Tips For Looking After Your Birds During Hot Weather – Nigel Tonkin, South Australia

Many of us provide heating for our birds for the winter months but how many make provision for extremes of temperature when the weather gets hot. Australian fanciers are well experienced in dealing with these conditions. Here, Nigel Tonkin offers advice based on his experience.

These are things that I DO or DO NOT do and others may beg to differ – if so, add yours to this article at the end.


DO water in the early part of the day – I try to at around 0600 – 0700 a.m. and then again later in the evening at say 1930 – 2000 p.m. I have lights on timers so the birds can see from 0500 a.m. until 2300 p.m.

DO add ice to the water in the morning to keep it cool for a longer period of time.

DO check the water later in the day to ensure all containers have water.

DO change the water twice daily.

DO use open trays, glass or enamel – not galvanised. I am not one for upturned bottles as they do not allow all of the birds’ access to the drinking water when they need it i.e. only permits one at a time vs. a flock situation

DO NOT add vitamins as these can go off’.

DO add Aviclens or a similar sanitiser to the water

DO NOT spray the birds in the aviary during the day as this increases humidity and puts more stress on the birds


DO use electric fans to create air movement.

DO us air-conditioning if you have it but it can be dangerous if the power goes off due to the potential for a significant jump in temperature over a short period of time.

DO get into the aviaries early in the day. Once out stay out to prevent disturbance of the birds.

DO allow the birds to control their own day without interruption once you have fed, watered and turned on any items you might use.

Do insulate in preparation for hot weather if you are able to but only when cool.

DO use shade cloth to take some of the heat off the aviary.


DO NOT feed green food unless in the early morning or late afternoon and it can all be eaten in a short period of time


DO NOT feed soft food as this can quickly sour in the heat, I cease all dietary add ins.

DO feed sprouted seeds but take care as these can be a treat if done properly but a disaster if overdone and or seeds are not thoroughly rinsed.


DO check your birds both in the a.m. and p.m.

As stated at the outset, others may not do the same as me but that‘s okay so long as we are all aware of the need to use best practice to prevent disasters during hot weather conditions.



Filed Under: BeginnersFeaturedFeedingHealthManagement



About the Author: Nigel Tonkin is President of the Budgerigar Council of South Australia and has judged in the Australian Nationals, New Zealand, Switzerland & Germany. He is heavily involved in producing the new Australian Standard pictorial - working with Roy Aplin.

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