Perching Options

Types of Perches - And Where to Place Them

Using multiple perches in your bird's cage is ideal.  Using an assortment of different types is even more ideal.

There are many type of perches: Wood, Rope, Mineral, Cement Pedicure, SandPaper Pedicure, and Calcium. There are many other types of perching areas, besides the normal perch and should be considered as part of your perch assortment.  One in particular which will become one of the favorite place your bird perches and sleeps is a wrought iron bird rests.

Besides using multiple kinds of perches within the birds cage, be sure that you place them at different levels in the cage.  You should always have at least one main perch, which is what your bird will use most of the day and probably to access his food bowls.  Other perches can be placed at different levels and different lengths. Perches placed below the main food areas, will most likely never be used, so placing them higher in the cage is the way you need to arrange them.

WOOD PERCHES

There are many kinds of Wood Perches, Manzanita, Cholla, and Ribbonwood, which are the most common.  Besides these there are other, less common wood perches that are occasionally available.

Wood Perches can be made from trees you might find in your yard, but be sure they are on the safe bird list before using them.  

Also be sure that if you make your own perches, that they are made with secure and safe bolts on the ends.  Notched ends can also work, but are not considered to be as secure.  NEVER attach a perch with wire, as it is completely unsafe for even a temporary fix. 

Manzanita is the toughest of all the woods available, and Madrone is probably the next toughest available wood.  If your bird is a heavy chewer, manzanita is your best choice.  If a bird is young and you use manzanita, you can use sandpaper to slightly rough it up, if it seems too slick for your bird.  If you have a manzanita tree made out of manzanita and it seems too sleek, use sisal rope wrapped very tightly around the perching branches, and your bird will love this addition to his tree.  Manzanita mostly comes from Northern California, and sometimes available in parts of Mexico.

Cholla is a very soft wood, but totally loved by all birds. Cholla is an endangered wood species, so not quite as easy to come by, and can be more expensive. You can often find cholla wood filled with minerals or calcium which makes them even more ideal.  Even though a soft wood, don't quickly discount this wood though, as this will probably bird your birds favorite. Don't use cholla as a main perch in the cage as it will be too quickly chewed up.

Ribbonwood is a softer wood, and more easily chewed up, but also a very good wood perch.  This wood is mostly found in southern California.  Probably priced about the same as manzanita, but will not last nearly as long as a main perch in the cage.

ROPE PERCHES

Birds love rope perches as they are easy to hold onto while birds hang and play.  One word of caution would be to be sure that they are bird safe, meaning that they are purchased from a reputable company.  Birds "could" become entangled in the rope threads if cotton rope isn't used.  NEVER use nylon perches, as they will not break easily if they do become entangled.

One type of rope perch is the zig zag perches.  They are made of bird safe cotton rope and have a wire in the center that stiffens the rope and makes it possible to hold it into any shape.  So even though they are usually longer then your cage length or depth, you can flex them into a fun shape that your bird will love to climb around on.

MINERAL PERCHES

There are may type of mineral perches now days, and perches that are filled with minerals.  Mineral perches work well because birds love to chew on their perches, and mineral is a great thing to chew on.  The type of perches that are usually filled with minerals are cholla perches.  Because cholla wood is made with many holes, it is a great place for minerals. And because cholla wood is a soft wood, it is an easy wood to chew up to get to the minerals.

Mineral perches can often times be hung vertical as well, and used primary for a mineral chew instead of a perch. This works excellent and makes it fun and easy for your bird to chew on.

CEMENT PEDICURE PERCHES

Having a pedicure perch or a pedicure swing in your cage is the perfect way to keep your birds toenails filed.  They work by keeping the sharp tips from being shape, which obviously makes holding your bird much more enjoyable. Although pedicure perches might not be a "fun thing" they are more of a necessary thing.  

Using them in a place in the cage where your bird will be sure to use it to perch on, is the key to a successful pedicure perch.  Consider using it high in the cage, where your bird sleeps, or in front of a food bowl.  If it isn't where he will perch on it, it will not help keep his nails filed.  

 

SANDPAPER PEDICURE PERCHES
Sandpaper perches will work much like the cement pedicure perches.  They are usually made of manzanita that is coated with a type of sandpaper.  Either the cement pedicure perch or the sandpaper pedicure perch will work for keeping your birds nails trimmed.  The sandpaper perches might be a little more rough on the soft part of your birds foot area, but are well liked by many bird owners.

As with the cement pedicure perch as mentioned above, positioning is important. Again you will need to use it high in the cage, where your bird sleeps, or in front of a food bowl.  If it isn't where he will perch on it, it will not help keep his nails filed.

CALCIUM PERCHES

Much like your mineral perches, Calcium perches will give your bird much needed extra nutrients.  And as mentioned above:  Mineral perches work well because birds love to chew on their perches, and calcium is a great thing to chew on. 

Calcium perches can also often times be hung vertical as well, and used primary for a calcium chew instead of a perch. This works excellent and makes it fun and easy for your bird to chew on.

Calcium perches are made to chew up, so remember that it wouldn't be considered the main perch in your cage. Many of them come in fun flavors, all of which birds will love.  Don't neglect having one of these somewhere in your cage, either as a perch or a hanging treat.

 

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