Poicephalus parrots need a lot of space to be happy. The smallest cage you can buy is 24 x 24 x 40, though even medium sized birds will need something as roomy as 36 inches in length, 24 inches in width, and 52 inches in height. Get one with a big door if you have Jardines. The bars should be less than one inch apart, so there’s no risk of the birds getting their heads stuck between them.
Avoid cages with curlicue designs. The curves can snap off under heavy chewing, and poicephalus parrots have very strong beaks. There have also been cases of tail feathers getting caught into them.
It’s also better to get a rectangular or square cage. Birds need to have a corner they can retreat to when they are scared. Being in a round cage is the equivalent of being trapped in an open field—there’s no where to go, and they’ll always be checking for any signs of “predators”. This can exacerbate the poicephalus parrots’ already nervous dispositions.
Get a cage with a pull out tray, so you can easily throw away droppings or food scraps. Some specialty cages will even have a roll of heavy duty paper, so you just have to tug at the end. Never remove the grid that separates the cage floor from the tray. It will prevent your pet from eating food that’s come into contact with the droppings.
Clean the cage thoroughly at least once a week, scrubbing the bars and the perches. Stainless steel is easy to clean. Don’t get wooden trays, which absorb moisture and smell, and get warped when wiped with a damp cloth.
Poicephalus Cage-Room for Play
You need at least 3 perches for the cage. Many parrot aficionados say that wooden branches from your own back yard are even better than the ones you can buy from the store. Just make sure that they are thick enough for your pet to stand on them without its claws turning inward. Remove traces of chemical fertilizers or insecticides by soaking the branches in a mild bleach solution, or heating them in the oven at 400 F for 20 minutes.
Parrots also tend to prefer cages with horizontal rather than vertical bars because they can climb. It’s also easier to hang toys or accessories.
When you buy cages, try to visualize how much room will be left after you’ve put the perches, the toys, and the feeding dishes.