Why are my sun conures chewing their box

by Beth
(Sydney nsw Australia )

I have two sun conures
Originally I had a male and female that we're bonded. The male got away earlier in the year so I replaced him with a male who is 3 years old (she is 2)
Just recently the male has been chewing at the breeding box. I put up some metal to replace where he chewed but now he has started chewing the side. Yesterday he was inside the box kicking out all of the pine shavings.

Is this Bordem? Getting prepared for breeding? Should I replace the old with new shavings? HELP!

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Mar 04, 2014
parrot diet
by: M Covault

I see a lot of pellet diet recommending here. Although a good quality pellet should likely be part of a hookbill's diet, it should rarely be most of the diet. **Veterinarians who used to recommend an all-pellet diet have changed their advice on this.**

Insofar as seeds, I have been raising conures for 20 years, and IMO, conures need some seed, just not as most of their diet. Mine get about 15-20% seed, 20-30% pellets (Roudybush or similar), 25-30% sprouted seeds (germinated to about 1/4-1/2" long--sunflower hearts, lentils, and others), 15-20% fresh chopped veggies and fruit, and the balance varies according to whether they are adult maintenance, breeding, or youngstock.

Dec 03, 2012
KooKoo Koments!
by: Anonymous

ALL birds have behaviors like this be it kicking food out of their dishes, biting the cage, going after metal objects like earrings and necklaces etc etc. It's called curiosity, boredom and just plain chewing habits from Conure's in general.

Jun 03, 2012
by: Beth

How can you make the assumption my birds are unhealthy because they are chewing their box?

They have a balanced diet with seed and fresh fruit and vegetables. My other conures have been breeding for three years with the same diet.

They have plenty of toys in their cage to keep them busy,

Jun 03, 2012
Why are my sun conures chewing their box
by: Linda

Neither bird is interested in breeding, and that can be for many reasons. First is illness and both birds have to be examined by an Avian Vet BEFORE any breeding program is begun. Infections are transferred directly to the babies who will die because of being so fragile.

The other issue is diet. Parrots need to be eating 80-85% of their diet in organic pellets like Harrison's found here. All seed diets are slow starvation and extremely poor nutrition.

It is normal for birds to chew wood, so provide a wooden toy or two in cage so they can chew on them. Replace toys as they chew them up. Use harder woods like Manzanita or other hard, safe woods.

For now, I'd take out the box and forget the breeding until you've taken them to Avian Vet and begun a new diet of highly nutritional food. It can take up to a year on a highly nutritional diet before birds are in breeding condition, so breeding program is on hold for as long as it takes to get your birds healthy. Below is link on how to go about changing from seeds to organic pellets, and no changes can be made until both birds are examined by an Avian Vet and either diagnosed and treated or cleared for infections:

Switching Birds To Pellets article

Thanks for writing,

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