Bringing Home Your First Bird – What You Need To Get Started

Getting your first pet bird is a big step. Just like giving birth to a baby, you want to make sure you have everything you need to take care of the baby…uh, bird and that it is comfortable and happy.

The first most important thing you need is a cage for your bird’s new home. Numero uno on your list!

Bird Cage

Be sure to choose the proper size cage for your new bird. Here is a list of birds and approximate size cages they will need.

Min Cage Size
Bar Spacing
Finches18"x30"x18"1/4" to 1/2"
Canaries18"x24" x18"1/4" to 1/2"
20"x20"x24"1/2" to 5/8"
Ringneck Parakeets24"x24"x36"1/2" to 5/8"
24"x24"x24"5/8" to 3/4"
24"x24"x36"5/8" to 3/4"
Mini Macaws
Goffin's Cockatoos
African Greys
24"x36"x48"3/4" to 1"
Large Cockatoos36"x48"x48"1" to 1.5"
Large Macaws36"x48"x60"1" to 1.5"

Parakeet Bird Cage with Stand

The other thing you want to know about choosing a bird cage is what else comes with it. Do you need to purchase perches and food dishes? Does it come with a stand and/or rolling wheels. Wheels make it easier to move the cage around for cleaning as well as to give your bird a new view from time to time.

Is it easy to clean? Most cages have a bottom tray that pulls out for easy cleaning. This tray should be cleaned daily to remove the fecal and hence odor. Not only that but a dirty cage can lead to serious health issues for the bird. You can use prepared cage liners, newspaper or paper towels to lay out on the tray. A larger door or lift out bottom grid is also helpful for cleaning. A larger door will help you to get your hands into the cage easier. If the bottom grid comes out, you will have a much easier time cleaning up.



Birds love bright colorful things. So any toy with bright colors will be sure to spark an interest. They also love mirrors. Sometimes they may even talk to themselves in the mirror. Depending upon the size of your bird cage you will need a few toys to keep your bird busy. You do not want the bird to feel bored in his cage. A ladder is another fun toy to have in your cage and also bells. They love to hear the noise.


bird swing

Other necessary items for your bird cage are perches and food cups. You should have at least one cup for food and one for water. Of course these should be changed daily.

You should have enough perches to enable the bird to access all the fun toys you put in the cage and allow him to access different views from the cage. Again its all about stimulation. A bored bird makes a noisy bird, squawking for your attention.

Another fun accessory to have in your cage is a bird swing. Your bird will get tons of enjoyment sitting on his swing.


Make sure you bring a bag of food home for your new bird. Decide if you want to feed him a pellet diet or seed diet. Birds also eat lots of fruits and vegetables just be sure not to feed him avocado.


Choosing a Cockatiel Cage

Cockatiels are one of the most wanted pet birds. They are very social birds and that is why we chose to add one to our family. But make sure that you intend to keep the bird for about 15-20 years which is the average lifespan of a Cockatiel. When we were shopping for our bird we also had to get a new cage for it. The most important thing to know when purchasing a Cockatiel cage is that you get one that is big enough. It is recommended to get one that is a minimum of 24 inches wide by 24 inches tall, with 1/2 inch to 1 inch bar spacing. We ended up getting a larger cage for our Cockatiel just in case we end up getting a mate for it. You may want to take that in to consideration.

cockatiel cage

The Cockatiel cage in this post is the one that we ended up purchasing. It has a dome top lid that opens up. When you open it you can put a perch in between the two halves of the top so the bird can play there or just get a different view of things.

Another important part of the bird cage is cleanup. This cage has a slide out grill and seed tray. The seed tray is what catches all of the droppings and seed hulls. The tray simply slides right out and can be dumped into a garbage and washed in the sink.

A properly set up Cockatiel cage should have about 3 perches. Perches should vary in materials and diameter. This is good exercise for their feet.

Cockatiels love to play with toys. Select several different types of toys they can chew and pull and forage on. We have some that are wooden and some that have string, felt, palm leaf, shredded paper and more. There are lots of variety in toys. Oh, birds also love very bright  colorful toys. A swing is another fun toy for your bird.

Click here to see all of the different types of Cockatiel cages.

Here are some other cages that you might be interested in:

5 Vintage Bird Cages for your Pet Bird

When talking about Vintage, there can be several different meanings or connotations to the word. The word vintage, for our purposes, refers to a past style of elegance that was well liked back in time and is still popular today. There are vintage bird cages ¬†available for both decoration or for holding your pet bird. I will highlight several of my favorite choices of vintage style bird cages you can use as a home for your pet bird. There are vintage bird cages that are old and some that are new and made to look like the older vintage style. I will show you some vintage style bird cages that are new in age. Older bird cages are not the best choice for your pet bird’s home due to older materials, old paint (may contain lead) and bird cage size are some just to name a few. However, being the bird lover that you are, you most certainly can use the older vintage bird cages as decoration in your home.

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