Avian food selection with application to pesticide risk assessment: Are dead and desiccated insects a desirable food source? Stafford, Jennifer M.; Brewer, Larry W.; Gessman, James A. Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Jun. 2003, v. 22 (6), p. 1335-1339. ISSN: 0730-7268.

            NAL call no: QH545.A1E58

Descriptors: food selection, dead insects, pesticides, risk assessment, field study, orchard, corn field, laboratory diet study, preferences.

Abstract: Past evaluations of pesticide exposure have been conducted with substantial uncertainty regarding avian consumption of contaminated food items. One question is whether birds consume invertebrates that are killed by a chemical application and that may present an increasing chemical concentration as they dessicate. We addressed the research question in two phases. First, a laboratory study was conducted in which wild-caught birds were individually offered three food choices, i.e., live, fresh-dead, and desiccated insect larvae. Second, these same food choices plus live, fresh-dead, and desiccated crickets were presented in study plots in two agricultural crops, i.e., a cornfield and an orchard. The experimental food items were monitored with videography equipment to determine their fate and to compare laboratory and field results. Laboratory results showed that birds have a strong preference for live and fresh-dead prey over desiccated prey, with live prey taken before fresh-dead prey in most trials. The field study revealed a similar preference for live prey over desiccated prey, with preference for fresh-dead prey intermediate to the two other types.


Hand rearing of pet birds – feeds, techniques and recommendations. Wolf, P.; Kamphues, J.; Liesegang, A. (ed); Riond, J.L. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, 2003, v. 87 (3-4), p. 122-128. ref.

            NAL call no: 389.78 Z3

Descriptors: feeds, techniques, pet birds, hand rearing, budgerigars, lovebirds, nutrient requirements, proteins, minerals, sulphur, amino acids.

Abstract: The comparisons of the contents of nutrients determined in commercial hand rearing diets with the nutrient requirements of growing budgerigars and lovebirds estimated by the factorial method revealed satisfactory protein, lysine and arginine concentrations. Regarding sulphur amino acids, a number of products showed marginal methionine and cystine contents. Mineral contents generally met all requirements and were even excessive in some cases. Ultimately, the results gained in this study demonstrate that nestlings’ substantial requirements for sulphur amino acids for plumage development are often underestimated, while their calcium requirements in connection with bone mineralization are frequently overestimated. The primary obstacle to successful hand rearing, however, probably lies not so much in energy and nutrient contents, but rather – as revealed by first results of feeding trials with lovebirds – in the passage of the suspended diet through the gastrointestinal tract (e.g. crop disorders) and/or errors regarding feed quantities and feeding frequency.


Investigations on feathering, feather growth and potential influences of nutrient supply on feathers’ regrowth in small pet birds (canaries, budgerigars and lovebirds). Wolf, P.; Rabekl, N.; Kamphues, J.; Liesegang, A. (ed); Riond, J.L. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, 2003. v. 87 (3-4), p. 134-141. ref.

            NAL call no: 389.78 Z3

Descriptors: feather growth, nutrition, regrowth, small birds, feather regeneration, sulphur, amino acids, minerals, vitamins.

Abstract: The aim of this study was to quantitate feathering in several companion birds. Besides the ratio of feathers to whole body mass, feather length as well as feather weight were of interest. Furthermore, data on feather loss and growth rates were estimated. In general, it could be observed that the proportion of feathers relative to body mass varied between 14 (canaries) and 7.4% (lovebirds). Feather losses (outside the moult period) amounted to an average of 6.66 (canaries), 8.98 (budgerigars), and 8.43 (lovebirds) mg.bird/day respectively of 37 (canaries), 20 (budgerigars), and 17 (lovebirds) mg.100 g body weight/day (values of interest in calculating of protein requirements for maintenance). In canaries, the average growth rate of the developing feathers amounted to 2 mm/day. In contrast to the onset of feather regeneration, the growth rate of new feathers leaving the follicle was not influenced by the supplements used here. The regeneration period (first measurable feather growth) of a plucked pinion can be used as an indicator and objective parameter to test potential nutritional influences. Parallel to the improvement of nutrient supply the rates of feather losses and also replacement increased, whereas the rates decreased when seed mixtures without any addition of minerals, sulphurous amino acids, and vitamins were fed.


Lipolytic and metabolic responses to glucagon in fasting king penguins: Phase II vs. phase III. Bernard, S.F.; Thil, M.A.; Groscolas, R. American Journal of Physiology, 2003. V. 284 2(2), R444-R454. ref. ISSN: 0002-9513.

            NAL call no: 447.8 AM3

Descriptors: glucagon, fasting king penguins, responses, fuel metabolism, plasma concentrations.

Abstract: This study aims to determine how glucagon intervenes in the regulation of fuel metabolism, especially lipolysis, at two stages of a spontaneous long-term fast characterized by marked differences in lipid and protein availability and/or utilization (phases II and III). Changes in the plasma concentration of various metabolites and hormones, and in lipolytic fluxes as determined by continuous infusion of [2-3H]glycerol and [1-14C]palmitate, were examined in vivo in a subantarctic bird (king penguin) before, during, and after a 2-h glucagon infusion. In the two fasting phases, glucagon infusion at a rate of 0.025 ug.kg-1.min-1 induced a three- to fourfold increase in the plasma concentration and in the rate of appearance (Ra) of glycerol and nonesterified fatty acids, the percentage of primary reesterification remaining unchanged. Infusion of glucagon also resulted in a progressive elevation of the plasma concentration of glucose and beta-hydroxybutyrate and in a twofold higher insulinemia. These changes were not significantly different between the two phases. The plasma concentrations of triacylglycerols and uric acid were unaffected by glucagon infusion, except for a 40% increase in plasma uric acid in phase II birds. Altogether, these results indicate that glucagon in along-term fasting bird is highly lipolytic, hyperglycaemic, ketogenic, and insulinogenic, these effects, however, being similar in phases II and III. The maintenance of the sensitivity of adipose tissue lipolysis to glucagon could suggest that the major role of the increase in basal glucagonaemia observed in phase III is to stimulate gluconeogenesis rather than fatty acid delivery.


Methods to determine metabolizable energy and digestibility of feed ingredients in the domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica). Sales, J.; Janssens, G.P. Poultry Science, Sept. 2003, v. 82 (9), p. 1457-1461. ISSN: 0032-5791.

            NAL call no: 47.8 AM33P

Descriptors: feed ingredients, digestibility, metabolizable energy, methods, corn, peas, intake, excreta output.

Abstract: The influence of length of excreta collection period (1, 3, 6, 10, 14 d) and prefeeding protocol (7 d either individual feeding in collection cages or group feeding in housing cages) on AMEn, nitrogen retention (NR), and apparent DM, organic matter and ether extract digestibility of corn and peas were evaluated in domestic pigeons (Columba livia domestica). In addition, the use of internal markers [acid-insoluble ash (AIA) and acid detergent lignin (ADL)] to determine AMEn. NR, and apparent digestibility was compared with the method of measuring total feed input ands excreta output. A quadratic (y = a + bx + cx2) trend in the CV for AMEn, NR, and apparent digestibility coefficients found over collection periods with corn presented evidence that excreta collection for a period of 3 d will produce a CV of 5% less than the minimum CV. Although no trend could be detected in CV for peas, a 3-d excreta collection period resulted in relatively low variation. Both AIA and ADL, when used as internal markers, resu lted in AMEn, NR, and digestibility values below (P<0.05) those obtained with total collection with corn. However, values between markers were comparable (P>0.05) for all components evaluated. The ADL was unsuccessful as a marker with peas. Group prefeeding of pigeons in housing cages resulted in lower feed intake, excreta output, NR, and apparent digestibility than when birds were adapted individually to collection cages. This study presents evidence that the method of measuring total feed intake and excreta output for a period of 3 d, with individual adaptation of birds to collection cages, resulted in the most reliable values for AMEn, NR, and apparent digestibility of DM, organic matter and ether extract of feed ingredients in pigeons.


Nutrition and its interaction with reproductive processes. McEvoy, Tom G.; Robinson, John J. Conservation Biology Series (Cambridge), Reproductive Science and Integrated Conservation, 2003, 8: p.42-56. Holt, William V.; Pickard, Armanda R.; Rodger, John C.; Wildt, David E. (eds.). Cambridge University Press, N.Y, N.Y. ISBN: 0521011108 (paper); 0521812151 (cloth).

            NAL call no: QL676.5 C54

Descriptors: bird husbandry, nutrition, reproduction, egg laying species.


Osmoregulation in an avian nectarivore, the whitebellied sunbird Nectarinia talatala: Response to extremes of diet concentration. Fleming, P.A.; Nicolson, S.W. The Journal of Experimental Biology, Jun. 2003, v. 206 (Pt, 11), p. 1845-1854. ISSN: 0022-0949.

            NAL call no: 442.8 B77

Descriptors: diet concentration, nectarivores, osmoregulation, water, nectar, sucrose solutions at various concentrations.

Abstract: Water intake of nectarivores is intrinsically linked to nectar concentration. Osmoregulation in whitebellied sunbirds Nectarinia talatala (body mass 9.3 + 0.1 g, mean + S.D., N=7), was examined by feeding them sucrose solutions, equivalent to extreme diet concentrations (0.07 - 2.5 mol l(-1) sucrose; 2-65% w/w), with and without supplementary drinking water. Total water gain was 33-515% of body mass daily. Cloacal fluid (CF) volume increased with diet dilution from 0.4% to 309% of body mass while increases in evaporative water loss (obtained by difference) were also recorded. Osmolality of CF demonstrated the largest scope yet recorded for a bird and was significantly correlated with water flux: mean values were 6-460 mosm kg(-1) H(2)0 (minimum 3, maximum 1900 mosm kg(-1). When supplementary water was provided, its consumption by birds fed concentrated diets (2.5 mol l(-1) sucrose) led to a dramatic reduction in CF osmolality, from 461+ 253 to 80 + 119 mosm kg(-1) fluid. Sunbirds maintained energy balance on sucrose diets varying tenfold in concentrations, from 0.25 to 2.5 mol l(-1); however, on extremely dilute diets (0.07 and 0.1 mol l(-1) sucrose, lower than natural nectar concentrations) their inability to maintain energy balance was probably due to excess preformed water. Total osmotic excretion and concentrations of Na(+) and K(+) increased with high water fluxes, and are a possible physiological constraint for nectarivorous birds on artificial dilute diets devoid of electrolytes. Even low electrolyte levels in nectars may be adequate to replace these losses, but other physiological limitations to the intake of dilute nectars are increased energetic costs of solute recovery, increased heat loss and interference with digestive processes. Sunbirds therefore deal with sugar solutions spanning the range of nectar concentrations by shutting down water excretion on concentrated diets, or on dilute diets, by producing extremely dilute CF with some of the lowest solute concentrations recorded.





Estimated nutrient content of diets commonly fed to pet birds. Hess, L.; Mauldin, G.; Rosenthal, K. Veterinary Record, 2002, v. 250 (13), p. 399-404. ref. ISN: 0042-4900.

            NAL call no: 41.8 V641

Descriptors: dietary surveys, energy, food consumption, nutrient requirements, seeds, formulated feeds, human foods, owner survey.

Abstract: 135 pet bird owners in New York city (New York, USA) were surveyed by questionnaire between July 1996 and May 1997, to determine their birds’ weekly food consumption. The birds were divided into 6 food groups on the basis of the amounts of seeds, formulated products and human food they consumed. The formulated products and seeds were analysed for their nutrient content by 2 independent laboratories; the nutrient content of the human foods was obtained from a standard nutrition reference, and each bird’s nutrient intake was estimated. The dietary content of individual nutrients was then compared with the estimated maintenance requirements for pet birds. Birds consuming less than approximately 50% of their diets as formulated products had inadequate intakes of vitamins A [retinol] and D3 [cholecalciferol], and calcium. Diets high in human food were low in protein, energy, vitamins and minerals. Diets high in seed were excessive in fat and deficient in vitamin A and D3 ands calcium.


Introduction to basic husbandry, handling and nutrition of caged birds. Keeble, E.J. Irish Veterinary Journal, 2002, v. 55 (5), p. 232-236. ref. ISSN: 0368-0762.

            NAL call no: 41.8 IR4

Descriptors: animal feeding, animal nutrition, diets, aviary birds, budgerigars.

Abstract: This paper provides information regarding the proper housing, welfare, nutrition and handling of budgerigars, parrots, canaries and other commonly kept pet birds.





Adult cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus) metabolically adapt to high protein diets. Koutsos, E.A.; Smith, J.; Woods, L.W.; Klasing, K.C. Journal of Nutrition, 2001, v. 131 (7), p. 2014-2020. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 389.8 J82

Descriptors: protein intake, urea, toxicity, adaptation, diets, liver, essential amino acids, males, amino acid catabolism, nitrogen excretion.

Abstract: To determine the ability of cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus), a granivorous avian species, to adapt metabolically to high dietary protein levels, adult males (n=26) were fed isocaloric diets containing 11, 20, 35 or 70% crude protein (CP) for 11 mo. Throughout the trial, body weight and breast muscle weight were maintained by 11, 20 or 70% CP. The 35% CP diet resulted in significantly greater body weight (P<0.05) and whole body lipid content (P<0.05) compared with the 11% diet. The 20% diet resulted in greater breast muscle mass compared with 70% CP (P<0.05). Activity of the amino acid catabolic enzymes alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase and arginase as well as the gluconeogenic enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase were significantly increased with 70% CP (P<0.05). Serum essential amino acids, urea and uric acid were also increased with 70% CP (P<0.05), but the magnitude of their increase was similar to that found in omnivorous chickens fed a similar diet. There was no evidence of visceral gout, articular gout or renal pathology; however liver lesion severity, and specifically liver lipogranuloma severity, was significantly increased above 11% CP (P<0.05). We conclude that cockatiels are able to up-regulate enzymes for amino acid catabolism as well as mechanisms for nitrogen excretion in response to high dietary protein levels, and that high dietary protein levels are not associated with kidney dysfunction in this avian species.


The apparent metabolisable energy of diets with different sources of fibre when fed to emus, ostriches and cockerels. Farrell, D.J.; Sales, J.; Perez-Maldonado, R.; Kent, P.; Ahermer, M.; Mannion, P.F. EAAP publication 103; Proceedings of the 15th Symposium on Energy Metabolism in Animals. Snekkersten, Denmark. Sept. 11-16, 2000. Chwalibog, A.; Jakobsen, K. (eds.). Publisher: Wageningen, Wageningen (Netherlands), 2001, 487 pp. Chapter pagination: 141-143. ISBN: 9074134831.

Descriptors: emus, ostriches, cockerels, digestibility, dietary fibers, energy metabolism.


Captive diets alter egg yolk lipids of a bird of prey (the American kestrel) and of a galliforme (the red-legged partridge). Surai, P.F.; Speake, B.K.; Bortolotti, G.R.; Negro, J.J. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2001, v. 74 (2), p. 153-160. ref. ISSN: 1522-1005.

            NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: diets, egg composition, egg yolk, fatty acids, lipids, study, increase in polyunsaturate ratio, fatty acid profile, dietary.

Abstract: The salient feature of fatty acid profile of kestrel eggs collected in the wild was the very high proportion of arachidonic acid (15.2%+ 0.7% of fatty acid mass, n=5) in the phospholipid fraction of the yolk. Kestrels in captivity fed on day old chickens produced eggs that differed from those of the wild birds in a number of compositional features: the proportion of linoleic acid was increased in all the lipid fractions; the proportion arachidonic acid was increased inn yolk phospholipid and choesteryl ester; the proportion of alpha-linolenic acid was decreased in all lipid classes, and that of docosahexaenoic acid was decreased in phospholipid and cholesteryl ester. Partridge eggs from the wild contained linoleic acid as the main polyunsaturate of all the yolk lipid fractions. Captive partridges maintained on a formulated diet very rich in linoleic acid produced eggs with increased levels of linoleic, arachidonic, and –6 docosapentaenoic acids in the phospholipid fraction; reduced proportions of alpha-linoleic acid were observed in all lipid classes, and the proportion of docosahexaenoic acid was markedly reduced in the phospholipid fraction. Thus, captive breeding of both the kestrel and the partridge increases the n-6/–3 polyunsaturate ratio of the yolk lipids.


Diet preferences of warblers for specific fatty acids in relation to nutritional requirements and digestive capabilities. Mcwilliams, S.R.; Kearney, S.B.; Karasov, W.H. American Zoologist, Dec. 2001, v. 41 (6), p. 1523. ISSN: 0003-1569.

NAL call no: 410 AM3

Descriptors: behavior, metabolism, nutrition, diet, food intake, long-chain saturated fatty acids, yellow-rumped warblers, Dendroica coronata.

Abstract: During energy-demanding periods of the annual cycle such as migration or during cold days in winter, birds store fat comprised mostly of 16- or 18-carbon unsaturated fatty acids. In such situations, birds may feed selectively on foods with specific fatty acids that enable efficient fat deposition. We offered wild-caught yellow-rumped warblers (Dendroica coronata) paired choices between semi-synthetic diets that differed only in their fatty acid composition. Warblers strongly preferred diets containing long-chain (18:1; carbon atoms:double bonds) unsaturated, unesterified fatty acids to diets containing long-chain saturated, unesterified fatty acids (18:0) and they preferred diets containing mono-unsaturated fats (18:1) to diets containing poly-unsaturated fats (18:2). The preference for diets containing long-chain unsaturated fatty acids to diets containing long-chain saturated fatty acids was consistent in birds tested one week after capture at 2°C, one month after capture when cold-acclimated (1°C), and six weeks after capture at 21°C. Birds acclimated to a diet with 50% of the fat comprised of unesterified stearic acid (18:0) lost mass and reduced their food intake when we reduced ambient temperature from 21°C to 11°C over three days. We concluded that especially in energy-demanding situations there are limits to the yellow-rumped warblers ability to assimilate some long-chain saturated fatty acids and that this digestive constraint can explain in part why yellow-rumped warblers prefer diets containing long-chain unsaturated fatty acids to diets containing long-chain saturated fatty acids.


Early nutrition causes persistent effects on pheasant morphology. Ohisson, T.; Smith, H.G. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2001, v. 74 (2), p. 212-218. ref.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: dietary protein, growth rate, ontogeny, size, tarsus, agricultural pesticide effects, experimental study.

Abstract: Differences in growth conditions during early ontogeny have been suggested to cause permanent effects on the morphology and quality of birds. Yearly variation in growth conditions could thus result in morphological and quality differences between cohorts. In this study, we investigated the effect of small differences in the dietary protein content of captive ring-necked pheasants (Phasianus colchicus) during their first 8 wk posthatching. An experimental increase of the proportion of dietary protein during the first 3 wk of life accelerated growth, whereas a similar manipulation during the following 5 wk had only a limited effect. Compensatory growth during the postexperimental period equalized the size of the chicks from different experimental treatments. However, a difference in tarsus length resulting from experimental treatment during the first 3 wk remained into adulthood. Furthermore, the protein content of the diet during the first 3 wk had an effect on the degree of fluctuating asymmetry in tarsus length, suggesting persistent effects on the quality of birds. The results of this study may explain sized differences between cohorts that exist in pheasants and may also provide a link between the use of pesticides in agriculture and population effects on pheasants.


Effect of age on seed digestion in parrots (Amazona aestiva). Vendramin, Gallo M.; Pessutti, C.; Pezzato, A.C.; Vicentini, Paulino M.L.M. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2001, v. 74 (3), p. 398-403. ref. ISSN: 1522-2152.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: age, digestibility, fiber, maize, seeds, soybeans, sunflower seeds, young, adults, gastrointestinal microflora.

Abstract: The objective of this study was to compare the capacity of adult (more than 3 yr old) and young (less than 1 yr old) true parrots (n=12 in each group) to digest seeds that are normally included in their diet in captivity, particularly soyabean, sunflower, and corn. All the seeds were offered for 5 d with an interval of 15 d between different diets. The seeds of soyabean and corn were boiled for 15 min and soaked in water at ambient temperature for 12 h before being fed to the birds. There were no differences in the digestibilities of crude protein and fats (ether extract) among the animals, but the digestibilities of dry matter and crude fibre by the adult animals were higher than those of the young ones. The digestibility of carbohydrates (nitrogen-free extract) by adult birds was higher only for sunflower seeds. It is concluded that the capacity of parrots to digest fibre may change according to the age of the animal. Since the digestion of fibre depends on the action of microorganisms, these results suggest that the colonization of the gastrointestinal tract is delayed or very slow in young parrots.


Feeding behaviour of free-ranging penguins determined by oesophageal temperature. Charrassin, J.B.; Kato, A.; Handrich, Y.; Sato, K.; Naito, Y.; Ancel, A.; Bost, C.A.; Gauthier, Clerc M.; Ropert, Coudert Y.; Maho, Y. le; le Maho, Y. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Series B, Biological Sciences, 2001, v. 268 (1463), p. 151-157. ref. ISSN: 0962-8452.

