African Grey, Red Bellied Parrot & Kittens

Hi there. 


Just thought I would ask what you thought about this.


I have a 9-year-old Timneh African Grey, named Sparky, and a 12-year-old red-bellied parrot, Val (both DNA-sexed males). I have had them since they were chicks.


I’m thinking of going to visit a relative out of state. She and her daughters have two kittens (they got the kittens for Christmas). 


Do you think it would be a bad idea for me to bring the birds, which I would bring in separate cages, as they don’t really get along? What if I could keep them in a room with a door? Would the kittens want to kill the birds as a matter of genetics? I have seen YouTube videos of cats and larger parrots coexisting, sometimes even playfully interacting. But obviously, I don’t want to put the birds in any danger.


Thanks if you have any thoughts!




Hi Peter, 

Generally speaking we don’t advise allowing inter-species play. Especially in your case where your birds are a little bigger and I would be far more concerned for the kitten’s safety because of their inquisitiveness not the birds. 

I think it would be okay if you were to keep the birds segregated from the kittens. Keep it in mind that your birds may or may not be stressed out from the trip. I know our bird liked to travel with us because obviously he likes being with us which your birds can enjoy. 

I think a lot of it has to do with the makeup of the house and if there’s a way that the kittens could be put in any sort of pet crate to allow your birds some freedom keeping them from engaging the new kittens.

New Bird Cage for Charlie


Belmont Bird Cage by Prevue Pet

I so much appreciate your phone call yesterday–thank you! The cage arrived about 5:30 yesterday evening via UPS. Our UPS guy has been delivering here for years so he brought it all the way into the house for me, which was great! He loves our dog so he even stayed a few minutes to play with her! LOL! 

I haven’t opened the cage yet, but it looks like it was very well packed. The boxes were all reinforced at the corners and not even dented in shipping! 

When I told Charlie his new house had arrived, he said, “Oh boy, oh boy!” I laughed because I know he will be afraid of it at first. We will have to leave it setting in front of the old cage for a couple of days and let him explore it before getting him into it permanently. Since our living room is quite small, that should be interesting! What we do for these birds, huh? They are worth it, though! 

Have a great day, and be careful out there in that snow. I just got in–roads are still fine, but the sidewalks, parking lots, and driveways are already quite slippery. We’ve been so blessed so far, though, so I guess we’re due a doozy!



Glad you ordered the cage when you did, what a mess out there. 

If you have any issues with the cage once opened please contact us as soon as possible so we can facilitate the correction of the issue. 

Or you can call Prevue directly at 312-243-3624 and they will also handle it. They are closed on Monday for the holiday, we will be open. 

Thank you for your order, it is appreciated.

Hi Catherine,

I’m SO sorry I haven’t replied until now. I’ve been very busy with taking care of my mom–pretty much been taking up all of my time. 

Anyway, there seem to be only a few glitches with the cage, but honestly, I’ve never had a perfect bird cage. There are a few spots that probably need to be touched up with paint because they are chipped, but the touch up paint included with the cage was pretty much dried up. We did manage to get a drop out to touch up the front seed guard panel–that was the worst spot. 

The biggest problem is that the right side track where the grate slides in is very bent, but we are able to manage to slide it in and out. It does stick, but it’s manageable. The feeder doors are bent a little, but I’m not worried at all about them–they seem to be loosening up the more I use them. My only concern is that bend in the track because I hope it doesn’t worsen with age. That couldn’t have happened during shipping because the cage was packed VERY well. It looks as if it was just a defect in the track. 

Otherwise, the cage looks VERY nice since it matches Koko’s. Charlie seems very happy in it. We let it sit one day for him to look at before attempting to get him into it. The next day I let him out and then started moving his stuff from the old cage into the new one. He was on his play gym and was pretty upset, yet curious. He finally flew to the top of his new cage, and I was thinking that was a very good thing. However, after two hours of getting everything into his new cage, cleaning up his old cage, dismantling it and trekking it to the basement, he still had not moved! LOL! I guess he figured he would just enjoy sitting on top of it. 

