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How To Keep A Baby Bird Warm Without Their Mother

Mackenzie Gary



Can you imagine the hatchling staying alive without its mother? When birds come out from the eggs, they don’t have feathers and they are so weak to drink and eat by themselves. In this situation, they need extra attention and they need to be kept warm in order to survive,. Some regions are most colder in winters due to snowfall, which is dangerous for mature or fledgling birds.  How to keep a baby bird warm in winter?

Keep a baby bird warm in winter

You can keep the baby bird warm by providing them automatic brooders, heating pads, heating lamps and by giving them warm food. Covering the cage with cotton can also a good source of heat. Make sure to avoid any step that leads to suffocation in baby birds.

Imagine nestlings who have no stamina to fly or do not have the capacity to produce heat. Definitely, just a mother can take care of their nestlings. Sometimes the mother of a baby bird dies or abandoned them. So, the male birds take care of their babies. But if both male and female are not present, then a human can care for the baby bird and help him to survive. 

Perhaps, there are many causes that become the reason for the death of baby birds. Some of them are malnutrition, dehydration, diseases as well as cold weather. All these problems are solved if someone cares for their birds heartly. There are many unique and helpful guides to keep the baby bird warmer at night and in winters. Let’s take a glance at wonderful tips.

Use automatic brooders 

The brooder is actually like a box that is specially designed for birds to keep them warmer. Everybody can maintain the temperature according to the baby’s size. Those who want to save the baby bird, then they must need a brooder to provide the heat. This box-like structure is supportive to treat diseased birds by separating them from others also. 

If your birds are not well, then the brooders are favorable to maintain the body temperature. A 100-volt bulb is attached according to the box size. Also, with the thermostat, you can set the temperature for automatic mode. Moreover, automatic brooders will be ON and OFF instinctively when it reaches a limited temperature. 

You should try to use the small box for 10-12 hatchlings. Otherwise, for more than one mature bird, make sure to utilize a larger one. 

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Small heated blankets

Several people avoid the brooders and want to try another safe way. The bird’s heated blankets are suitable. These blankets are easy to cover the baby birds and mature ones. Before trying this method, make sure whether you use this for nestling or fledgling birds. Perhaps, if you used the large quilt for a hatchling, then there are fewer chances of survival due to the heat. 

A heated towel is the right option for your searching about keeping a baby bird warmer. Sometimes, the electrical blankets are not suitable because of the thick fabric. Surely when the heat is more, then birds lose the capacity to breathe and die immediately. Therefore, simply heated blankets are best rather than electronic ones. Although to cover the wooden cage, the electrical blanket is best.

Cotton pads

Most of you ignore the large cage and leave it as it is without covering. In this instance, cotton pads are crucial to keep the baby birds active and warm. You can wrap the cotton in fabric and place it in a cage. After that, take the birds on the cotton pad and cover them with another piece of cotton. 

If you wrap the bird in cotton, then they cannot move. Moreover, movement is essential for the circulatory system of birds. Besides, try to avoid the cotton to wrap the fledgling birds. Because the birds have the potential to chew the cotton and it can damage their digestive system.

Use indoor covered cages

During winters, the outdoor cages can affect birds badly. The best way is to analyze the area before setting up the cage. Hanging the box or hutch near the door or windows in winter may hurt your birds. You should always try to place the enclosures facing toward the sun or away from the cold wind. Aside from that, keep in mind to cover the half cage indoors.  Otherwise, cover the cage fully for outdoor use. 

Winter thermo perches

For climbing and standing, the perches are unique items for birds. Yet, the winter thermo-perch is specially designed for the fledgling. In fact, the main concern is to know that these perch are non-toxic and not harmful for baby birds. However, with the wire and wooden cages, it is easily attached. Also, it does not injure the feet of birds. 

The perches are more suitable for the adult birds. The baby may dont have enough potential to climb at the perch. If you are looking for long term planning and want to keep the bird as a pet. Then you should go for it . But for the baby bird it is like wasting some money on it.

Healthy warm foods

In a temperate environment, healthy foods are helpful to keep the bird warmer. Hence, the most injured baby birds need a healthy diet for living. Nuts like peanuts and almonds keep them healthier and comfortable.