NAL call no: 501 L84B

Descriptors: feed intake, temperature related to prey ingestion, esophagus, stomach, Aptenodytes patagonicus.

Abstract: Using oesophageal temperature, we present here a new method for detecting the timing of prey ingestion in free-ranging sea birds, and, to our knowledge, report the first data obtained on king penguins (Aptenodytes patagonicus). In birds ashore, which were hand-fed 1-15 pieces of fish, all meal ingestions were detected with a sensor in the upper oesophagus. Detection was poorer with sensors at increasing distances from the beak. At sea, slow temperature drops in the upper oesophagus and stomach characterized a diving effect per se. For the upper oesophagus only, abrupt temperature variations were superimposed, therefore indicating prey ingestions. We determined the depths at which these occurred. Combining the changes in oesophageal temperatures of marine predators with their diving pattern opens new perspectives for understanding their foraging strategy, and, after validation with concurrent applications of classical techniques of prey survey, for assessing the distribution of their prey.


Feeding of ostriches (Struthio camelus). Arsian, C.; Inal, F. Kafkas Universitesi Veteriner Fakultesi Dergist, 2001, v. 7 (2), p. 229-235. ref. ISSN: 1300-6045.

Descriptors: animal anatomy and morphology, nutrition, nutritional physiology.

Abstract: The following review elaborates on features of the gastrointestinal tract and nutrient requirements of ostriches (Struthio camelus). Suggested feeding regimes are evaluated.


Food requirements of wild animals: Predictive equations for free-living mammals, reptiles and birds. Nagy, K.A. Nutritional Abstracts and Reviews, Series B, Livestock Feeds and Feeding. 2001, v. 71 (10), p. 21R-32R. ref. ISSN: 0309-135X.

Descriptors: animal nutrition, bioenergetics, feed intake, nutrient requirements.

Abstract: Feeding rates (intake of both dry matter and fresh matter) by 79 species of animals, 95 species of birds and 55 species of reptiles were estimated from doubly labeled water-based measurements of field metabolic rate on each species. Allometric (scaling) regression analyses of log 10-transformed feeding rates vs. body mass yielded statistically significant relationships for 90 different taxonomic, dietary and habitat groupings of species. The resulting exponential equations can be used to predict the daily food requirements needed to maintain energy balance for free-living mammals, birds and reptiles with an average error of about 5% to 60%, depending on the group. The ability to predict feeding rates of terrestrial vertebrates should be useful to zoo keepers, animal nutritionists, veterinarians, pet hobbyists, wildlife zoologists, game managers, range biologists, preserve directors and planners, conservationists, paleontologists and ecosystem modelers. These equations should underestimate somewhat the feeding rates of free-living animals that are growing, reproducing or storing up fat. The equations probably overestimate the feeding rates of captive wild animals (e.g. in zoos) and of free-ranging animals during some phases of their lives when they either do not or cannot feed normally.


Fueling around. Sugar junkies of the bird world. Jackson, Sue; Nicolson, Susan. Africa Birds and Birding, Jun./Jul. 2001, v. 6 (3), p. 32-35. ISSN: 1025-8264.

Descriptors: nutrition, diet, dietary requirements, feeding behavior, nectar feeding.


Function of vitamin A in vertebrate embryonic development. Zile, Maija H. Journal of Nutrition, Mar. 2001, v. 131 (3), p. 705-708. ISSN: 0022-3166.

NAL call no: 389.8 J82

Descriptors: congenital abnormalities, nutritional disease, vitamin A deficiency, bird embryo.

Abstract: Advances in molecular biology and retinoic acid receptor research have significantly contributed to the understanding of the role of vitamin A during vertebrate development. Examination of the function of this vitamin during very early developmental stages using the completely vitamin A-depleted avian embryo has revealed that the vitamin A requirement begins at the time of formation of the primitive heart, circulation and specification of hindbrain. The lack of vitamin A at this critical time results in gross abnormalities and early embryonic death. In rodent models, vitamin A deficiency can be targeted to later gestational windows and documents the need for vitamin A for more advanced stages of development. Major target tissues of vitamin A deficiency include the heart, central nervous system and structures derived from it, the circulatory, urogenital and respiratory systems, and the development of skull, skeleton and limbs. These abnormalities are also evident in mice mutants from retinoid receptor knockouts; they have revealed both morphological and molecular aspects of vitamin A function during development. Retinoic acid receptors (RAR) in partnership with retinoid X receptor (RXR)alpha appear to be the important retinoid receptor transcription factors regulating vitamin A function at the gene level during development via the physiologic ligand all-trans-retinoic acid. Homeostasis of retinoic acid is maintained by developmentally regulated vitamin A metabolism enzyme systems. Inadequate vitamin A nutrition during early pregnancy may account for some pediatric congenital abnormalities.


How does time since feeding affect the fuels pigeons use during flight? Gannes, L.Z.; Hatch, K.A.; Pinshow, B. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2001, v. 74 (1), p. 1-10. ref. ISSN: 1522-2152.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: blood plasma, carbohydrates, catabolism, feeding, flight, oxidation.

Abstract: Time between meals can vary from multiple hours to days within and among species. We investigated the effects of time since feeding on lipid, protein, and carbohydrate oxidation in flying pigeons (Columba livia) by interpreting changes in blood plasma metabolite concentrations and mass during flight. Five pigeons on the Ben-Gurion University, Negrev, Israel flown or rested for 4 h after feed deprivations of 2, 12, 24 and 48 h. After flight, blood plasma concentrations of uric acid and beta-hydroxybutyrate were elevated over control and preflight values, indicating elevated protein and lipid catabolism during flight. Lipid oxidation, as indicated by changes in beta-hydroxybutyrate concentration, increased more than in unfed flying pigeons compared with recently fed flying pigeons and with resting controls. Protein oxidation, as indicated by changes in uric acid concentrations, also positively covaried with feeding time; the covariation was mostly caused by increases in 48 h food-deprived pigeons. Unfed birds lost less mass during a 4 h flight than recently fed birds. We reasoned that recently fed pigeons oxidized more glycogen in flight than pigeons not recently fed; calculated glycogen stores explained 72%-117% of mass loss differences between 2 and 48 h fed pigeons. Thus, time since feeding was an important determinant of the fuels pigeons used in flight.


Huidige vooruitgang in volstruisvoeding. [Current trends in ostrich feeding.] Brand, T.; Brand, Z.; Nel, K.; Van Schalkwyk, K.; Van der Merwe, G.; Young, D.; Van der Walt, J. Elsenburg Journal, 2001, p. 9-13. ref. ISSN: 0250-1538. Full text available: www.elsenburg.com. Note: In Africans with an English summary.

Descriptors: ostriches, animal feeding, nutritional requirements, energy value.


Long-term fasting and re-feeding in penguins. Groscolas, Rene; Robin, Jean Patrice. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology Part A Molecular and Integrative Physiology, Mar. 2001, v. 128A (3), p. 645-655. ISSN: 1095-6433.

NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: starvation, long-term fasting, review of adaptations, lipids, protein catabolism, feeding physiology.

Abstract: Spontaneous fasting during reproduction (sometimes with a full stomach) and moult is a major characteristic of the annual cycle of penguins: Long-term fasting (up to four months in male emperor penguins) is anticipated by the accumulation of fat (incubation fast) and of fat and protein (moult fast). During most of the incubation fast, birds rely almost entirely on lipids as an energy source, body proteins being spared. However, below a critical (but non-total) fat store depletion, marked behavioral, metabolic, and endocrine changes occur. Spontaneous locomotor activity increases and the egg is transitorily left unincubated for increasingly long periods, until it s definitive abandon and the bird departs to re-feed at sea. These changes are thought to be activated by an endogenous re-feeding signal triggered before lethal energy depression. An increase in body protein catabolism in the face of a reduction in lipid availability and utilisation, and an increase in circulating corticosterone vs. a decrease in plasma prolactin, are likely to be major metabolic and humoral components of this signal. The survival and rapid restoration of energy stores in birds having departed to re-feed at a stage of near total lipid depletion demonstrates the effectiveness of the re-feeding signal. Penguins, and possibly other seabirds, are therefore appropriate animal models for understanding the long-term interactions between body energy reserves and fasting, breeding and feeding physiology and behavior.


The maintenance nitrogen requirement of the zebra finch Taeniopygia guttata. Allen, L.R.; Hume, I.D. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2001, v. 74 (3), p. 366-375. ref. ISSN: 1522-2152.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: dietary minerals, nitrogen, seed diets, protein levels, procedures.

Abstract: A procedure is described for the accurate determination of the maintenance nitrogen requirement (MNR) of small granivorous birds. When used with zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata), it yielded a MNR of 403 mg kgW-0.75 d-1. This is lower than most other passerines so far measured and more similar to some nonpasserine species. Similarly, the value for endogenous nitrogen loss estimated for the zebra finch (153 mg kgW-0.75 d-1) is less than that for passerines in general but higher than the nonpasserine value. We suggest that the low MNR of the strictly granivorous zebra finch is primarily an adaptation to seed diets in which high-quality protein is a limiting factor. Comparison with a wider range of species reported in the literature was restricted because inappropriate methods have been used to estimate MNR in many cases, including the use of growing or reproducing birds and the assumption that maintenance of the body mass necessarily coincides with maintenance of zero nitrogen balance.


Nutrition of birds in the order Psittaciformes: A review. Koutsos, E.A.; Matson, K.D.; Klasing, K.C. Journal of Avian Medicine and Surgery, 2001, v. 15 (4), p. 257-275. ref. ISSN: 1082-6742.

NAL call no: SF 994.J6

Descriptors: animal nutrition, diets, feeding behavior, nutrient requirements, parrot type birds, malnutrition in captive birds.

Abstract: Over 350 species of birds make up the order Psittaciformes; many of these are maintained in captive environments. Malnutrition is commonly diagnosed in captive psittacine birds; therefore, providing nutritionally adequate diets must be a primary concern. This review integrates quantitative information on the dietary habits and nutritional requirements of psittacine birds to facilitate the formulation and evaluation of diets for birds in captivity. Initially, characterization of the diet and feeding strategy of a particular species in the wild can provide insight into appropriate diet choices in captivity. Knowledge of the gastrointestinal anatomy and physiology can be used to elucidate the capacity of that species to utilize various feedstuffs. Foe example, the presence of a highly muscular gizzard may allow a bird to utilize a seed-based diet, whereas a species possessing a small gizzard may be unable to process such a diet. Finally, nutrient requirements determined in a particular species or a related species (e.g. similar digestive physiology and feeding strategy) may be applied to create a nutritionally adequate diet. Understanding the factors involved in selecting appropriate diets enables aviculturists, veterinarian, and nutritionists to maintain and propagate these birds with increased success.


Order Psittaciformes (parrots, macaws, conures). Nutrition. Carciofi, Aulus Cavalien. Biology, Medicine and Surgery of South American Wild Animals, 2001. i-x. 1-536. Chapter pagination: 152-157. Fowler, Murray E.; Cubas, Zalmir S. (eds). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. ISBN: 0813820465.

NAL call no: SF996.4.B56 2001

Descriptors: care in captivity, nutrition, diet, dietary requirements, diseases.


Overview of nutraceutical and herbal therapies for birds. McCluggage, D. Exotic DVM, 2001, v. 3 (6), p. 8-11. ISSN: 1521-1363.

NAL call no: SF981.E96

Descriptors: chaparral, herbal drugs, potency, ubiquinones.


Pet bird feeding strategies-facts and fallacies. Brue, R.N. Proceedings North American Veterinary Conference, Gainesville, FL. Eastern States Veterinary Association, Jan. 13-17, 2001, Orlando, FL.

NAL call no: SF605.N672

Descriptors: birds, animal feeding, animal nutrition.


Seed preferences by birds: Effects of the design of feeding-preference experiments. Cueto, Victor R.; Marone, Luis; de Casenave, Javier Lopez. Journal of Avian Biology, Sept. 2001, v. 32 (3), p. 275-278. ISSN: 0908-8857.

Descriptors: feeding analysis techniques, food preference determination, food plants, Rufous-collared Sparrows, Zonotrichia capensis, 8 seed options.

Abstract: We analysed the effects of the design of feeding-preference experiments in a study of seed selection by Rufous-collared Sparrows, Zonotrichia capensis. We presented eight seed options in multiple- and simple-offer experiments. Statistical results indicated that in multiple-offer tests there were three preferred, and two avoided seed species. The other three species could not be assigned to any of those groups. In contrast, results of simple-offer tests showed that all seed species were preferred, except the two avoided ones. Using a graphical combination of the results of both approaches, we obtained an easily interpretable assessment of the seed preferences of Rufous-collard sparrows. In the graph space, seed species make up three groups: preferred, avoided, and less-preferred (i.e. heavily consumed in simple-offer trials, but avoided of consumed to a lesser extent in multiple-offer trials). With the combination of both protocols we avoided the biases caused by using one experimental design alone and could detect secondary-preferred food items. This seems crucial when the bird under study is plastic in its feeding preferences.


Supplemental ascorbic acid and heat stress in growing Japanese quail chicks. Abou-Egla, E.H. Mansoura University Journal of Agricultural Sciences, May 2001, v. 26 (5), p. 2653-2665. ISSN: 1110-0346.

Descriptors: quails, feed additives, ascorbic acid, nutritive value, temperature resistance.





Desempenho produtivo da perdiz (Rhynchotus rufescens) submetida a racoes com diferentes niveis energeticos.
[Productive performance of partridge (Rhynchotus refescens) fed diets containing different energy levels.]
Moro, M.E.G.; Tavates, F.A.; Lima, C.G. Revista Brasileira de Ciencia Avicola, 2000, v. 2 (1), p. 13-18. ref. Note: In Portuguese.

Descriptors: energy consumption, energy requirements, feeding, diets, feed intake, feed conversion efficiency, egg production, liveweight gain.

Abstract: The optimum energy levels in rations for partridges during their reproductive phase were investigated by evaluating feed intake, liveweight gain, feed conversion efficiency and average egg production. 24 R. rufescens, 10 months old, were fed on 3 isoproteic rations (15% CP) with different levels of ME (2650, 2800 and 2950 kcal ME/kg). A completely randomized experimental design with three treatments and four replicates per experimental unit was used. There was no significant differences in feed intake, but energy level had a significant effect on mean egg weight, egg production and feed conversion efficiency for the 2650 and 2800 kcal ME/kg diets compared with the 2950 kcal ME/kg diet. It is concluded that energy levels from 2650 to 2800 kcal ME/kg be used in partridge diets during the reproductive phase.


The diet and nutrition of the Namaqua sandgrouse, an arid-zone granivore. Lloyd, P.; Durrans, L.; Gous, R.; Little, R.M.; Crowe, T.M. Journal of Arid Environments, 2000, v. 44 (1), p. 105-122. ref. ISSN: 0140-1963.

NAL call no: QH541.5.D4J6

Descriptors: feeding behaviour, seeds, nutritive value, composition, wild birds, Pterocles namaqua.

Abstract: A study was conducted to evaluate the feeding behaviour of the Namaqua sandgrouse, Pterocles namaqua, and the nutritive value of its principal seed diets.


Dietary nitrogen as a limiting nutrient in frugivorous birds. Bosque, Carlos; Pacheco, M. Andreina. Revista Chilena de Hostoria Natural, Sept. 2000, v. 73 (3), p. 441-450. ISSN: 0716-078X.

Descriptors: nutrition, dietary nitrogen, fruit eaters, energy needs, nutritional requirements, physiology.

Abstract: Fruit pulp is considered nutritionally inadequate for frugivorous birds because of its low protein content. Consequently, frugivores are expected to minimize their nitrogen losses as an adaptation to frigivory. In this review we examine properties of fruit and physiological traits of frugivores that affect their ability to subsist on fruit diets. Most tropical and temperate fruit seem to contain enough nitrogen to satisfy the birds if their food intake was adjusted to meet their energy needs, but requirements depend on body mass. Birds of larger body size should require foods having a higher ratio of nitrogen to energy than smaller species. However, digestible nitrogen may in fact be limiting because fruit pulp seems to contain considerable amounts of nonproteinaceous nitrogen and an amino acid composition that deviates from that required by birds. Both of these characteristics of fruit pulps should augment nitrogen losses of frugivores and consequently their needs when consuming natural diets. In terms of their physiology, we expect frugivores to maximize their nitrogen extraction efficiency from the diet and hint the possibility that low urinary nitrogen losses of frugivores might be related to a low metabolic rate. Minimization of endogenous fecal losses could be the most important adaptation of frugivores to subsist on nitrogen poor diets. It is not evident how specialized frugivores can have lower than expected nitrogen requirements when compared to birds of other dietary groups. We suggest several areas of research that should improve out understanding of the complex interactions involved in the regulation of protein needs of frugivorous birds.


Effects of diet with different levels of protein and energy content on reproductive traits of utility-type pigeons kept in cages. Meleg, I.; Dublecz, K.; Vincze, L.; Horn, P. Archiv fuer Gefluegelkunde, 2000, v. 64 (5), p. 211-213. ISSN: 0003-9098.

NAL call no: 47.8 AR2

Descriptors: pigeons, animal feeding, energy, feed intake, conversion efficiency.


Utjecaj drzanja i prehrane tijekom ljetnih mjeseci na bolesti kucnih ptica. [Effects of housing and nutrition during summer months on disease incidence in pet birds.] Hraste, A; Tratnjak, D. Veterinarska Stanica, 2000, v. 31 (4), p. 209-210. ref. ISSN: 0350-7149. Note: In Croation.

Descriptors: animal housing, summer, nutrition, heat stress, intestinal diseases.


Energetics and nutritional ecology of small herbivorous birds. Lopez-Calleja, M. Victoria; Bozinovic, Francisco. Revista Chilena de Historia Natural, Sept. 2000, v. 73 (3), p. 411-420. ISSN: 0716-078X.

Descriptors: behavior, digestive system, energy requirements, nutritional requirements, Phytotoma rara, adaptations to plant-based diet.

Abstract: Herbivory is a rare strategy in birds. Only 3% of extant birds exploit plant material as an energy source. Both plant chemical composition and bird constraints associated to flight and digestion may explain why herbivory is so scarce in small endotherms such as birds. Here we tackle the question on how herbivorous birds meet energy/nutrient requirements when feeding on extremely poor diets. We focus on Phytotoma rara (Phytomidae), possibly the smallest herbivorous bird. From our mini-review we conclude that several features such as the fast passage rates, and effective physical breakdown of cell walls, and constant and high activities of digestive enzymes make available the highly nutritious cell contents to the small herbivore, without the energy costs of anatomical structures for bacterial fermentation or slow passage rates. These are possible crucial adaptations in the evolution of hebivory in small birds.


Estimating the energy needs of pet birds. Harper, E.J. Journal of Avian Medicine and Surgery, 2000, v. 14 (2), p. 95-102. ref.

NAL call no: SF994.J6

Descriptors: diets, energy content, energy consumption, energy requirements, expenditures, mathematical equations, energy.

Abstract: A review. Little is known about the energy requirements of pet birds. Because animals generally eat to meet energy requirements, the nutrient content of a diet must be balanced with energy content. To formulate balanced diets for a range of bird species, both the energy needs of the relevant bird species and the energy content of the diet must be calculated. The most practical way of understanding the energy requirements of pet birds is by studying their daily energy expenditure. Factors affecting energy requirements are body size, activity patterns, environmental temperature, plumage cover, age, and physiological state. Energy costs of maintenance are directly related to the lean body mass and the relative size of different organs, because these are the tissues that actively use oxygen. Activity patterns also have a considerable impact; the difference between sitting and standing can affect the daily energy expenditure by as much as 42%. There are a variety of published allometric equations for determining avian energy requirements, but those derived from fasted species are inappropriate. For companion birds, equations derived for the particular body-weight range of the avian species in question are the most applicable. Two equations are recommended: one for calculating the energy requirements of avian species less than 100 g, and the second for avian species whose body weights are in the range of 100-1500 g.


[The feeding activity of Derby’s parakeet (Psittacula derbiana) in captivity.] Yang, XiaoJun; Wen, XianJi; Wang, ShuZhen; Yang, Lan; Yang, HongJun; Dong, RongMei; Zhang, YuKun; Dong, Xin; Li, YuanChun; Yang, X.J.; Wen, X.J.; Wang, S.Z.; Yang, L.; Yang, H.J.; Dong, R.M.; Zhang, Y.K.; Dong, X.; Li, Y.C. Zoological Research, 2000, v. 21 (2), p. 115-120. ref. ISSN: 0254-5853. Note: In Chinese.

