Hi Tiffany. Lorikeets are one of the easiest birds to hand raise and wean. He will need to be kept fairly warm still at the moment. I use a plastic terrarium with sterile pine shavings in the bottom about 1 1/2 inches thick and a bath towel doubled up over the top to keep the heat in. He should feel warm at all times. I don't have a thermometer in the brooder with them so I don't know the exact temperature. Best not to be in an air conditioned room. As for the constant chirping. This is something peculiar to baby Lorikeets. They can be full to bursting and they will chirp in their sleep. Even adults will often make noises in their sleep. I think it is one thing that endears them to me. Another thing about Lorikeets is that they can be weaned at a younger age than seed eating birds. You really need to have a food thermometer to test the temperature of his food. I used to use a crop needle (I was usually feeding alot of birds at the time so it was necessary). When I slowed down the number of birds I was hand raising I switched to a spoon. I found that lorikeets if you try to feed them at the recommended temperature of 40C the are sluggish feeders but increase the temperature of the food and when it is right for them they will gulp it down. I found at least 45C was better. Some like it a bit hotter than that. When I am starting to wean them I get a small container (usually glazed ceramic) and make the food up to the required temperature and I just push their beaks into it a bit like when you are teaching a puppy or kitten to drink. I fill the container right to the very top (a bit messy but it works) and push their beak in, they will lap up a bit with their tongue and usually put their head up again, I then just repeat the procedure. I usually do this at least once a day and the other feeds as normal with the spoon. Each time you do it they will increase the amount they are eating on their own until you just put the container in and they will eat themselves. I usually do this when they are about 2/3 feathered. This is the time I play with them more as they are not getting as much handling as they do when you are feeding them by spoon. When they are nearly fully feathered they go out into a nappy cage and I introduce dry lorikeet mix and water along with the wet mix that they get. They will start exploring and start eating dry and water themselves.
A soft toy is a good idea at this stage that your bird is now as they will snuggle up to it and it wll help keep him warm. Once they are well feathered you can dispense with the toy.
Hope this helps.
Meant to add that I use the same food they would eat as an adult to hand raise them with. I make my own and have done for 11 years, I also sell it to other breeders and owners here in Australia. My mix can be used either wet or dry so they get the same nutrients whichever way you choose to feed them.
That was a wonderful post! Thanks so much - it definitely helped and it put my mind at ease..
Nibbles is a very eager eater at 40 degrees.. while he's waiting for me to refill his spoon, he likes to stick his head in the bowl and start lapping up the formula! He does little sneezes afterwards for a few seconds.. that's normal, right? The breeder told me to feed him every 6 hours, but his crop is empty by 4 and he's hungry for more.. should there be a period of time to wait? As in, does his crop need to be empty for a little bit to give him some rest, or is it fine for him to eat as soon as it's empty? Also, I read to never feed while there's still food in his crop - obviously, this isn't a problem, but why is it not good to do so?
If he's eager to start lapping up by himself now, does that I mean I should start weaning him? I'm a little worried about the weaning process because I don't really trust the shops (and their advice) in Taiwan.. I tend to question whether or not they really know what they're doing, but their birds seem to be doing fine. Mainly, I don't trust the formulas that they make.. I might have to go find some imported mixes. Any thoughts?
He's starting to flap his wings quite a bit and I'm wondering when to switch him to a cage, and what kind of cage to use? Right now, he's in a medium-seized cardboard box with a little cardboard box inside that contains newspaper shreds; this way, he has room to walk around and still has a space to keep warm in. I cover them both with a towel to make sure he's adequately warm - but Taiwan is so hot anyways, I'm actually more scared of him getting heatstroke.
Lastly, here is a picture of one of his droppings.. does it look okay? There's no white part to it and it doesn't hold any definition, both of which would lead me to believe that it's not
okay.. but he is
a baby bird in a new location and maybe he's just a little stressed right now? Or maybe it has to do with the formula?
Man, I really wish I had more experience with birds so I could have actual experience with what's normal and not, rather than just knowing all this stuff I've read up on >.< I really appreciate the help! Thanks!!