Bird knowledge is always evolving constantly. We attribute this to an increase in research related to bird needs and heightened awareness as far as bird nutrition is concerned.
And just like other animals, Macaw requires a proper balance of proteins, vitamins, water, minerals, carbohydrates, and fat too. But how do you take care of Macaw in an apartment with such knowledge and awareness?
For your information, a Macaw consumes about 15% of its body weight daily. Since an average Macaw weighs about 925 grams, you’ll need about 140 grams.
Here, we focus on critical things you must do to successfully feed a Macaw in your apartment.
What To Feed Macaw In An Apartment?
It’s important to ensure that the Macaw bird has a varied and well-balanced diet all the time. Below are the things you should feed it with:
Wild macaws are known for eating different types of seeds as different plants come into season. And for your information, seeds have high-fat content and an imbalance or deficiency in other nutrients if you feed your macaw as the only food source. This could shorten the life of your bird and cause ill health.
For this reason, seeds should only be part of the balanced diet you give to your macaw daily. Here we recommend sunflower seeds and peanuts. However, provide only a few nuts daily to allow your macaw to eat other foods.
2. Pelleted Diets
Pellets are designed to meet all the bird’s nutritional needs. There are several formulations available to manage specific diseases and life stages.
We recommend starting a pelleted diet on hand-raised babies. And since pellets are the perfect macaw diet, we recommend that you slowly wean your seed-eating birds on it.
Ensure that pellets make about 75-80% of the macaw diet. Buy a reputable pellet brand from the many options available on the market. They’re available in different shapes, colors, and flavors.
Almost every animal and bird requires water at least daily. You should therefore avail clean water to your macaw at all times. If you don’t have clean and quality water on your tap, avail bottled water.
Ensure you pour water on clean dishes. Wash the dishes using water and soap.
4. Vegetables and Fruits
Vegetables, greens, and fruits should make up at least 20-25% of a macaw’s daily diet. However, remember that pale vegetables with a high water composition always have low nutritional value. And be aware that avocado has been reported to be toxic.
Ensure that you clean vegetables and fruits thoroughly to remove potential chemicals. You should cut them into small pieces based on your bird’s size.
We highly recommend that you provide vegetables and fruits in a separate dish. And if you notice that your macaw is feeding on one food than the other, stop providing it temporarily to encourage it to feed on other foods.
5. Understand The Apartment Guidelines
Even before feeding a macaw in your apartment, you need to investigate if there are restrictions on having birds in the unit. Most apartments have regulations and guidelines that prohibit feeders. You might be prohibited from having screws, hooks, or some other feeder equipment that could possibly damage railings or walls.
It might also be against rental agreements and tenant guidelines to have a messy balcony. For this reason, the number of feeders allowed in an apartment might be restricted.
Even if you love feeding macaw birds, risk penalties or fines for violating property regulations may not be worth it. In some cases, you might even face eviction.
6. Acquire The Best Feeders
When you decide to feed a macaw in your apartment, it will help to acquire the best feeders. There are so many bird feeders that you can access on the market for your information. We recommend employing feeders that can be attached to or balanced on railings.
If you can attach a hook to the railing, roofline, or wall, you can use hanging feeders. However, ensure that hooks or clamps don’t damage the structure. We also recommend using freestanding pole setups.
Feel free to use small or large feeders, especially on your balcony. Select a feeder that can feed several macaws without being heavy.
If you intend to have less mess in your apartment, go for feeders that provide no-waste foods, like sunflower hearts, hulled sunflower, jelly, and nuts. There is also an option of attaching a tray or net under your feeders to keep your apartment balcony clean.
It’s important that feeders remain clean and colorful to attract birds. However, be warned that colorful feeders might attract other animals such as squirrels.
7. Attract Macaw To The Balcony
To attract birds to your balcony, you need to catch their attention with attractive habitats. It means having plants, potted trees, and flowers on your balcony. If you have many plants in your apartment, birds will feel free to visit.
You can even have hanging baskets where you can easily add greenery. You also have the option of having a pot of flowers on a patio table. Some people incorporate railing planters or multi-level shelves to allow for more growing space.
Attractive sounds will also attract birds to feed on your apartment balcony. For instance, having a tabletop fountain with splashing and dripping sounds can draw macaws into your apartment.
Playing bird sound recordings can also make macaws feel welcoming and safe. However, you need to avoid overusing sounds since excessive sounds are threatening.
You should also be aware of things that keep birds away from the balcony. For instance, having excessive clutter is likely to intimidate the macaw. Avoid storing bright items with unexpected flashes on your balcony.
You should also avoid unnatural sounds such as wind chimes. If you avoid these challenges and have plants on your balcony, macaws will feel more welcome. It’ll therefore be easy to feed it.
8. Offering Healthy Conditions
Apart from just feeding macaws, there is also the need to offer them healthy living conditions. Most of the time, these birds are exposed to feather-destructive behaviors. This can be associated with medical problems, lack of mental stimulation, and boredom.
An appropriate solution would be providing your macaw with plenty of opportunities for exercise and play. This includes ropes, toys, and nets.
Macaws might also suffer from proventricular dilatation disease, psittacosis, aspergillosis, malocclusion, and feather disease. You should therefore do a regular health checkup. If you lack proper knowledge and skills in this area, contact a veterinarian to help you.
As we have seen, feeding birds is a very involving process. You’ll need both resources and knowledge to do so.
There is also the need to provide your macaw with a balanced diet of proteins, vitamins, water, minerals, carbohydrates, and fat. Ensure that the daily food you offer the birds is at least 15% of their body weight.
And to successfully feed a macaw in your apartment, follow the things we have highlighted above.