NAL call no: QL1.J874

Descriptors: feeding, behaviour, feeding frequency, total feeding time, regression equation, sex differences, seasonal variation.

Abstract: The feeding activity of 20 captive Derby’s parakeets in 4 groups was observed by instantaneous method and scan sampling method from March 1994 to February 1995. 254 completed feeding activities were observed by all-occurrences’ recording method from March 1996 to September 1998. The daily feeding frequency of Derby’s parakeets were 32.12+14.28, and the daily time spent on feeding was 153.23+73.11 min, which accounted for 14.51% of total observing time. The feeding frequency and feeding time in different individuals were different (frequency F=1.747, time F=1.791; P<0.05). The daily feeding frequency and total feeding time were correlated. The daily feeding activity had two main peaks. Generally the first appeared from 7.00 to 10.00 h, the second was from 15.00 to 19.00 h. However, the time when the peak occurred was different in different seasons. The feeding activities began earlier and stopped later in summer and vice versa in winter. The daily feeding frequency of young was not significantly different from that of adult, but the duration of each feeding activity lasted longer in young than in adult., e.g. young spent longer time for feeding than adult daily. The daily time spent on feeding by male and female was not significantly different from that by female, while the feeding frequency of female was less than that of male, and the duration of each activity lasted longer in female than in male. The results by using all-occurrences’ recording method showed that: The feeding activity consisted of a series of behaviours, including picking-up with bill, grabbing with foot, chewing, carrying food (in bill or foot), body caring, looking, threatening, and courtship feeding. The picking-up with bill, grabbing with foot and chewing were >90%. The feeding activity began with picking-up (100%), then chewing (95.56%), carrying food (2.87%) or threatening (0.57%; and then picking-up (85.06%), carrying food (7.47%), chewing (1.15%), body caring (1.15%), grabbing with foot (3.45%), courtship feeding (0.57%) or looking (1.15%), and etc. The stepwise regression showed that the feeding activity of males and females were affected by all behaviours. Temperature, relative humidity and illumination were not the factors significantly affecting the feeding activities. The feeding activities of young birds were affected by resting, fed by parents, bite, locomotion and temperature. The regression equation is as follows: Y=1578.74-1.95 X3-1.76 X4-0.85 X5-1.44 X6-0.74 X7 Y stood for daily feeding time, X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7 respectively stood for temperature, resting, locomotion, feeding by parents and bite.


Healthy Bird ® Avian Nutrition System. Rohrberg, Roderick G.; Lillie, Thomas C. Official Gazette of the United States Patent and Trade Mark Office, Patents, (e-file), Aug. 22, 2000; 1237 (4): No pagination. ISSN: 0098-1133.

NAL call no: T223.A21

Descriptors: animal care, foods, nutrition, avian nutrition system.

Abstract: Methods and liquified dietary supplements for enhancing and maintaining the health of birds are disclosed. The invention also includes dietary supplements which are intended to promote avian well-being by providing a daily regimen of two specifically designed formulas. The Healthy Bird® Sunrise Formula is a morning supplement which furnishes quick energy, and maintains the natural acid base balance of the bird. The Healthy Bird® Sunset Formula is an evening supplement which enables the bird to begin its rest cycle. Both preparations are novel compositions which furnish highly nutritional dietary regimens for domesticated birds.


Huidige vooruitgang in volstruisvoeding. [Effects of feed particle size on the digestive process in domestic birds.] Carre, B. Special Issue. Feed Particle Size and Animal Nutrition. Production Animals. 2000, v. 13 (2), p. 131-136. ref. ISSN: 0990-0632. Note: In French.

Descriptors: feeds, digestion, feed particle size, effects, transit time in the gut, digestibility, retention.

Abstract: The effects of feed particle size on the digestive process in domestic birds are reviewed. This paper is divided into two parts: the effects on digestive transit times and the availability of intracellular plant components. Coarse particles compared to fine ones generally result in an increase in total transit time due to a longer retention time in the gizzard. According to the literature, it seems that coarse grinding should be positive for reducing water losses, and also, in some cases, for protein digestibility. The latter effects would be explained by better control of the intestine transit time by the gizzard emptying when using coarse ground feeds. Coarse grinding may result in low availabilities for some of the intracellular components of dicotyledon whole seeds as observed for soyabeans, rapeseeds, fava beans and peas. In contrast, cereals seem to be much less sensitive to particle size variations. In dicotyledon seeds, the intracellular components do not show the same sensitivity: the highest sensitivities to particle size variations are generally observed for lipids and starch. However, if a pelleting process is applied after grinding, the effects of the grinding intensity are considerably reduced with, in this case, similar digestibility values close to a maximum.


Iron storage diseases in birds. Cork, S.C. Avian Pathology, 2000, v. 29 (1), p. 7-12. ref. ISSN: 0307-9457.

NAL call no: SF995.A1A9

Descriptors: storage, absorbable iron, liver, hemosiderosis, reviews, metabolic disorders, Kupffer cells, iron uptake, Peris iron stain.

Abstract: Parenteral iron is toxic to many species but, because the uptake of iron from the diet is regulated in the intestine, acute intoxication is not seen under natural conditions. Chronic ingestion of large amounts of absorbable iron in the diet can lead to the storage of iron in the liver in many species, including man. The excess iron is stored within hepatocytes as haemosiderin and can be quantitatively assessed by liver biopsy or at necropsy using special stains such as Peris iron stain and/or biochemical tests. Iron may also be found within the Kupffer cells in the liver and the macrophage cells of the spleen especially where concurrent diseases are present such as haemolytic anemia, septicemia, neoplasia and starvation. Iron accumulation in the liver, also known as haemosiderosis, may not always be associated with clinical disease although in severe cases hepatic damage may occur. It is probable that concurrent disease conditions are largely responsible for the degree and nature of the pathological changes described in most cases of haemosiderosis. In some humans there may be a genetic predisposition to iron storage disease, haemochromatosis, associated with poor regulation of iron uptake across the intestine. In severe cases iron pigment will be found in the liver, spleen, gut wall, kidney and heart with subsequent development of ascites, heart failure and multisystem pathology. Clinical disease associated with accumulation of iron in the liver, and other tissues, has been reported in many species of bird although it is most commonly reported in Indian hill mynas (Gracula religiosa) and toucans (Ramphastos sp.). It is likely that the tolerance to the build up of tissue iron varies in individual species of bird and that the predominant predisposing factors may differ, even within closely related taxonomic groups.


Nitrogen requirements of an Old World nectarivore, the orange-tufted sunbird Nectarinia osea. Roxburgh, L.; Pinshow, B. Physiological and Biochemical Zoology, 2000, v. 73 (5), p. 638-645. ref.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: nitrogen requirements, urine, body weight, nitrogen balance, captive-bird study.

Abstract: Nectivorous birds are represented by three major radiations: honeyeaters and sunbirds in the Old World and hummingbirds in the New World. Costa’s hummingbirds and New Holland honeyeaters have unusually low nitrogen requirements, which have been related to the species’ low-protein, high-sugar diets. Therefore, we hypothesised that orange-tufted sunbirds (N. osea) would likewise have low-maintenance nitrogen requirements and low rates of endogenous nitrogen loss. To test this hypothesis, we measured nitrogen balance, total endogenous nitrogen loss, and body mass changes in captive birds using insects as a nitrogen source. Nitrogen balance, estimated by regression analysis to be 3.9 mg d-1, was less than one-half of that allometrically predicted, while total endogenous nitrogen loss (1.9+0.6 mg d-1) was less than one-third of the allometrically predicted value. Thus, orange-tufted sunbirds follow the same pattern of low nitrogen requirements found in hummingbirds and honeyeaters. Total endogenous losses of nitrogen in nectivores are low because a fibreless, easily digestible liquid diet reduces nitrogen losses in the feces, while the protein-sparing effect of a diet containing largely sugar leads to endogenous urinary nitrogen losses.


The nutritional, morphologic, and physiologic bases of nectarivory on Australian birds. Gartrell, B.D. Journal of Avian Medicine and Surgery, 2000, v. 14 (2), p. 85-94. ref.

NAL call no: SF994.J6

Descriptors: foods, forage, nutrient requirements, protein requirements, nectar, honey eaters, swift parrots, Lathamus discolor, lorikeets, adaptive physiology.

Abstract: A review. Nectarivorous birds are those that rely predominantly on the products of flowering trees and shrubs for food. Australian avian nectarivores include honey-eaters of the family Meliphagidae and lorikeets and swift parrots (Lathamus discolor) of the family Psittacidae. Nectar is a sugar-rich, liquid food source that provides abundant amounts of energy for birds that are able to harvest it. However, it contains very low levels of amino acids, vitamins, and trace minerals necessary for avian maintenance, growth, and reproduction. Therefore, birds classified as nectarivores need to forage for other food resources. Manna, honeydew, and lerp are common food sources for a variety of honey-eaters and nectarivorous parrots; these foods are high in carbohydrates and low in protein, similar to nectar. Pollen protoplasm is composed of highly digestible protein and contains a diverse amino acid profile; however, only 3 Australian species of psittacine birds have been recorded engaging in active pollen harvesting. Insects are thought to be the main source of protein for nectarivores. Nectarivorous birds have developed a variety of morphological and physiological adaptations. Morphological adaptations to nectarivory include changes in body size, plumage, beak and tongue structure, and the alimentary organs. The physiology of nectarivory is still poorly understood, but there are indications that adaptations may include lowered metabolic rates, lowered protein requirements, and changes in digestive and renal physiology. Considerable work is needed to illuminate the specific nutritional requirements of nectarivores for maintenance, growth, and reproduction.


The science of tastefully formulating bird food. Matson, Kevin D. Exotic Bird Report, Jul. 2000, v. 12 (1), p. 1-3.

Descriptors: diet in captivity, taste, perception, response, thresholds, diet formulation.


Taste threshold determination and side-preference in captive cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus). Matson, K.D.; Milliam, J.R.; Klasing, K.C. Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 2000, v. 69 (4), p. 313-326. ref. ISSN: 0168-1591.

NAL call no: QL750.A6

Descriptors: consumption, flavor, NaCl, sucrose, feeding behavior, citric acid, taste preferences, water, captive birds.

Abstract: The taste threshold of caged cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus) for aqueous solutions of sodium chloride, citric acid, and sucrose were studied using two-choice taste-preference tests. The effects of location on the threshold were tested by putting the flavoured solution in either the preferred or non-preferred locations (i.e. sides of cages) and offering water in the opposite location. Four parameters (total consumption, consumption from preferred side, consumption from non-preferred side, and proportion of test solution consumed) were measured at the end of 3-day test periods. Experiments were repeated with increasing concentrations of test flavours until intake variables were significantly (p<0.05) affected. The results showed that birds distinguished (p<0.05) between purified water and 0.16 mol 1-1 sodium chloride and citric acid, 0.36 mol 1-1 sucrose, or pH 5.5 citric acid. The likelihood of detecting a taste threshold was greater for sodium chloride and citric acid when these solutions were placed on the preferred side. In contrast, sucrose sensitivity was greater when this solution was offered on the non-preferred side.


The true metabolisable energy content of canola oilcake meal and full-fat canola seed for ostriches (Struthio camelus). Brand, T.S.; De Brabander, L.; Van Schalkwyk, S.J.; Pfister, B.; Hays, J.P. British Poultry Science, May 2000, v. 41 (2), p. 201-203. ISSN: 0007-1668.

NAL call no: 47.8 B77

Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, ostrich, metabolisable energy, protein and energy sources.

Abstract: 1. The true metabolisable energy (TME) of canola oilcake and oil-fat canola seed was determined for ostriches to broaden our knowledge of canola as a potential protein and energy source for ostriches. 2. Both test materials were diluted with a basal diet, fed to ostriches and TME-values estimated by multiple regression analysis. 3. The TME values for canola oilcake meal and full-fat canola seed for ostriches were respectively 13.76 MJ kg-1 and 22.5 MJ kg-1. 4. The TME values obtained for these 2 important protein sources will assist on the more accurate formulation of diets for ostriches.


Why do nutrient requirements differ among bird species? Koutsos, Elizabeth A.; Klasing, Kirk C. Exotic Bird Report, July 2000, v. 12 (1), p. 4-6, 8.

Descriptors: dietary requirements, nutrition, diet, energy requirements, species differences.


Zywienie strusi i emu - podstawy fizjologiczne i zapotrzebowanie na skladniki pokarmowe. [Feeding ostriches and emus: Physiological basis and nutritional requirements: a review.] Jamroz, Dorota. Prace i Materialy Zootechniczne, 2000. v. 56, p. 51-73. ISSN: 0137-1649. Note: In Polish.

NAL call no: SF1.P672

Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, energy requirements, ostrich, emu.

Abstract: This paper is a review of literature in the field of nutrition of ostriches and emus - the biggest herbivorous birds in the world. The keeping and breeding of these birds develops dynamically not only in south Africa, Australia, Israel, Canada and United States, but also in many European countries, including Poland. Essential information is presented relative to the specificity of the digestive tract, digestibility and requirements for nutrients and energy depending on the age and performance of birds. Also, principles are described of the practical feeding of ostriches and emus as well as the basal characteristics of ostrich egg and meat composition. Cited are 34 references.




Basic concepts and recent advances in digestion and nutrition. Cilliers, S.C.; Angel, C.R.; Deeming, D.C. The Ostrich: Biology, Production and Health, 1999, p. 105-128. ref. ISBN: 0851993508.

NAL call no: SF511.O774 1999

Descriptors: digestion, age, diet, feeds, amino acid metabolism, wild ostriches, feed-flow programs.

Abstract: This chapter briefly describes reports of the diet of wild ostriches. The anatomy of the digestive tract and changes induced by age and diet are also discussed. Other sections include: feedstuff evaluation; amino acid metabolism; implications of urea contamination of ostrich diets; and practical feed-flow programmes.


Calculating the required volume of avian nutritional products. Bartges, J.; Ritchie, B.W. Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian, 1999, v. 21 (8), p. 694-695. ref. ISSN: 0193-1903.

NAL call no: SF601.C66

Descriptors: nutrient requirements, therapeutic diets, trauma, nutrients, surgery.

Abstract: Nutritional support is important in the management of avian patients that are ill or recovering from trauma or surgical procedures. Provision of adequate calories is essential during convalescence. Formulae for calculating caloric requirements for avian patients are presented and discussed.


Comparison of metabolite energy values of different foodstuffs determined in ostriches and poultry. Cillers, S.C.; Sales, J.; Hayes, J.P.; Chwalibog, A.; Du Preez, J.J. British Poultry Science, Sept. 1999, v. 40 (4), p. 491-494. ISSN: 0007-1668.

NAL call no: 47.8 B77

Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, ostriches, energy, values of foodstuff.

Abstract: 1. Apparent (AMEn) and true (TMEn) metabolisable energy values, corrected for nitrogen retention of wheat bran, saltbush (Atriplex nummularia), common reed (Phragmites australis), lupins, soyabean oil cake meal (SBOCM), sunflower oil cake meal (SFOCM) and fishmeal were compared in 7 successive trials using 12 mature South African Black ostriches and 10 adult Australorp cockerels per ingredient. 2. TMEn values of 11.91, 7.09, 8.67, 14.61. 13.44, 10.79 and 15.13 MJ/kg for wheat bran, saltbrush, common reed, lupins, SBOCM, SFOCM and fishmeal, respectively, were found for ostriches in comparison to lower (P<0.05) values of 8.55, 4.50, 2.79, 9.40, 9.04, 8.89 and 13.95 MJ/kg for cockerels. 3. The higher (P<0.05) ME values for ostriches confirm that the ostrich is capable of digesting foodstuffs, especially those with high fibre concentrations such as drought-resistant fodders, more effectively than poultry. Plant protein sources could make a considerable energy contribution to diets for ostriches. 4. It is concluded that it is essential to use energy values of foodstuffs determined using ostriches and not extrapolated values derived from poultry in diet formulation for ostriches.


[Digestive system of the ostrich.] Li, XuGang; Zhu, HongQiang: Sun, ZeWei (et al); Li, X.G.; Zhu, H.Q.; Sun, Z.W. Journal of Economic Animal, 1999, v. 3 (3), p. 43-45. ref. Note: In Chinese.

Descriptors: digestive system, ostrich, structure, functions.


Does shifting from a commercial to a natural diet affect the nutritional status of hand-reared grey partridges Perdix perdix? Liukkonen, Anttila T.; Putaala, A.; Hissa, R. Wildlife Biology, 1999, v. 5 (3), p. 147-156. ref.

NAL call no: SK351.W663

Descriptors: composition, energy content, energy intake, nutrients, blood chemistry, hand-reared, animals, 6 weeks to adapt.

Abstracts: Two feeding trials (January to April 1996 and 1997) using a total of 54 hand-reared grey partridges were performed in Finland to study the effect of a change from a commercial pelleted diet to a natural diet (barley, oats and weed seeds) on body mass, food consumption, metabolised energy coefficient, gut morphology and some blood metabolites. The abrupt change in the diet which takes place when hand-reared birds are released into the wild was simulated. Controls continued to be given the pelleted diet throughout the trial. Group body mass decreased significantly after the change in diet. However, within 1 week, body mass started to increase again, but it stabilised at a lower level than in control birds (P<0.05). Compared with controls, birds in the test group consumed more food (fresh weight) during the feeding trial (P<0.001) and produced more excreta during the 2nd, 4th and 5th week of the feeding trial (P<0.001). Gross energy intake, amount of metabolised energy and metabolised energy coefficient decreased and excretory energy content increased during the feeding trial. No differences were seen in the analysed blood metabolites. Gizzards of the test birds were heavier than those of the control birds (P=0.01). It is concluded that a period of 6 weeks may be inadequate for partridges to get totally adapted to a new diet.


Ecological constraints on digestive physiology in carnivorous and piscivorous birds. Hilton, G.M.; Houston, D.C.; Barton, N.W.H.; Furness, R.W.; Ruxton, G.D. Special Issue: Avian Gastrointestinsl and Renal Function. Journal of Experimental Zoology, 1999, v.283 (4-5), p. 365-376. ref. ISSN: 0022-104X.

NAL call no: 410 J825

Descriptors: digestive tract, digestion, reviews, feeding behaviour, physiology, meat and fish eating birds, absorption efficiencies, gut length.

Abstract: Digestive strategies of meat-and fish eating birds have received little attention, and the assumption has generally been made that there is rather little variation in digestion parameters between species in these guilds. That there is a significant though small variation between species in apparent absorption efficiency is demonstrated here. This variation is associated with an apparent trade-off between retention time of digesta and apparent absorption efficiency: short retention times result in low apparent absorption efficiency. It is shown that, in raptors, rapid digestion is a consequence of both reduced gut length and increased flow rate of digesta. The ecological correlates of digestive strategy in raptors and seabirds are demonstrated. Rapid digestion appears to be associated with a pursuit foraging mode, whereas slow digestion tends to occur in species with a searching foraging mode. It is suggested that in raptors which actively pursue aerial prey, the weight savings that can be achieved through rapid but inefficient digestion exceed the costs in reduced apparent absorption efficiency. However, a species which adopts a strategy of rapid but inefficient digestion may be restricted in diet to high-quality food types, whereas species with a slow but efficient digestive strategy are able to exploit a wide range of food types, including low-quality prey.


Energetics of hummingbird foraging at low ambient temperature. Gass, C.L.; Romich, M.T.; Suarez, R.K. Canadian Journal of Zoology, 1999, v. 77 (2), p. 314-320. ref. ISSN: 0008-4301.

NAL call no: 470 C16D

Descriptors: energy balance, energy consumption, energy intake, thermoregulation, Rufous hummingbirds, Selasphorus rufus, sucrose solutions, metabolic rates.

Abstract: Because of their small size and high energetic costs of hovering and forward flight, hummingbirds achieve the highest mass-specific metabolic rates known among vertebrates. Rufous hummingbirds (Selasphorus rufus) stop to refuel on floral nectar in subalpine meadows as they migrate south from British Columbia, Canada, to Mexico. In such habitats they face the challenge of achieving daily net energy gain despite the high energy costs of flight and thermoregulation at near-freezing morning temperatures. Hummingbirds provided with 15 or 20% sucrose while subjected to these conditions for 4 h in the laboratory did not remain in energy balance and loss mass. However, they achieved energy balance or net energy gain on 30% sucrose. Because these sucrose concentrations are within the range observed in the nectar of hummingbird-visited flowers, the results suggests that the energetic cost of thermoregulation may influence the coevolution of hummingbirds and flowers. Hummingbirds maintaining energy balance at low ambient temperature via high foraging frequencies and high rates of energy intake can sustain average metabolic rates of about 250 W/kg over a 4-h period. These are the highest metabolic rates known among vertebrates at which rates of dietary energy intake equal rates of energy expenditure.


