Aviary Construction Questions!

Discussion in 'Caged Birds - Finches, Canaries, Cockatiels, Parro' started by WaterFowlMan01, Nov 25, 2014.

  1. WaterFowlMan01

    WaterFowlMan01 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 28, 2012
    Columbus, OH
    Hello, I have a few questions about the construction of an aviary. This will be my first time ever owning and/or building an aviary and I would be glad if someone or multiple people gave me some advice and answers based upon my questions.

    To begin, I would like to state that the avian inhabitants will be of different species. These species will include:

    - Pheasants (Optional)
    - Parakeets
    - Quail
    - Finches
    - Doves
    - Cockatiels (Optional)
    - Parrotlets (Optional)

    I did not include specific breeds from each because I keep discovering new birds to purchase from my research. All birds chosen will be purchased in pairs.

    I would like to construct an aviary 7.5 Meters in length, and at least 4.5 Meters in width.
    I also would like the aviary to be 8 feet tall.

    If you would like for me to provide more information, please state that in your response and I will gladly do so!

    Questions.)
    - Are any of these birds not compatible?
    - What is the reason for these birds not being compatible?
    - Will providing more space let me house them together?
    - Will my aviary be adequate in size?
    - What size Mesh will be good to keep out rodents and keep my birds from escaping?
    - Where can I purchase the Mesh?
    - Any other advice?

    Thank you so much for the help!

    - Darian Woodson
     
  2. WaterFowlMan01

    WaterFowlMan01 Out Of The Brooder

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    Can anyone please help me?
     
  3. georgiagail

    georgiagail Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'd be careful mixing the hookbills (cockatiels, parrolets even the parakeets) in with the smaller birds such as finches, quail and doves. These hookbills can do a number on the smaller birds if they happen to catch them. At best the bigger guys can terrify the little ones.

    I'm an old finch/canary person myself (used to raise Lady Gouldian finches) and a very pretty aviary to start off with is a group of finches and perhaps doves with the quail on the bottom to clean up the seeds that finches invariable drop.

    If using finches, you'd need at least hardware cloth to prevent escapes.
     
  4. georgiagail

    georgiagail Chillin' With My Peeps

  5. WaterFowlMan01

    WaterFowlMan01 Out Of The Brooder

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    Columbus, OH
    Quote: Thanks a lot for the help! I thought no one would respond! I will go with your advice and start off with a group of finches, doves, and quail. I will also look at the link you posted! I truly do appreciate your help!
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2014
  6. lovetopaint

    lovetopaint Chillin' With My Peeps

    I can't really help as far as the mixing species thing goes, BUT! I can offer a little warning and some advice.
    Be VERY careful what metals you use for your aviary!!!! Zinc coated wire/mesh is also bad. It actually is bad for chickens too, but the reason people use it is because chickens don't climb all over the walls and roof ;) Well, at least mine don't....
    Note: I'm NOT sure if this applies only to hookbills? If you are getting quail, finches and doves, I'm not sure if you need to worry or not! If it is bad, the wire you were linked to is Zinc coated, so don't ever use that for parakeets, cockatiels, etc. If the birds you are getting don't climb, which makes sense, ignore that. But I just wanted to make you aware! I don't want any of your future birds to die! [​IMG]

    Now for some advice!
    I recently built an aviary for my parakeet. I thought for awhile and used this:
    http://www.menards.com/main/storage...48-x-16-tightmesh-shelf/p-1633849-c-12643.htm
    It works GREAT. I even built a stand out of MDF and 2x4"s!!
    So I probably used...
    3 2x4"'s
    2 sheets of 1/8 inch thick 2x4' MDF (I used one for the roof, one for the floor...)
    3 shelves
    And some decking I had...but I could have used a 2x4 instead :)
    I painted everything the color I wanted it and then cut the boards to size. Then I took four slats of 2x4 that were cut to be 3 feet long and attached them to the MDF. It looked like a table--A VERY tippy table. So I added brace supports diagonally--eight in all. They were made out of decking, by the way.
    Then I attached the shelving up top, and used cable ties to hold the roof in place. Then I used a grate I had on hand for the door and BOOM!
    My parakeet loves it ;)
    I hope this helps! Any questions? Let me know!
     
  7. WaterFowlMan01

    WaterFowlMan01 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 28, 2012
    Columbus, OH
    Thank you so much for your reply! I will check out the link you posted! Also thank you for the tips on what metals not to use for my aviary! I appreciate your compassion!
     
  8. Rosa moschata

    Rosa moschata Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If you're going to have finches in there, avoid budgies and parrotlets -- they're just a bit too pugnacious, and can inflict some serious harm to any finch that gets in their way. Cockatiels are generally more peaceful in a large aviary with finches. If you want some more color, consider grass parakeets -- but no more than one pair per genus (Polytelis, Neophema, Psephotus, Neospehotus). From what I've read, rosella pairs (genus Platycercus) can be too belligerent toward other parakeets sharing their aviary, so avoid them for your mix.

    Also be aware that many species of pigeons and doves can't be housed with more than one pair per aviary, while there are a few which will be fine in a colony (Diamond and Ring-necked doves would be good for you if you want a group of the same species).

    While many references will advise putting all inhabitants into the aviary at once to avoid territory disputes, for your situation that's not entirely necessary -- with a caveat. If you can't put them in all at once, put the smallest members of each niche (ground bird or canopy bird) in the aviary first. So if you plan on a pair of pheasants, put them in after the quail (and be mindful of the type of quail, being as many species won't tolerate another pair in their aviary). With the canopy birds, put the finches in first, then the doves, then the parrots. And by this I don't mean in the same day -- you can space out the introductions by a week or more, or however long until each introduction has acclimated.

    Have you considered how you will protect/heat the aviary in Winter?

    As far as mesh goes, I'd suggest 1/2 inch by 1/2 inch. You can find PVC-coated, stainless steel, and other alternatives to bare galvanized welded wire. For a frame, consider a sturdy greenhouse or hoophouse as a base. There's a parrot sanctuary in Virginia which has several outdoor aviaries built to house flocks of birds which prefer the company of their own over that of people. These are serious aviaries built with donated money, parts and labor, but you can get some inspiration and ideas from their pictures. Here are links to their website and facebook page:

    http://www.projectperry.com/

    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Project-Perry/144608394309


    :)
     
  9. Rosa moschata

    Rosa moschata Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, and when you have the aviary built, consider planting it first before adding any birds. You might even want to give the plants a year to establish before adding birds. If you need recommendations on what plants to use, ask away.

    :)
     
  10. WaterFowlMan01

    WaterFowlMan01 Out Of The Brooder

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    Jun 28, 2012
    Columbus, OH
    Thanks a bunch! I'm gonna go with what you said and grow plants in the aviary before I get the birds and put them in it. I actually would like a few recommendations on what plants to put in the aviary because I have not done any research on that yet. Also I did not think about how I would heat my aviary during the Winter, thats because I planned on building the aviary when I move to Atlanta, Georgia pretty soon. I wanted to do my research ahead of time because after I settle down in the new house, I'm going to begin building the aviary right away. Do you have any ideas on how I could heat my aviary during the Winter just incase?

    I now have an idea on how I will release my birds into the aviary thanks to your help. I will begin my purchasing the smaller birds first and then the bigger birds last. I really do appreciate your help!

    - Darian Woodson
     

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