How do you ship birds?

We ship all our birds via a pet airlines or cargo service so that they are properly taken care of. They are shipped in either wooden carriers or plastic pet kennels. They ride in a special climate controlled and pressurized compartment on the plane. They are not shipped in the same compartment as the passenger luggage. We use the airlines because it is the fastest way to transport the birds worldwide. Although traveling is not that hard on them, we do not like to make them spend any more time than absolutely necessary in transit. For this reason we also look for the shortest route and always schedule direct flights if possible.

Is shipping hard on the birds?

It has been our experience that shipping is not hard on the birds. Our parrots are exposed to a wide variety of things while being raised in our nursery and home. As far as they are concerned, it is perfectly normal for them to get on an airplane on the 60-100th day of their life and go for a trip. About the only sign of any stress is sometimes on the post ship veterinarian exam, there is a slightly elevated growth of gram negative bacteria but this is a fairly normal reaction to being shipped. When they get to their new homes, sometimes it takes them a day or two to settle in.  Most of our customers tell us that their new pet bird steps out of the shipping container and acts right at home. Some even fall asleep in their new owners arms on the way home from the airport.

How much does it cost to ship a bird?

We simply pass along what it costs us to ship a bird. The shipping cost is what the airlines charge. Other costs include a pet carrier $25-$65.  In addition a Vet Health Certificate may be required by some airlines ($35). Approximately, shipping will cost $150 and at most $250. Most at times we pay for all these cost ourselves.

Can I save some money on shipping and can you ship by UPS or US mail, or...?

Sorry, we have no experience with UPS or US Mail on live shipments, as far as we know they do not do this. Several airlines have experience shipping animals including birds. We ship all our parrots only through airlines licensed to ship parrots.

Have you ever had a bird die or get lost in shipping?

No. The worst that has happened is one time the bird missed a connecting flight, but the airline was able to get the bird on the next scheduled flight, and the bird arrived safely and in good health with only a three hour delay.

Don't the birds get hungry or thirsty?

We put lots of seeds and plenty of fruits and vegetables that is being shipped along with the birds. The fruits and vegetables provide all the moisture the bird needs during transit. We also only ship babies that are old enough to survive the trip.   We supply enough food and water for the unlikely event, i.e if that they get delayed at an airport overnight (because of connecting flight trouble).   We do not want to worry about them not having enough to eat or drink.

Do you ship out of the country?

We ship worldwide. Although few people are willing to pay for the extra costs involved.

How do you determine the sex of a parrot

With most species of parrots, sex of the bird cannot be determined accurately by visual inspection because they have no external sex organs. To determine the sex of the bird, there are two common methods. One is surgical sexing which requires putting the bird under anesthesia, making an incision in the abdomen of the bird, and then inserting a small laparoscope and visually identify the sex of the bird.  The other method is much less intrusive and involves taking a drop of blood from the birds cut toenail and sending it to a lab for DNA analysis. This is the method we use.

Most of our parrots cannot be sexed by visual means. However Cockatoo adults’ sex can be determined by eye color at about sixteen months of age, a coal black color indicates a male and reddish brown color indicates female. Some Cockatiels can be sexed visually by looking underneath the wings at the 8 longest flight feathers.  The female will have yellow dots and the male will not have yellow dots.

Which talk better - male or female parrots?

We do not believe that talking ability differs between the sexes – regardless of the species. We have some outstanding male and female talking birds, however, Cockatiels and African greys are an exception, Males are more likely to talk, but we do know of several female Cockatiels that talk.

Which make better pets - male or female parrots?

We get this question a lot. We believe that both sexes of all the species we raise make equally great pets. What kind of pet, a bird will make, has far more to do with how it is raised than what sex it is. For example, most people that have bought our parrots both male and female Macaws and Amazon Parrots, have told us they all became great pets.  Heaven Parrots keeps in touch with the people who buy our birds, and we have happy customers with both male and female of each species.  Almost everyone loves their birds and has found that gender was not important.

What do you feed your birds?