Energy metabolism in an obligate frugivore, the superb fruit-dove (Ptilinopus superbus). Schleucher, E. Australian Journal of Zoology, 1999, v. 47 (2), p. 169-179. ref. ISSN: 0004-959X.

NAL call no: 410 Au73

Descriptors: wild birds, energy metabolism, metabolism, fruit eaters.


Le esigenze nutritive dei fasianidi. [Feeding of pheasants.] Mussa, P.P. Rivista di Avicoltura, 1999, v. 68, (3), p. 12-15. ref. ISSN: 0005-2213. Note: In Italian.

NAL call no: 47.8 R523

Descriptors: animal nutrition, feeding, game birds, reviews.


Fatty acid composition of the adipose tissue and yolk lipids of a bird with a marine-based diet, the emperor penguin (Aptenodytes forsteri). Speake, B.K.; Decrock, F.; Surai, P.F.; Groscolas, R. Lipids, 1999, v. 34 (3), p. 183-290. ref. ISSN: 0024-4201.

NAL call no: QP751.L5

Descriptors: egg yolk, fatty acids, composition, adipose tissue, carotenoids, luteins.

Abstract: The fatty acid composition of the total lipid of the yolk from emperor penguins (Aptenodytes forsteri) was characterized by high levels of –3 polyenoic fatty acids. However, it differed in several respects from that of the maternal adipose tissue. For example, the proportions of 14:0 (myristic acid), 16:1n-7 (palmitoleic acid), 20:1n-9 (gadoleic acid), 22:1n-9 (eurcic acid), 20:5n-3 (eicosapentaenoic acid), and 22:6n-3 (docosahexaenoic acid) were significantly greater in adipose tissue than in yolk. Thus adipose tissue lipids contained 7.60+0.3% and 8.0+0.3% (wt% of total fatty acids;+ meanSE; n=5) of 20:5n-3, respectively, whereas the yolk total lipid contained 1.6+0.1 and 5.5+0.3% of these respective fatty acids. The proportions of 16:0 (palmitic acid), 18:0 (stearic acid), 18:1n-9 (oleic acid), 18.2n-6 (linoleic acid), and 20:4n-6 (arachidonic acid) were significantly lower in the adipose tissue than in the yolk lipids. The proportions of triacylglycerol, phospholipid, free cholesterol, and cholesteryl ester in the yolk lipid were, respectively, 67.0+0.2, 25.4+0.3, 5.3+0.2 and 1.8+0.2% (wt% of total yolk lipid). The proportions of 20:4n-6, 20:5n-3, 22:5n-3, and 22:6n-3 were, respectively, 5.7+0.3, 2.8+0.2, 1.4+0.1, and 11.7+0.5 in phospholipid and 0.4+0.0, 1.2+0.1, 0.8+0.1 and 3.6+0.3 in triacylglycerol. About 95% of the total vitamin E in the yolk was in the form of alpha-tocopherol with gamma-tocopherol forming the remainder. Two species of carotenoids, one identified as lutein, were present.


Feed for cockatoos. Nippashi, K. Journal of Veterinary Medicine, Japan, 1999, v. 52 (4), p. 319-322. ISSN: 0447-0192.

Descriptors: aviary birds, nutrition, pets, Psittaciformes.


Feeding of ostriches. Burlini, F. Informatore Agrario, 1999, v. 55 (42), p. 111-119. ISSN: 0020-0689.

NAL call no: 281.8 IN32

Descriptors: diets, feeds, digestive system, feeding, management, nutrition, signs of malnutrition.

Abstract: Ostrich feeding is discussed. Many ostrich farmers have incorrect information about the way to feed ostriches. Causes of this are ignorance about the ostrich digestive system; and inaccurate information about some feeds. It is important to recognize a healthy chick and the effects of an unbalanced diet.


Food ingestion and water turnover in hummingbirds: How much dietary water is absorbed? McWhorter, T.J.; Rio, C.M. del; del Rio, C.M. Journal of Experimental Biology, 1999, v. 202 (20), p. 2851-1858. ref. ISSN: 0022-0949.

NAL call no: 442.8 B77

Descriptors: diets, water turnover, absorption, feeding, sugars, water, feed intake, nectar intake.

Abstract: Hummingbirds are specialized nectarivores that feed on dilute solutions of sugar with trace amounts of amino acids and electrolytes. Their diets contain excess water that, if absorbed, must be eliminated. It has been hypothesized that in hummingbirds only a small fraction of this dietary water may be absorbed in the intestine. The results of experiments designed to examine the relationship between nectar intake and water turnover in hummingbirds (Selasphorus platysercus) are reported. These results also allow the estimation of water absorption across the intestine and therefore test the hypothesis that ingested water in hummingbirds passes largely unabsorbed through the gastrointestinal tract. It was found that fractional and total water turnover increased linearly with water ingestion. At low sucrose concentration, food intake rates between four and five times body mass per 12 h were not unusual. A simple mass-balance model suggested that 78% of ingested water was absorbed in the gastrointestinal tract and hence must be processed by the kidneys. However, fractional water absorption was variable and did not appear to be correlated with food or water intake parameters. These results do not lend support to the hypothesis that the bulk of dietary water passes through the intestine unabsorbed. Although hummingbird kidneys appear well suited to excrete large volumes of dilute urine, rates of energy assimilation in hummingbirds may be constrained by excess water elimination when these birds are feeding on nectars with a low sugar concentration.


Fruit sugar preferences of house finches. Avery, M.L.; Schreiber, C.L.; Decker, D.G. Wilson Bulletin, 1999, v. 111 (1), p. 84-88. ref. USDA, APHIS, National Wildlife research Center, Gainesville, FL. ISSN: 0043-5643.

NAL call no: 413.8 W692

Descriptors: assimilation, consumption, deficiency, digestion, sugars, fructose, glucose, sucrose, hexose.

Abstract: In a series of choice tests, the relative preferences of House Finches (Carpodacus mexicanus) for equicaloric aqueous solutions of hexoses (1:1 mixture of fructose and glucose) and sucrose were determined. At 2% (m/v) birds consumed each sugar solution equally and in amounts similar to plain water. Consumption of hexose but not sucrose increased at 4% sugar concentration. At 6% and 10% finches displayed consistent, strong preferences for the hexose over sucrose. In other passerine species, strong hexose preference has been linked to the absence of sucrase, the enzyme needed for digestion of sucrose. Fecal sugar readings from the House Finches, however, indicated approximately equal assimilation of hexose and sucrose, so the hexose preference apparently is mot due to sucrose deficiency. Rather, energetics may determine the finches’ sugar preferences: hexoses are rapidly processed because the 6-carbon sugars are readily assimilable whereas sucrose must first be hydrolyzed.


Nestling diet, secondary sexual traits and fitness in the zebra finch. Birkhead, T.R.; Fletcher, F.; Pellatt, E.J. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences, 1999. V. 266 (1417), p. 385-390. ref. ISSN: 0962-8452.

NAL call no: 501 L84B

Descriptors: feeds, diets, immunity, growth, secondary sexual traits, mates, Taeniopygia guttata.

Abstract: The effect of the quality of nestling diet on the performance of adult male zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) in terms of their morphology, primary and secondary sexual traits, condition, immune function and survival, was investigated.


Passerine nutrition: An overview of current information. Crissey, Sue. Wildlife Rehabilitation, 1998, v. 17, p. 3-14. ISSN: 0737-1829.

NAL call no: SF996.45.J69

Descriptors: Passeriformes, diet in captivity, nutritional requirements, nutrition, perching birds.


Studies on the energy content of pigeon feeds: I. Determination of digestibility and metabolizable energy content. Hullar, I.; Meleg, I.; Fekete, S.; Romvari, R. Poultry Science, (Hungary), Dec. 1999, v. 78 (12), p. 1757-1762. ISSN: 0032-5791.

NAL call no: 47.8 AM33P

Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, feed, pigeon, 10 seed species, comparison with chickens.


Studies on the energy content of pigeon feeds. II. Determination of the incorporated energy. Fekete, S.; Meleg, I.; Hullar, I.; Zoldag, L. Poultry Science, Dec. 1999, v. 78 (12), p. 1763-1767. ref. ISSN: 0032-5791.

NAL call no: 47.8 AM33P

Descriptors: pigeons, breed differences, metabolizable energy, energy content.


Using cotton seed meal in rations of growing Japanese quail. Abdel-Malak, M.S. Mansoura University Journal of Agricultural Sciences, Sept. 1999, v. 24 (9), Pt. A. P. 4527-4539. ref.

Descriptors: quails, cotton seed meal, rations, feed, digestibility, development.


Voedingsgerelateerde problemen bij gezelschapsvogels. [Diet-related problems in pet birds.] Schoemaker, N.J.; Lumeij, J.T.; Dorrestein, G.M.; Beynen, A.C. Tijdschrift voor Diergeneeskunde, Jan. 15, 1999, v. 124 (2), p. 39-43. ISSN: 0040-7453. Note: In Dutch.

NAL call no: 41.8 T431

Descriptors: goitre, nutritional diseases, metabolic diseases, endocrine disease, hypocalcemia, vitamin deficiency, parrot family, budgerigars, minahs, toucans.

Abstract: The detection and correction of dietary errors plays an important role in avian medicine. Examples of diseases caused in part by a deficiency of abundance of a nutrient include hypovitaminosis A in birds of the parrot (Psittacidae) family, hypocalcemia in the African grey parrot, goitre in budgerigars, and iron storage diseases in the minah and toucan. Hypovataminosis A can lead to metaplasia of mucous membranes, which in turn can lead to chronic rhinitis and respiratory fungal infections. Vitamin A deficiency is caused by feeding a seed based diet. Seed mixtures are often deficient in calcium, and nutritional secondary hyperparathyroidism can develop if an additional source of calcium, in the form of ground shells, is not provided. Tetanic symptoms as a result of hypocalcemia are seen only in the African grey parrot and the timneh parrot. Over supplementation with vitamin D gives rise to poisoning with polyuria and polydipsia as common initial symptoms. The exact cause of iron storage diseases in toucans and minahs is not known. A diet low in iron and vitamin C is advised as therapy. Goitre can develop in budgerigars as a result of iodine-deficient drinking water and provision of a seed mixture based on millet. An unbalanced or multideficient diet can give rise to reproductive disorders, abnormal feathers, or infections as a result of diminished resistance. It is usually not possible to relate the causes of these diseases in a simple way to the composition of the diet. Obesity, which occurs in the galah, amazon parrot, and budgerigars, can lead to fatty liver and lipoma. A gradual reduction in weight, by means of calorie restriction, is recommended. Commercially available nutritionally balanced bird food is often effective.




Absorption and metabolism of carotenoids in birds, fish and crustaceans. Schiedt, K.; Britton, G (ed.); Liaaen, Jensen S.; Pfander, H. Carotenoids, v. 3: Biosynthesis and Metabolism, 1998, p. 285-358. ref. ISBN: 3764358297.

Descriptors: carotenoids, metabolism, retinoids, transport, distribution, plumage.

Abstract: A selective review concerning the absorption and metabolic transformation of carotenoids in animals excluding mammals, focusing on recent results using modern analytical methods from studies in birds, fish and crustaceans. Metabolic transformations of special interest are the oxidative and reductive transformation of the beta and epsilon end groups of various chiralities and the cleavage of carotenoids to retinoids.


Avian nutrition. Forbes, N.A. Voorjaarsdagen Congress 1998. Veterinary Quarterly, 1998, 20, Supplement, p. S64-S65. ISSN: 0165-2176.

NAL call no: SF601.V46

Descriptors: nutrition, aviary birds, diets, vitamins, dietary minerals, protein.


Avian nutrition: anatomy of the avian digestive system - Part 2. Klasing, K.C. Exotic Bird Report, May 1998, v. 10 (1), p. 4-6.

Descriptors: Aves, digestive system, anatomy, birds.


Comparative Avian Nutrition. Klasing, Kirk C. CAB International, Oxon & New York, 1998. i-ix. 350 pp. ISBN: 0851992196.

NAL call no: QL698.K58 1998

Descriptors: nutrition, digestive system, anatomy, physiology, Aves, textbook.


Contrasting digestive strategies of fruit-eating birds. Witmer, M.C.; Van Soest, P.J. Functional Ecology, Oct. 1998, v, 12 (5), p. 728-741. ISSN: 0269-8463.

NAL call no: QH540.F85

Descriptors: diet selection, digestive strategies, fruit, protein requirement, comparison study, lipid digestion, adaptions, Cedar Waxwings, Bombycilla cedrorum.

Abstract: 1. Sugary fruits dominate the annual diet of Cedar Waxwings (Bombycilla cedrorum), whereas lipid-rich foods dominate the diets of frugivorous thrushes. Nutrient utilization and preferences of Cedar Waxwings and thrushes fed sugary and lipid-rich natural fruits were assessed to ascertain the potential for nutrient-based specializations that could explain diet selection in nature. 2. Compared allometrically, Cedar Waxwings showed higher rates of sugar assimilation from sugary fruits than did thrushes, by virtue of higher intake rates, and achieved the highest energy assimilation rates from sugary fruits than did thrushes, by virtue of higher intake rates, and achieved the highest energy assimilation rates when eating a sugary fruit. A trade-off to this digestive strategy appears to be less efficient utilization of lipids when eating exclusively lipid-rich fruits. 3. Thrushes digested lipids more efficiently than Cedar Waxwings as a function of intake rate or estimated retention time, and thrushes achieved the highest energy assimilation rates when eating a lipid-rich fruit. Specialization to a diet rich in lipids appears to limit the rate at which sugary fruits can be processed. 4. Within each bird species, sugar digestive efficiencies were high and were not reduced at higher intake rates. Lipids were consumed at lower rates than sugars, and lipid digestive efficiencies declined with increasing intake rates. Frugivorous birds modulated digestive processing of fruits according to the time needed for efficient digestion and/or absorption of sugars and lipids, respectively. 5. Rate of nitrogen intake, not sugar assimilation, positively influenced body mass changes of birds. Sugary fruits appear nutritionally rich in energy, but limited in protein for avian frugivores. Relatively high intake rates and low protein requirements of Cedar Waxwings suggests that specialization to sugary, low-protein diets involves traits that facilitate acquisition and conservation of protein/amino acids. 6. Cedar Waxwings and thrushes show digestive specialization to the utilization of sugars and lipids, respectively, as dominant dietary nutrients. These traits explain patterns of food selection by these birds in the laboratory and in nature. Variation in the value of particular fruit nutrients to different birds renders the dietary descriptor of ‘frugivore’ ambiguous in a nutritional context.


Daily energy budgets of avian embryos: The paradox of the plateau phase in egg metabolic rate. Dietz, M.W.; Kampen, M. van; Griensven, M.J.M. van; Mourik, S. van; Van Griensven, M.J.M.; Van Mourik, S.; Van Kampen, M. Physiological Zoology, 1998, v. 71 (2), p. 147-156. ref. ISSN: 0031-935X.

NAL call no: QL1.P52

Descriptors: energy balance, metabolism, eggs, embryos, energy, models, galliform species, embryonic synthesis and maintenance.

Abstract: The metabolic rate of precocial bird eggs reaches a plateau when about 80% of the incubation period has passed. This is unexpected, as in many species the embryo continues to grow and maintenance costs must therefore increase. To investigate this paradox, daily energy budgets were constructed for embryos of 4 galliform species according to 2 models that used empirical data on egg metabolic rate and embryo growth. In the first model, embryonic synthesis costs were estimated, with an assumed synthesis efficiency, before calculating the maintenance costs. In the second model, embryonic maintenance was calculated first, and no assumptions were made on the synthesis efficiency. The calculations show that assumptions of the synthesis efficiency had a major impact on the energy budget calculations, because embryonic growth rate was high. During the plateau phase, a galliform embryo allocated energy in favor of its maintenance costs in three ways: by decreasing growth rate, by increasing synthesis efficiency, and by depressing the formation of glycogen. The results suggest that a reduction in growth rate plays a minor role. An increase of synthesis efficiency is more likely to explain the plateau in energy expenditure, since small increases in synthesis efficiency can lead to great savings on synthesis costs.


Diet, maternal condition, and offspring sex ratio in the zebra finch, Poephila guttata. Bradbury, R.B.; Blakey, J.K. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, Biological Sciences, May 22, 1998, v. 265 (1399), p. 895-899. ISSN: 0962-8452.

NAL call no: 501 L84B

Descriptors: sex ratios, breeding, dietary intake, fitness, progeny, sex-biased mortality, quality of diets.

Abstract: Where maternal conditions affects condition and reproductive potential of offspring differentially with respect to sex, mothers in relatively good condition should produce more of the sex whose fitness is more dependent on condition. We experimentally manipulated body-condition in unmated zebra finches by feeding them for three months on high- or low-quality diets. Birds were then allowed to breed, while keeping the same diets. Females on the lower quality diet were in better condition and hatched significantly more males than females. Poorer conditioned females hatched an equal sex ratio. Chicks fed on low quality diet, but not on the high-quality diet, showed female-biased mortality. These results show that facultative sex ratio manipulation and sex-biased mortality can act together to produce extreme sex ratios in this vertebrate.


Determination of energy, protein and amino acid requirements for maintenance and growth in ostriches. Cilliers, S.C.; Hayes, J.P.; Chwalibog, A.; Sales, J.; Du Preez, J.J. Animal Feed Science and Technology, Jun. 1998, v. 72 (3-4), p. 283-293. ISSN: 0377-8401.

NAL call no: SF95 A55

Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, dietary maintenance requirements, young animals.

Abstract: requirements for maintenance and utilization of dietary true meatabolisable energy, corrected for nitrogen (N)-retention (TMEn), effective energy, corrected for N-retention, protein and amino acids were assessed in 44 young ostriches (7 months of age) by means of a comparative slaughter technique. Response in nutrient gain (energy, lipid, protein and amino acids) in feathers, legs, hides and carcasses were separately studied by scarifying 8 birds at the beginning and 12 birds at the end of a 21-day feeding period. TMEn required for maintenance was 0.42 MJ/empty body weight (EBW),kg0.75/day or 7.96 MJ/day, while maintenance requirements for effective energy, corrected for N-retention, amounted to 0.311 MJ/EBW. Kg0.75/day of 8.90 MJ/day. Utilization deficiencies for TMEn were estimated as 0.414+0.016 (MJ/day), whereas a value of 0.568 +0.009 was determined for effective energy, corrected for N-retention. Digestible maintenance protein requirements of 0.678 +0.027 g/EBW. Kg0.75/day was found, and by altering this estimate to requirement for total dietary protein, 1.05+0.038 g/EBW, kg0.75/day was calculated. Maintenance requirements for lysine, methionine+ cystine, threonine and valine compared favourable to literature values for poultry, but substantially higher values than for poultry, however, were determined for lucine, arginine and histidine. Net utilisation estimates for digestible amino acids varied between 0.948+0.025 for the slow turnover amino acids (cystine) with a mean value of 0.747. Results in the present study presented essential information for the establishment of requirement estimates for ostriches.


Dietary flexibility and intestinal plasticity in birds: A field and laboratory study. Sabat, P.; Novoa, F.; Bozinovic, F.; Rio, C.M. del; Del Rio, C.M. Physiological Zoology, 1998, v. 71 (2), p. 226-236. ref. ISSN: 0031-935X.

NAL call no: QL1 P52

Descriptors: feed intake, enzymes, digestion, intestines, digestive tract, modulation of intestinal enzymes by diet, hydrolases, Zonotrichia capensis, Diuca diuca, Z. capensis.

Abstract: The adaptive modulation hypothesis posits that the expression of digestive proteins should be modulated in response to intake of their respective substrates. A corollary of this hypothesis suggests that dietary flexibility and digestive plasticity should be correlated. Both hypotheses were examined in 2 granivorous Chilean birds (Zonotrichia capensis and Diuca diuca) that differ in dietary breadth. D. dicua is a strict granivore, whereas Z. capensis also eats insects. In field-caught birds, the activity of the intestinal dipeptidase aminopeptidase-N was positively correlated with intake of insects in Z. capensis but not in D. dicua. This is the first field documentation of modulation of intestinal enzymes by diet in birds. Intestinal maltase and sucrase activities were not correlated with seed (vs. insect) intake in either species. In the laboratory, both species exhibited similar modulation of membrane-bound intestinal hydrolases when fed on synthetic diets of contrasting carbohydrate and protein composition. Maltase, sucrase and aminopeptidase-N activities were significantly higher in birds fed on the carbohydrate-free than those on the carbohydrate-containing diet. Activities of the 3 enzymes were positively correlated. This increase was attributed to nonspecific increases of all enzymes resulting from intake of the carbohydrate-free diet. Principal components analysis separating the effect of diet on specific and on nonspecific modulation revealed that diet had a strong effect on nonspecific activity of intestinal enzymes in both Z. capensis and D. diuca. Diet also significantly affected aminopeptidase-N activities when the effect of diet on nonspecific modulation was removed. Birds fed on the carbohydrate-free, high-protein diet had significantly higher specific aminopeptidase-N activities than those fed on the carbohydrate-containing diet. The results cast doubts on the notion that dietary flexibility and the plasticity of the gut’s enzymes are necessarily correlated and on the general validity of the adaptive modulation hypothesis.


