Blog Archives

UVB requirements of an African Grey

Q. I have a hand reared African grey parrot and have just bought a bird lamp for the first time. I just wondered how many hours a day that I need to run the lamp and if I still need

Tetrachromacy a powerful tool!

Many references are made towards the positive, and indeed life-giving, properties of the wavelengths of light known as UVB. We know that most living things including our own species use the power of the sun to obtain warmth and can

The common or St Helena waxbill was once taken for granted by the fancy.

Who are you calling common? The common or St Helena Waxbill was once taken for granted by the fancy. Now, says JOHN COURTNEY-SMITH, it’s anything but common! THE St Helena or common Waxbill (Estrilda astrild) used to be one of

Greenfoods: are they as useful as we think?

We take an independent look at some of the common greenfoods that we offer our birds and tests their reputation as ‘must-feed’ elements of diet. Most people who have kept birds at some point in their life will have heard

Gauge that cage!

John Courteney-Smith assesses the wide range of cages available, and reveals some of his favorites. ONCE a year, most birdkeepers start to think about their cages. Do we need to sand down and repaint? Do we have enough cages or

Managing exposure

Where you should place your light sources within the birdroom When it comes to birdroom lighting, it is essential that all light sources are placed above the bird. A bright light source hitting the bird side-on can cause eye irritation,

Keep it Natural

Natural daylight is so important for your birds’ health, condition and wellbeing. The thinking and science behind birdkeeping has changed beyond all recognition in the past few years. Many breeders are specialising with individual species rather than mixed collections and

Suspect Lamps

Q I recently purchased a bird lamp from an online auction site, but when the lamp arrived I could see no markers mark and the only words visible are “for reptiles”. I am also concerned by some of the advice

Singing for his supper

JOHN COURTENEY-SMITH explains his passion for keeping singing finches and recalls the ups and downs of trying to obtain a true pair of these bright little birds.   FOREIGN BIRDS I’M GOING to be bold and say it straight. I


Small Furry Pets



  1. The importance of UVA-lighting

  2. Lighting to aid Feather Plucking and Bad Behaviour

  3. Getting the most from UV-lighting

  4. UVA and Tetrachromats
Vitamin D3 Cycle

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