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Saturday, 24 May 2014

Information About World Peaceful Parakeet Rosa Bourke For Pet Lover

English Name
Bourke’s Parrotlet
Spanish Name
Periquito de Bourke
Latin Name
Neopsephotus bourkii

Males and females are virtually identical in appearance, though hens have darker faces and more grey scattered throughout their body.
Normal coloured Bourkes can only be visually sexed after they've had their first moult. Then the male develops a beautiful blue band across his forehead, just above the beak at brow level. And the female lacks much if not all, of this blue band. In general, the male is brighter coloured with more blue but be warned this does not always hold true, with some hens having blue bands as well as more bodily blue about them, and some males having no blue band at all. The male is also the one who sings their chortling little song, while she has only a softer chirping chortling sound.


Size L à 4.3 mm.
These peaceful birds have calm dispositions that make them ideal companions for mixed flights that also house finches and cockatiels. Bourkes have a soft, pleasant voice, and are not nervous or excitable birds. Due to their non-destructive nature, it is unlikely that they will nibble on the vegetation in a planted aviary.
The males get quite territorial and will fight with other bourkes in the same cage. Young bourkes can be safety housed together until they are a year old, but remove all nest boxes and watch for the rogue bird!. They love to fly, and make a wonderful whistling noise similar to a dove.
Can be housed with : parakeets, gouldians, finches, canaries, neophemas, doves, cockatiels …
Every article, discussion, and book about Bourke will say he avoids water and it is true they drink little and hate baths. Most drinking in fact, will occur late in the evening so it is critical their water is freshened a little before this time period. Many will enjoy warm showers that seem natural, such like using a garden hose; but they resent being misted from a bottle and are quick to give you the 'evil eye' in protest. However, healthy feathers need the occasional bath.
A seed mix of millets, sunflower(grey-striped), canary, safflower, hulled oats, pannicum and small quantities of oil seeds such as maw, niger, rape and linseed should be available at all times.
In addition to the basic seed mix these birds need to be fed greens such as chickweed, thistle, dandelion, silver beet, broccoli, peas and seeding grasses. They also enjoy a feed of apple and sweet corn which should be partly cooked then cooled beforehand, this is to avoid the possibility of sour crop which can happen If raw corn is left with the birds for too long.
They can be fed apples, bananas and carrots which can be a favourite food.
Soaked or sprouted seed is also fed to these birds by many breeders. This can cause problems if not approached in the correct manner. The method I have used is to soak a mix of millet, pannicum, sunflower and mung beans in water overnight, the mix is then rinsed thoroughly before spreading out in a tray for 24hrs. when it is thoroughly rinsed again, spread out for a further 24hrs. then given a final rinse using an anti-bacterial solution (which can be purchased at any good pet supply store) before feeding to the birds. The use of a product called Aviclens from Vetafarm can be most helpful in eliminating problems when carrying out this process.
A few other items that should be available at all times are cuttlebone and shell grit along with a good supply of clean fresh water which should always be provided in glass, china, porcelain or stainless steel avoiding any porous materials.
They really like the small, black sunflower seeds and are a wonderful addition during breeding, especially when they are feeding youngsters.
Every evening, mix up a special mix of sprouted seed, homemade egg bread, baked egg shells, Petamine and thawed frozen mixed vegetables, also mix in a calcium supplement and powdered kelp for minerals. The male will sit on the bowl and wait for this mix to feed to his mate. The hen then feeds the babies. When the babies are big enough to stick their head out of the nest, the males will feed them directly. He also does most of the feeding when they leave the nest, so the hen can lay another clutch.
You can cultivate pots full of dandelions, which the bourkes enjoy year-round. They also relish broccoli, spinach and romaine lettuce, they can also get a slice of orange at least once a week.
Given a choice, they'd eat nothing but Millet Seed, so this food must be given only sparingly. Cuttlebone should always be available and other mineral blocks to help keep their beaks ground down, though these may be used only sparingly, depending on the bird.
Breeding Cages
The best size caging is said to be 6' long by 3' wide by 3' tall. Note all that length! These birds are straight-arrow fliers!
For nest boxes use a good quality plywood box measuring 20cm. square at the base by 30cm high with the sides tapering to 10cm. wide at the top. The entrance is a hole of 5.5cm. around 7.5cm. from the top with a landing platform 10cm. by 7cm. placed 2cm. below the hole. Inside place a wire ladder 7cm. wide from the hole to the base to allow easy access for the hen and easy escape for the young at fledging. The nest boxes are hung externally at the rear of the cage allowing easy access to keep an eye on the happenings within nest the box.




Nesting Material
There are many different nesting materials used. Some of these are mixtures of sawdust or pine shavings and peat moss, sawdust and crushed termite nest, wood dirt from rotting timber and sawdust or a mixture of seed raising mix sawdust and peat moss with an avian pesticide dust mixed with it to help in the control of lice and mites which can be a problem at breeding time.

Try to have 2 boxes per pair, so they can have a choice. The bottom needs a concave 'cup' bottom to hold the eggs to the centre, otherwise eggs risk being shuffled to the corners. You then need to add wood shavings to the bottom so the birds can throw them out in an exercise which is sexually stimulating to them, and messy for us to clean up after.
Breeding Period
During breeding time feeding is of utmost importance. The normal diet should be maintained with emphasis placed on the greens, soaked seed and seeding grasses and the provision of food such as egg and biscuit which should be available at all times. It will also be found that the parents will look for more sunflower seed.

