You often hear cuttlebone when it comes to the nutrition of parrots and other bird species. New bird sitters are curious about the effects of cuttlebone and why it is commonly seen in bird cages. The use of cuttlebone has been known in the ancient years, especially in the field of aesthetic and beauty, but nowadays, it is a popular calcium-rich dietary supplement of mammals, reptiles, and other animal species. Know more about the cuttlebone, its benefits, uses, and where to get one.
What Is Cuttlebone?
Cuttlebone is described as a white oblong canoe that is a popular accessory supplement. It is a calcareous internal shell of a cuttlefish. Its main purpose is to supply the needed calcium intake of parrots on a daily basis. It consists of about 85% calcium content and 15% of other essential nutrients such as Zinc, Magnesium, Potassium, and Iron. Cuttlebone is not an actual bone but is a shell that has a gas-filled chamber to make sure that cuttlefish have enough buoyancy to maneuver in the water. Your bird will surely peck the cuttlebone; that is why it is an assurance that they already have nutrient and mineral intake for every day.
Benefits of Cuttlebones
Cuttlebone has several functions, not only bird species but to other pets as well, such as reptiles, turtles, hermit crabs, and chinchillas. For bird species, since their normal diet does not contain calcium content, the use of cuttlebone is very much efficient. These are the list of benefits of a cuttlebone to parrots.
1. Cuttlebones are a source of your parrot’s calcium.
Most parrots pelleted mixes lack calcium; that is why they are prone to calcium deficiency. Breeders find it a bit complicated to supplement their bird with calcium supplements because an overdosage of calcium may also result in negative effects on the bird’s health. Calcium that is suspended through their food will not be effectively absorbed by their bodies; that is why it is just right to give them cuttlebones. The good thing about the cuttlebone is that its calcium content contains just the right amount to give their bones strong and that it is an inexpensive source of calcium.
2. Cuttlebones promote beak health.
Your parrot consumes cuttlebone by means of pecking it through their beak. In this way, their beaks are being polished because overgrown beak will make it difficult for them to eat that may eventually lead to malnutrition, so the use of cuttlebone helps their beak attain just the right size. Cuttlebone does not serve as a beak sharpener, but it serves as a grinding stone for beak trimming.
3. Cuttlebones can boost fertility.
Cuttlebone is not only enriched with calcium, but it also has different helpful elements such as iron, zinc, potassium, and magnesium that aids in the reproductive system. If their fertility is a boost, it can improve their egg quality, making it beneficial for those who are into breeding. When your parrot is pregnant, the use of cuttlebones will supply the needed calcium to make sure that the eggs to be laid are in good condition.
4. Cuttlebones provide hours of entertainment.
Aside from the wide variety of nutrients and minerals found on the cuttlebone, it is also a great tool for exercise and entertainment to prevent boredom, especially if you do not have time to play with them yet. It has a unique texture and appealing appearance; that is why they will surely have hours of enjoyment. It can be secured on the bars of the cage so that it is more accessible for the parrot.
5. Source of other nutrients and minerals
Your parrot may get a balanced diet by means of offering them fruits and vegetables, but if in case that these are not always available, cuttlebone is effective in filling in the lacking nutrients and minerals the needed nutrients. It has high amounts of calcium and at least 10% contents of iron, zinc, potassium, and magnesium.
Giving Cuttlebone To Your Parrot
There are different ways on how you can present the cuttlebone to your parrot. It can be clipped to the sides of the cage, or it can be tied in the cage bars. Experts say that there are high chances that they’ll play with the cuttlebone if you place it shoved on the sideways of the cage. If you think that your parrot will not be interested in playing with it, you may just break it off into bits so that you can sprinkle it into your bird’s food.
Whatever method used in introducing cuttlebone to your parrot, as long as your parrot will truly maximize its nutrients. In giving the cuttlebone to your bird, you may need to make sure that the part of the cuttlebone that is exposed is the soft side. There are also cuttlebones in the form of different birdcage accessories such as perch and toys so that they will be able to get the nutrients while they are having their good time.
How to Store it Properly?
Cuttlebones are good at attracting moisture in the air; that is why it is receptive to bacterial growth and molds. If you will not give it to your bird yet, it is advisable to place it in an air-tight container. Experts advised not to stock up since it can be destroyed easily; anyway, it is always available to pet shops.
Where to Get One?
Cuttlebones can be purchased at any bird pet store; that is why you will not have a hard time availing one. Most cuttlebones that are available in different pet shops are already pre-sterilized, but before giving it to your parrot, you may need to boil it for about 10 minutes so that you can get rid of strong fishy smell and other dirt that is in its surface. The cuttlebones are found on the sea so if you live nearby, you can be lucky to find one while you are walking along the shore.
Other Uses of Cuttlebone
A cuttlebone that is ground up into a fine powder or is pulverized was used by jewelers as a polishing agent. They also use cuttlebone to mold metal jewelry and other metal objects used for decorative purposes.
- A fine powder cuttlebone is also used as a polishing agent for toothpaste.
- It can also be used by humans since it is high in calcium content, it can be used as a dietary supplement and as an antacid agent.
- It can be molded into a stylish decorative piece that you can display in your homes.
Giving your parrot a cuttlebone is a good idea because it has a lot of benefits that will surely make your parrot healthy and happy. It may be a simple accessory for your bird’s cage, but it has a lot of uses such as a nutrient supplement and as a perfect toy that they can peck as an effective beak groomer and as a tool for fun and enjoyment. It can be availed for a low price, and you can even pick it up on the shore, making it worth it find for your parrot.