Ecological and evolutionary implications of energy and protein requirements of avian frugivores eating sugary diets. Witmer, M.C. Physiological Zoology, 1998, v. 71 (6), p. 599-610. ref. ISSN: 0031-935X.

NAL call no: QL1 P52

Descriptors: feeds, composition, protein content, sugars, diets, nutrient requirements, cedar waxwings, Bombycilla cedrorum, American robins, Turdus migratorius, wood thrushes, Hylocichia mustelina, Catharus mustelinus, fruit eaters.

Abstract: The digestive and physiological responses of cedar waxwings (Bombycilla cedrorum), American robins (Turdus migratorius) and wood thrushes (Hylocichia mustelina and Catharus mustelinus) to 3 artificial diets varying in sugar (6.6, 12.4 and 22.0% solutes) and protein content (4.5, 3.0 and 1.5% of DM) were evaluated. The results suggest that the digestive systems of frugivorous birds respond flexibly to dietary sugar concentration, but that protein content of fruits can present a nutritional limitation, potentially influencing the proportions of fruit and animal foods in the diets of birds.


The effect of dietary fibre level on the production of growing ostriches. Salih, M.E.; Brand, T.S.; Schalkwyk, S.J. van; Blood, J.; Pfister, B.; Brand, Z.; Akbay, R.; van Schalkwyk, S.J.; Huchezermeyer, F.W. Proceeding of the Second International Scientific Ratite Congress, Oudtshoorn, South Africa, 21-25 Sept. 1998, p. 31-37. ref.

Descriptors: feed conversion efficiency, digestive tract, fiber, feed intake, cellulose, hindgut digests high fiber diets.


The effect of group size on mean food intake rate in birds. Beauchamp, G. Biological Reviews of the Cambridge Philosophical Society, 1998, v. 73 (4), p. 449-472. ref. ISSN: 0006-3231.

NAL call no: 442.9 C14

Descriptors: behavior, feeding habits, feed intake, reviews.


Emerging trends in pet bird diets. Reid, R.B.; Perlberg, W. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Apr. 15, 1998, v. 212 (8), p. 1236-1238. ref. ISSN: 0003-1488.

NAL call no: 41.8 Am3

Descriptors: birds, diet, trends, nutrient requirements, seed-based diets, pelleted and extruded diets, problems of artificial diets.


Fugli i praksis. Nr 2. [Birds in veterinary practice. 2. (Feeding).] Reither, N.P.; Stabursvik, H.M.; Fyldeng, H.C. Norsk Veterinaertidsskrift, 1998, v. 110 (6), p. 371-372. ISSN: 0029-2773. Note: In Norwegian.

NAL call no: 41.8 N81

Descriptors: nutrition, feeds, aviary birds, nutritional disorders, feeding, diets.


Gefiederprobleme und ernahrung bei ziervogeln. [Wing problems and nutrition in pet birds.] Steinmetz, D. Fachpraxis, 1998, No. 33, p. 6-8. Note: In German.

Descriptors: aviary birds, wings, nutrition, feathers.


Impiego di probiotici nell'alimentazione dello struzzo. Nota preliminare: utilizzazione digestiva in giovani soggetti.
[Use of probiotics in ostrich nutrition. Preliminary note: digestive utilization in young animals.]
Lambiase, M.; Meo, C. Di; Mauro, P.; Menna, L.F.; Nizza, A.; di Meo, C. Nuovi aspetti della profilassi vaccinale in avicolura. XXXVI Convegno della Societa Italiana di Patalogia Aviares, Sept. 25-26, 1997, Selezione Veterinaria, 1998, No. 8-9, p. 661-665. ref. ISSN: 0037-1521. Note: In Italian.

NAL call no: 241.71 B75

Descriptors: digestibility, probiotics, supplements, feed additives.

Abstract: Twelve ostriches, 6 weeks old, were divided into 3 groups; one group served as the control while the other 2 were supplemented with 1% Turval 6 and turval 12 (2 different probiotics). Probiotic supplementation improved the digestibility of the ostriches.


Mineral deficiency in pet birds. Wolf, P.; Bayer, G.; Wendler, C.; Kamphues, J. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, Dec. 1998, v. 80 (2-5), p. 140-146. ref. ISSN: 0931-2439.

NAL call no: 389.78 Z3

Descriptors: mineral deficiency, nutritional diseases, phosphorous, sodium, zinc, copper, selenium, calcium, egg shells, bones, age requirements.

Abstract: Mineral deficiencies present one of the most frequent problems in pet bird nutrition. Calcium deficiency during reproduction leads to disturbances of egg production (thin shelled eggs, egg binding) or a demineralization of the skeleton. During the growth of chickens calcium and phosphorous are required in a ratio of 1.6:1, whereas some rearing feeds as well as commercial seed mixtures contain extremely low calcium levels and more phosphorous than calcium. Without an adequate calcium supply, the growing birds rapidly develop rickets and adults will in the long term show osteomalacia. Furthermore, a sodium deficiency (with disturbances of egg production or feather picking) occurs, if pet bird fanciers offer seed mixtures without mineral supplements. A low zinc content results in disturbances of the mucous membrane of the crop which causes an inflammation. Signs of insufficient copper content are decreased feed intake, poor quality of eggshells or eventually fading feathers. Muscle dystrophy may be related to a selenium deficit in birds fed exclusively on cereals. In addition the calcium-phosphorous ratio is often imbalanced. This imbalance is made worse (up to 0.03:1) by the dehusking and shelling of seeds and is tolerated in adults for a long time (even if individual birds show osteomalacia on x-ray), although clinical signs will eventually develop, particularly in the presence of high amounts of other minerals such as zinc should be considered. In general, the diagnosis of mineral disturbances is very complex and difficult. The assessment of mineral contents in plasma is possible, but not easy due to high variations and the lack of reference data. In addition to x-rays (mineralization of the skeleton?), analyses of feathers are made, but their value is doubtful given the present state of knowledge of normal values. The most helpful information is given by nutritional anamnesis and feed analysis. Although it is very difficult to quantify the mineral requirements of pet birds in different stages of life (maintenance, growth, moult, etc.), first estimates as well as recommendations exist and allow a rough evaluation of mineral supply provided under the specific feeding conditions reported by bird fanciers.


Native fruits for birds. Gorrie, Ian. Bird Obsewrver (Nunawading), Jul. 1998, v. 767, p. 6-7. ISSN: 0313-5888.

Descriptors: habitat management, diet, nutrition.


Normal bacterial floras in intestinal tract of ring-necked pheasant. Xu, ShuLin; Shen, XiuLi; Xu, S.L.; Shen, X.L. Journal of Forestry Research, 1998, v. 9 (2), p. 105-107. ref. ISSN: 1007-662X.

NAL call no: SD221.J67

Descriptors: intestines, microbial flora, age, game birds, microbial ecology, Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus, Bacteroideceae, China.

Abstract: The normal bacterial flora in the intestinal tract of ring-necked pheasants wer investigated in birds obtained from 2 locations in Hellongjiang Province, China. Eight age groups were chosen (1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 30 60 and 120 days). Samples from intestines were diluted in 10 fold series and incubated on different selective media. After incubation, the bacterial colonies were counted and the number of CFU/g of gut inclusions was evaluated. The data were statistically analysed. The physiological characteristics of the 8 main normal bacterial floral representatives were obtained. The results showed that the normal bacterial flora in the intestinal tract of ring-necked pheasants was established between 10 and 30 days old. The dominant bacteria were Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus and Bacteroideceae.


Recommendations for diets of captive pheasants, based on information from the diets of wild birds. Sheppard, C.; Dierenfield, E. Burnett, M. Wildlife Conservation Society, WPA News, 1998, No. 56, p. 27-33. ref.

Descriptors: reviews, diets, nutrition, game birds, wild birds.

Abstract: Published reports on wild pheasant diets were reviewed and information for 42 species was compiled. A basic diet for each pheasant group is described, which should provide adequate nutrition on the basis of current knowledge.


[Study on the advance of nutrients for Phasianus colchicus.] Liu, GriRong; Zhang, AiWu; Li, ShunCai (et-al); Liu, G.R.; Zhang, A.W.; Li, S.C. Journal of Economic Animal, 1998, No. 8-9, p. 661-665. ref. Note: In Chinese.

Descriptors: nutrition, nutrient requirements, reviews.


Twenty years of progress in pet bird nutrition. Harrison, G.J. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Apr. 15, 1998, v. 212 (8), p. 1226-1230. ref. ISSN: 0003-1488.

NAL call no: 41.8 Am3

Descriptors: birds, animal nutrition, diet, feeding, malnutrition, nutrient requirements.

Abstract: Research in pet bird nutrition in the last 20 years is briefly reviewed. It is suggested that, in comparison with improvements in surgery and medical care of companion birds, there has been little progress in the understanding of their nutrition. It is further argued that many veterinary practitioners and pet shop personnel are not well informed on bird nutrition and recommend inappropriate diets for birds. However, it is suggested that there is a considerable amount of data on the dietary requirements of Galliformes, Anseriformes and Passeriformes, and that many manufacturers of bird diets have improved their formulations accordingly. Changes in avian feeding recommendations between 1977 and 1997 are briefly reviewed and there are further summaries of the development of manufactured bird diets, the evaluation of avian diets and the importance of bird nutrition in avian preventive medicine. There are 3 appendices summarizing, respectively, recommendations for feeding pet birds between 1977 and 1997, compounds in which seed diets are deficient, and clinical signs of malnutrition.


Twenty years of progress in pet bird research. Flammer, K. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Apr. 15, 1998, v. 212 (8), p. 1231-1233. ISSN: 0003-1488.

NAL call no: 41.8 Am3

Descriptors: birds, animal health, research, veterinary medicine.


Wzbogacanie diety ptakow i bledy zywieniowe. [Enrichment of pet bird diets and common feeding mistakes.] Kruszewicz, A. Magazyn Weterynaryjny, 1998, v. 7 (5), p. 352-354. ISSN: 1230-4425. Note: In Polish.

Descriptors: diets, nutrition, pets, feeding.





Clinical nutrition of companion birds. Donoghue, S.; Stahl, S. Journal of Avian Medicine and Surgery, 1997, v. 11 (4), p. 228-246. ref. ISSN: 1044-8314 or 0892-9904.

NAL call no: SF994.J6

Descriptors: diet treatment, pets, undernutrition, review, nutritional support, diets.

Abstract: In this review, nutritional information that may improve the clinical management of sick companion birds, including those suffering from actual or anticipated losses of body weight, condition or muscle, is presented. Specific dietary management is discussed for birds exhibiting signs of undernutrition and for those with chronic conditions responsive to diet. The key to nutritional intervention is the complete assessment of the avian patient with emphasis on evaluating body water, fat or protein by physical examination, detecting specific signs of undernutrition and improving the performance of birds that fail to thrive.


A comparative study between mature ostriches (Struthio camelus) and adult cockerels with respect to true and apparent metabolisable energy values for maize, barley, oats and triticale. Cilliers, S.C.; Hayes, J.P.; Chwalibog, A.; Preez, J.J. du; Sales, J. British Poultry Science, 1997, v. 38 (1), p. 96-100. ref. ISSN: 0007-1668.

NAL call no: 47.8 B77

Descriptors: ostriches, cocks, energy metabolism, energy value, nutritive value.


The Consumer’s Guide to Feeding Birds: What Bird Owners Need to Know About What’s Good and What’s Not for their Pets and Why. Palika, Liz. Howell Book House, c. 1997. viii, 135 p. ref. ill. New York. ISBN: 0876056419.

NAL call no: SF461.75 P35 1997

Descriptors: cage birds, feeding and feeds, nutrition, consumer education.


Contribution on ornamental bird nutrition. Anon. Ubersichten zur Tierernahrung, 1997, v. 25 (2), p. 189-252.

NAL call no: SF95 A1U2 

Descriptors: nutrition, aviary birds, nutritional disorders, nutrient requirements.


Diet selection by Japanese quail (Coturnix coturnix japonica) in relation to ambient temperature and metabolic rate. MacLeod, M.G.; Dabutha, L.A. British Poultry Science, Dec. 1997. v. 38 (5), p. 586-589. ref. ISSN: 0007-1668.

NAL call no: 47.8 B77

            Descriptors: feeding preferences, feeds, air temperature, metabolism.


Effects of foraging enrichment on the behaviour of parrots. Coulton, L.E.; Waran, N.K.; Young, R.J. Animal Welfare, 1997, v. 6 (4), p. 357-363. ref. ISSN: 0962-7286.

NAL call no: HV4701.A557

Descriptors: foraging, enrichment, environment, animal behavior, animal welfare, red-front macaws, Ara rubrogenys, thick-billed parrots, Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha, green-winged macaws, Ara chloroptera, yellow-backed chattering lorys, Lorius garrulus, wood with drilled holes.

Abstract: The purpose of this study was to enrich parrot enclosures by creating foraging opportunities appropriate for the species and to investigate the possible preference for a variable versus a constant food supply. The subjects were housed as a single-species groups, which comprised 2 male and 2 female red-front macaws (Ara rubrogenys), a male-female pair of thick-billed parrots (Rhynchopsitta pachyrhyncha), a male-female pair of green-winged macaws (Ara chloroptera) and a male-female pair of yellow-backed chattering lorys (Lorius garrulus). The foraging device comprised of a length of wood (2X0.08X0.08 m) with 50 holes (0.02m diameter X 0.02 m depth) drilled into one face. Food was placed in the holes of the foraging device in one of two distributions: ‘constant’, one food item in every hole (total=50 food items) or ‘variable’, 5 food items in 10 holes (total=50 food items). The holes were then covered with starch paper. During the enrichment period the parrots spent significantly more time allopreening than in the baseline or post-enrichment periods. Use of the foraging device implied that birds were performing contrafreeloading since identical free food was available in their food bowls. There was no preference for a variable over a constant food source. It is concluded that providing extra foraging opportunities for parrots is a useful form of enrichment.


Effects of plasma glucose manipulation on food intake in white-crowned sparrows. Boswell, T.; Lehman, T.L.; Ramenofsky, M. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Physiology, 1997, v. 118 (3), p. 721-726. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: insulin, glucagon, food intake, glucose, effects, plasma, feed intake.


Effects of sugar concentration on hummingbird feeding and energy use. Lopez-Calleja, M. Victoria; Bozinovic, Francisco; Martinez-Del Rio, Carlos. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Dec. 1997, v. 118 (4), p. 1291-1299. ISSN: 0300-9629.

NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: metabolism, nutrition, feeding, energetics, sucrose solutions, Chilean hummingbird, Sephanoides sephanoides.

Abstract: We investigated the effects of sucrose concentration on the patterns of feeding, gut function, and energy management in the nectar-eating Chilean hummingbird Sephanoides sephanoides. We interpreted these results with a sample model of digestive function. The predictions of this model are: (a) Hummingbirds should exhibit 100% assimilation efficiency of sugars at all sugar concentrations; (b) Daily rates of energy intake should be positively correlated with sugar concentration; and (c) increased sugar concentration should lead to linearly increasing meal retention times, and, therefore, to linearly increasing time intervals between meals. In agreement with the model, hummingbirds exhibited almost complete assimilation of sugars and increased meal retention times and intervals with increased sugar concentration. Hummingbirds did not, however, show any significant differences in daily energy intake when fed different sugar concentrations. Birds differed in their temporal pattern of feeding when fed solutions with sucrose solutions of contrasting concentrations. At low food sucrose concentrations (0.25 M), birds showed a burst of feeding before dark. In contrast, birds feeding on higher sucrose concentrations (0.5M and 0.75M) showed steadily declining feeding activity throughout the day. In addition to measuring the behavior and gut function of hummingbirds. We also measured their daily patterns of energy using respirometry. Hummingbirds showed considerable flexibility in their patterns of energy use. The amount of energy used at night was positively correlated with the surplus of energy (intake minus diurnal expenditures) at dusk. Although birds exhibited only a small variation in total daily energy budgets as a function of sugar concentration, birds feeding at the lowest sucrose concentration (0.25M) seemed to rely on nocturnal torpor with more frequency than those fed on higher concentrations. We concluded that energy maximization is probably an inappropriate assumption for birds that are not growing, storing fat, or reproducing. We present a modification of the original model that allows assuming that birds do not maximize energy intake, but rather maintain constant rates of energy intake. We describe experiments and criteria that allow discriminating among the two models.


Einfluss der Verfutterung von Federmehl auf die Entwicklung und das Federwachstum bei jungen Fasanen. [The influence of feeding feather meal to young pheasants on their growth and the growth of their feathers.] Tucak, Z.; Klaic, T. Zeitschrift fuer Jagdwissenschaft, 1997, v. 43 (1), p. 65-69. ISSN: 0044-2887. Note: In German.

NAL call no: SK351 Z45

Descriptors: animal husbandry, development, food requirement, feather meal, feather growth, Yugoslavia.

Abstract: In 1983 in the pheasantry Darda in former Yugoslavia a feeding trial was conducted to determine whether feather meal could be substituted for meat and fish meal with 800 chick at the age of eight weeks. The feed for three trial groups consisted of respectively 1%, 3%, and 5% feather meal as a protein substitute (Table 1 and 2). The daily food requirements increased with increasing proportions of feather meal, and weight gains of the chicks was 1.5% to 6% lower than that of the control group (Table 3). The feather meal had no influence on the growth of the feathers in any of the trial groups.


Energy expenditure in wild birds. Bryant, David M. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, Nov. 1997, v. 56 (3), p. 1025-1039. ISSN: 0029-6651.

NAL call no: 389.9 N953

Descriptors: body mass, daily energy, flight activity, basal metabolic rate, 58 species, various ages.

Abstract: Energy expenditure was measured for a total of 58 species of bird from 123 stages as daily expenditure (DEE), DEE as a function of BMR [basal metabolic rate], and DEE relative to the metabolic mass (Wb). Two analyses were conducted: (1) data was employed from all species studied, (2) data on flight behaviour when available. Mean energy expenditure was shown to lie in narrow bands between species. For the 5 stages of annual cycle the highest energy expenditure was observed while rearing young, whereas the lowest cost (among non-breeders) was only 28% lower. Longer day length extended energy expenditure by allowing longer periods of activity. The combined effect of day length and ambient temperature accounted for 72% of the variation in DEE. Flight was amongst the most energetically expensive of animal activities (exceeding 20 X BMR) and therefore has a considerable impact on DEE. A table listing the bird species and sources included in this study is presented.


Essential amino acid metabolism in moulting and non-moulting sparrows in different nutritional states. Pearcy, S.D.; Murphy, M.E. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Physiology, 1997, v. 118 (4), p. 1291-1299. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: amino acid metabolism, moulting, nutritional state, wild birds.


First International Symposium on Pet Bird Nutrition. Hannover, Germany, 3-4 Oct. 1997. 134 pp. Tierarztliche Hochschule, Hannover, Germany. ISBN: 300001926X.

Descriptors: wild birds, energy, expenditure, energy metabolism, health, diagnostics, therapy.

Abstract: These proceedings contain abstract papers. The programme is in 7 sections covering general conditions of pet bird management, basic knowledge of avian nutrition, feed science-nutritive value, risks and problems, feed and water intake of pet birds, energy and nutrient requirements of pet birds, practice of feeding pet birds, and malnutrition, health problems, diagnostics and therapy.


Food choice in birds and insect chemical defenses. Bairlein, F. Entomologia Generalis, 1997, v. 21 (3), p. 205-216. ref. ISSN: 0171-8177.

NAL call no: QL461 E582

Descriptors: biology, behavior, prey, insect defense physiology, ecology.

Abstract: Many insects contain defensive compounds to protect them from parasitoids of predators. The biological significance of insect defenses against insectivorous birds has been insufficiently studied, and is poorly known. Insect defenses may affect the birds’ choice of food, its foraging behaviour, and may even have adverse effects on the birds’ fitness. The author briefly summarizes evidence that insect chemical defenses play a considerable role in avian feeding and nutrition.


Gastrointestinal physiology and nutrition in wild birds. Duke, Gary E. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, Nov. 1997, v. 56 (3), p. 1049-1056. ref. ISSN: 0029-6651.

NAL call no: 389.9 N953

Descriptors: nutrition, fruits, gastrointestinal tract motility, nectar, food.

