This comprehensive care guide will show you how to look after a Neophema in 3 easy steps
How long will my Neophema live? 15-20 years
How big will it grow? Approximately 20cm
What size of enclosure is recommended for my Neophema? An aviary of 6ft X 3ft X 5.5ft
What does a Neophema eat? Predominantly a seed-eating species
Neophemas are a moderately compatible, placid species and can be housed in an aviary with a variety of other species such as canaries, grass parrots, princess parrots and a range of finches. Neophemas should not be housed with dominant species like lorikeets, rosellas, cockatiels, budgies, lovebirds and conures.
Ideally, an aviary for neophemas should be 6ft(W) X 3ft(D) X 5.5ft(H) with floors that are easy to maintain and keep clean, and do not hold moisture as this can encourage diseases. Neophemas will enjoy the addition of plants and shrubbery to their aviary. As a general rule any native Australian plant is safe for use in an aviary.
Neophemas are predominantly a seed eating species so their captive diet should consist of a small parrot seed mix, which should contain a variety of seeds such as french white millet, plain canary, hulled oats, pannicum, japanese millet, saff flower and sunflower.
Grit assists with digestion so small amounts should be added to their daily seed. Seed lacks important vitamins and minerals so their daily diet should be supplemented with small portions of fresh fruit and vegetables such as apple, carrot, beans, peas, corn, broccoli and spinach. Never feed your Neophemas lettuce or avocado, and always remove the seeds from apples. Fruit and vegetables should not be left for prolonged periods of time as they will easily spoil and this can lead to illness from the bacteria and yeasts that grow on spoilt produce.
Vitamin supplements such as Soluvite D or Multivet can be added to the your neophemas water two or three times a week. Calcium and Iodine can be provided through cuttlebone and iodine bells. Fresh water should always be available and should be changed on a daily basis. Worming should be repeated every three months with a broad-spectrum bird wormer.
Enrichment is all about enhancing the quality of life for your Neophema and generally relates back to activities they would usually perform in the wild. Unlike hand raised birds, aviary birds do not require the same level of mental stimulation, as being in a flock environment provides that for them. However, it is still recommended to give them lots of activities to do within the aviary as boredom can sometimes lead to aggression within certain species.
This can be achieved by providing natural branches of varying lengths, shapes and thicknesses. There are many native branches that you could offer your Neophemas such as eucalyptus, gum, grevillea, bottle brush and lilly pilly, many of which have natural nuts and flowers that providing a foraging opportunity for your Neophemas. This also allows Neophemas to properly exercise their feet and beak as they can chew and strip the bark perches.
To own certain Neophema species you must hold a Class 1 Bird Keeper’s Licence. This can be applied for online through the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage at http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/wildlifelicences/applnformsandfees.htm
We have created a Shopping list to show what you need to look after a Lovebird:
- Aviary; 6ft x 3ft x 5.5ft
- Water bowl
- Food bowl
- Perch brackets
- Natural perches
- Hanging feeder
- Carry cage
- Seed and millet
- Avicare disinfectant
- Lice & Mite spray
- Nest boxes
- Nesting material
Common health issues in Neophemas
Psittacosis: A type of bacterial lung infection commonly carried by wild and domesticated birds, and able to be passed onto humans.
Respiratory Infections: Usually caused by bacteria infecting the respiratory system of birds due to vitamin A deficiency, however can be caused by many other factors such as fungi, parasites and environmental toxins.
Bacterial Infections: There are many common bacterial diseases birds are susceptible to and is usually caused by lack of hygiene or stress, especially when there is another factor compromising the birds immune system.
Is your Neophema showing any of the signs of disease or illness? If yes, please contact your vet.
- Fluffed up feathers
- Nasal discharge
- Out of character behaviour
- Discoloured poo or diarrhoea
At Kellyville Pets, we encourage responsible pet ownership.
CARE GUIDE © Copyright 2016 Kellyville Pets - All information found in this care guide is based upon our own experience. The information provided is not the only information available. In any medical situations, you should always consult your vet, including questions regarding your pet's diet.