by Shelly Lane
Here is one of the first questions every new Quaker Parrot owner faces. This article not only discusses the best cage size but also bar spacing, cage finishes and other tips for choosing a good cage for a Quaker.
One of the first decisions you need to make once you’ve decided to add a Quaker Parrot to your home is what will be the best size of cage for your new Quaker. This is one of those questions that people are going to have different opinions about. I’d like to share some things I’ve learned over the years that hopefully will help with your decision making when it comes to the best size bird cage.
When I first became involved with Quaker Parrots, the wisdom of the day was to purchase a cage that is no smaller than 18x18x18. I believe the thinking was that this size would be sufficient to allow a Quaker to stretch and flap its wings. Of course, that would depend on how many toys and other items are in the cage, but that was the general idea. After living with these birds for a number of years, I agree that this size provides a sufficient home for a Quaker and personally would never consider a cage that was smaller than this.
However, in addition to the outside dimensions of the cage, it’s also important to consider the bar spacing of the cage. If the bars are too far apart, you risk your new pet getting its head stuck in the bars. I’ve found that a bar spacing of 5/8″ works very well. Further, most Quakers are able to live safely in a cage with 3/4″ bar spacing, but the key word here is “most.” Some of the smaller Quakers could possibly run into trouble with this spacing, so do keep your QP’s size in mind if you are considering this larger spacing between the bars.
Because your Quaker will be spending a lot of time in its cage, it makes sense to purchase the largest bird cage that you can afford. Since baby Quakers are rather clumsy, it’s ok to start with a smaller cage and upgrade to a larger one after six months or so. Also, adult parrots spend most of their time on the highest perches in the cage, so the height of the cage is far less important than the width and depth.
As far as the finish on the cage, I prefer the powder coated cages. Powder coating is a special process that is used to apply the paint to the cage. My personal experience is that powder coated cages last longer than other types of painted cages. I even prefer our powder coated cages to the stainless steel one that we have because dried poop and food are much easier to clean off the powdered coated finish than the stainless steel.
When choosing a cage, look for one with bars that are all the same spacing apart. A few bird cage models have ornate decorations that have proven dangerous for some birds. Also look for doors and food bowl openings that can’t be opened by your bird (or purchase quick links to lock them down). Quaker Parrots can be little escape artists, so try to find the most secure cage that you can.