Abstract: A brief review of the gastrointestinal tract and its motility is given, including the small intestine reflex. Carbohydrate digestion (fibre, nectar, fruits and chitin) and protein digestion (gastric digestion and pellet egestion) are discussed. Digestion of fats is also covered.


Grouse and ptarmigan nutrition in the wild and in captivity. Moss, R. Proceeding of the Nutritional Society, 1997, v. 56 (3), p. 1137-1145. ref. ISSN: 0029-6651.

NAL call no: 389.9 N953

Descriptors: nutrition, nutrient requirements, feeds, seasonal variations, Lagopus lagopus, red grouse, L. mutus, rock ptarmigan, L. leucurus, white-tailed ptarmigan.

Abstract: A brief review is presented on the diets of grouse and ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus (red grouse), L. mutus (rock ptarmigan) and L. leucurus (white-tailed ptarmigan). Topics covered include: winter foods; spring foods for adult birds (captive and wild birds); chick diet; and the differences between captive and wild birds with respect to nutritional content of foods and anatomical changes.


A Guide to a Naturally Healthy Bird: Nutrition, Feeding and Natural Healing Methods for Parrots. McWatters, Alicia. East Canaan, CT: Safe Goods, c1997. 72 p. ill. ref. ISBN: 1884820212.

NAL call no: SF473.P3M38 1997

Descriptors: parrots, feeding, feeds, nutrition, health, holistic veterinary medicine.


Heat increment of feeding in adult white-crowned sparrows. Schieltz, P.C.; Murphy, M.E. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Physiology, 1997, v. 118 (3), p. 737-743. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: heat production, metabolism, diet, increment, feeding.


The importance of green seed in the nitrogen nutrition of the zebra finch Taeniopygia guttata. Allen, L.R.; Hume, I.D. Australian Journal of Ecology, Dec. 1997, v. 22 (4), p. 412-418. ISSN: 0307-692X.

NAL call no: QH540.A8

Descriptors: nitrogen, nutrition, diet, green and ripe seeds, growth, whole egg powder, amino acid composition.

Abstract: Australian grass finches are widely reported to consume large quantities of green seed when it becomes available, and the opportunistic breeding of wild Zebra Finches in the arid zone has been correlated with the occurrence of rain. In this study, green and ripe seeds were harvested from seven pasture and weed grasses grown in experimental plots and, along with three cereal flours and whole-egg powder, were analysed for the amino-acid composition of their protein. The relative levels of ten amino acids essential in the diets of growing birds were compared between samples using a cluster analysis dendrogram generated from Raabe’s Similarity index. The protein of all green seeds clustered with whole egg, and away from all but one of the ripe seeds and seed products. Green ripe seed profiles were found to be significantly different by a two-sample multivariate test of significance (Hotelling’s T2). Histidine lysine, phenylalanine and theronine were the amino acids most different. Of these four amino acids, lysine and theronine (along with methionine) were potentially limiting in ripe seeds when compared with whole-egg protein. In green seeds, lysine was only marginally limiting, theronine was no longer limiting, but methionine was still limiting when compared with whole-egg protein. These results indicate that the benefit of green vs ripe seed in the diet of breeding Zebra Finches is partly a higher level of the limiting essential amino acid, lysine, and partly a higher intake and throughput of soft green seed and consequent greater extraction of limiting essential amino acids.


Nutrition of companion birds and reptiles. Donoghue, S.; Anderson, N. (ed.); Oglesbee, B. (ed.); Sokolowski, J.H. (ed.); Gumbs, M.W. 21st Annual Waltham-OSU Symposium for the Treatment of Small Animal Diseases: Exotics, Sept. 27-28, 1997, p. 27-33. ref. ISSN: 0893-777X.

NAL call no: SF981 K34

Descriptors: nutrition, pets, aviary birds, psittacines, passerines, reptiles.


Nutrition and physiology of ratites. Scheidler, S.E. Proceedings 18th Annual Conference on Avian Medicine and Surgery, Mid Atlantic States Association of Avian Veterinarians. Clinton, MD. 1997, p. 149-155. ref.

NAL call no: SF994.M52

Descriptors: nutrition, physiology, stomach motility.


Nutritional constraints on egg production in birds. Houston, D.C. Proceedings of the Nutritional Society, 1997, v. 56 (3), p. 1057-1065. ref. ISSN: 0029-6651.

            NAL call no: 389.9 N953

            Descriptors: egg production, constraints, nutrition, nutrient requirements, reviews.

Abstract: This paper reviews whether there is any evidence that nutrient availability, and essential amino acids might constrain egg production. Areas of discussion include the nutritional constraints and the role of body reserves on egg formation in wile birds. The implications for captive breeding of birds in relation to diet are discussed.


Polyuria and polydipsia due to vitamin and mineral over supplementation of the diet of a salmon crested cockatoo (Cacatua moluccensis) and a blue and gold macaw (Ara ararauna). Shoemaker, N.J.; Lumeij, J.T.; Beynen, A.C. Avian Pathology, 1997, v. 26 (1), p. 201-209. ref. ISSN: 0307-9457.

            NAL call no: SF995.A1A9

            Descriptors: urination disorders, diet, diagnosis, foodborne diseases.


Symposium on nutrition of wild and captive wild animals, held at Edinburgh Zoo, 16-18 May, 1997. UK Nutrition Society. Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, 1997, v. 56 (3), p. 989-1145. ISSN: 0029-6651.

            NAL call no: 389.9 N953

            Descriptors: zoo animals, game animals, wild birds, nutrition, egg production.

Abstract: The following series of papers were presented: plenary lecture - captive wild animal nutrition - a historical perspective: from babirusa (Babyrousa babyrussa) to domestic pig - the nutrition of swine; fatty acid metabolism in domestic cats (Felis catus) and cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus); energy expenditure in wild birds; physiological adaptation in savanna ungulates; gastrointestinal physiology and nutrition in wild birds; nutritional constraints on egg production in birds; stable isotopes in adipose tissue fatty aids as indicators of diet in arctic foxes; utilising wild foraging ecology information to provide captive primates with an appropriate diet; the importance of food presentation for animal welfare and conservation; the importance of Ca in relation to P, especially in folivorous reptiles; factors influencing the daily energy expenditures of small mammals; and grous and ptarmigan nutrition in the wild and captivity. Abstracts of other papers presented at this meeting are included at the end of this issue (pp. 318A-324A).


Voedingsaspecten van de struisvogel (Struthio camelus). [Nutritional aspects of the ostrich (Struthio camelus).] Janssens, G.P.J.; Seynaeve, M.; Wilde, R.O. de; Rycke, H. De; De Wild,, R.O.; DeRycke, H. Vlaams Diergeneeskundig Tijdschrift, 1997, v. 66 (4), p. 153-160. ref. ISSN: 0303-9021. Note: In Dutch.

            NAL call no: 41.8 V84

Descriptors: nutrition, vitamins, minerals, proteins, nutrient requirements, behavioral pecularities, physiological status, maintenance, growth, breeding.




Avian energetics, ecology, and evolution. Ricklefs, Robert T. 1996, p. 1-30. Carey, C. (ed.). Chaoman & Hall, Inc. N.Y., N.Y. ISBN: 0412037017.

            NAL call no: QL698 A825 1996

            Descriptors: nutrition, metabolism, evolution, adaptation, Aves, birds.


Bases de l'alimentation des oiseaux de cage et de voliere. [Feeding data of cage and aviary birds.] Jouglar, J.Y. Revue de Medecine Veterinaire, 1996, v. 147 (7), p. 539-546. ref. Note: In French.

            NAL call no: 41.8 R32

            Descriptors: feeding, diets, nutrient requirements, aviary birds.

Abstract: General nutritional requirements of pet birds belonging to the orders Columbiformes, Psittaciformes and Passeriformes are presented.


Calcium deficiency in wild birds. Graveland, J. Veterinary Quarterly, 1996, v. 18 (SUPPL 3), p. S136-S137. ISSN: 0165-2176.

            NAL call no: 41.8 V84

            Descriptors: bone disease, calcium deficiency, eggshell defect, nutritional disease.


Digestive plasticity in avian energetics and feeding ecology. Karasov, William H. Avian Energetics and Nutritional Ecology, 1996, p. 61-84. ISBN: 0412037017. Carey, C. (ed). Chapman & Hall, Inc. N.Y., N.Y.

            NAL call no: QL698.A825

            Descriptors: energetics, feeding ecology, digestive plasticity, reproduction.


Food choice by seed-eating birds in relation to seed chemistry. Diaz, M. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Physiology, 1996, v. 113 (3), p. 239-246. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

            NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: seeds, nutrient composition, energy content, secondary compounds, seed selection, dietary shifts, through-put speeds, adaptions to mechanical aspects of digestion.

Abstract: The role of seed chemical traits (nutrient composition, energy contents and presence of secondary compounds) in seed selection by granivorous birds and for the evolution of bird granivory is analysed and compared with the roles of other seed traits such as seed distribution and seed morphology. This review focuses on seasonal dietary shifts from seeds to other feed items; dietary effects of between-seeds differences in energy and nutrient contents; and dietary effects of seed secondary chemistry. Results suggest that the effects of seed chemistry on seed-eating bird diets are much less important than the effects of morphological traits related to seed processing speed. In general, birds tended to select feed items they could process faster, their chemical composition being of secondary importance. Several experiments aimed to test this hypothesis are proposed. This pattern of feed selection suggests that the evolution of bird granivory has been mainly focused on the development of morphological adaptations for the mechanical digestion of seeds, whereas physiological adaptations for their chemical digestion appear to be secondary.


Fruit eating birds and its nutritional consequences. Bairlein, Franz. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, 1996, v. 113 (3), p. 215-224. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

            NAL call no: QP1.C6

Descriptors: nitrogen, frugivory, diet, nutrition, biochemistry, Aves, seasonal changes, secondary plant metabolites effects.

Abstract: Fruits comprise a large portion of the diet in many bird species. Several species switch diet composition seasonally, from a diet consisting almost entirely of invertebrates to one that comprises even exclusively fruits, and vice versa. The adaptive significance of these dietary shifts has rarely been investigated. The present article reviews some recent data revealing much evidence that seasonal frugivory is highly adaptive, and that fruits may be an adequate diet to satisfy the birds’ daily nutritional demands. There is further evidence that fruits may provide particular nutritional qualities to meet particular demands. Secondary plant metabolites considered to act as feeding deterrents seem to be less detrimental to avian frugivores than observed in many herbivores. The birds appear to be able to counteract the detrimental effects of secondary compounds taken with their fruit diets. In addition, there is evidence that secondary plant compounds may even stimulate food intake and metabolism in avian frugivores, although the mechanisms of counteradaptation need to be clarified.


Husbandry and nutrition. Forbes, Neil A.; Richardson, Tony. Manual of Raptors, Pigeons and Waterfowl, 1996, p. 289-298. Beynon, P.H.; Forbes, N.A.; Harcourt-Brown, N.H. (eds). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. ISBN: 0813828767.

            NAL call no: SF994.B73 1996

            Descriptors: animal husbandry, nutrition, disease control, raptors, pigeons, watefowl.


Husbandry and nutrition. Harper, Frank D.W. Manual of Raptors, Pigeons and Waterfowl, 1996, p. 233-237. Beynon, P.H.; Forbes, N.A.; Harcourt-Brown, N.H. (eds.). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. ISBN: 0813828767.

            NAL call no: SF994.B73 1996

Descriptors: animal husbandry, feeding, nutrition, management, dosing, raptors, pigeons, watefowl.


Management and husbandry. Forbes, Neil A.; Parry-Jones, Jemima. Manual of Raptors, Pigeons and Waterfowl, 1996, p. 116-128. Beynon, P.H.; Forbes, N.A.; Harcourt-Brown, N.H. (eds.). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. ISBN: 0813828767.

            NAL call no: SF994.B73 1996

Descriptors: bird husbandry, aviary, nutrition, housing, management, raptors, pigeons, watefowl.


Nutricne deficiencie v tuku rozpustnych vitaminov a ich metabolicke vazby u exotickych vtakov. [Nutritional deficiencies of fat-soluble vitamins and their metabolic binding in exotic birds.] Magic, D.; Magic, D. Kozak, M. Slovensky Veterinarsky Casopis, 1996, v. 21 (5), p. 262-266. ref. Note: In Slovakian.

            Descriptors: pets, nutrient deficiencies, retinol, vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin K.


Nutrition. Scott, Peter W. BSAVA Manual of Psittacine Birds, new ed. 1996, p. 17-26. Beynon, P.H.; Forbes, N.A.; Lawton, M.P.C. (eds.). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. ISBN: 0813823498.

            NAL call no: SF994.2.A1M37 1996

            Descriptors: metabolism, nutrition, diet, energy requirement, parrot family.


Nutrition and feeding of ostriches. Ullrey, D.E.; Allen, M.E. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 1996, v. 59 (1-3), p. 27-36. ref. ISSN: 0377-8401.

            NAL call no: SF95.A55

Descriptors: nutrient requirements, feeding, nutrition, growth, health, reviews, calcium requirements, egg production, adequate diets.

Abstract: The historic habitat, environmental adaptability, feeding behaviour in the wild, gastrointestinal anatomy and function, nutrient requirements and feeding suggestions for ostriches are discussed. Very few experiments have been conducted to determine nutritional requirements of ostriches and it was suggested that the turkey is the best avian model from which to predict ostrich nutrient needs. It was concluded that to minimize leg abnormalities in ostrich chicks, it may be helpful to restrict liveweight gain by limiting dietary protein concentrations below those recommended for starting turkeys and by feeding high-fibre diets. Non-slip surfaces and exercise are also important. Egg production by ostriches laying a normal annual clutch does not significantly increase the dietary calcium requirement; however, when egg production is forced by continually removing eggs, increased Ca requirements should be met by providing dietary concentrations of 16 g/kg or by ad libitum access to granulated calcium carbonate of oyster shell.


Nutrition and metabolism. Murphy, Mary E. Avian Energetics and Nutritional Ecology, 1996, p. 31-60. ISBN: 0412037017.

            NAL call no: QL698.A825 1996

            Descriptors: behavior, digestive system, nutrition, metabolism, behavior, birds.


Nutrition of New Zealand native birds - more questions than answers. Guilford, W.G. Proceeding of the Nutritional Society of New Zealand, 1996, v. 21, p. 116-119. ref. ISSN: 0110-4187.

            NAL call no: TX341 N86

            Descriptors: endangered breeds, nutrition, breeding, New Zealand.


Nutritional disorders. Roudybush, Thomas. Diseases of Cage and Aviary Birds, 3rd. ed. Rosskopf, W.J. Woerpel, R.W. (eds.). 1996, p. 490-500. Williams and Wilkins Co., Baltimore, MD. ISBN: 0683073826.

            NAL call no: SF994.2.A1D57 1996

            Descriptors: metabolism, nutrition, diet, growth, disorders, captive birds.


Practical feeding strategies for individual pet birds. Rosskopf, Walter J. Jr.; Woerpel, Richard W. Diseases of Cage and Aviary Birds, 3rd ed. 1996, p. 235-241. Williams and Wilkins Co., Baltimore, MD. ISBN: 0683073826.

            NAL call no: SF994.2.A1D57 1996

            Descriptors: behavior, development, foods, nutrition, dietary supplementation.


Practical feeding of psittacine birds. Macartney, A.I.; Johnston, D. (ed.).; Warner, T. Proceedings and Abstracts 21st Congress of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA), Jerusalem, Israel. Oct. 20-23, 1996. P. 173-174. ref.

            Descriptors: nutrition, pet foods, diets, parrot family.


Principy vyzivy a krmenia papagajovitych vtakov (Psittaciformes) v aviariach a klietkach. [Principles of nutrition and feeding of psittacine birds (Psittaciformes) in aviaries and cages.] Magic, D.; Magic, D. Slovensky Veterinarsky Casopis, 1996, v. 21 (2), p. 68-71. ref. Note: In Slovakian.

            Descriptors: reviews, nutrition, aviary birds, feeding, diets.


Ratite nutrition. Angel, C. Roselina; Scheideler, Sheila E.; Sell, Jerry L. Ratite Management, Medicine and Surgery, 1996, p. 11-30. Tully, T.N. Jr.; Shane, S.M. (eds.). Krieger Publishing Co. Malabar, FL. ISBN: 0894648748.

            NAL call no: SF995.5.R37 1996

            Descriptors: nutrition, digestive system, gastrointestinal tract, development.


Retention time of seeds in bird guts: Cost and benefits for fruiting plants and frugivorous birds. Fukui, Akiko. Plant Species Biology, 1996, v. 11 (2-3), p. 141-147. ISSN: 0913-557X.

            NAL call no: QK980.P66

            Descriptors: nutrition, diet, seed retention time, digestion, seeds.


A review of ratite nutrition. Angel, C. Roselina; Blair, R. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 1996, v. 60 (3-4), p. 241-246. ref. ISSN: 0377-8401.

            NAL call no: SF95.A55

Descriptors: digestive system, metabolism, nutrition, animal husbandry, ostriches, emus, rheas, digestibility, lysine requirements.

Abstract: This paper reviews the literature available on ostrich, emu and rhea nutrition. Information on the unique characteristics of the gastrointestinal tract and general biological information about these flightless birds is presented. The following information is discussed: nutrient digestibility in ostriches and emus, nutrient requirements of ratites, lysine requirements of growing emus, and ostrich and emu performance. To the author’s knowledge, there are no scientific studies published on rhea performance or nutrition.


[Studies on the nutrition and feeding of ostrich.] Zhang, GuiYou; Wang, Sujian; Cui, GuoYin; Zhang, G.Y.; Wang, S.J.; Cui, G.Y. Chinese Journal of Zoology, 1996, v. 31 (6), p. 40-43. ref. ISSN: 0250-3263. Note: In Chinese.

            NAL call no: QL1.T8

            Descriptors: feeding, diets, composition, minerals, nutrient requirements.


Untersuchungen zur Zusammensetzung handelsublicher Mauserpraparate fur Ziervogel. [Composition of commercial supplements for enhancing the nutrient supply during moult for pet birds.] Wolf, P. Wendler, C.; Kamphues, J. Kleinitierpraxis, 1996, v. 41 (9), p. 669-678. ref. ISSN: 0023-2076. Note: In German.

Descriptors: composition, supplements, moult, feed supplements, pet foods, labeling 20 feed supplements.

Abstract: Composition and labeling of 20 commercial feed supplements for the moulting period in aviary birds were studied. Few of the products met the nutrient composition expected of such preparations nor that specified on the label. In some cases the suggested dosage was inaccurate which would lead to nutrient excesses or deficiencies.


Variation in reproductive effort in female zebra finches (Taeniopygia guttata) in relation to nutrient-specific dietary supplements during egg laying. Williams, T.D. Physiological Zoology, 1996, v. 69 (5), p. 1255-1275. ref. ISSN: 0031-935X.

            NAL call no: 410 P56

            Descriptors: nutrient balance, egg production, protein supplements, fats.





Clinical nutrition of exotic pets. Donoghue, S.; Langenberg, J. Veterinary Clinical Nutrition, 1995, v. 2 (2), p. 57-63. ref. ISSN: 1076-3872.

            NAL call no: SF94.5.V48

            Descriptors: pet birds, vitamins, nutrient deficiencies, nutrition, anorexia.


Copper nutritional deficiency in the ostrich (Struthio camelus). Speer, brian L. Association of Avian Veterinarians Main Conference Proceedings, 1995, p. 221-225.

            NAL call no: SF994.M52

            Descriptors: literature review, dietary requirements, copper deficiency, symptoms.


Diets, feeding practices, and nutritional problems in psittacine birds. Kollias, G.V. Veterinary Medicine, 1995, v. 90 (1), p. 29-39. ref. ISSN: 8750-7943.

            NAL call no: 41.8 M69

            Descriptors: pets, nutrient deficiencies, vitamins, minerals, diets, feeding, parrot-type birds.


Effect of medium-chain fatty acids on cholesterolemia and atherosclerosis in Japanese quail. Toda, T.; Oku, H. Nutrition Research, 1995, v. 15 (1), p. 99-113. ref. ISSN: 0271-5317.

            NAL call no: QP141.A1N88

            Descriptors: fats, oils, maize, blood lipids, atherosclerosis, intake, cholesterol, triacylglycerols.

Abstract: 54 forty-day-old, male Japanese quails were fed on basal diet or a diet containing 15% fat or oil and 2% cholesterol for 3 months. Oils and fats used were maize oil, palmitic fatty acids, medium chain triacylglycerols, coconut and palm kernel oil. No significant difference was noted in serum triacylglycerols among fat or oil fed groups. Quails fed on the diet containing maize oil or palmitic fatty acids and cholesterol showed marked hypercholesterolemia and severe lipid-rich aortic lesions. Quails fed on MCT, coconut or palm kernel oil and cholesterol had slight increases in serum cholesterol values and initial thickening of the aortas. These findings suggest that fats containing abundant medium-chain fatty acids are less atherogenic than the other fats and oils.


