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Nutrition for breed - the lead up

Feeding for breeding starts some 6-12 weeks before you expect to pair up or see eggs. Some people still insist on feeding their birds the same diet until the chicks hatch. They are missing the key benefits that come from a controlled stimulation of the breeding response. More eggs, better fertility and therefore many more chicks.

Your birds should now be on a diet supplemented with Feast (or Flourish), Daily Essentials3 and Calcivet (CalciBoost). This should have them fighting fit but not in breeding mode.

Wild birds respond to various changes in the environment that tell them that their food is going to improve enough to make chick rearing possible. For tropical birds the key message is rain.

For temperate birds it is increasing day length. These environmental changes are predictors of better food to come and we can mimic them in our aviaries with artificial lights and sprinklers.

But the real message that all birds will respond to is an improvement in nutrition. And the key signal is an improvement in the protein to energy ratio. This means increasing the protein level of the diet without a significant increase in the fat level. Because of their high fat levels, boiled or scrambled eggs are not really very good at doing this.

ProBoost SuperMax is a very high protein supplement designed specifically for this purpose.

So adding low levels of ProBoost SuperMax to the Feast softfood tells the birds that the food is getting better and chick rearing will soon be possible. We increase the amount of this product added to the Feast over a period of weeks so mimicking the changes in wild diets.

For parrots eating lots of fresh foods we may put the ProBoost SuperMax on these fruits and vegetables instead of or as well as giving Feast. As we add more protein to the diet we a] so increase the amount of Feast we feed. Because Feast is fully supplemented this increases the amount of vitamins and minerals consumed. Again this reinforces the message that food quality is improving.

Control for you and control for your birds

The beauty of ProBoost SuperMax is that it puts you in control of your birds' breeding cycle. It gives you the most important tool for achieving great breeding results. And you can use it when you want your birds to breed.

Equally importantly it puts the adults in control of their chicks' nutrition. Baby birds need very high protein levels in their food when they are very young. As they get older their requirement for energy increases so reducing the percentage of protein they need.

By feeding a low protein food (seed etc) and a high protein food (ProBoost SuperMax on Feast or fresh foods) in separate containers, the adult birds are able to control the nutritional composition of the babies' diet very precisely. This maximises growth rates and minimises nutritional stress.

There is one final breeder stimulant we recommend. By adding a probiotic to the diet about one month before breeding is expected we optimise gut function and hence nutrient absorption significantly. This also stimulates breeding. And later, it will help with chick health and growth. Use Potent Brew or BioPlus for this.

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