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ניסיון אמיתי ועצות 22/6/07

 


 

 

ניסיון אמיתי בגידול ציפורים ועצות מועילות לגידול 22/6/07

תרגם ברשות תומר ג. ©

True experience with birds Helpful hints about caged birds 6/22/07

by G.A. Abbate Ph.D.©

yטרם תורגם

ולדוברי האנגלית שבינינו, ניתן להצטרף לחוויה הלימודית בפורומים הבאים ביאהו:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ABBASEEDBIRDSQANDA/
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/COM_USA/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ColorbredCanaries101Genetics/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EuropeanGoldFinch/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/GPA101911/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/timbrado/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NFSS/?yguid=47202339

Meet my old friend and successful Carduelan Finch and Canary breeder in Coreggio, Reggio Emilia, Vito Bizzarri. Vito is the gentleman on the left with the white t-shirt next to Franco Gobbi, my guide and business associate.

Vito's breeding room is on the top of the fourth floor home (in the attic). I climbed I believe about 80 plus steps (poor old me). The bird room is located in an unfinished sort of an attic, pretty hot and very dry. Adequate artificial and natural light is available in his huge two breeding rooms. The cage set up that Vito uses in his breeding room is not my preference. Lots of work to clean and maintain those cages, but Vito obviously doesn't bother to clean too much and his breeding result is obvious, babies everywhere. He has nests of 4,5, even 6 youngsters being fed by their parents, including Venezuelan black hooded red Siskins, European Goldfinch mutations, other Carduelan Finches as well, and lots of Red Mosaic Canaries, and some other types of Canaries.

He keeps certain types of Canaries as back up in case a fostering of the more delicate species is necessary. However, I'd like to emphasize that at the time of my visit, in his adequate lighting but rather on the dark side, there were several nests of various Carduelans feeding their own youngsters. I climbed the 80 plus stairs to Vito's breeding rooms, twice, around the 24th through 26th of May, at the time that I was in the area. I may add that Vito had tremendous numbers of Carduelan youngsters and also lots of Canary youngsters. Vito has been a rather mature gentleman and retired for many years, he climbs those stairs several times a day. That is what keeps him in good health and alert. He goes in fields gathering seeding heads and vegetation for his birds. The key to his success in breeding Carduelan Finches, I believe is due to two major factors. He doesn't bother to clean the cages! Also, the gathering of seeding heads is a vital source of nutrition for his birds. He also feeds a very simple but well composed Carduelan Finch seed mixture. To his Canaries, he also feeds a sensible, well composed seed mixture.

All his birds receive a well-composed soaking seed mixture, which he carefully prepares and makes sure it does not go sour or moldy. He blends the soak seed with a simple, but well composed, unscented nestling food that he feeds a small amount, freshly made a few times per day. A sensible feeding program using common sense and a bit of filth, the success was obviously there.

Meet Mario Carrano, formally from the Bayway area of Elizabeth, NJ, where he had a very fruitful pizzeria and restaurant. Obviously he made a bundle of money? and he moved back to his native land of Teggiano (Salerno, Italy). Mario has called me on the phone in the past years boasting his and his associate's production of Goldfinches. He was exploring the possibility of exporting some of the yearly production of the Goldfinches. When I mentioned to him that sometimes European Goldfinches imported from overseas are available in bird flea markets in many parts of north America and especially in Florida, where personally I have seen European Goldfinches for as low as $20-$25 each. In fact, in one particular location, I saw an individual purchase Goldfinches, 20 for $16 each. When I mentioned these prices, he said "Oh no! Our birds are worth from 300-2,000 Euros each or even higher." I replied to him, "Good luck to you in getting this kind of money from the overwhelming majority of American fanciers."

Unfortunately, all over Europe, as I mentioned many times in the past, I have seen many European fanciers pay up to 8,000 Euros for a Goldfinch mutation. NOT ME DARNIT! I remember one time that a partnership or two purchased a very rare European Goldfinch mutation paying the equivalent of $5,000, and guess what? As they left by taxi from the Reggio Emilia exhibition facility to the railroad station, the bird died inside a comfortable carrying cage before they even boarded the train! $5,000 down the trash bucket! Well, I guess people have a lot of money, I work for my money and I work very hard, I have to be careful the way I spend it too.

