Baby birds should be fed on a routine schedule allowing the chick's crop to empty (or nearly empty) between feedings and to determine if bird is being fed the right amount. This prevents any food remaining too long in the crop and possibly spoiling. If the time between crop emptying suddenly increases, and the crop appears to be slowing down, observe the chick closely. See "IMPORTANT NOTES" regarding crop-slow down.
1. Feed mixture with a clean, disinfected syringe, spoon, tube, or other comfortable method. A separate implement should be used for each baby to prevent spread of disease.
2. Dispense food along with the chick's feeding response (rhythmic bobbing motion). This is more natural and decreases the likelihood of formula being inhaled.
3. Feed until the chick's crop is nicely rounded or it refuses any more food, whichever comes first. Do not overfeed or regurgitation may occur. Generally, each meal should consist of a volume equivalent to 10-12% of the bird's body weight.
4. Clean and sanitize feeding equipment after use. Clean any spilled food from the chick and change bedding after each feeding. Good hygiene is critical for a baby bird's health. exact Hand Feeding Formulas are designed to be the only food for baby birds. Additions to the diet may include fruits and vegetables (such as strained baby foods) but should not exceed 20% of the total diet. Additional vitamin or mineral supplements should not be added.
To encourage the weaning process, exact Conversion diets should be offered when "exploration" begins. When the baby bird is fully feathered, offer exact Conversion diet, or an adult daily diet of exact Natural, or exact Rainbow in a clean food cup, in addition to routine hand feeding. The baby bird will slowly begin to prefer these new forms of the food. Fresh water must be provided at all times. Prolonged use of hand feeding formula beyond the normal weaning age, or excessive feeding, may result in health concerns. A chick will lose up to 10% of its body weight during weaning as it begins to eat on its own. Birds wean easily onto exact Conversion diets or exact adult daily diets because of compatible taste and ingredients.