Sunday, January 29, 2012

Feeding Parrots: Parrot Casserole

Don't your parrots get tired of eating the same ole mash or chop day in and day out? Ours sure would. We feed our parrots real food. Every weekend we prepare a parrot casserole to feed our flock of parrots for the following week. Easy to make. Little cooking required. We use organic ingredients as much as possible.

We vary the ingredients from week to week, depending on what we have on hand in the kitchen, but the basic ingredients are pretty much the same:

Pasta. The parrots love rigatone for ease of handling, as our spokesparrot Tillie demonstrates below. Pasta shells are also easy to handle. Rarely, but on occasion, do we use spaghetti.

Beans. Kidney, Garbanzo, Soybeans, are the most popular with our parrots.

Sweet Apples. Cameo and Golden Delicious are the most popular with our flock. They are not to keen on tart apples. Our parrots also love bananas, but bananas don't keep as well as apples.

Corn. Corn on the cob in season.

Baby Carrots. A couple of our parrots love baby carrots as treats.

The coffee is for the cook.

Our Timneh African Grey parrot Tillie is our kitchen assistant and spokesparrot.

Rigatone is just the right size for small parrot feet!

Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Cage World and Commercial Parrot Abuse

Would you like to know how not to treat a parrot? Debbie from Mesa, Arizona's Cage World will show you, if you can bear to watch. Fair Warning: This video contains disturbing images, made even more disturbing because Cage World clearly believes these are appropriate methods to handle your parrots!

This archaic and outdated training methodology is known in the dog training world as Positive Punishment. In the parrot training world, we just call it Animal Abuse! Common decades ago, these training techniques are still employed by so-called parrot trainers from to Debbie here at Cage World. Every parrot person who believes in Positive Reinforcement should read respected parrot trainer Sid Price's scathing critique of BirdTricks and Positive Punishment.

Cage World is located at 2110 W. Southern # F, Mesa AZ 85202.

If you would like to share your displeasure of Cage World's outdated parrot training techniques, here is their phone number: 480-833-4001. Cage World's email address is: Cage World can also be found on Facebook.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Snow Crows: Crows Just Like to Have Fun

With Seattle looking more like Anchorage this week during one of the heaviest snowfalls this city has experienced in years, we were somewhat concerned for our neighborhood critters here in North Seattle's Ballard neighborhood. Seattle gets snow so infrequently that our parrots were quite agitated, not knowing what to make of the white blanket outside the windows. We kept our wild bird feeders full, and kept our fingers crossed. Our neighborhood crows kept coming by to check out the cat food dish, and our resident Anna's Hummingbirds kept showing up at the hummingbird feeder at first light.

Apparently we didn't need to be overly concerned. Our Greenwing macaw and Diva parrot Roxanne has a crow friend we call Mr. Toad, for one notable straight toe. Mr. and Mrs. Toad (a cute couple at that) have been hanging around our back yard play stands for years and usually stop by to visit with Roxanne whenever she's out in the back yard on the play stands. Well, during the height of the snow storm this week we caught Mr. Toad frolicking in the snow in our front yard taking a snow bath. We can only imagine what Mrs. Toad was thinking.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

It's Just Nuts! Bulk Nuts for Parrots and People

With the holidays behind us, this is a great time of year to stock up on bulk nuts in the shell, both for you and your parrots. Bulk nuts in the shell may still available in major grocery stores and supermarkets, usually in the produce section. You might even snag some great deals from produce managers wanting to clear out their stocks of bulk nuts. Any extra nuts that you get simply put in airtight containers and freeze. The nuts will keep in the freezer for long periods of time. Once thawed however, we don't recommend refreezing.


The form of vitamin E (gamma-tocopherol) found in walnuts is unusual and particularly beneficial. This form of vitamin E has been found to provide significant protection for the heart. Walnuts also contain antioxidants not found in any other foods, and unlike other nuts, are rich in the plant-based source of omega-3 fatty acids.


Almonds are one of the most nutritionally dense nuts. They are among the richest sources of vitamin E and provide an array of minerals and antioxidants. There may be more than twenty different antioxidants in almond skins alone! Almonds are richer than eggs in protein: a quarter-cup contains more than seven grams.


Pistachios are one of the lowest-calorie, lowest-fat nuts and among the highest nuts in antioxidants. They are an excellent source of B vitamins, copper and manganese, which are important for keeping blood sugar stable, protecting bones and nerves, and helping metabolize fat and cholesterol.


Pecans contain more than nineteen vitamins and minerals. They also contain different forms of vitamin E called tocopherols, which have been shown to decrease bad (LDL) cholesterol by as much as one-third. Pecans are also a rich source of oleic acid, the same heart-healthy fat found in olive oil.


