Here we explain what Creative Foraging is.
What is a Creative Foraging System?
A fully integrated group of feeding devices which when used together makes food foraging a feeding protocol. The system is designed to replace the practice of making food readily accessible.
Conventional feeding practices or feeding from open dishes only encourages laziness, whereas forage feeding requires that the bird exert a considerable effort to procure food.
What Are The Individual Foraging Components?
The system is made up of two distinctively different types of devices all are easy to use, economical and work well together.
Destructible chipboard boxes with chipboard honeycomb inserts.
About the Foraging Box: Boxes and the honeycomb inserts are made from “USDA approved” chipboard an eco-friendly, biodegradable material.
All boxes are free of glue and / or any toxins that might be harmful to your pet bird. The box is heavy enough to maintain its configuration but must be torn apart in order to gain access to the entire contents.
The bird must chew into the box to find food. After discovering the food source it must continue chewing through the honeycomb to continue accessing additional food.
Increase foraging opportunities by using multiple foraging devices installed in different locations. Position devices so that some are more difficult than others to access and change locations frequently.
These boxes may be filled with your choice of food products such as pellets, dried fruit, shelled nuts, sliced vegetables or seeds. The objective is to make the bird work for its food.
Many people find the treat box is an easy way to introduce their birds to concept of working for food. Do not be surprised if your bird’s first reaction is to destroy the box.
Parrots learn to forage by observing the behaviour of their parents and / or other members of their flock; this option is obviously not available to our pet birds. Be patient; tear a bit of the chipboard away so that your Parrot can identify the box as a food source.
Interactive / Refillable forage feeding devices provide a variety of food acquisition challenges. The second group of products currently includes hanging or bolt on polycarbonate foraging devices each with varying levels of difficulty that require the Parrot to exercise a variety of physical and intellectual skills.
Polycarbonate is a crystal clear, high impact material that will not break if dropped and will withstand the demands of most Parrot beaks.
The common denominator in these devices is that the Parrot is always able to visually access the food. However they must solve different mechanical challenges in order to procure the food.
Many devices have food access openings these openings have polished edges to prevent injury while the bird is removing the food items. Several products include leather strips which a Parrot will grab with one foot, stabilizing the device so they can obtain the food items.
The hardware on these products is stainless steel. Select food items of appropriate size that will not drop thru the openings.
1) Entry Level Foraging Devices / Birds Learning to Forage:
2) Intermediate Foraging Devices:
3) Advanced Foraging Devices:
What does Creative Foraging Achieve?
CFS provides your pet with the opportunity to feed naturally by foraging for their food. They will employ similar behaviours and physical activities as birds observed in the wild.
Obtaining food entirely by foraging is a revolutionary concept within the pet bird community and offers numerous benefits to both the Parrot and its human companion.
Field trails indicate that Parrots fed from traditional dishes spend between 15 to 27 minutes per day feeding. Whereas, birds that have made a complete transition to foraging for their food must dedicate 4 to 6 hours per day to feeding activities.
CFS is the only feeding solution which provides environmental enrichment, continuous stimulation and vast amounts of vigorous physical exercise.
Occupy your pet bird’s time with healthy interaction with their environment. Promote searching for and finding food, doing whatever work is necessary to obtain food, using their natural skills to manipulate small items and allow them to become self sufficient foragers.
Your pet must also learn to budget enough time to satisfy its appetite. This will increase as it burns more calories to obtain food. Birds that spend time foraging have less time available to exhibit abnormal behaviour i.e. feather picking, excessive screeching, etc.
Food foraging is universally recommended by avian veterinarians and behavioural scientists.
We know that Parrots are extremely intelligent, curious and very athletic. They don’t get discouraged if it takes your bird some time to learn how to use these devices effectively.
Remember that you are presenting intellectual and physical challenges that your bird was never exposed to while sitting next to a food dish. The goal should be to make a complete transition from open dish feeding to forage for food.
Be absolutely certain that your Parrot is eating its normal daily ration before you completely eliminate food bowls. To learn more about foraging, avian foraging behaviour and new foraging products visit the Creative Foraging Shop Here.