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Bird Molting Care: A Comprehensive Bird Care Guide

bird molting care

With everyday activities, birds’ feathers go through a lot, especially during the molting season.

So, as they shed the old, shabby plumes and change them into fresh and beautiful feathers, you need to provide the right bird molting care throughout the process.

It is one of the hardest moments in every bird’s life.

Therefore, as a bird owner, you should gain awareness and understand how their bird struggles as they molt.

Of course, there are things we can do to ease their burden.

In fact, in this guide, we’ll talk about:

  • When your bird is molting and the symptoms you need to look out for
  • What are the common parrot behavior during the molting season and
  • Ten bird molting care tips to keep in mind when raising bird

If you’re a bird owner looking to provide the best possible care for your bird during this difficult season, we’re here to help you out!

parrot molting

Bird Molting Care Tips 

Birds molting are a normal process in which a bird sheds old, shabby plumes and replaces them with fresh, bright ones.

Birds’ molting cycles differ depending on their variety.

. In this stage, they are going through a lot of unwanted feelings. As owners, here are some helpful bird molting care tips:

1. Be Patient

The first and most important thing is that we remain considerate and patient, notwithstanding their irritable and difficult attitudes during this stage.

Moreover, there are many ways we can aid our molting birds. When our bird is feeling cranky, one incredible way to free them from their stress is by giving them a safe toy to play with.

Most of the time, it can lighten their mood by giving them entertainment and distraction.

Besides, it can help owners prevent being bitten when their aggressiveness ignites.

2. Bathe Your Birds

Furthermore, a refreshing bath can uplift your bird’s state of mind. That is even more helpful when your bird is experiencing itchiness.

Place a bowl of warm water nearby if your bird is irritable and doesn’t want to cooperate with you.

Then, let them take a bath on their own accord. If it’s not effective, attract them.

Make it more enticing by dipping and splashing around the bowl with your fingers. It will make them think it’s fun.

Another thing you can do is put them inside their cage and mist them with warm water in a spray bottle.

This method can sometimes upset them but will make them feel better and lessen their irritation.

3. Help Them Out When Necessary

You can also help your molting bird by giving them a hand. Whenever they feel itchy, you can offer them a light scratch.

However, just a friendly reminder to only assist your bird by scratching if they give no indications of aggressiveness.

Always ensure that it is safe they are safe to handle before doing so. You can try out a few tests.

For instance, try touching your bird’s beak and head and scratch it gently.

You’ll know if they submit to you and love what you’re doing. Like cats, they would likely rub and lay their head and body against your fingers.

To avoid irritation, it is vital to scratch your pet bird as gently as possible.     

 Everything is hard for first-timers. Likewise, the molting process can be challenging for your bird, especially if it’s its first time doing so.

Usually, your bird can’t grasp a few points on its body, like its neck and head.

That is when we can help them. However, there are some key points we have to keep in mind when tending our bird.

First, if you notice that the bird’s sheath is tough and waxy, the skin is still soft. Don’t force it.

Next, loose feathers will voluntarily fall off. So, if it’s not yet falling off, don’t tend.

Finally, if your bird has a partner, let it be the one to tend your molting bird.

If it’s not doing the job, that’s when you can send them in to pick its feathers.

4. Give Them Enough Moisture.         

Just like how we maintain your skincare routines, a bird’s skin needs sufficient moisture to avoid feeling itchy.

Thus, when your bird’s molting season comes, prepare a cool area that provides enough moisture.

That is the primary thing you can do. Next, you can mist them with enough moisture without soaking them wet.

5. Give them Space

The molting process among birds is never easy. It takes a long time to complete and drains much of their energy.

Therefore, they need our patients to give them time to rest and recuperate.

When your parrot molting starts, they require enough time and space to sleep and relax.

To do this, you can keep them in the dark or shaded area for half of the day.

Then, make sure that no one disturbs them. If they get to have enough sleep they require, it allows beautiful feathers to grow.

6. Petting and Handling them is Not Advisable.

 In case you are unaware, the bird’s pin feathers contain nerve endings and blood. It is hypersensitive when they first start growing.

Petting and handling your birds during their molting process is good.

Aside from the fact that it can hurt them, it can worsen the irritation they are already feeling. Plus, it can disturb the growth of new feathers.

So, it would help if you waited until the molting process was over before you could handle and pet them.

7. Provide the Right Diet

Another thing is to ensure that your bird gets all the required diet and nutrients.

Foods rich in proteins, calcium, mineral salts, and vitamins are the priority since they have to grow new feathers which drain their energy and their body nutrients.

Furthermore, during the bird’s molting season, you must prepare essential supplements and visit the vet immediately if your bird encounters health issues.

8. Give them the Right Room Temperature

 Birds’ feathers are what keep them cold-hardy. But since molting season makes them lose their feathers, they need your help in keeping them at an adequate temperature.