Guidelines for estimating the feeding performance of diving birds. Magic, D.; Magic, D.; Kozak, M. Wildfowl Slimbridge, 1995, No. 46, p. 119-128. ref. ISSN: 0954-6324.

            NAL call no: SK351 W575

Descriptors: performance, nutrient requirements, digestibility, nutrition, reviews, wild birds, field and captive data, diving-efficiency, feed consumption.

Abstract: A method of assessing the feeding performance of wild diving birds is presented that relies on the use of field data on diving behaviour and environmental conditions, and of additional information on underwater behaviour obtained from captive during experiments. Two components of feeding performance are considered - diving efficiency (measured as the ratio of the time spent feeding over the dive cycle time) and the rate of feed consumption. These 2 components can be used to assess habits that differ in water depth and feed concentration. At present, however, there is limited information available on consumption rates of birds feeding on natural foods and on different substrates in the benthos. This information could be obtained from captive feeding trials.


Optimalizacia vyzivy jarabac vo farmovom chove. [The optimization of partridge nutrition at the breeding farm.] Misko, J.; Pancak, J.; Kocis, J.; Sokol, J. Folia Venatoria, 1995, No. 25, p. 119-126. ref. Note: In Slovakian.

            Descriptors: reproduction, nutrition, diets, feeding.


Protein (part 1). Pearson, Jim. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1995, v. 38 (7), p. 109-112. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: Aves, proteins, diet, dietary protein, amino acids, birds.


Protein (part 2). Pearson, Jim. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1995, v. 38 (8), p. 124-128. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: diet in captivity, Aves, protein requirements, dietary requirements, birds.


Protein (part 3). Pearson, Jim. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1995, v. 38 (9), p. 140-143. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: Aves, diet in captivity, dietary requirements, protein sources, birds.


The science and practice of ostrich nutrition. Niekerk, B.H.D. van; Van Niekerk, B.D.H. Journal of the Zimbabwe Society for Animal Production, 1995, v. 7, p. 45-60. ref.

            Descriptors: diets, nutrition, feeding, nutrient requirements, reviews, diet forumlation.

Abstract: Nutritional requirements of ostriches and recommendations for the formulation of complete ostrich diets are reviewed.


A tarsmadarak gyakorlati takarmanyozasa, [Practical nutrition of companion birds.] Taylor, J. Magyar Allatorvosok Lapja, 1995, v. 50 (7), p. 442-443. Note: In Hungarian.

            NAL call no: 41.8 V644

            Descriptors: feeding, nutrient requirements, nutrition, aviary birds.





Advances in our understanding of the nutrition of pet birds. Nott, H.M.R.; Taylor, E.J. Wiener Tierarztliche Monatsschrift, 1994, v. 81 (5), p. 135-140. ref.

            NAL call no: 41.8 T345

            Descriptors: nutrient requirements, aviary birds, reviews, nutritional deficiencies.

Abstract: Pet birds are widely kept as companion animals and the most common cause of disease has been identified as nutritional deficiency, due to lack of understanding or knowledge of the owners. This paper reviews current information on energy requirements for maintenance, reproduction and growth, protein requirements of adult and growing birds, and requirements of calcium and phosphorous, trace elements, vitamins and water.


Bird behavior. Cowdy, Susan. Buckinghamshire Bird Club Bulletin, May 1994, v. 130, p. 3.

            Descriptors: foraging, Columbidae, buds and blossoms, nutrition, feeding behavior.


Diet and nutrition. Crissey, Sue; McGill, Patty. Penguin Husbandry Manual 1st ed. Ellis, Susie; Branch, Sherry (eds). Feb. 1994, American Zoo and Aquarium Association, i-v. 1-197, Chapter pagination: 95-125.

Descriptors: diet in captivity, guidelines, rearing techniques, hand rearing diets, captive penguins.


Feeding big birds. Scheideler, S.; Angel, R. Large Animal Veterinarian, 1994, v. 49 (2), p. 28, 30. ref. ISSN: 0888-028X.

            NAL call no: SF740.A54

Descriptors: vitamin E, selenium, nutrient requirements, ratites, ostriches, emus, kiwis, rheas, cassowaries.


A guide to the nutrition of captive honeyeaters. Rich, Brian. Bird Keeping in Australia, Sept. 1994, v. 39 (9), p. 130-136. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: Meliphagidae, diet in captivity, care in captivity.


Hemosiderosis and dietary iron in birds. Dierenfeld, Ellen S.; Pini, Maria T.; Sheppard, Christine D. Journal of Nutrition, 1994, v. 124 (12 Suppl.) p. 2685S-2686S. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 389.8 J82

            Descriptors: dietary implications, hepatic iron overload, liver pathology, Aves.


Macromineral content in quail feedstuffs. Tikk, H.; Hammal, J.; Tikk, V. Proceedings of the Animal Nutrition Conference, 26-27 May, 1994 in Tartu, Estonia. 1994, p. 131-134. ref.

            NAL call no: SF94.6.A56 2000

            Descriptors: egg production, egg shell quality, calcium, intake.

Abstract: Trials with quail are described that demonstrate that 4.1 compared with 2.8% Dietary calcium improves egg production, laying intensity and egg shell variables. Average egg weight, viability of quails and egg fertility were not affected by Ca intake.


The nutrition of the canary (Serinus canarius). Taylor, E. Jean; Nott, Helen M.R.; Earle, Kay E. Journal of Nutrition, 1994, v. 124 (12 Suppl.) p. 2636S-2637S. ref. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 389.8 J82

Descriptors: metabolism, nutrition, digestive system, Aves, energy requirements, adults, young, digestibility of major nutrients. 


Nutritional mechanisms and temporal control of migratory energy accumulation in birds. Bairlein, F.; Gwinner, E. Annual Review of Nutrition, 1994, v. 14, p. 187-215. ref. ISSN: 0199-9885.

            NAL call no: QP141.A1A63

            Descriptors: energy metabolism, wild birds, migration, reviews, passerine birds.

Abstract: Nutritional adaptations and temporal control of migrants that enable them to cope with the enormous migratory energy storage in long-distance migration are reviewed. Passerines are focused upon primarily since they are the largest group of migrants in all continents.


Pre-laying nutrition of sage grouse hens in Oregon. Barnett, J.K.; Crawford, J.A. Journal of Range Management, 1994, v. 47 (2), p. 114-118. ref. ISSN: 0022-409X.

            NAL call no: 60.18 J82

Descriptors: feeding behavior, game birds, feeding habits, feeding preferences, female Centrocercus urophasianus, Oregon, variety of desert plants.

Abstract: Nutrient composition and diet selection by female sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) were determined during the pre-laying period in southeastern Oregon, USA, in 1990 and 1991. 42 female sage grouse were collected during 5 weeks before incubation (4 March-8 April). Sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) Was the most common among 21 feeds consumed but forbs composed 18 to 50% of the diet by weight. Desert parsley (Lomatium spp.) hawksbeard (Crepis spp.), long-leaf phlox (Phlox longifolla), everlasting (Antennaria spp.), mountain dandelion (Agoseris spp.), clover (Trifolium spp.), Pursh’s milk-vetch (Astragalus purshii), buckwheat (Eriogonum spp.) And obscure milk-vetch (A. obscurus) were the primary (1% 0f the diet by weight) forbs consumed. Forbs were used selectively over sagebrush in both low and big sagebrush cover types. All forbs were higher in CP and phosphorous and many were higher in calcium than sagebrush. Consumption of forbs increased nutrient content of the composite diet. Substantially fewer forbs were present in the diet in 1991 than in 1990, which coincided with reduced sage grouse productivity in the study area. Results suggest that consumption of forbs during the pre-laying period may affect reproductive success by improving nutritional status of hens.


Selenium in plant and animal nutrition. Mayland, H.F.; Frankenberger, W.T. Jr. (ed.); Benson, S. Selenium in the Environment, 1994, p. 29-45. ref. ISBN: 0824789938.

            NAL call no: QH545.S45S46 1994

Descriptors: toxicity, birds, deficiency, nutritional state, nutritional physiology, bioavailability in foodstuffs.

Abstract: After a brief introduction this chapter presents an historical perspective of selenium nutrition focusing on deficiency and toxicity. The presence of selenium in water, soils and plants, and bioavailability in feedstuffs are discussed. In addition bioavailability of selenium in faces, urine and products of respiration as well as prediction of selenium status, management of selenium-responsive diseases in cattle and sheep, selenium in human nutrition and health and toxicity in birds and animals are also covered.


Vitamin E in exotics: Effects, evaluation and ecology. Dierenfeld, Ellen S. Journal of Nutrition, 1994, v. 124 (12 Suppl.), p. 2579S-2581S. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 389.8 J82

            Descriptors: vitamin E deficiency, wildlife, nutrition, metabolism, birds.


What do we know about bird nutrition and what don’t we know? Crissey, Sue. American Zoo and Aquarium Association Annual Conference Proceedings, 1994, p 407-413.

            NAL call no: QL75.5.U6A472

            Descriptors: diet in captivity, nutrition, Aves, review.





Bird nutrition. Pearson, Jim. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1993, v. 36 (4), p. 56-60. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: diet in captivity, basic requirements, dietary requirements, Aves.


Calculations of energy requirements of dogs, cats and small psittacine birds. Earle, K.E. Journal of Small Animal Practice, 1993, v. 34 (4), p. 163-172. ref. ISSN: 0022-4510.

            NAL call no: 41.8 J8292

Descriptors: energy requirements, aviary birds, pets, energy, nutrient requirements, weight, feeding behavior, owner-pet-interactions.

Feeding your pet bird. Burgmann, Petra M. Barron’s Educational Series, c1993. ix. 182 p. ill. ref. ISBN: 0812015215.

            NAL call no: SF643.5 B87 1993

            Descriptors: cage birds, nutrition, feeding, feeds.


Non date agli struzzi il mangime per tacchini. [Do not give ostriches feeds for turkeys.] Anon. Rivista di Avicoltura, 1993, v. 62 (2), p. 21-24. ISSN: 0005-2213. Note: In Italian.

            NAL call no: 47.8 R523

Descriptors: nutrient requirements, ostriches, kcal/kg in feeds, crude protein, calcium, phosphorus, vitamins, antibiotics.

Abstract: The use of turkey diets rich in protein and energy for feeding young ostriches can result in a too rapid increase in body weight for the partly mineralized bones in the feet to support, resulting in deformations. Recent data on the specific nutrient requirements of ostriches are discussed. Recommended intake of metabolizable energy for maintenance, growth and reproduction is 2400, 2600 to 2700 and 2400 to 2500 kcal/kg feed. Recommended intake of crude protein is 140, 180 to 200 and 160 to 200 g, lysine, 7, 9 to 10 and 8 to 10 g, methionine plus cystine 6.5, 8 to 8.5 and 7 to 9 g, calcium 8 to 10. 10 and 28 to 30 g and available phosphorous 4.5, 5 and 4.5 g/kg, respectively. In cases of stress electrolytes, vitamins and antibiotics if necessary should be given in addition to drinking water.


Nutrition of pet birds. Nott, H.M.R.; Taylor, E.J.; Burger, I.H. The Waltham Book of Companion Animal Nutrition, 1993, p. 69-84. Pergamon Press, Oxford, UK. ISBN: 0080408443.

            NAL call no: SF427.5.W35 1993

Descriptors: ornamental birds, nutritional requirements, aviary birds, mimic natural feeding, ecology.


Pelleted feeds for pigeons. Davoli, E. Rivista di Avicoltura, 1993, v. 62 (2), p. 33-40. ISSN: 0005-2213.

            NAL call no: 47.8 R523

            Descriptors: pelleted feeds, pigeons, diet options, grain mixtures.


The role of vitamin D endocrine system in avian bone biology. Norman, A.W.; Hurwitz, S. Journal of Nutrition, 1993, v. 123 (2), p. 310-316. ref. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 398.8 J82

Descriptors: bones, metabolism, calcitriol, vitamin D, reviews, bone development and growth, bone remodeling, osteoblasts, osteoclasts.

Abstract: The involvement of vitamin D and its endocrine system is essential, both for the process of bone development and growth, as well as bone remodeling. Important bone cells participating in those processes include the osteoblast (bone formation), the osteoclast (bone resorption) and the growth plate chondrocyte (longitudinal bone growth). The hormonally active form of cholecalciferol, calcitriol, generates many of the biological responses attributed to the parent cholecalciferol, including actions on osteoblasts and chondrocytes and the stimulation of the production of osteoclasts. Calcitriol is able to generate biological responses via both genomic and nongenomic pathways. This review provides a summary of this area.


[Stereotypes of bird feeding behavior.] Khlebosolov, El. Uspekhi Sovremennoi Biologii, 1993, v. 113 (6), p. 717-730. ISSN: 0042-1324. Note: In Russian.

            NAL call no: 442.8 ER3

            Descriptors: nutrition, feeding behavior, diet, behavior.


Understanding pet bird nutrition. Butcher, G.D.; Miles, R.D. Circular Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Gainesville, FL. University of Florida, Feb. 1993, (1062) 6 p. ISSN: 0099-7676.

            NAL call no: 275.29-F66C

            Descriptors: aviary birds, pet foods, nutrition, nutrient requirements.


Wildlife Feeding and Nutrition. 2nd ed. Robbins, Charles T. 1993, San Diego, Academic Press. xiv. 352 pp. ill. ref. ISBN: 0125893825.

            NAL call no: QL756.5.R6 1993

            Descriptors: animal nutrition, captive wild animals, feeding and feeds.





Die Futter- und Wasseraufnahme bei Kanarien - Einflussfaktoren und Abhangigkeiten. [Feed and water intake in canaries. Influencing factors and relationships.] Wolf, P.; Kamphues, J. Kleintierpraxis, 1992, v. 37 (8), p. 545-552. ref. ISSN: 0023-2076. Note: In German.

             Descriptors: feed intake, housing, temperature, feeds, water intake.


Der Nahrstoffbedarf von Papageien. [Nutritional requirements of parrots.] Nott, H.M.R. Waltham International Focus, 1992, v. 2 (3), p. 2-7. ref. Waltham Centre for Pet Nutrition, Pedigree Foods, Melton Mowbray, Leics LE 14 4RS, UK. Note: In German.

            NAL call no: SF600.W34

Descriptors: dietary protein, vitamins, minerals, lipid nutrient requirements, carbohydrates, water.

Abstract: In this survey it is stressed that the first essential is to provide a balanced diet composed of proteins, lipids, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and water. 20% proteins in the food is sufficient for maintenance, growth and egg production. High quality protein should contain methionine, phenylalanine and lysine. Lipids are the main energy source and facilitate the resorption of fat-soluble vitamins. Starch and fibres are the main source of carbohydrates. Fibres are indigestible but necessary for the normal function of the digestive system. Vitamins A, C and D can be synthesised from pro-vitamins contained in the diet. B vitamins do not accumulate in the body and must be provided with the foodstuff. The birds require large amounts of Ca, P, Mg, Na and K and very small quantities of Co, Cu, F, Mn and Zn. The water uptake depends on the ambient temperature, air humidity, the kind of foodstuff provided and egg production. Energy requirements vary with physical activity.


[The use of fish oil and vitamins E and C for preventing metabolic disorder in birds.] Zabolotnikova, M.V.; Konchura, T.M.; Sokolovskaya, V.I.; Belov, A.D. Biologecheskie priemy povysheniya produktivnosti sel’ skokhozaistvennoi ptitsy. 1992. p. 46-49.Note: In Russian.

            Descriptors: fowl feeding, fish oils, haemoglobin, body weight, diets, hematology, chickens.

Abstract: Belarus’-9 chickens were fed from 1 to 70 days old, in 5 groups, on a basal diet (BD) supplemented with gaseous ammonia-treated fish oil at 10 or 20 kg/t plus vitamins E and C at 10 and 100 g/t, respectively; the BD plus standard fish oil at 10 or 20 kg/t plus vitamins E and C; or the BD alone. Body weight of the chickens at 2 weeks old was 506.3, 562.5, 537.5, 619.4 and 431.1 g, respectively. Concentration of haemaglobin at 60 days old was 9.28, 8.28, 8.64, 9.10 and 8.8- g/100ml. Survival of the chickens to 2 weeks old was lowest with BD given alone. In another trial the number of chickens culled was greater in the group given the BD alone than in that on the BD plus fish oil and the vitamins.





Basic avian health care and nutrition for the new bird owner. Vogt, S.L. Veterinary Technician. 1991, v. 12 (6), p. 461-464, 466-467. ref. ISSN: 8750-8990.

            NAL call no: SF406.A5

            Descriptors: pets, cages, diets, nutrition, aviary birds.


Cockatiel (Nymphicus hollandicus) nutrition. Roudybush, T.E.; Grau, C.R. Journal of Nutrition, 1991, v. 121 (115), p. S206. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 398.8 J82

Descriptors: nutrition, birds, psittacines, feeding, hatchlings, gworing birds, protein requirements.

Abstract: The feeding of cockatiels (Nymphicus hollandicus) is discussed. For the first 3 days after hatching, cockatiels must receive a diet including about 90% water which can then be reduced to 30% until they can regulate their water intake. Protein requirement is 20% of the diet; less results in reduced growth and more behavioral abnormalities. Lysine requirement for growth is 0.8%. Choline deficiency in growing cockatiels resulted in normal growth, but 30 to 40% of the birds showed achromatosis on tail and wing feathers. Pantothenic acid deficiency resulted in mortality or in reduced feather growth on the body. Calcium requirement in reproducing females for maintenance of shell thickness and egg shell conductance was 0.35% of the diet.


Energy requirements for maintenance and growth of wild mammals, birds and reptiles in captivity. Kirkwood, J.K. Journal of Nutrition, 1991, v. 121 (115), p. 529-534. ref. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 398.8 J82

Descriptors: energy requirements, nutrient requirements, pets, zoo animals, captive breeding, basal metabolism rates.

Abstract: A wide range of animals are maintained in captivity as pets and an increasing number are likely to become dependent on captive breeding for conservation. Generally, these animals are fed freely and a knowledge of their energy requirements is not essential. However, estimates of energy requirements are helpful in several situations: treating obesity, providing nutritional support to anorexic animals and feeding newborn animals. Data on basal metabolic rates (BMR) are available for about 5% of avian and 17% of mammalian species, and the maintenance requirement can be estimated at twice the BMR. Estimates for other species can be based on allometric equations relating energy expenditure to body weight in the species that have been studied. Although between species time taken to grow increases with adult mass, wide variation remains after the effect of adult mass is considered. A model is developed which illustrates the impact of variation in time taken to grow on daily growth rate (per metabolic mass) at all stages of maturity. This model may assist in estimating the lower limit to energy requirements during growth.


Formulated diet versus seed mixtures for psittacines. Ullrey, D.E.; Allen, M.E.; Baer, D.J. Journal of Nutrition, 1991, v. 121 (115), p. S195-S205. ref. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 398.8 J82

Descriptors: diets, birds, Psittacidae, parrot family, natural diet diversity, diet formulation inconsistant.

Abstract: The natural dietary habits of certain psittacines are reviewed. Psittacines are often classified as seed eaters despite studies that have established great diversity in food habits in the wild. While seeds are consumed, so are flowers, buds, leaves, fruits and cambium. Some psittacines consume parts of >80 species of grasses, forbs, shrubs and trees. In addition, insects may be important. Although there are few controlled studies of the requirements of psittacines, it is probable that most nutrient needs are comparable to those of domesticated precocial birds that have been thoroughly studied. Commercial seed mixes for psittacines commonly contain maize, sunflower, safflower, pumpkin and squash seeds, wheat, groundnut, millet, oat groats and buckwheat, although other seeds may be present. Because hulls/seeds comprise 18 to 69% of these seeds and they are removed before swallowing, a significant proportion of typical seed mixtures is waste. Some of the seeds are very high in fat and promote obesity. Common nutrient deficiencies of decorticated seeds include lysine, calcium, available phosphorus, sodium, manganese, zinc, iron, iodine, selenium, retinol, vitamins D, E and K, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, available nicotinic acid, vitamin B-12 and choline. Attempts to correct these deficiencies by incorporating pellets into seeds mixes are usually thwarted by rejection of the pellets and disproportionate consumption of items that are more highly favored. An extruded diet formulated to meet the projected nutrient needs of psittacines was given with fruits and vegetables to 8 species of psittacines for 1 year. Fledging percentage was increased to 90% from the 66% observed during the previous 2 years when these psittacines were fed seeds, fruits and vegetables. Although this extruded diet was well accepted in a mixture of fruits and vegetables and met the nutrient needs, analyses have shown that not all commercial formulated diets are of equal merit.


