How to Move Birds to a New Cage

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Moving a pet bird to a new cage should be a gradual process. Birds stress easily, and unless a sudden move is necessary, take your time and let the bird get to know his new home before making the move permanent.

Minimize Stress

Your bird will accept a new cage easier if it's the same color metal as his old cage. Birds are creatures of habit, and the stress of change can cause illness. Be sure that the new cage is an appropriate size and style for your bird -- too big, too small, or the wrong shape for your type of bird can make him sick. Place perches in the same positions in the new cage as they are in the old one, even if you plan to change them later.

Hand Tame Birds

If your bird is hand-tamed and allowed free time outside of the cage, it will be easier to make the transition. Set the new cage up in the room where he is currently housed and put the perches in place. Add some toys from his old cage and a few new ones if you're updating his playthings. Open both cage doors and, with the bird perched on your finger, carry him to the new cage. Let him explore it inside and out for several days, and make the move after he's had a chance to become accustomed to the new cage.

Cage to Cage

You may be tempted to move a bird who won't perch on your hand to a new cage by catching him. This can be stressful for both you and the bird. It may be a last resort, but first try setting up both cages side by side and letting your bird find the way on his own.

Step 1

Set the new cage up as completely as you can with perches and some familiar toys. Position the perches in the same positions they are in the old cage.

Step 2

Place some tasty treats such as millet seed or vegetables your bird enjoys in the new cage where he can see them.

Step 3

Position the two cages side by side with the doors facing each other. Line or prop the cages up so the doors meet.

Step 4

Open the door to the new cage and clip it so it remains open. Carefully prop open the door to the old cage and set a perch to reach through both cage doors.

Step 5

Be patient and don't hover. Let your feathered friend find his way to his new digs. Once he's in the new cage, remove the old one. If several hours pass and he doesn't move, cover the old cage to darken it. This will encourage him to move through to the new one.

Tip

  • Keep your bird's diet stable when you are transitioning him to a new cage. Limit treats to the new cage until he moves in and don't overdo them to avoid dietary upset.

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