Around 70°F or 21°C is the advisable temperature. Failing to do this means risking them suffering from very cold or hot weather.

Too hot or too cold room temperature may cause them further discomfort.

9. Give them the Right Food

If people get sick, eating the right and nutritious food is important. The same thing goes with your birds.

Even though molding is normal, they are very sensitive and not in their best condition during that time.

Thus, they require more nutrients, like proteins. And the recommended food to feed them is eggs and cucumbers.

 You have to shred cucumbers and eggs into tiny pieces before feeding them.

As for the cucumbers, make sure to wash them well before giving them to them.

Just give them the right amount and remove any excess after they eat to prevent molds.

This will help the bird to mature strong, healthy, and beautiful feathers.

10. Consult a Veterinarian

Our last bird molting care tip is to visit your vet. In any case, if your bird undergoes the molting process more than the average 2x a year, it means two things. 

Your bird is not meeting the proper diet and nutrients. Or your bird is experiencing stress or under serious conditions.

This is the time that you need to consult your vet without delay.

Moreover, ensure your bird gets the proper diet and nutrients they need. They also require 10-12 hours of sunlight daily and 10-12 of darkness.

If your bird fails to receive the required sunlight or nutrients, it alters the molting schedule.

Alternatively, you can provide them with natural sunlight using UV light bulbs. 

Another case you should visit your vet is if your bird’s pin feather bleeds. This serious issue could lead your bird to die if neglected.

bird molting symptoms

Bird Molting Symptoms You Should Look Out For 

The molting process among birds can usually change their attitudes. Bird molting symptoms differ based on their variety.

Some birds become unusually jumpy or noisy. But in most cases, like the budgie molting signs, they became weak and silent.

These are molting birds symptoms you should look out for:                                     

  • You will notice their act of aggressiveness towards other birds or even you.
  • They squawk and are moody.
  • They lose their desire to eat any food.
  • You can see many feathers scattered over the molting bird’s cage.
  • Your bird looks drained and sleeps more than usual.
  • Your bird prinks more often.
  • You can notice new feathers growing on the head and face of the bird.

When Do Parrots Molt? 

A parrot’s molting schedule differs depending on the variety. Often, birds start their molting process in springtime before the breeding season.

And then, they molt the second time of the year during fall as preparation for the winter seasons.

As the owner, you can expect your bird to molt every year or two.

How Often Do Parrots Molt?

At default, most parrots undergo the molting process once or twice every year.

However, the frequency of parrot molts varies based on their breeds or lineage.

For instance, Macaw and African Grey molt once every year. As for Parakeet and Cockatiel, these birds molt as often as three times a year.

Thus, knowing the breed of your parrot is what can help you identify the approximate times your parrot molts.

How Long Do Birds Molt?

The time for birds to complete their molting process also differs depending on the species.

A few factors affect the density of a bird’s molting cycle. First, every species of bird molts differently.

Second, it depends on the molting the bird performs.

They either do partial molting or complete molting process. The climate and migration are also features that affect the density of birds molting.

One thing in common is that it takes a long time for them to finish. Mostly, birds’ molting process can take 5-12 weeks.

Common Parrot Molting Behavior 

Owners can also notice changes or shifts in their parrot’s behavior during molting.

First in line is the increased need for nutrients, especially protein, iron, and calcium.

Birds require more energy and nutrients to grow new feathers, so proper nutrition is crucial for molting birds.

The development of new feathers greatly affects the parrot’s body. During that time, they are more stressed and weaker.

They even stop laying eggs and go silent. Other birds, like canaries, even stop singing during their molting season.

Their health and immune systems are affected during the process.

molting birds

Final Tips and Takeaways About Bird Molting Care

Birds are good life companions and family. Aside from their mesmerizing look, their unique characteristics and existence are very relaxing, relieving us of our stress.

However, we all know that caring for birds is not all rainbows and sunshine.

You may also experience challenging and struggling moments, such as when they are molting. Molting can cause changes in your bird’s attitude or personality.

They become more aggressive or irritable, feel weak, or lose their appetite. Thus, they need extra care and attention.

This moment can be difficult for both you and your bird. However, everything will come back to normal once their molting time is over.

Everything will be fine as long as you can still provide for your bird’s needs and make them more at ease and comfortable during that tough situation.

To take care of your bird during its molting season, there are a few highlights you must ensure to meet.

Helping your bird get through their molting season in good condition means that you should keep away all things that can fuel its stress.

They need to be in a tranquil or calm haven where they can rest and get all the necessary sleep.

Altogether, giving your bird molting care they need can relieve its stress away. It may be challenging, but you are now aware that changes in your bird’s character are just a brief outcome of a stressful once or twice-a-year moment.

After that, your bird will return to normal but with a new, beautiful feather.

The fulfilling joy when the molting cycle finishes is priceless.

READ NEXT: Chicken Molting: What Is It and How to Fix It

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