One of things that is different when you have a bird as a pet compare with other animals is that they need perches. Perches to birds are like ground to human. They will make them feel safe when they stand on them. Birds not only sit on perches to rest and sleep. They also wipe on them to clean their beak after eating, grip on them to polish their nails, and chew on them to keep their beaks in good shape. We all know perches are important for our birds, but for new bird owners, sometimes it is easy to get confused of what type of perches should they get for their new feathered babies. While. usually when you buy a bird cage, it will come with one or sometimes a few dowel perches. The question is that are the dowel perches good enough for our birds? The simple answer is, NO. The main reasons we don’t recommend dowel perch is that the surface of the dowel perch is usually very smooth, so it will be too slippery for birds to sit on, and the unified thickness on the whole perch will cause the sore feet if the birds sit on it for long time. Imagine when the birds are living in the wild, there is no way they will sit on one type and one size of perch for life. They will sit on perches with different sizes and textures to keep their feet relaxed. So in this blog article, we will introduce five different types of perches that will make your pet bird happy and healthy.
Natural Wood perch
Natural wood perches are the most commonly used perches for birds. It’s like in the nature, all birds like to sit on tree branches. One of the good things about the natural wood perches is the shapes of them are all grown naturally, and usually one natural wood perch will come with different thicknesses on it’s body so the birds are able to relax the feet when sit on it. Also, most of the natural wood perches are harder than dowel perches, so it won’t be so easy for the bird or parrot to chew through, which will make them last much longer. If the natural wood perch has bark on it, the naturally formed roughness on the surface of the bark can also help the bird to file their nails and beak. So natural wood perches are definitely recommended for your birds and parrots, but please make sure the natural wood perches you use is made of non toxic wood with proper disinfectant treatment so they won’t harm your loved ones.
Rope perch is another popular perch type for birds and parrots. The texture of sisal rope or cotton rope is softer than wood and other hard material perches, which could let the birds sit on more comfortably. In the cold winter time, rope perches are also warmer for the birds to sit on. Most of the rope perches come with flexible wire on the inside, which will allow you to bend it into different shapes that your bird like and easy to place it at different positions in the cage. Usually, the rope perches will come in variety of bright colours that will immediately attract your birds and the braided part of the rope is easy for the bird to grip.
Calcium is essential for birds. Calcium deficiency could cause the heart disorder and depression of birds and weaken their bones. Calcium perch is a fun way to let your bird consume some extra calcium supplement. Most of the calcium perches are made of cuttlebones and oyster shells that provides rich source of natural calcium to your pet birds. The calcium perches are usually made into different interesting shapes that will attract the bird to sit on. The gently rough surface on the perch could also help polish the beak and nails of the birds.
The flat or grill panel perches are not as typical as the stick shaped perches, but they are still very commonly used by bird owners. This type of perch provides a extra platform in the cage, so birds can have some different fun, such as eating treats on the flat perch and hanging upside down on the grill panel perch. Plus they allow the birds to relax their feet after they have been sitting on the stick shaped perches for too long. These perches are especially useful for disabled birds and parrots, such as for the parrot with losing toe(s). It is very easy for these parrots to lose balance when sitting on the stick perches, so they need the flat ones to keep them safe in the cage.
Shower and window perches are usually made of the water proof material, such as plastic, rubber, or PVC, and they come with suction cups at the end, so they can be easily placed on any smooth surface like glass, tile, or stone countertop. With these perches, you are able to take the bird to the shower in the bathroom, or let them sit on the window to enjoy some warm sunshine. You could also use them as portable training perches when you teach your birds some interesting tricks.
So, after introducing these 5 types of commonly used bird perches, I hope you could have a better idea of what perches you should get to keep your bird happy and healthy.