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Putting Nature to the Test

How natural instincts of the budgerigar affects our exhibition type.

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A Visit to the Emerald Budgerigar Stud

Exhibition budgerigars have been an important part in the lives of Eileen and John Hall for about 40 years.

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Slaughter Advice from Experience

Younger hens can be risked more easily within warmer climates.

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Pairing Up Techniques

Techniques that experienced fanciers associate with the introduction of the individual partners to one another

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No Danger When the Chips are Down

Gold Chip sawdust is supplied to laboratories – where it has to be ultra clean and sterile when medical testing is in process. Added to that, it is great for us fanciers because it does not scatter as the birds fly – and furthermore, it goes further than many other baled varieties and is far easier to lift each bag.

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Sawdust – and the Possible Dangers for Budgerigars

This may seem like a trifling subject to some – but it is so important. In my case, it has been a cause of concern as I have lost a few 100% fit adults – found dead on the breeding cage floor for no reason at all that I could fathom.

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The Dicavalli Stud – Henry George

Henry George lives with his wife, Diane in a stunning area just north of Brisbane in Queensland. He is arguably one of Australia’s pre-eminent budgerigar breeders and his results at national level are second to none. For the record, Henry was the driving force to get 4500 birds into Australia from the UK so many years ago and the leader of the first syndicate.

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Thoughts on Nesting Boxes – Ancient and Modern

It was not long before I realised that breeders were, like myself, having many problems, particularly when trying to retrieve the box for inspection, unhooking it, then seeing the hen, or the pair, dashing around and trying not to drop the box with one hand. Needless to say, at best, the eggs were scattered all over the place and many times damaged.

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Concentrate on Quality Initially – Not Colour

As you gain experience, ask questions all the time. Many beginners feel they are being silly at a meeting of their chosen club, asking basic questions. Do not hold back – nobody minds especially any lecturers who feed off such questions and thrive on them.

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Breeding Pairs – Go or Stay – Artificial Lighting

Remove any eggs that you do not want to transfer, but leave the box open for a day. After a day close off the nest box entrance. Allow the pair to adjust to the new scene for another 2 days. Then remove them to a stock cage along with others similarly affected, but make sure the pair are close together.

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Every One Counts

There is no doubt that the start to any season is the most difficult. I can tell that the birds are ready to breed by looking at the behaviour of the hens as well as their condition. All my flights have the sexes mixed year round. This is because the current year stock learn their sexual habits very early. If you keep the big hens separate they just sit in the flights and get overweight with predictable poor results. Mix them and keep them active.

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Timber Value Affects Fanciers

Forestry owners have seen their woodlands increase in value by two and a half times since 2006 owing to rising timber prices and a market that outstrips supply.

This is why anything made of wood for the hobby – be it cages, show cages, nest boxes and aviaries of all kinds – has suffered directly from these world wide increases. Manufacturers are all affected so such prices have to be passed on to even make a reasonable profit for any labour involved.

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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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