I only managed to get bitten twice trying to get him INSIDE the new cage. He finally went inside, hissing all of the way. Poor guy! Once he was in there, though, it was as if all of the sudden he realized that was actually HIS stuff in there, and he was fine–started talking and singing again

. He actually has just a little more room in this cage than his other, and since this one is not a dome top, I think I am going to be able to hang his big rope swing in there. It never hung right in the dome cage. 

Another thing I absolutely LOVE is that he can’t flip his food and water dishes out! He keeps trying, and it really amuses me! In his other cage I finally got to the point I took the higher dishes out and put those crocks toward the bottom of the cage. However, he managed to quickly learn to dismantle those and throw them around the cage, but at least he wasn’t throwing them from up so high! LOL! He is SUCH a character! I often call him Mr. Destructo! 

Anyway, thanks for you e-mail! I’m sure Charlie will have many happy years in this cage.


Arizona Exotic Bird Rescue

 A part of animal rescue goes beyond that of helping dogs, cats, or even bunnies. Exotic bird rescue needs just as much help from the community as organizations that help those with wagging tails. The AZ Exotic Bird Rescue Inc., through a series of questions has shared information with me about their wonderful organization, which helps rehabilitate and adopt homeless exotic birds.

1.) What is the mission of Arizona Exotic Bird Rescue?
~ Arizona Exotic Bird Rescue, Inc. is a non-profit, charitable, corporation established to meet the needs of surrender parrots and other exotic birds. Our avian rescue/sanctuary is located in sunny Mesa, Arizona. Our primary function is to accept and rescue surrendered, displaced, abandoned, neglected, and abused parrots. We provide rehabilitation, behavioral therapy, retirement, and adoption services for exotic birds. 
2.) What do you need from the community?
~We are a no-kill, non-profit organization funded solely through adoption fees and donations. No salaries or wages are paid to our entirely volunteer staff. 100% of all monies donated go to provide, housing, health care, superior nutrition as well as stimulating individual environments and proper socialization. We depend on you the public, to support this amazing endeavor. Monitory donations are always needed and most welcomed.
3.) What is the adoption process?
~ The Adoption Process: 
You must first fill out and submit an ‘Application To Adopt.’ It’s available on our website.
Following our review of your application you will be contacted by phone during normal business hours (9:00am To 5:00 PM) for your first interview by a member of our staff. Note: When completing an application answer the questions in detail. If answers are too vague or left blank the application will not be processed. In the event a question simply doesn’t apply fill in the blank with n/a. Example: Are you a legal citizen of the Unites States? Answer: No – Please explain: Answer: I hold citizenship in Canada but reside in Arizona half of the year where I own my own home. 
You may be interviewed by a second member of our staff having completed the first. 
Every question on the application must be answered honestly.
A home study may be completed. Applicants living within a 25-mile radius of our Mesa, AZ location will be expected to cover our travel expenses with a $25 donation for the ‘home study’ if required. Those living farther will be charged accordingly. This in no way guarantees approval but could assist in our decision.
We may do a complete background check on an applicant and or other household members.
An applicant may be ask to provide proof of income.
Providing you qualify to that point all persons living in your home will have a face to face interview at the rescue and meet the birds.
You may be required to come visit the bird you are interested in adding to your life on more than one occasion to form a bond prior to taking him or her home if adoption is approved.
Persons under the age of 21 need not apply. We have found this requirement to be in the best interest of our birds.
An applicant’s experience with exotic birds plays a major role in the type of bird they are approved to adopt. Example: A person that has no experience with exotic birds would not be approved to adopt a large Macaw or parrots of similar size. They would be expected to gain experience and understanding with an educational program and starting out with a smaller bird. The amount of time you are able to spend with a bird is also very important. Some parrots need more time with their owner than others. Persons with very young children, infants, or planning a pregnancy need not apply as this is the most common reason parrots are surrendered to rescues. A parrot’s bite can severely injure little ones. Other restrictions apply such as being financially stable and being able to provide a calm, solid environment.
4.) What are the adoption fees?
~ A minimum adoption donation is required upon placement of a bird. In other words if the minimum fee is $200 to adopt a parrot some folks elect to donate over and above that amount. We are a charitable non-profit corporation avian sanctuary recognized on both a state and federal level as an animal shelter. Adoption fees vary depending on the type of bird, its age, behavior and health issues. For example a Congo African Grey ($500 to $1,000) is going to be more than a Quaker Parrot ($100 to $200). 
5.) What kind of events do you sponsor?
~ We are available to speak at schools and nursing homes. We provide rehabilitation, behavioral therapy, retirement, and adoption services for exotic birds. The Board of Directors, Advisory Board, and other Volunteers of Arizona Exotic Bird Rescue, Inc. have extensive experience working with exotic birds. We place great emphasis on educating the public, both those with parrots and those considering adding a parrot to their lives, about the needs and care of these amazing birds. 
6.) What is the adoption hours, location, and ways to contact?
~ We are not open to the public. Only persons that are surrendering a parrot or those who have completed the adoption process and have met with our approval are permitted to come to our establishment on an appointment basis. We have a contact form available on our website. Our e-mail address is: Those persons considering surrendering their parrots are welcome to call us at 480-380-3231. If you are interested in adoption please submit a completed application prior to calling us.
7.) What type of birds do you have available?
~ For the safety of the many parrots in our care and the everchanging population that’s not a question I will answer directly. You are welcome to visit our website to become aquantied with some of our birds.
8.) How and where are these animals rescued?
~ Arizona Exotic Bird Rescue, Inc. was created in response to all of the birds whose needs are not being met: Those who will lose their homes because their loving human caretakers become ill, start a human family, move, find themselves in dire financial straits or experience another major life change. We serve the Southwestern United States as a refuge for displaced exotic birds that are relinquished by their owners. We do not allow adoptions outside of Arizona.
Thank you for reading this article. Select the “subscribe to e-mail” icon to receive e-mails to stay updated with future articles showcasing animals needing a home, and the finest organizations in Phoenix that help them.
For more info:

Can a Lixit Bird water bottle stopper be washed in the dishwasher?

Can a Lixit Bird water bottle stopper be washed in the dishwasher and/or wash by hand in lukewarm soapy water? Please e-mail me about cleaning the stopper. Thanks for your help with this matter.

Our answer:

Dear Reginald:

You can wash the stoppers in the dishwasher, but it will cause them to wear out sooner than if you just use hot soapy dish water.


 Sonia Wertz
Lixit Corporation
Sales Manager

Click here to see all out Lixit Water Bottle products


Hagen Tropimix Premium Large Parrot Bird Food Review

Product Name: 80664 Hagen Tropimix Premium Large Parrot Bird Food 20 lb Bag
Headline: Owner, Blue Line Kennel
Name: Heidi
Location: Waxhaw, NC

Review: For the larger birds that I own that need more than just pellets, this is the most cost effective food I have found. There is no waste from shells and it fills their need for more than pellets.

My birds are healthy and happy on this feed, and their feathers shine. Windy City is by far the cheapest place I have found to purchase this food, which I have been feeding for years.
Rating: 5

Differences between same size bird cages from AE, HQ & Prevue?

Here’s a question that comes across the 24/7 Help Desk regularly

Hi there,

I was referred to your website by some folks who have purchased from you in the past. It is generally known that HQ makes a very good cage. I have looked at some of the other cages you have to offer and wanted to know how they compare. I have seen the Prevue Select cages but haven’t seen any reviews or information on the web as to quality, ease of cleaning etc. I notice that the Prevue Select 3152 is more expensive than the HQ 80024 and wondered if it is a better cage overall. The other line I am curious is AE, any suggestions?

Adrian – The best way to talk about this is to look at the 3 bird cages side-by-side

Black Double Playtop Parrot Cage by HQ 8002422D


All 3 cages are well built and constructed of Bird-safe wrought iron with durable powder-coating finishes. Prevue uses a higher strength steel so the bars are thinner than the other 2 thus the Prevue cage is a bit lighter than the other 2
AE & HQ are each 24″ W X 24″ L and have an interior cage hieght of 29″. The Prevue is 24″ W X 20″ L but the inside of the cage (living space) is 5″ higher at 34″ yet Prevue is the shortest at 60″ tall while the other two are 67″ tall overall

Ok let’s start with some basic features AE has 3 feeder doors vs 2 for the other guys – I feel 2 is enough. Our Indian Ringneck Sunshine likes his cage against a wall. (If you are going to place a place a cage in a corner, make sure you put the side panel with the feeder cups on the open side when assembling)

AE & HQ uses a gravity lock to keep feeder doors secure, Prevue uses a “gate type” bolt latch. The bolt latch may be a tad more secure in the long run but gravity lock are effective in that birds struggle with moving them far enough to actually release a door.

