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Creating & Maintaining a Winning Stud – Pierre Swart, South Africa

South African champions Pierre & Mija Swart share some breeding tips.

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Tails You Lose! – Part 1

You can breed a super bird with all the right head qualities, depth of mask and so on, until it gets to 5-7 weeks of age and suddenly it loses its tail feathers! It can be earlier or later. The bird is what I have always thought – a borderline French Moult victim. The reasoning is that the tails are the longest feathers in the budgerigar body, and thus require a perfectly nutritious metabolism to sustain these feathers soundly to full growth and permanence, until the first normal moult.

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Megabacterial Infection

Weight loss over a prolonged period is consistent with Megabacterial infection. Megabacteria as a secondary disease related to immune suppression. So we have to look for another primary infection which may be a genetic weakness, but more often inherent Polyomavirus infection and / or stress related psittacosis.

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Budgerigar Health Part 2 of 5 – Medicine Selection

Sick birds are given their best chance of being saved by adding an appropriate medicine into the ER/Quik Gel formula and administering it directly by crop needle.

At the same time, whilst waiting for the final outcome of veterinary tests, adding Quik Gel to the drinking water may temporarily protect healthy in-contact birds.

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Basic Terminology

When a beginner first attends a Club Meeting or an Exhibition, he/she, sees or hears references to all manner of features, colours and descriptions applicable to the budgerigar which appear totally confusing. What are buffs? What are runners and for that matter what are splits?

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Preparing to Breed

In the last 6 weeks I have been working to get the aviary “winterised”. A very cold one by UK standards is forecast. So, having a cedarwood exterior, it needs treating every three years without fail. That has resulted in it still being as good today as it was when I purchased it in 1971. It would be massively expensive to replace as it covers 1200 square feet (110 sq metres).

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French Moult and Why You Get It

I am one of those breeders who believe in the old fashioned tried and tested methods of feeding. When it comes to feeding, it is THE vital factor to success. If it (the feeding) is out of balance by the smallest amount and by that I mean it is changed frequently and has an absence of essential vitamins to support the seed input, then failure will result in the number of chicks bred and FM will arise easily because YOU have allowed to do so!!

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