Hazelnuts have the highest content of a plant compound (proanthocyanidin) shown to decrease the risk of blood clots, heart disease, cancer and other chronic diseases. Hazelnuts also rank number one in a B vitamin (folate) essential for preventing birth defects and may help to reduce the risk of heart disease and depression. Doctors and herbalists once used hazelnuts to treat the common cold, persistent coughs and even baldness.


Like pecans, cashews are a very good source of the beneficial fat oleic acid and minerals such as copper, phosphorus, and magnesium, which are important for bones, muscles, and stable blood pressure.

Nuts for Health: Eating nuts actually is associated with weight loss! Studies have found that people who ate nuts at least twice a week were much less likely to gain weight than those who almost never ate nuts. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, eating a handful of nuts a day may reduce the risk of heart disease. The plant sterols and good fats in nuts — monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats — are believed to lower bad (LDL) cholesterol levels. Nuts are a source of l-arginine, a nutrient that may help prevent blood clots. Much of the antioxidants in nuts is in their skins — for example, that's where about ninety percent of the antioxidant-rich phenols in walnuts are stored. Most nuts contain a good supply of vitamin A and B vitamins. Many nuts contain vitamin E, which is important for preventing plaque in arteries and is good for skin, hair and nails. Many nuts are high in potassium, calcium and magnesium, minerals important for healthy blood pressure. In multiple studies, these minerals have a much greater impact on blood pressure than salt.

Nuts for Protein: Nuts are protein-rich but they're not complete proteins because they don't contain all the amino acids. Combining nuts with grains, beans, or vegetables such as greens or broccoli with other amino acids creates a complete protein. Unlike protein from animal sources such as meat and eggs, which have an acidic reaction on the body, most nuts have an alkaline reaction. (Walnuts, peanuts and hazelnuts are exceptions.)

The bottom line is: Nuts are good for people, and nuts are good for parrots! As long as they are part of a balanced diet.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Parrot Paradise Coffee

We are extremely pleased to announce that will introduce its own line of 100% Parrot Friendly Parrot Paradise Coffee. In our continuing pursuit of coffees that we not only are willing to offer for sale but actually drink ourselves, we have decided to create our own blends.

Our first offering, soon to be available at, is Parrot Paradise Blend. This coffee features our Greenwing macaw and Diva parrot Roxanne. A very special blend of Shade Grown coffees from Guatemala in Central America. A unique blend of lighter and darker roast. These Central American coffees create a rich caramel, sweet chocolate flavor, medium body, resulting in a well-balanced and hearty cup. 100% Parrot Friendly: USDA Certified Organic, Shade Grown, Kosher Certified. Look for it soon at

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Seattle's Wild Parrots: Mitred Conures of Maple Leaf

The mild weather this winter here in Seattle apparently has been a boon to Seattle's wild Mitred Conure parrots, as well as Seattle bird watchers. Several sightings of Seattle's wild Mitred Conures have been confirmed, and some really nice photos posted as well. This blog reported a sighting of the Golden Gardens parrots in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood back in September, 2011. Recently, sightings of the Maple Leaf/Shoreline parrots have been confirmed.

The Shoreline, Washington blog Of Paramount Importance, reported that three Mitred Conures (incorrectly identified as Scarlet Fronted Parakeets), were spotted foraging in the Maple Leaf neighborhood of Northeast Seattle, in the vicinity of 12 Avenue NE and NE 90th Street, on December 12, 2011. These Mitred Conures winter in the Maple Leaf/Shoreline area and return to Seattle's Seward Park for the summer. The Conures are known to venture as far north as the Ridgecrest neighborhood in Shoreline.

Photograph by Dennis Paulson, January 20, 2010

People typically report hearing the parrots prior to ever seeing them. Possibly the same three Mitred Conures were reported by the Maple Leaf Life blog in the same Maple Leaf area on September 24, 2010.

The Shoreline Area News blog published these terrific photos of Mitred Conures on January 9, 2012, foraging in Hawthorne trees in the Ridgecrest neighborhood..

Three Mitred Conures in a Ridgecrest Hawthorne Tree
Photo by Stefanie Gendreau, January 9, 2012

Mitred Conure in a Ridgecrest Hawthorne Tree
Photo by Stefanie Gendreau, January 9, 2012

This photo clearly shows that these parrots are not Scarlet or Red-fronted Conures, but are in fact Mitred Conures.The photographer Stefanie Gendreau reported:

My guess is that they nest in Hamlin Park but we see or more often hear them (emphasis added) on 8th NE and 9th NE in Ridgecrest. They usually travel in pairs but this group of three is what we've been seeing this winter. 

Support Your Local Invasive Species!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Parrot Soup: Revenge of the Pirate Parrot

Get Ready for the Second Season of Parrot Soup
The Continuing Adventures and High Seas Drama of the Pirate Ship
The Alligator

Pirate Parrot Aboo