by Shelly Lane
It’s something that all parrots go through – that time of the year when old feathers are shed and beautiful, new feathers come in to replace them. Some Quaker Parrots experience one heavy molt per year, and others go through several smaller molts. Whichever is the case with your parrot, this article will help.
We are mid way through the month of August. The summer is nearly over, and school starts next week for the kids in our area. It also means that it is nearly time for our Quaker Parrots to begin their yearly molt.
Soon, over approximately a six week period, our parrots will slowly lose and replace the large majority of their feathers. While I’ve never actually seen an estimate of how many feathers a Quaker Parrot has, I can tell you that with seven birds this amounts to literally thousands of feathers that I will be cleaning up over this period of molting. (Oh boy, can’t wait! LOL) I know other parrot owners will be dealing with the big molt soon as well, so I thought I’d share some tips on how to make this yearly event easier on both you and your birds.
- Give your bird some extra care and understanding. It takes a lot of physical resources to produce all those new feathers, plus it’s an itchy process of losing and replacing feathers. Understand that your parrot may be a little cranky during this time.
- Pay close attention to your bird’s diet to make extra sure that its nutritional needs are being met.
- Give your parrot the opportunity to bathe daily by providing a bowl of water or a misting or whatever method your bird prefers. This is super important and is extremely helpful to your bird during the molt.
- Be ready to help remove the outer sheath of new feathers around the head area where your bird can’t reach to do this for itself. Gently press into the sheath with a finger nail. If it doesn’t break apart easily, it’s not ready to come off yet so just move on to the next one.
- Keep a vacuum or broom nearby – you’re going to need it!
Depending on what type of parrot you have and where you are located, your birds may not molt at the same time of year that mine do. However, I hope you’ll find these tips helpful for when your parrots do experience their molt.