4+6 laid every other day.


The hen will start sitting at the laying of the second egg

When using a new breeding hen for the first time, never chase her from the nest box to inspect the eggs or young and never handle the young. As the hen gains experience she will also gain tolerance to being disturbed while in the nest box.

18 - 21 days.
21-28 days old.

Breeding Life

Sexual Maturity
Male 8 months
Female 10-12 months.
They are good in the planted aviary as they leave the plants alone for the most part.
However for the colony, set up equal numbers of males and females greater than 2 pair, with 4-6 pair being ideal. If you just have 2 pair, you have 2 males fighting for both hens, which also leads to some people breeding in large aviaries with 2 hens and 1 cock. In this latter situation, you place the nest boxes just as far from each other as you can get them! However you set up your colony though, place all birds in it at the same time, so nobody has priority stature over the other birds.

Health Problems
The control of worms is most important in the keeping of any birds, the neophema is no exception to this rule. This should be done at least three times a year. There are many worming medications available such as fenbendazole, levamisole, droncit, ivermectin and oxfendazole. Due to the ability of most neophema to go for extended periods without water worming by medicating their drinking water can be unreliable, however this at times can be the only practical method. I do worm my young birds in the growing cages by medicating drinking water using oxfendazole. It must be stirred every few hours as it does settle out in a very short time. The method I have chosen to worm my breeding stock and young when removing them from their parents is the crop needle using ivermectin and droncit. I feel that this technique should be learnt and mastered by all who keep birds of any type as it is the only way to be sure of correct dosage. I am sure any experienced breeder would be willing to help in this regard, failing this your local avian veterinarian will be able to set you straight in the use of a crop needle. I will also mention at this stage if you are not known to your local avian veterinarian, I recommend you make yourself known to him or her, as a good relationship with your vet. can be invaluable. I will not give the dose rates that I use as I feel this is a subject you should discuss with your avian veterinarian.
External parasites: such as lice and mites must also be controlled. To achieve this I use Dichlorvos strips (Shelltox) hung in the aviary at all times so that the birds are unable to come in contact with them. If this fails I have found a product called Avian Insect Liquidator from Vetafarm to be excellent for the control of all external parasites.

Although Bourke won't inter-breed with other Grass Parakeet species, they often will foster their eggs and sometimes their chicks.

Colour Mutations

These would be one of the prettiest of the neophema mutations. The colour can vary from a deep & rich salmon pink with a clear pink crown and almost white cheeks to a dirty washed out pink with a dark brown crown and face. In the clear crowned bird the rump is pink and the primary and secondary flight feathers remaining as normal while in the dark crowned bird the rump can vary from shades of blue to green with the secondary flight feathers showing more cream and even touches of blue and green.
Sexing of the dark crowned bird is relatively simple as the hen tends to show less intensity in the pink and more dark colouring on the head and face. I have been successful in breeding a clear headed rosa ( pink headed ) that requires surgical sexing as there is no noticeable difference between the sexes. The more experienced breeder should be able to determine the sex of the mature bird by behaviour in the aviary. The cock does not show the blue brow.
Referred to as the Isobella in some parts of the world. A very pretty bird having red eyes and displaying cinnamon coloured feathers edged with cream on the back and wings while the head and neck is what can be described as mushroom in colour becoming a deep pink on the belly then to a pale blue from the vent to the under side of the tail. They have very noticeable blue on the leading edge of the wings. In all a very nice little bird that I am proud to have in my collection.
Sexing of these is simple as the cock bird has a blue brow while the hen has a white brow.
Similar to the cinnamon in appearance having the same red eyes. The back and wings tend to be more cream to yellow with the head being more pink, face almost white and the pink on the belly extending up onto the chest. This bird tends to be a little washed out in its colouring but still a very pretty bird.
Sexing is the same as for the Cinnamon posing no problem.
This bird would be the most noticeable of the Bourke mutations in any collection. It also has red eyes. As in the Rosa there can be quite a variation in the colour from a deep salmon pink with dark flight feathers and a pink back to the more sought after soft pink with cream to yellow on the wings (normally refered to as the yellow-winged pink). All tend to have a white face.Must be taken in selecting breeding pairs to produce these birds as it can be difficult to produce strong offspring.

A sex linked mutation.


A lutino crossed with a Rosa.

Cream Ino Scarlet-Chested

Albino Scarlet-Chested
A Blue x Lutino
Lacewing Scarlet-Chested
Lutino x Cinnamon
Lutino Scarlet - Chested
A sex-linked mutation.
Blue Opaline
The inheritance of the blue factor, who is resposible for this new colour varieties, is recessive. The blue colour is due to the loss of psittacine in the plumage. But he Bourke is not a green bird like the Neophema's. So it can not be a loss-mutation of psittacine. Brown feathers without blue structure become feathers with a blue structure.This is a real mutation factor of the blue structure. This happened in the opaline series. And so the blue opaline did appear.
Green Opaline.
Also recessive. The appearance of green one's is very surprising because of the fact that the wild-type Bourke doesn't have green feathers at all. The new green colour is a combination of yellow pigment and the new extended blue structure of the feathers.

Information About World Peaceful Parakeet Rosa Bourke For Pet Lover 

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