By Dr Bob Doneley

DVD Review: Expert Companion Bird Care Series: Vol 1.

This DVD introduces a new concept in bird DVD’s – a guide to caring for companion birds, produced and narrated by avian veterinarians. A phrase I use with my clients when they tell me “The breeder said…” is that, while I have been driving a car for 33 years, I am not a mechanic. Avian veterinarians have the training, the expertise and the experience to be able to advise pet bird owners on a wide range of issues involving the care and health of pet birds. This DVD is an excellent starting point for new and experienced pet bird owners to learn more about their charges.

Scott Echols and Brian Speer are internationally renowned avian veterinarians. They have brought together a team of exceptionally talented American avian veterinarians (Jeleen Briscoe, Greg Burkett, Susan Orosz, Laura Wade, Paul Gibbons and Kemba Marshall) who each discuss a separate section: how to identify commonly kept parrots, housing the pet bird, basic avian nutrition, household dangers and toxins, identifying when your bird is sick, and how to select an avian veterinarian. Each section discusses, over a 15 minute period, an overview of the topic and highlights the most important areas.

The DVD is well produced and well illustrated. For Australian viewers, it could do with some more Australian input. However, it does provide the opportunity to view species and cage setups that are outside the typical Australian experience. This more than cancels out the negative aspects of minimal Australian content. By breaking the content into separate sections, the viewer is able to break up their viewing time into more convenient blocks – an aspect I always find appealing for those of us with busy lives.

I would strongly recommend that people contemplating the purchase of a bird for the first time watch this DVD before making any decisions or commitments. I would also recommend that those who already own a pet bird watch the DVD to learn or revise concepts they may feel they are conversant with. Veterinarians and pet shop owners would find this DVD to be a useful staff training tool. Breeders supplying the pet market, pet shops and avian veterinarians should be able to find a ready market for this DVD.

Bob Doneley BVSc FACVSc CMAVA (Author and Lecturer)

West Toowoomba Vet Surgery
 – Toowoomba, Australia

published in Australian BirdKeeper Magazine

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