species, otherwise you could end up choosing an unsuitable type of bird for the following reasons:

domesticated birds

  • may not settle in your particular environment
  • too noisy and the neighbors start to complain
  • if you have more than one type of bird in the same aviary, make sure they get on with each other
  • environment is either too hot or to windy

Having to find a new home for the birds soon after acquiring them is likely to be traumatic for all concerned, especially if it is a bird that is used to human company.

Draw up a checklist to help you to decide. Consider things like the bird’s talking ability, how easy or demanding it is to look after, its lifespan, its accommodation requirements and how destructive the species is. Large parrots need stronger cages as they tend to chew everything in sight.

Your budget is another important consideration. Suitable housing for any bird is always expensive and often more expensive than the actual bird. If you cannot afford both at the same time, rather by the housing first so you don’t have to house your bird in unsuitable accommodation. It may start to pluck its feathers out as a consequence, and this can easily become an habitual problem.

The prices do vary. A young, hand-reared parrot chick will cost twice as much as an older, untamed bird, but if you are seeking a pet, it really will pay dividends to select a young one that has been reared in the home.

If you are building an aviary, it may be worthwhile constructing it in a part of your garden where it can be expanded as your interest in bird-keeping develops over time.

There is also a wide price variance among exhibition birds, because of there pedigrees, and it pays to research carefully so that you can be certain you are getting the best value for your money.

7 Comments

  1. Hello! 

    I really wish that I could view your article, but for some reason I am only getting an error page that is offering instructions for debugging. Is anyone else having issues viewing this page as well? 

    Your article title however sounds very intriguing. Hoping your able to fix the bug soon, so that I can learn about whether or not a cockateel would be the right bird for me. 

    Thank you!

    Brandy

  2. A very well written article with lots of information about birds as pets. This will make people think when they have the intention to start with having a bird in their home or even try to build an aviary. Also the cost is to be considered and the needs of the domesticated bird as well. My father used to have a parrot and he was very attached to it and it even survived him. This shows that the lifespan of such a bird should be taken into consideration when you decide to buy one. As an afterthought, I am not so sure if birds in general love being held in a cage – for me they seem to be the animals with the most freedom being able to fly!

    1. You are right, parrots live a very long time if well looked after. I think domesticated birds are so used to cages it is all they know. I always let mine out to have a fly about the house, but they are always eager to return to their cages at the end of it. I think they look at their cages as their homes.

  3. Budgerigars are very popular as pets in the UK but I’m not sure that they are all kept in the best conditions. I’ve always been slightly troubled by the idea of keeping birds in cages, but maybe, rather like our domesticated rabbits and rats, they have long since lost the ability to fend for themselves in the wild and if they’re bred in captivity they wouldn’t know anything else. As with any pet, I think it’s really important to consider the environment you’ll be keeping the bird in and whether they really are suitable for your home and lifestyle.

    1. I don’t think domesticated birds will be able to fend themselves anymore in the wild, but yes I do agree that birds need to be kept happy and in humane conditions. You can normally see if you have an unhappy or stressed bird on your hands.

  4. Hi there Michel,

    When I was a little kid I had a blue little parakeet (I know everyone of them is little , but mine was incredibly small haha) and at some point it turned out that he (it was a he) was sick. He was born with this health issue that didn’t allow him to grow bigger (I forgot the name of the malady). The doctor told me that it’s incredibly rare for birds in general to suffer from such disease. And it died not very long after. I remember that I had experienced a heart-break then, I was so so depressed because I loved him. He was so so small and cute and…he was my friend, like…I was just a kid. 

    After the incident I’ve never had another one.

    Until I read your article I hadn’t had a lot of information about parakeets anyway, and now I can say a know a bit more. Beautiful article, I’ve always loved animals in general. It was a pleasure to read your content, looking to read more of your content in the future. Thank you for sharing this beautiful post with us! 

    Cheers, Alex.

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