SHOW CAGES – Once you have decided you will attend a show it is advisable to start preparing months before the event. Buying show cages are a must if you are interested in starting to compete with your birds. Birds are displayed and behave better in a show cage. They feel protected by the three sides which are either wood or plastic and there’s wire on the front only, this discourages the birds to fly to the back or the sides of the cage ruining the feathers. Show cages need to have non colored food on the bottom on the cage (not in food cups), pour seeds to cover the bottom. No spray millet or any other supplement. During the show the birds need to have only seeds on the bottom of the show cages. A small water tube should be placed on the right side of the cage and the show tags go on the left side. Some show tags hang, other are stick on tags.
There are a few places on the internet where you can purchase show cages, the plastic show cages are easier to clean and lighter, the metal are also easier to clean but they are heavier, and the wooden ones need to be painted every so often to keep them looking nice and they are not easy to clean like the plastic and metal ones. ABE accepts plastic, metal or wooden ones because the judges do not judge the cages. Plastic ones need to be sturdy and not collapsible because you can run the risk of the cage collapsing during a show and the bird can escape.
GETTING BIRDS READY – Getting the birds ready for a show is advisable approximately three months prior to an event. Increase food which has protein and spray your birds with cool water every day. Clean feet with some mineral oil being careful not to get oil on the feathers. This is advisable so the feet are not cracked or dry. Birds usually do not eat during a show so it is important to give protein prior to the show.
SHOW ENTRY FORMS – These forms are filled by the exhibitor by writing the cage number which is on each tag and the appropriate sections and classes for the different types of birds you are entering.
THINGS TO TAKE WITH YOU TO A SHOW:
Be prepared, take all the information down regarding the birds your taking to the show such as color mutation, band code, number and year. When you are at the show you should not be handling a bird to check band numbers. This should be done at home so you don’t stress the bird at the show.
Pens, to write on the show entry forms, etc.
Electrical tape (white or black) in case you need to secure a show cage door. Use a color that matches the color of the cage so it is not noticeable.Be prepared, accidents can and do happen when you least expected.
Bottled water, to fill your water tubes. If you are out of town always give bottled water to your birds, never give water from the faucet if you not live in that area.
Extra water tubes
Small towel, in case you need to catch a bird.
Tooth brush, in case a bird has pin feathers it is easier to brush it off using a tooth brush.
Styptic powder for birds, in case a bird is bleeding the powder is a blood clotting emergency treatment.