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Hand Feeding

Kaytee Pet Bird Blog

Hand-fed baby birds make wonderful loving and affectionate companions. The act of hand feeding helps create a bond between the baby bird and people. When purchasing a companion bird, always ask if the bird was hand-fed.

If you have never been formally trained in hand feeding a baby bird, it is best to purchase a baby bird that has been weaned and is eating on its own. If you are interested in hand feeding babies, it is important to receive training from someone who is experienced. Hand feeding of baby birds has certain risks to the animal if not properly administered and should only be done by competent individuals.

KAYTEE® exact Hand Feeding® Formula is a nutritious diet for hand feeding baby birds. Exact's high nutrition formula helps baby birds grow faster, wean earlier, and develop better, brighter plumage.
*If you find a baby bird, before handling or feeding, contact your local wildlife center or veterinarian for advice.

Hand Feeding Tips 

Always follow the directions completely and thoroughly.
Hand feeding is best performed by experienced bird breeders or aviculturists. 
Mix KAYTEE® exact Hand Feeding® Formula with hot, clean water to a desired consistency.
Feed the hungry baby with a special hand feeding syringe.
Feed hatchlings about every two hours.
As the baby grows, decrease the number of feedings, and increase the amount of food.
Baby birds require 10-12 percent of their body weight per feeding.
Use fresh formula at each feeding.
Use proper hygiene.
Monitor babies daily for growth and health.

Depending on species, most birds wean between the ages of 8 and 12 weeks. For more information on weaning, please read the articles Weaning Tips and When Will My Baby Bird Start Weaning from Hand Feeding to Adult Food?

 
Feeding Baby Bird with Syringe

Why Hand Feeding is the Best For Pets

Hand feeding your baby bird or owning a pet that was hand fed socializes them at a young age.
It reduces fear of humans and other household pets such as dogs, cats, and small animals 
It creates a strong bond between you and your pet bird.

For more information on the Kaytee® exact Hand Feeding® Formulas available and hand feeding, please see the Pet Birds Products and Ask the Experts sections of this web site.

Additional Resources

 If you find a baby bird, before handling or feeding, contact your local wildlife center or veterinarian for advice. 

Pet Birds