If your parrot does not have a band, don’t get in a flap!
Some birds have bands, and some don’t.
It really depends on where you’ve brought your parrot from.
Often, people get bands removed since it might become an inconvenience for the bird itself.
Bands are placed on birds for multiple reasons, and if your bird doesn’t have one, there’s no need to panic.
It might be from a private breeder, a rescue, or had it removed for some other reason.
However, understanding banding is important, whether you’re looking to buy a bird or if you already own a huge flock.
Why Are Bands Put On Birds?
Banding birds is a common practice among many breeders as it helps in identification.
A series of letters and numbers to keep a record of the breeder or the organization where the bird was bought from.
It also helps in keeping track of their genetics so that breeding can become easier.
Typically, bands on the right leg identify as male, and a bar on the bird’s left leg identifies it as a female.
Since many birds look and chirp alike, placing a leg band will only troubleshoot any future distinguishing problems.
With the recent increase in the cases of parrot thefts, bands help greatly in the process of claiming the bird to its rightful owner.
Another reason why bands are placed on birds is simply that they’re imported, yes!
If a flock of birds arrive from a different country, bands are placed for regulatory reasons.
With the illegal bird trade on the rise several years ago, leg bands were implemented to track any unlawful, lost or stolen birds.
Hence, to differentiate domestic and imported birds, you’d often find birds with leg bands if you ever stroll across the bird market.
Should I Band My Bird?
As necessary as it sounds, it really depends on you.
Many bird owners don’t band their birds as they don’t intend to breed.
Those who want to breed birds need a dependable way to identify many birds in their aviary.
If you wish to maintain a broad gene pool, pair unrelated birds, and breed for features or mutations, bands might just become extremely necessary for your birds.
However, if you own a tiny flock of birds in your home only for your amusement and fondness, you can completely omit them.
As long as you’re able to identify your own birds, banding them becomes unnecessary.
Are Bands Bad For Birds?
Commonly, bands seem harmless and an easy way to identify birds.
However, they’re also considered harmful.
Why? Let’s find out!
Bands can be dangerous for birds if they’re most likely to get it stuck in the wire of their cage, a toy or any other part of the cage.
Seeds, food, dirt, and other small substances may get caught between the band and legs.
Some birds are also naturally clumsy, so injuries may occur if they snag on things too often.
Breaks, wounds, dislocations, and sprains are all possible outcomes.
It can be a slight injury or a major problem.
An accumulation of dead skin between the skin and the band may occur in some smaller birds, causing the band to become overly tight.
Some bird owners and vets remove the band from every bird they own or treat because they believe it can be a potential source of future damage.
There are concerns that the band will entangle a bird in its cage or that a bird will pick and chew at the band and its feet.
How Do You Put A Band On A Bird?
Leg bands come in two ways:
Closed leg bands are simply slid onto a little hatchling, which later becomes a permanent fixture once the bird grows up.
Open leg bands can be placed around a bird’s leg using the correct size applicator.
The lower hole of the applicator must fit into the band.
Squeeze it shut with the applicator’s help and rotate the band if necessary to ensure it is properly sealed.
Ensure that the band isn’t too tight for the bird, or it might hurt!
Should I Be Worried If My Parrot Doesn’t Have A Band?
If you intend to breed, it’s not necessary.
If you still intend to keep track of your birds because you’re unable to identify every single one of them, then go for it.
There isn’t a hard and fast rule.
If you’ve bought a bird that came without a band, that’s okay too!
Don’t be too quick to conclude that your bird may be illegal.
Many people opt to have leg bands removed because birds have an intrinsic ability to get themselves into mischief, and some get their bands stuck on things that may have fatal outcomes.
So, as a bird owner, be fully aware of banding your birds.
To identify the best way for your bird, talk to your veterinarian about these identification options and improvements needed to stay protected.