African Grey

The African Grey is an amazing bird which hails from the wilds of Africa. Revered for their beauty, personality and intelligence, African greys have come to be a popular addition to any family that wishes to co-exist with them. There are two popular subspecies of african greys, the congo and the timneh. Timneh greys are smaller then congos and do not have the vibrant red-tail color of the congo. Timneh are also much less expensive then congos, but still make fine companions.

Talking ability:

African Grey is excellent talkers.

Life Span:

You can expect a healthy African grey to live around 45-50 years or even longer with good nutrition and care.

Sexing:

Monomorphic / Dimorphic Surgical or DNA sexing is usually necessary.

The Incubation Period:

They will lay usually 3 or 4 eggs, and the incubation period is approximately 28 days, with eggs being laid at 2 or 3 day intervals.

Breeding:

To breed African Grey, you will need to acquire a true pair and identify the sex of your birds before you set them up. You can do this with DNA sexing. All breeding birds should be DNA sexed.

Food:

Seed, soaked or sprouted seed: We suggest seeds & soaked or sprouted seed for successful breeding.

Tree Branches:

Leafy live branches from non-toxic native trees and shrubs can be placed into the aviary for the birds to chew. When available, nectar filled flowers on the plants will be appreciated by the birds. Natural branches of various diameters, and placed at various angles, can be used for perches. Branches can be placed in a near vertical position and many of the birds will practice their acrobatic acts on these near vertical branches and ropes. These natural perches may be chewed by the birds and may need to be replaced regularly.

Calcium:

Calcium supplements are available in liquid and powder form and added to the wet feed mixture, as required especially prior to breeding season. Veterinary advice should be obtained to ascertain if your birds require mineral and or vitamin supplements, and this includes calcium, as excess levels can be detrimental to a bird's health. Adding extra calcium to a bird's diet may be of little or no value unless the bird does daily flying or exercise. Calcium is usually absorbed in response to a physical demand such as exercise or lots of flying.

For a hen to absorb an adequate amount of calcium prior to breeding, it is preferable to give the breeding bird access to an aviary prior to the start of the breeding season. The aviary should give the birds the exercise required to obtain optimal fitness for a good breeding season.

Water:

Clean fresh water must be available at all times. Some birds bathe in the drinking water. Others like Asiatic parrots will not bathe in their drinking water so provision may have to be made for a second water bowl. There are a number of automatic and semi-automatic watering systems now on the market as well as "home made" systems that are used successfully both in outdoor aviaries and indoor rooms. When the dry mix is not mixed with water and is fed as a separate dry food, the birds will then drink from the water bowl and leave some of the food in the water. Regular thorough cleaning of the water bowl is essential.

Sunlight & Vitamin D:

With aviaries having fully covered roofs, care must be taken to ensure no deficiency occurs.

Mineral & vitamin supplements (including calcium):

Keep in mind with supplements, the correct dose rate you should get good results, but, if more than the prescribed dose is administered, it could be toxic or even fatal to the birdís and or the babies. Seek advice from a veterinarian before adding these items to a bird's diet.