My husband and I order many things from Amazon, from DVDs to clothes to bird stuff to things I won’t talk about on this blog. As a result, we end up with a pile of empty, clean, used once cardboard boxes. Of many and varied sizes. And sometimes wonderful brown paper used as a packing material.
The smallest boxes are filled with cartons and boxes from our home recycling. These are put into a bigger box along with brown paper and the occasional egg carton. This is put into an even larger box with plastic bottle caps and toys, and then the whole thing is put into one cage or another for the larger parrots.
I can’t really do foraging for them because the mice will get the treats before the birds do. So little toys and nuts in shells are the most exciting thing to be put into the box. But the birds seem to think these boxes are the best thing ever!
Io, my blind bird, spends much of his day sitting on a lower perch where he can reach the outer box and ripping it up. He makes really good fluff out of the cardboard and other bits. When he gets down to the last of the boxes, usually after a couple weeks, he will sift through his debris until he finds something big enough to chew on. I try to replace his boxes before that happens.
Bo Dangles loves to slip off her shelf onto the boxes and then start chewing whatever catches her eye. She is more delicate than Io, but she also gets distracted by her vision. If she sees a bird outside her window, she climbs up to talk to it, asking it to come see her. Her boxes last a lot longer than the boys’ do.
Maynard liked smaller boxes at first, but now he loves the big box in his cage. He chewed a hole in the top and went inside to shred everything there. He alternates from sitting on top of it near the hole to reach other boxes on each side and climbing inside the box while crooning to me to come nest with him. I think he would be depressed if I took that box out now. I add new ones to the cage and scraped off the poo that gathered on the top. That’s about all that can be done without endangering his delicate sensibilities.
So far, not many of the other hookbills care about boxes. The lovebirds Fin and Rebel like them too much and will use even the smallest one to nest in and lay eggs. Since they are both girls, that’s a lot of eggs. I discourage this as much as possible.
I noted that my orange front conures had laid eggs under a paper bag I put in their cage. After the appropriate time, the eggs were candled and nothing was happening. It’s possible I have two girls there. It’s also possible that Dani’s splayed legs prevents a good “cloacal kiss” from happening. But I left the wooden nest tray in and got a clean bag so they can keep trying. One more round of eggs won’t hurt either of them.
My newest hookbill, sun conure Tron, hasn’t gotten into chewing his boxes, and he only has small things right now. He has a tissue cube and an oatmeal canister and an empty plastic jar. He sleeps in a different one every night. I imagine he feels he lives the life of luxury.
I’m glad I’m at a point in my life where online shopping is so easy and I can get things I need from Amazon. The bonus of the boxes is wonderful, too! Thanks for reading, I’ll be back next Sunday.