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ima.snowbird

Keeping Lettuce Fresh

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Years ago, I learned a tip for keeping lettuce, and pretty much all produce, fresh, without spoiling, and thought as budgie owners you all might find it helpful.

 

Thoroughly wet a paper towel, then wring out as much moisture as you can. Fold it flat, and place it in a seal-able bag with your lettuce.

 

I have a salad spinner, and when I can get the energy, I tear up as much of my Romaine as I can fit in there, fill with water, and clean like you would fine washable clothing... then drain and spin dry. I just add the paper towel rignt on top, and put the whole thing in the fridge.

 

The lettuce is all ready for salads - for the budgies or me! Makes it more likely that I'll have a salad, too!

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Hi, just like to say that lettuce is one of the least valuable greens to feed to birds & can give them the runs...

The dark green leaved veg is far better. Including grass, roots & dirt......Just cos we like it don't mean its good

for birds.....Sorry I know they enjoy it,....B.J.

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I should have clarified in my original post, this works for all leafy vegetables.

 

BJ's comment got me thinking though that I should add other greens. But what? Spinach, collards, beet greens, swiss chard, and mustard greens contain oxalic acid that binds with calcium. In humans (ME) that creates kidney stones. Are birds not effected by them? I did see that someone said to avoid spinach when you are boosting calcium for breeding. But I'm nervous about it the rest of the time, too.

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Hi I remember during a talk from an avian vet that the oxalic acid in some greens is fine as long as it is countered by plenty of calcium.

He said they have to eat a lot of it for it to be a problem. He also mentioned dipping it in boiling water for I think 30 seconds and that solves the problem altogether. He was talking about silverbeet which a lot of breeders feed here I think it might be called chard over there.

Hope this helps.

Cheers Jenny

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Thank you, Jenny, that does help. We do have swiss chard, and it is high in oxalic acid. So could very well be the same thing.

 

Celery is one thing I never buy; I don't eat enough and it goes to waste. Well, my boy friend bought some for soup, and gave me the tops. That's one food they don't seem to need an introduction to! Gracie latched onto a piece right away. I'll check the faq's, but maybe someone knows off the top of their head... if I dice the celery stalks can they eat them, too?

 

I think they have come to know where the salad is, and anything in that dish is fair game. I saw them looking for it even before I'd had time to get today's salad out.

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Celery, plus tops are good. Corn on the cob, mine will kill for that, silver beet or spinach, some of mine love cucumber, beetroot tops and beetroot cut in half and fed raw (beware the birds looking like there's been a murder) whole carrots, tops soil and all if you grow them. just a few of my birds favourite's.

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Did it take long to teach them to eat corn on the cob?

 

I'm planning to pick some up Wednesday, but I thought I'd have to cut it from the cob. The store has them packaged 5 ears to a pack (days of husking your own, any quantity went with the summer weather, I guess). I was going to cut all of it off the ears, par-boil and freeze. I've read that they actually love the frozen kernels.

 

Diana

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Try a mixture of chopped up Carrots, Mung Beans, Snowpea Sprouts, Celery, corn and spinach leaves. They will go for this and is very health.

You can give this at night to breeding pairs an in the nursary cage. Just take out in the morning before it gets warm.

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Hi. Many well meaning bird keepers feed a good healthy food mix on a daily basis.

For instance bowl of mixed fruit & veg, seed, nuts etc. This may be necessary in a

commercial or zoo situation due to manpower or time restrictions.

This situation unfortunately turns food into a toy. With birds like little children picking

out the bits they like best & throwing out rest Thus they are not necessarily getting the

greatest value from the food supplied. At the moment there are experiments being

undertaken which have shown that the enzimes in some types of fruit & veg prevent the

uptake of nutrients from others when ingested on or about the same time. Itis suggested

that only one type of fruit or veg should be fed in any 4 hour period. This is more in keeping

with the birds natural intake of vit & min. In the wild no bird recieves its full compliment

of vit & min on a daily basis.,,,,,,B.J.

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Very interesting point BJ. Wouldn't giving them the salad and letting them pick what they want/need from it better simulate nature where they have access to a variety of foods?

 

I do see the concern that they'll only eat the 'candy,' (like millet, oats, etc.) so that should be limited.

 

Good discussion!

 

Diana

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Please remember that Budgies if given a good choice of seed, fruit and veg will eat what they want/need. I've seen Birds in the breeding cage throw out one type of seed while laying but eat it during feeding the chicks.

 

Some breeders do give the birds each type in separate dishes for this reason. It stops waste.

Edited by Daz
spelling

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I think it's trial and error. Good point Daz, I've noticed mine wasted a heap of seed in breeding cages until I added extra canary seed when chicks are tiny and hulled oats as they grew. Seed waste dropped a lot. When chicks were weaned they all went back to usual seed mix. I think it's a case of watch and adapt. :P

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I'm still trying to get my head around everything I learned at the vet's office yesterday, and I'll post more on that later. But I wanted to share what she said about diet.

 

First I want to apologize to BJ, even Romaine, though it has more nutrition than iceburg lettuce, is not that great for them.

 

The vet sells Harrisons pellets, and follows their recommendations. Per their website: "Offer certified organic vegetables and fruits in small quantities; select dark yellow meaty or dark green leafy items such as sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin, winter squash, broccoli, parsley, spinach, mango or papaya."

 

I bought the pellets. I'd been hoping to find either Harrisons or Roudybush, so that was good. No color added! I wonder if my boyfriends wild birds will appreciate the brightly colored stuff I bought before? I've already seen 4 of the 6 budgies scarfing them down, and my canary has been checking out the treat cup that I put in his cage. The 2 pieds are the ones I have not seen eat them, and they're from different breeders, so maybe the others had been exposed to pellets before and are happy to see them again? I will probably put the pieds in a separate cage for awhile so I can monitor. Twitter, one of the pieds, can't afford to lose any weight.

 

I also bought a mix for Birdy Bread. They better like it! I bought Sunshine Factor to make it with as recommended. Sunshine Factor looks like a nice supplement that I can mix with seed or pellets, too. $10 for the bread mix and $16.48 for the Sunshine Factor. The bread mix makes 1 batch, can be frozen and served in small quantities, and the Sunshine Factor will make many batches, and can be used as a diet supplement.

 

By The Way, I don't plant to follow the 90% pellet, 10% fresh, with seed as treats that Harrisons recommends. I'll continue with seeds and fresh food - pretty much what they want as long as they don't start getting fat on me!

 

I guess I'll find out if my oven works today. I'll bake them some bread and a sweet potato. As long as I have it on, I might even throw in some potatoes for myself! (I rarely cook for myself!)

Edited by ima.snowbird

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