Did you know that birds perceive much more of the light spectum than we humans do?
Many of us know that birds need sunlight for vitamin synthesis, and use a UVA / UVB bulb to provide indoor pets broader spectrum light.
But a full spectum light is only the begining.
Birds rely heavily on parts of the light spectrum not visible to humans for important tasks such as food dection in foraging, recognizing indviduals, recognizing thier own eggs, determining the sex of other birds, and more. As humans, we have a hard time recreating the rich complexities of nature, and sunlight is no excpetion. Our bulbs, even the full spectrum ones, just don't do what the sun does. And sunlight filtered through a window? Well, just try getting a tan that way - not all wavelengths of light make it through a window. So our indoor birds literally go their lives without full use of their senses.
Look at the picture to the above. This is an actual foraging salad for Anita's bird Cassie. The original shows how it looks to us when viewed in the full spectrum of visible light. The 2 images below are how it looks with parts of our visible light spectrum blocked. Some of the food looks downright unappealing, and other foods become all together invisible. This is how our indoor birds navigate the world every day.
So what can you do? The answer is simple, if not necessarilly easy: Give your bird safe time outdoors or near an open window as frequently as possible, and provide UVA/ UVB lighting for 4-8 hours each day when not expossed to sunlight. If you would like an outdoor aviary or other environmental enrichemnt for your bird, we suggest contacting Nyla Copp of My Birdie Buddy. Of course, we can help you with foraging toys and other tools to help bring a more natural life to our indoor pets.
Posts made after 2/1/2013 written by Kelly. Most older articles written by Cathy. She accepts sole responsibility for typos and bad grammarisms.