Prevue offers 3/4″ bar spacing, AE & HQ are at 5/8″ I feel that bar spacing can be over anaylzed. Our Ringneck has over a dozen cages, his main one at home has 1″ bar spacing. Many people would gasp at that. Sunshine is 20 and has been in that cage for 6 years. Birds are as different as people. So fudging on an 1/8″ or 1/4″ difference in bar spacing is a calculated but subjective decision.

Feeder cups – all three offer stainless steel cups and a system to help lock the feeder cups down so birds can not pull them out of the holders. Prevue’s cup holders can be removed without tools. You must unscrew the rings on the HQ & AE

Speaking of screws. AE & HQ use conventional phillips head metric screws which means you probabaly have the right tools already while Prevue has opted to go with hex head screws. The Hex is a little more labor intensive using the included Allan key (unless you follow my suggestion in our listings Prevue 3152 but are much harder for birds to unscrew. Less of a problem with smaller parrots but each of these 3 cages come in 4 sizes so if you have a Houdini African Grey going into at 32″ x 23″ cage the screws may come into play.

All 3 are similar in terms of 2 removable trays, 2 removable grilles, a dowel perch inside the cage and one on the play top. Prevue 3152 is notable in that the lower refuse drawer is spaced about 6″ below the grate. The open area is protected by cage wall to prevent a bird from what I call dumpster diving. (You spend $20 on a bag of food and all they want is that 2 day old dry morsel in the tray.) In that regard Prevue’s lower tray design prevents your bird from ingesting decaying food) The knock on that (the lower tray) by some of our senior aged customers is that it’s too low and requires additional stooping to empty

Playtops are playtops. The AE comes with a toy hook standard. The Prevue has a a double ladder on it’s metallic color cages. HQ offers a double play top scenario. HQ and AE offer plastic casters – this one goes to Prevue for their stainless ball bearing casters. Prevue offers a spring loaded bolt action cage door lock, very effective. The other two have typical “lever/gate” locks. Prevue & AE have secondary “gravity” door locks, HQ does not.

It’s no secret that I’m not a big fan of seed guards (we’ll leave that for another post) AE & HQ seed guards mount with less harware than Prevue’s which require 8 hex head screws for intallation (and removal) but if you must have seed guards, Prevue’s have rounded corners making them safer especially for children and other pets.

Prevue offers 5 conventional colors and 3 metallic colors (Prevue metalic color cages have dual ladders), HQ & AE each offer 6 colors. When people ask us “what’s the most popular color” we’ll always answer platinum because we think it hides bird poop the best.

Assembly time is about the same with all 3, about 30 minutes once all the parts are out of the box and all 3 cages retail for about $200 including shipping on

The specs:

HQ 80024

24″ w x 22″ d x 29″ h
Overall height 67″
Bar Spacing 5/8″

  • Great for these medium birds or these smaller birds
  • Removable trays (1 under playtop – 1 below the bottom grate)
  • Removable grate (the floor of the cage)
  • 5 Stainless Steel Cups
  • Playtop with ladder
  • Access feed cups from outside the cage
  • Seed Skirt
  • 2 Wood Perches
  • 4 EZ Roll Casters
  • Constructed of Bird-safe wrought iron
  • Durable powder-coating finish
  • Assembly time approximately 45 minutes
  • Tools required: Pliers, Screwdriver (electric preferred)

AE 80024

24” wide x 22” deep with a total height of 67”
Inside height 29″ – 5/8″ bar spacing – 4mm bars