Lifetime energy budgets in mammals and birds. Jurgens, K.D.; Prothero, J. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology A, Comparative Physiology, 1991, v. 100 (3), p. 703-709. ref. ISSN: 0300-9629.

            NAL call no: QP1C6

            Descriptors: energy metabolism, lifespan, 35 species of birds, mammals.

Abstract: 2 Data sets for standard energy metabolism (351 and 320 species, respectively) and 1 for maximal lifespan (494 species) in mammals were assembled from the literature. In addition, smaller data sets of active (field) energy metabolism in mammals (36 species) and in birds (25 species) were drawn on. The products of the respective regression parameters as well as the products of energy metabolism and maximal lifespan in individual species were compared in order to estimate lifetime energy metabolism in mammals generally and in various mammalian orders. It was found that lifetime energy budgets in mammals generally, whether standard or active, vary systematically with body mass with slopes between 0.87 and 0.93, significantly different from unity (P<0.001 or P<0.01). In birds, lifetime energy budgets, whether standard or active, varied with slopes of 0.94+ 0.5 and 0.88 + 0.09, which were not significantly different from unity(P>0.1). In carnivores, artiodactyls, primates and bats, the slope for lifetime standard as well as lifetime active energy budgets were not significantly different from 1 in any of the investigated data sets. In rodents, the lifetime standard energy budget had slopes significantly different from 1; in marsupials, 1 data set for lifetime standard and another for lifetime active energy budget led to slopes significantly different from 1. It is concluded from this analysis that current data do not support the hypothesis that lifetime energy budgets, whether standard or active, vary as the first power of body mass in mammals generally. But this hypothesis may be valid for birds generally and for some mammalian orders.


[Nutritional diseases of small birds.] Ishimori, R. Journal of Veterinary Medicine, Japan. 1991, v. 44 (9), p. 566-569. ISSN: 0447-0192. Note: In Japanese.

            Descriptors: aviary birds, nutritional disorders.


The nutrition of the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus). Earle, K.E.; Clarke, N.R. Journal of Nutrition, 1991, v. 121 (115), p. S186-S192. ref. ISSN: 0022-3166.

            NAL call no: 389.8 J82

            Descriptors: nutrition, reviews, nutrient requirements, breeding trials, daily energy intake.

Descriptors: Nutrient requirements of the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus) were reviewed to estimate the relationship between daily metabolic energy intake (kj/kg) and body weight change (g/day) for groups of adult budgerigars showed that they required daily 48 to 128 kj/bird depending on body mass. During a series of breeding trials the daily intake for a breeding pair plus 3 chicks, at peak energy intake was 483 to 505 kj (at pairing, the mean daily energy intake of the breeding pairs was 231kj). Apparent metabolizability of major nutrients from a seed diet were generally >80%, which allows the birds to assimilate the high amounts of energy needed for basal metabolism.


The protein nutrition of simple-stomached mammals, birds and fishes. Butts, C.A.; Darragh, A.J.; Moughan, P.J. Proceedings of the Nutritional Society of New Zealand. 1991, v. 16, p. 60-81. ref. ISSN: 0110-4187.

            NAL call no: TX341 N86

Descriptors: protein requirement, amino acids, requirements, monogastric, amino acid availability estimates, methods compared.


Trace elements and their role in avian nutrition. Ryan, T. Canine Practice, 1991, v. 16 (2), p. 30-35. ref. ISSN: 0094-4904.

            NAL call no: SF991.A1C3

            Descriptors: trace elements, aviary birds, deficiency symptoms, sources in various diets.


Why birds need calcium and how to ensure they get it. Pearson, J. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1991, v. 34 (10), p. 154-156. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: Aves, diet in captivity, nutrition, diet, calcium.


Vitamin A (retinol and retinyl esters), alpha-tocopherol and lipid levels in plasma of captive wild mammals and birds. Schweigert, F.J.; Uehlein, Harrell S.; Hegel, G.V.; Wiesner, H. Journal of Veterinary Medicine, Series A, 1991, v. 38 (1), p. 35-42. ref. ISSN: 0931-184X.

            NAL call no: 41.8 Z5

Descriptors: retinol, blood chemistry, vitamin A, lipids, vitamin E, blood plasma values, Ciconiiformes, Falconiformes.

Abstract: Vitamin A (retinol and retinyl esters) vitamin E and lipids were determined in several wild mammals and birds held in captivity (250 samples). In mammals plasma levels of vitamin A were generally below 500mg/ml and those of vitamin E were highly variable (0.1-2ug/ml. In primates, vitamin E levels were 3 to 8ug/ml. Whereas in Marsupalia, Chiroptera, primates, Rodentia, Proboscidea, Sirenia, Perisodactyla, and Artiodactyla only retinol was found, retinyl esters (basically retinol palmitate/oleate) represented 10 to 50% of the total plasma vitamin A in some birds of the order Ciconiiformes and Falconiformes. Retinol levels in birds were higher compared to mammals (500-2000 mg/ml). The same was true for lipids as well as for vitamin E levels (1-26ug/ml) in the plasma of birds.





Alimentation et reproduction des autruches - rapport d'un stage effectue au Zimbabwe d'un D.E.S. de production des regions chaudes. [Nutrition and reproduction of ostriches. 3. Nutrition.] Campodonico, P.; Masson, C. Bulletin des G.T.V., 1990, No. 4, p. 73-76. ISSN: 0399-2519. Note: In French.

            NAL call no: SF602.G7

            Descriptors: nutrition, ostriches, zoo animals, production farms, rheas, emus, cassowarys.

Abstract: Recommendations are given for the nutrition of the 4 main struthioniformes in captivity (ostrich, rhea, emu and cassowary) based on information from 52 zoos worldwide followed by examples of diets provided in ostrich farms.


Companion bird management and nutrition. Taylor, M. Proceedings Annual Conference Association of Avian Veterinarians, 1990, p. 409-414.

            NAL call no: SF994.M52

            Descriptors: Psittaciformes, diet in captivity, caging system, parrot family.


Healthy Diet, Healthy Bird. Henzler, David J. Augusta, ME; D.J. Henzler, c 1990. x, 54 p. ill. ref. ISBN: 0962755206.

            NAL call no: SF463.5.H46-1990

            Descriptors: cage birds, nutrition, feeding, feeds.


Nutrition and food selection in migratory birds. Bairlein, F. Bird Migration: Physiology and Ecophysiology. Gwinner, E. (ed.). 1990. i-xii. 1-435 pp. Chapter pagination: 198-213.

            NAL call no: QL698.9 B57 1990

            Descriptors: Aves, dietary requirements, energy requirements, nutrition, migration.


Utilization of lipid versus protein reserves during long-term fasting in mammals and birds. Belkhou, R.; Robin, J.P.; Cherel, Y.; Maho, Y. le; Le Maho, Y.; Mellinger, J. (ed.). Animal Nutrition and Transport Processes. 1. Nutrition in Wild and Domestic Animals: Comparative Physiology. 1990. V. 5, p. 231-141. ref.

            NAL call no: QL141 A1E89

            Descriptors: protein metabolism, starvation, lipid metabolism.





Bird Flight Performance. A Practical Calculation Manual. Pennycuick, C.J. Oxford University Press, N.Y. 1989. i-xi. 1-253 pp.

            NAL call no: QL698.7.P4

            Descriptors: bird flight performance, calculations, metabolic rate, biomechanics, nutrition.


Effect of cecectomy on water and nutrient absorption of birds. Chaplin, S.B. Journal of Experimental Zoology, 1989, Suppl. 3, p. 81-86. ref. ISSN: 0022-104X.

            NAL call no: 410.J825

Descriptors: water, absorption, caecum, reviews, osmoregulation, nutrient use, adaption, effects.

Abstract: The effect of the removal of the avian digestive caeca on osmoregulation and absorption of certain nutrients is reviewed. While data indicate that the caeca have the potential for the absorption of a significant quantity of water, several studies have demonstrated that effects of ceacectomy on water intake and output are transitory and that compensatory adjustments made within 2 to 3 weeks postsurgery allow caecectomized birds to eat and gain weight normally. However, caecectomized great horned owls exposed to 27 degrees C turned over their body water 1.6 times faster than intact owls under the same condition, suggesting that the caeca do have a vital role in water balance of thermally stressed horned owls. Caecectomy resulted in slightly lower metabolizability of feed, lower digestibility of crude fibre in low fibre diets, and greater loss of certain amino acids in caecectomized birds that were fasted or fed on a protein-free diet. The latter result suggests that the caeca are important in recovery of amino acids from endogenous protein degradation. Loss of caecal function also resulted in higher energy intake and excretion in Japanese quail, amounting to 5.7% of the total daily energy requirement.


Effect of quantity and source of dietary methionine on the growth and plasma free amino acid titres of Japanese quail. Shim, K.F.; Chen, E.V. Nutrition Reports International, 1989, v. 40 (6), p. 1073-1080. ref.

            NAL call no: RC620.A1N8

            Descriptors: methionine, sources, feeding, growth, maize-soybean diet, plasma levels.

Abstract: In a 4x3 factorial design trial, groups of 15 day-old Japanese quails were freely given a maize-soyabean diet with 0.05, 0.10 or 0.15% methionine from 4 sources: DL-methionine (DL-Met), DL-methionine hydroxy analogue calcium (DL-MHA-Ca), DL-methionine hydroxy analogue free acid (DL-MHA-FA) and liquid DL-methionine (DL-Met-Na). A control group was given the basal diet alone. At 7 days old, quails given DL-Met or DL-Met-Na grew significantly faster than those given DL-MHA-Ca or DL-MHS-FA at 0.10 or 0.15% but from 7 days to 5 weeks old, there were no differences in utilization of the 4 methionine sources. Plasma levels of the sulphur-amino acids remained constant with increasing levels of methionine. Increasing order of growth and feed:gain ratio of the 4 methionine sources was: DL-MHA-Ca, DL-MHA-FA, DL-Met-Na, DL-Met.


Food utilization in relation to gut structure and function in wild and domestic birds and mammals. Dawson, T.J. Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, 1989, Suppl. 86, p. 20-27. ref. ISSN: 0044-605X.

            NAL call no: 41.8 AC87

            Descriptors: nutrition physiology, herbivores, wild birds, reviews.


Gut size and the digestion of fibrous diets by tetraonid birds. Moss, R. Journal of Experimental Zoology, 1989, Suppl. 3, p. 61-65. ref. ISSN: 0022-104X.

            NAL call no: 410.J825

Descriptors: fiber, digestion, reviews, red grouse, differing levels of heather, adaptions to diet options.

Abstract: In this review, experiments in which red grouse were given diets containing different proportions of heather with low-fibre grain are discussed. With increasing heather and associated fibre contents, feed intake increased and overall digestibility decreased. For grouse on diets containing up to 40% heather, the calculated partial digestibility of heather was only 9.4%, but when heather was eaten as the sole feed, its digestibility was 46%. Adaptations to diets containing more heather included increases in the size of the digestive system. Gizzard weight increased linearly with feed intake. Length of intestine and particularly caeca increased with intake, but not linearly. Up to an intake of about 50 g DM/day no significant change occurred. Above 50 g/day, but size increased rapidly. Bulk may have started to limit intake at about 50 g/day. It is suggested that galliform digestion functions in 2 modes; a low-fibre mode, in which bulk does not limit intake and fibre digestion is unimportant, and a high-fibre mode in which bulk limits intake and fibre digestion may be important. Most studies on avian digestion have been of captive galliforms, most of which probably function in low-fibre mode all the time. Wild galliforms seem to function in high-fibre mode for much of the time.


Hummingbird nutrition: Development of a purified diet for long-term maintenance. Brice, A.T.; Grau, C.R. Zoo Biology, 1989, v. 8 (3), p. 233-237. ref. ISSN: 0733-3188.

            NAL call no:QL77.5.Z6

Descriptors: nutrient requirements, hummingbirds, soy-protein, Calypte anna, C. costae, purified liquid diet, one year study.

Abstract: A purified liquid diet containing 25% solids (by weight) was developed for maintenance of adult hummingbirds so that nutritional studies could be conducted. Calypte anna and C. costae were fed on the diet for at least 1 year, during which time they maintained body weight and general good health, and they moulted normally. A diet containing 3% protein (dry weight basis), supplied by isolated soyabean protein plus methionine, met the need for nitrogen. It was found that Calypte anna and C. costae do not need ascorbic acid in their diets.


Methionine requirement and its effect on the feather loss of laying Japanese quail. Shim, K.F.; Chen, E.V. Nutrition Reports International, 1989, v. 40 (5), p. 1003-1010. ref.

            NAL call no: RC620.A1N8

            Descriptors: methionine, requirements, egg production, female, diet study.

Abstract: A basal diet containing 0.29% methionine was supplemented with DL-methionine to provide diets with 0.39, 0.49, 0.59 and 0.60% methionine. Diets were given to 260 female Japanese quail from 5 weeks to 1 year old. Requirement of methionine for optimum egg production and feed intake was 0.39% of diet. Feather loss was not affected by methionine deficiency or egg production.


[Stimulating effect of fish protein concentrate on vital activities in birds.] Kushak, R.I.; Tarvid, I.L.; Basova, N.A.; Yukhno, E.N.; Filipchenkova, L.P.; Isidorov, G.E.; Val’ dman, A.R. Doklady Vsesoyuznoi Ordena Lenina i Oedena Trudovogo Krasnogo Znameni Akademil Sel’skokhozyaistvennykh Nauk. V.I. Lenina. 1989, No. 10, p. 37-39. ref. Note: In Russian.

            Descriptors: fish protein concentrate, fowl feeding, protein metabolism, body weight.

Abstract: Dried fish protein concentrate (Suberkon), a secondary by-product of the fish industry, when added at 1% to the diet of chickens significantly increased body weight, increased rate of protein metabolism and increased the activities of pancreatic and small intestinal enzymes.


Stimulation of avian cholesterol metabolism by alpha-tocopherol. Qureshi, A.A.; Peterson, D.M.; Elson, C.E.; Mangels, A.R.; Din, Z.Z. Nutrition Reports International, 1989, v. 40 (5), p. 993-1001. ref.

            NAL call no: RC620.A1N8

            Descriptors: cholesterol metabolism, alpha tocopherol.

Abstract: Alpha-Tocopherol delivered via intraperitoneal injection in short-term studies or via the diet in long-term studies elicited significant concentration-dependent increases in avian hepatic beta-hydroxy-beta-methylglutaryl-CoA (HMG-GoA) reductase and cholesterol 7alpha-hydroxylase activities. The reciprocal actions pf the 2 hepatic enzymes precluded an increase in serum low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol was increased by alpha-tocopherol, but not significantly. Dietary cholesterol (0.5%) decreased HMG-CoA reductase activity, increased serum lipoprotein cholesterol and had no effect on cholesterol 7alpha-hydroxylase activity. Addition of alpha-tocopherol (100mg/kg diet) to the cholesterol-enriched diet elicited a reversal of the cholesterol-mediated suppression of HMG-CoA reductase activity and increased cholesterol 7alpha-hydroxylase activity. In these conditions, alpha-tocopherol had no effect on serum total or LDL cholesterol but produced a numerical increase in HDL cholesterol compared with a cholesterol-free diet. The disparity in the influences of alpha-tocopherol and alpha-tocotrienol on cholesterol metabolism seems to be due to the different side chains of the 2 methyl-substituted tocols.





Avian diseases and winter bird feeding. Brittingham, M.C.; Temple, S.A. Passenger Pigeon, 1988, v. 50 (3), p. 195-203. ISSN: 0031-2703.

            Descriptors: diseases, winter feeders, mortality, diseases seen at winter feeders.


Nutrient requirements of game birds. Beer, J.V.; Haresign, W. (ed.).; Cole, D.J.A. (ed.). Recent Advances in Animal Nutrition, 1988, p. 195-203. ref. Butterworths; London, UK. ISBN: 040701165X. ISSN: 0269-5642.

            NAL call no: SF95.R47

            Descriptors: nutrient requirements, game birds, pheasant, partridge.

Abstract: Rearing programmes, nutrient requirements, and growth rates, feed consumption and efficiency in game birds are discussed. Crude protein and metabolizable energy in pheasant and partridge diets and amino acid content of pheasant diets are tabulated


An overview of pet bird nutrition. Villm, D.L.; O’Brien, S.E. Iowa State University Veterinarian, 1988, v. 50 (2), p. 107-113. ref. ISSN: 0099-5851.

            NAL call no: 41.8 V6425

Descriptors: diet in captivity, nutritional requirements, nutrition, Psittaciformes, parrot family, diagnosis and treatment, nutritional deficiencies.

Abstract: The organ systems and clinical signs seen in the commoner nutrient deficiencies of pet birds are discussed including the integument, mucous membranes of the oral cavity and nares, growth and skeletal abnormalities, reproduction, the vascular system and the central and peripheral nervous system. Diagnosis and treatment of nutritional deficiencies are covered with selected psittacine diets provided.


Proceedings of the Third Annual Dr. Scholl Conference on the Nutrition of Captive Wild Animals. Meehan, T.P.; Allen, M.E. (eds.). 1988, 166 pp.

            NAL call no: SF95.D7

            Descriptors: animal nutrition, nutrition of captive wild animals.

Abstract: This is a report of the proceedings of the third Annual Dr. Scholl Conference on the Nutrition of Captive wild Animals held on December 2 and 3, 1983 in Lincoln Park Zoological Gardens, Chicago, USA. There are 12 contributions to the conference, dealing with feeding, foraging and mental health; computer analysis of diets fed to zoo animals; protein and amino acid utilization in carnivores; providing proper nutrition for captive Alcidae and penguins; the apparent diet digestibilities of captive tigers; considerations in feeding exotic cats; feeding strategies and metabolic adjustments; results of a digestion trial evaluating 6 species of carnivores; diet and oral health in captive amur tigers (Panthera tigris altaica); the effects of cricket calcium levels on calcium levels in tree frogs and geckos; progress and problems associated with bullfrog tadpole diets and nutrition; and considerations in the uses of fish as food. The need for careful examination of what the captive animal is fed and how it is fed within the broad context of how animals feed in nature is emphasized. Using computer-generated data tables of composition pf diets for various animals and birds are presented.


Roche Symposium "The Value of Vitamins in Animal Nutrition’, London, October 1988. The significance of carotenoids in animal nutrition. Schiedt, K. 1988, 28 pp.; Brochure in Series Animal Nutrition Events. ref. F. Hoffmann-La Roche & Co. Ltd., Basle, Switzerland.

            Descriptors: carotenoids, animal nutrition, reviews.

Abstract: This review summarises that bacteria, fungi and higher plants synthesize carotenoids de novo. Carotenoid functions in these organisms are energy transfer and photoprotection. Animals are unable to synthesize carotenoids de novo and depend on dietary supply. However, they can transform ingested carotenoids into species-and tissue-specific carotenoides by oxidation or reduction. Colourants are of vital importance for the pigmentation of the plumage in birds and also for the integuments of fish and crustacea. Some biochemical processes related to vision and reproduction have also been found. A greater number of varieties of fish, molluscs and crustacea are of increasing interest in industrialized livestock production. Their commercial value, as with the yolk colours in eggs, depends largely on their pigmentation. Carotenoids have a much wider spectrum of functions than being merely cosmetics and, for many of these functions, it is important that the correct carotenoid is supplied.





A different aspect on avian nutrition. Rich, B.; Osmond, G. Bird Keeping in Australia, 1987, v. 30 (6), p. 86-91. ISSN: 0045-2076.

            Descriptors: diet in captivity, review, care in captivity, techniques, Aves.


Feeding and nutritional disorders. Dolphin, R.E. Companion Bird Medicine, Burr, E.W. (ed.). Iowa State University Press, Ames, IA. 1987, i-x. 1-247 pp. Chapter pagination: 66-71.

            NAL call no: SF994.2.A1C66 1987

            Descriptors: Aves, diet in captivity, deficiencies, disorders, nutrition in captivity.





Bird feeding: Tips for beginners and veterans. Craven, Scott R.; Ruff, Robert L. University of Wisconsin Extension Publication, 3176, 1982, 11 p. ill.

            Descriptors: birds, food, bird feeders.





Dietary requirements of gallinaceous birds. Wylie, S.R. Game Bird Breeders, Aviculturists, Zoologists and Conservationist Gazette, 1978, v. 27 (7), p. 9-10. ISSN: 0164-3711.

            NAL call no: 47.8 G144

            Descriptors: Galliformes, rearing and breeding techniques, dietary requirements.


Twenty-five years of research in game bird nutrition. Scott, J.L. World Pheasant Association Journal, 1978, v. 3, p. 31-45. ISSN: 0963-326X.

            Descriptors: nutrition, dietary requirements, Phasianidae, research review.

Return to:    Contents