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Heating lamps or small heaters

Heaters will relax your baby bird. Heat lamps and ceramic bulbs can be used for indoor as well as outdoor cages. These are good options if you are looking for objects that do not burn the bird’s feet. In brooders, the bulb is already attached. But for simple cages, you can fix the ceramic bulb or heat lamps.

In the starting, some birds need a 95-degree temperature. Naturally, hatchlings want heat for about six weeks and this time period is critical for them. 

Plastic sheet to cover the cage

Mostly the rice and seed are used as food. Undoubtedly, the cooked rice provides heat and works as a heated blanket. Firstly, take an extra small cloth pouch and put the rice in it. Then place the pouch in the microwave. Furthermore, wrap it with a thick fabric and set it in the cage. This trick is good to provide heat to baby birds in the snowfall season. 

Use uncooked rice

It is a myth that the plastic cover can suffocate the birds. Surely, it does not happen and birds will remain alive. In fact, the plastic prevents the cold wind and protects the respiratory system of birds. Otherwise, in winters the birds will remain uneasy even with bulbs, heaters, and healthy food. It means you need a barrier to stop the cold wind and that is just plastic covering. 

Congested cage

Congested cages are just unique for baby birds. The more packed the coop, the more heat will be produced. Besides, the small cages are not accurate for the flying birds. 

Make sure if you are using small cage , it has a good ventilation system. Cover the cage with the blanket or cotton. You can also use light bulb along with

Use hot water bottle

Take an empty bottle and fill the hot water in it. Wrap it with a towel and position it in the coop. Make sure your birds feel comfort rather than burning. 

This is simple and cost free way. But this will require your precious time. As soon the water get colder , you have to fill it again with the warmer one.

Things to avoid to keep a baby birds alive 

With some dos you should follow some don’ts either. So, there are some following guides to avoid for the baby birds. 

Avoid to placing water bowl 

Most bird lovers place the cold water bowl in cages during the summer season and hot water in winter. Logically, they thought that it could provide comfort to parrots and finches. But have you ever realized how dangerous the water bowl is near nestling or infected birds? Although, this behavior kills the injured birds.

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No doubt, if you place the cold water in the cold season, then it can cause a sore throat in fledgling. Even it promotes a decrease in temperature in the enclosure. Very hot water can hurt your bird. Always check the temperature.

Don’t provide steam

Baby birds need extra protection for some weeks. Therefore, giving them steam is bad behavior. As steam converts into the water, that will drop the health of small miniatures. Steam will also overheat the place, and baby birds cannot survive in such conditions. It is because too much humidity is also not good

Avoid for excessive touching

Humans’ hands produce heat but taking the birds in your hands is not secure. Many people pick the small birds in front of their mother. In this way, the mother is some cases,(rare) may rejects their babies. Not just this, but also picking them wrongly in hands can damage the bird’s health. They may be infected by different diseases. 

If the birds are not well, then this behavior transfers the disease to humans. So, be aware before taking any step. Always wash hands after. Just make sure to use gloves for extra care. There is no much harm if you grip the baby bird carefully with your polite hands.

Do baby birds drink water after heating?

For nestling, the water is not important because the food that they eat is mixed with water. Additionally, baby birds drink milk also. Yet, fledgling needs water to drink after heating because they crush the seed and eat solid food. Both need heat at night so giving them watery food will be beneficial. Anyhow, dehydration will destroy the health of birds. 

Final thoughts

Shortly, you got your answer about how to keep baby birds warm. To allow safe shelter without a mother, you must try the above methods including brooders. Therefore, those people who don’t want to try the heated box and feel uneasy, then they use a ceramic bulb. Small heaters are designed according to the size of enclosures and work automatically. This will relax you to keep your eyes on the bird all the time. 

Some thermo-perches are beneficial and totally safe for birds. Mostly in winters, the indoor cages are suitable with proper cover. If someone doesn’t want an indoor cage, then select the outside cage with a plastic covering. Some things are needed to skip, like adjusting the water bowl in coop and steam.