  • Great for these medium birds or these smaller birds
  • Playpen top with curved ladder and wood perch with toy hook and 2 stainless steel feed cups
  • 3 swing out feeder doors with stainless steel cups
  • Constructed of Bird-safe wrought iron
  • Durable powder-coating finish
  • Matching seed catchers (adds 8″ to width & depth)
  • Slide out grate
  • 2 slide out trays for easy cleaning
  • Large front door with safety latch
  • 4 EZ roll Casters
  • Assembly time approximately 30 minutes
  • T
  • ools required: screwdriver (electric preferred), pliers
    Prevue 3152

    Parrot Cage Dimensions:
    24″ W x 20″ D x 60″ H (overall)
    34″ Interior Height
    3/4″ Bar spacing

    Great for these medium birds


    these smaller birds

    • Playpen top with 2 stainless steel cups
    • 2 Hardwood dowel perches
    • 2 Stainless feeder cups inside the cage
      (Accessible from the out side)
    • Rounded corner seed guards
    • Pull out grille
    • 2 Pull out drawers
      (One lower, one up top)
    • Cage wall between the lower grate
      & lower tray (So birds can’t pick at garbage)
    • Spring loaded safety lock
    • Second gravity door lock for extra security
    • 4 Stainless ball bearing casters
    • Constructed of Bird-safe wrought iron
    • Durable powder-coating finish
    • Hex head bird proof screws (Hex wrench included)
    • Estimated assembly time 30 minutes




What Kind of Parrot was in A Hard Days Night w/ the Beatles?

Working on the Windy City Parrot website late last night and the movie A Hard Days Night, starring the Beatles came on. I remember going to the Howard movie theater as a sophomore at Sullivan High School in Chicago.

My kinky hair (when I had hair) forced down over my fore head, a turtle neck dickie and bell bottom trousers made me look well, maybe I need to delete that part of the memory.

Anyway, Not really paying attention to the movie on cable but looking up now on then easily following the loose plot . Watching the scene in the bar where Ringo gets himself into trouble (and almost misses the “Big Show”) by throwing darts. The first one lands in a patron’s sandwich. The second dart passes through a bird cage but misses the African Grey parrot.

I’ve tried to do some research on the bird in the scene. No luck. I did find this picture of Ringo with what I think is a Macaw. Tough to tell in the black and white photo.

Any additional information on Ringo and parrots would be welcome. Simple leave a “comment” below.

Help – My Lixit Water Bottle Tip Is leaking

Click to learn more about Lixit Water Bottles for birds

I have another problem and this is with the LIXIT 5/8 nozzle. I just got that bottle mounted last night and this morning I found the water half gone and the papers beneath were saturated with water. I took my cockatoo out of the cage replaced the paper with dry paper and waited. The papers are wet again. No matter how I try to position the ball, tap the ball with my finger it does not stop the drip. Eventually it returns.

Neither of my other LIXIT nozzles have this problem. Please tell me what I need to do to get a stem and ball that don’t leak. And thanks for looking into a way to clean the stem now that it has some indentations. I’m suspecting some type of bristled cleaner that can curve and attack it from the rubber stopper end. Probably a brush made for aquarium use.
Thank you,


Hi Kris


It is rare that the nozzles will leak that much.
There are a few reasons and some can be corrected.
If the nozzle is not seated in the bottlle correctly it will leak.
If the nozzle is up too high or too low in the stopper it may leak so check that.
If the water when put in the bottle is very cold, it may leak until the water reaches room temperature so always use room temp water. It is normal for a few drops, teaspoon or so to leak in the morning due to the temperature changes during the night and the warming back up during the day.
If the rubber stopper has a crack in it or has shrunk from being washed too much in a hot dishwasher or left out in the air unused for a LONG time, it could leak.
If there is a seed stuck up in the nozzle it can happen as well.
If the cockatoo has bent the nozzle so it is not round, the ball cannot stop the water. There is another nozzle in the 5/8″ thickness called a TUFF TIP that has a reinforced ring at the opening to stop this with the destructive birds.
Once all these suggestions have been ruled out then indeed we can have another nozzle and stopper sent out to you.
As far as the brush needed to clean the nozzle, I have found the thinnest aquarium brushes do work very well and have used them myself.

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