The young babies that are being handfed receive a special diet that we mix ourselves.  As the babies start to wean, they are provided the same diet our breeder birds get which is a mix of 25% pellets (Polly Treasure Parrot Paradise pellets (many colors)), 40% seeds and 35% fruits and vegetables (we mix it ourselves). We try to introduce the babies to many different foods, in an effort to get them to start eating on their own and for the nutritional balance this provides. We believe that parrots are very intelligent creatures with a highly developed taste.  We have found from personal experience that the more variety you can provide the healthier your bird will be. It is for this reason that we do not feed only pellets. Below is a list of some of the fruits and vegetables your bird will most likely have tried before you get it from Heaven Parrots:

Fruits: apples, oranges, bananas, melons, grapes, pears, kiwi

Vegetables: corn, beans, peas, carrots (cooked slightly in microwave. soft but crunchy), yams (cooked the same as carrots), broccoli, spinach (fresh), kale, mustard greens, bell peppers, potatoes (cooked or mashed).

Rice, Pastas, Grains : long grain rice, noodles, 12 bean soup (we just cook it up and then drain it) , bread (they like this, we just give them small pieces now and then)

Proteins: cooked eggs, cooked chicken.

Our four favorite vegetables to feed our birds are: Yams, Carrots, Broccoli and Spinach

Is there anything my bird should not eat?

Harmful Plants (first source): Amaryllis–bulbs, American Yew, Avocado, Azalea-leaves, Balsam Pear – seeds, outer rind of fruit, Baneberry – berries, root, Bird of Paradise – seeds, Black Locust – bark, sprouts, foliage, Blue-green Algae – some forms toxic , Boxwood – leaves, stems, Buckthorn – fruit, bark, Buttercup – sap, bulbs, Caladium – leaves, Calla Lily – leaves, Castor Bean – also castor oil, leaves, Chalice Vine/Trumpet vine, Christmas Candle – sap, Clematis/Virginia Bower, Coral Plant – seeds, Cowslip/Marsh Marigold, Daffodil – bulbs, Daphne – berries, Datura – berries, Deadly Amanita, Death Camas, Delphinium, Deffenbachia/Dumb Cane – leaves, Eggplant – fruit,
Elephants Ear/Taro – leaves, stem, English Ivy berries, leaves, English Yew, False Henbane
Fly Agaric Mushroom – Deadly Amanita, Foxglove – leaves, seeds, Golden Chain/Laburnum
Hemlock – also water the plant is in, Henbane – seeds, Holly – berries, Horse Chestnut/Buckeye – nuts, twigs, Hyacinth – bulbs, Hydrangea – flower bud, Indian Turnip/Jack-in-Pulpit
Iris/Blue Flag – bulbs, Jack-in-the-Pulpit, Japanese Yew – needles, seeds, Java Bean – Lima bean – uncooked, Juniper – needles, stems, berries, Lantana – immature berries, Larkspur, Locoweed
Lords and Ladies/Cuckoopint, Marijuana/Hemp – leaves etc.

So what IS safe for my bird?

House and Outdoor Plants

Acacia Aloe, African Violet, Baby’s Tears, Bamboo (Our parrots in Heaven-parrotaviary love Bamboo), Begonia, Bougainvillea, Chickweed, Christmas Cactus, Cissus/Kangaroo Vine, Coffee
Coleus, Corn Plant, Crabapple, Dandelion, Dogwood, Donkey Tail, Dracena Varieties, Ferns (asparagus, birdnest, boston, maidenhair), Figs (creeping, rubber, fiddle leaf)
Figs (laurel leaf), Gardenia, Grape Ivy, Hen’s and Chickens, Herbs (e.g. oregano, rosemary, thyme), Jade Plant, Kalanchoe, Marigold, Monkey Plant, Mother-in-Law’s Tongue, Nasturtium, Natal plum
Pepperomia, Petunia, Pittosporum, Prayer Plant, Purple Passion/Velvet Nettle, Schefflera (Umbrella), Sensitive Plant, Spider Plant, Swedish Ivy, Thistle, Wandering Jew, White Clover
Zebra Plant etc.

How long do the birds take to wean?

Weaning time varies by parrot species and also depends on how much experience the person has that is doing the hand feeding.  For most cockatoos expect 4 months, this also applies to the large macaws. We wean our Greys and Eclectus around 100 days. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is weaning a baby too early, so we take our time and allow the babies to tell us when they are ready.