Mario's breeding facility was the most photographic friendly establishment than most of the other places I visited anywhere in the world. The situation of the aviary and cages were positioned that the sun hit from the back toward the front, as you can see the birds look beautiful and it is crystal clear. Also, it is obvious that his birds are in a healthy condition. He lives on a small farm in the valley of Salla Consolina, in a luscious, green, situation. He has plenty of wild greens and wild vegetation to feed his birds. The seeding grasses were plentifully available and it showed on his birds. Unfortunately, at the time of my visit, his breeding program didn't start yet. His Goldfinches were building nests. Maybe it was the cleanliness of his bird facility that minimized the production of youngsters? Well, I will communicate with Mario on a later date and there definitely will be a follow up on his breeding program.

Mario's method of feeding is well coordinated and sensible. Practically all the European Carduelan breeders use a similarity of seed mixtures consisting of white Perilla, white lettuce seed, black lettuce seed, small hemp seed (unfortunately we do not have good, viable hemp seed here in the USA), a small amount of the following: Canary grass seed, canola rape, Japanese millet, flax seed, sesame, very small sunflower, rye grass, fescue grass, plus a few other seeds I could not identify. This mixture is kept before the Carduelans at all times. The wise and smart breeders make sure the birds eat 100% of the mixture. Most of the European breeders, or at least all the Italians that I visited, feed their birds soak seed especially when the parents are feeding the youngsters, they blend the soak seed with a good nestling food. I want to repeat that the filthiest breeders that use a non-aromatic/non-sweet smelling nestling food blended with the soak seed were the successful ones that produced lots of youngsters, including Carduelans. The spotless clean that use sophisticated perfumed nestling food, the only breeding result they were experiencing was ZERO, only a clean, spotless breeding establishment, it was only pleasing to the eye and to my camera.

In telephone conversations with many fanciers in North America, many lamented to me problems with their birds. Many experienced mortality of youngsters in the nest and already weaned. Some indicated mortality of adult birds as well as youngsters. This mortality has been happening in certain parts of North America. Evaluating the situations, in most cases the public water system was identified as the cause of some problems. Many water systems have hard water that has a high mineral content; the content usually consists of high levels of harmful metals, calcium, iron, copper, sodium, magnesium carbonates, plus many other minerals. Many of these minerals are essential in the diet of caged birds and humans as well, but in excess they can be poisonous, especially to young birds. Also traces of bacteria found in well water and sometimes public water can be harmful to the birds. Some other problems identified traces of bacteria and toxins in cultivated green vegetables and fruits. Personally, in my family, we thoroughly wash and sterilize everything we eat ourselves. My helpers and I sterilized everything that we feed our birds.

In personal e-mails, some have questioned me about the method that I feed grasses to my Gouldians and other birds. One mentioned to me that New Jersey is full of deer, which have disease-carrying ticks and can be detrimental to our birds. I heard that the ticks could be detrimental to humans and perhaps birds. For years I have been cutting and gathering seeding grasses and seeding weeds in fields, on the side of the road, on my property, etc. However, before anything is introduced in my bird room, it is spread on the top of a screen in my parking lot and all the seeding grass and weeds get thoroughly sprayed with a solution of 9 parts of water and 1 part bleach. We will let them stand and absorb the bleach for roughly a half an hour, and then we thoroughly wash them with a high-pressure garden hose. If there is any ticks or any impurities, it will get washed away down the drain. Well, I never experienced any problems because of ticks or bacteria in the greens.

If you are not certain about the quality of your water, you can buy the water pretty reasonably at Walmart for 64 cents a gallon or you can use a simple filtration system for the birds' drinking water. Personally, I just installed a pretty elaborate and expensive filter in my bird room that is supposed to remove all the impurities. We will see. In the last several days, because oh the suspicion of the quality of the public water, we have been filling three 5 gallon jugs with very hot water, we let it cool and evaporate for a couple days, we rotate it and sterilize the plastic container, then we add one or two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to each gallon of drinking or bathing water. I believe the vinegar will neutralize some impurities of the water and also be beneficial to the birds.

This is all for now. Lots more to come. Go view the photos on the Abba web site @ www.abbaseed.com <http://www.abbaseed.com/> , click on Euro photo, then click to each individual name, such as Carrano, Bizzarri, and others. So I hope you enjoyed reading this. Enjoy the photos.

If you are not a member of the following groups, please join and be part of the learning experience.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ABBASEEDBIRDSQANDA/
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/COM_USA/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ColorbredCanaries101Genetics/?yguid=472023\
39

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EuropeanGoldFinch/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/GPA101911/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/NFSS/?yguid=47202339
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/timbrado/?yguid=47202339

Best regards to all,

G.A. Abbate
 

 

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