Society News



April 2018



The Chairman Lou Dall’Est opened the April meeting of the Society at 8.09pm welcoming the 70 members in attendance.

Main Feature:

Our International guest speaker for the evening was Eric Antheunisse from the United States. Eric, who lives in Lodi, California owns Cedar Hill Birds and was introduced by Committee person Matt Baird. Cedar Hill Birds services the Pet Trade in the United States and Eric currently has anything between 5000-7000 birds in his flights at any given time.

He began his presentation by suggesting that his interest in birds was from an early age when he kept Budgies and Finches. As is almost inevitable the interest in larger parrots etc. followed over the years. He continued and spoke about the…

(a) Facility Layout : He now has at least seven large complexes measuring approximately 30ft x 200ft.   Along with the larger banks of aviaries there are numerous smaller flights which house a great number of other breeding pairs. All Eric’s aviaries are suspended and house a huge variety of birds: Conures, African Grey, Cockatoos, Macaws, Major Mitchells, Eclectus, Toucans, Cockatiels and far more. Eric employs 3 full time workers and along with his wife they are currently hand rearing 600 babies.

(b)  Aviaries and Set ups: The smaller parrots such as the Bourke’s, Scarlets and other smaller species are kept in indoor flights given the fluctuating temperatures over the seasons. The other flights are external and range in size according to the species requirements. The flights have natural wooden double perches, pendulum feeders which hasten the time required to fill seed tray (all birds fed 1/day), automatic watering and a mist system.

(c)  Nest Boxes & design:  Eric designs and makes his own boxes and caters for each particular species in detail…Z boxes, Long Straight Boxes for Black Cockatoos, C boxes, Boot boxes and T boxes.

(d)  Surgical Sexing and Cultures:  Eric keeps a close eye on the wellbeing of his birds and attempts to stay ahead of problems by doing his own swabs and cultures. Interestingly, this area created a great deal of interest and discussion from the floor. He has 70% of his birds surgically sexed.

    (e)  Diet:  Obviously the complex requires the generation of an enormous amount of food. They feed 700 lbs of sprouted seed /day…Sunflower, Safflower, Mung Beans, Green Beans, Millet, Buckwheat sprouted to very short head. Included with the sprouted seed when available….Carrots, Apple, Brochali, Oyster Shell for Calcium, Corn, Mango, Watermelon, Pine Nuts, Walnuts, Peppers,  Palm Oil, Coconut Oil and Olive Oil.

   (f)  Pest Control:  Beneath the flights Eric has both Chickens and Guinea Fowl which eradicate both food scraps and keep the vermin (Snakes, Rats, Mice) under control. He also utilizes Poison in a variety of forms throughout the complex.

(g)  In the Nursery: Eric has designed and built a number of his own Brooders which have a different set up for temperature and humidity than current commercial options. All babies are kept in a variety of containers on wood shavings depending on their age in a temperature controlled environment and hand fed appropriately via crop needle. The larger birds are fed with one syringe/bird whilst the smaller babies are fed with one syringe/Tub. They feed 600-1500 chicks at any one time and are feeding 600 chicks currently throughout the day. The last feed is around 10:30pm and begins again at 7:30am the following day…quite a responsibility.

(h) Incubation:  He spoke briefly about the incubation process and how he utilizes Silkie Chickens as an aide in the incubation process. Eggs are removed from the chickens with a couple of days to go and complete incubation in the Incubators.

Eric then took questions from the floor and was thanked by Matt for a most interesting and informative presentation. Matt then presented Eric with a Certificate of Appreciation from the Society.

General Business:

  1. Competitions: The Lucky Door Prize…Phil Bourke won the $10 Voucher donated by Nunawading Birds & Pets. The Lucky Name Badge Prize, a $15 Voucher also from Nunawading Birds & Pets was won by Colin Wilkins. Raffle winners for the evening were: Tom Hobbs won a Nest box donated by Joe Bolyos,  Aly Begley won the Macaw book donated by ASA and Roland Weeks won the Avi Natural Supplement donated by ASA.
  2. New Members: Lou welcomed the new members and thanked them for attending and commented that he hoped they enjoyed their association with the ASA.
  3. Next Month’s Program:    Brett Jarrett…”Life’s passion…Painting Wildlife”
  4. Lost and Found: (TH) African Grey…Bundoora area.
  5. Service Items: (JP) At the back of the Hall.

                                                            Other Business:

  1. Lou mentioned the upcoming Bird Expos suggesting the dates had all been approved and details and contact numbers for bookings appear elsewhere in this month’s Journal. The ASA Bird Sale is on Sunday 6th May. Any member who wishes to help on the day please contact Lou or Graeme.
  2. The new ASA Website is now available …www.asaust.com. Mark Hill would appreciate any feedback. Also, remember we are now on Facebook…make yourself familiar with that option to communicate with other like-minded members.
  3. The Committee require assistance with the organization and arrangement of supper at the General Meeting. Any member who feels that they could assist should contact either Lou or Graeme. The Committee would like to thank both Aly and Keith Begley, who are not able to continue with the supper arrangements, for their assistance which was greatly appreciated.
  4. The Annual General Meeting of the Society will be held at 8.00pm immediately before the May General Meeting. All members welcome.
  5. A big thank you was given to John and Ria Pope by John Murray on behalf of the members who participated in the recent aviary visit hosted by the Ballarat Branch for their input and effort in making the weekend visit an absolute success. The weather apparently was not the kindest; however John suggested that the dinner on Saturday evening was a delight. Thank you also to the Ballarat members who opened their homes and aviaries over the weekend.

Meeting closed at 9.50pm and members enjoyed a chat over a coffee.

 



March 2018



Minutes of General Meeting 28th March 2018

Held at “The Pines Learning Centre” 520 Blackburn Road, East Doncaster.

The Chairman Lou Dall’Est opened the March meeting of the Society at 8.30pm welcoming the 75 members in attendance.

Visitors and long distance travellers: Lou thanked all long distance travellers for their attendance this evening.

Business Arising: Nil

Financial Statement: As posted    Moved: Warwick Remington        Seconded: Gael Mizzi

                                      

Main Feature:

Tonight’s guest speaker Michael Lee, one of the biggest breeders of Macaws in Australia, was introduced by Warwick Remington. Michael has spoken at a Society meeting some 14 months ago and this evening again spoke about his collection of Macaws. Michael and his partner run the Australian Macaw Research Centre which has grown from a couple of pairs of Macaws to the point currently where they are moving to a far larger property to continue their research and breeding program. Prior to Michael’s address we were unable to locate the remote control for the Data Projector; however, member Greg Huckstepp came to our rescue and was able to turn it on manually.

In the period since his last  presentation Michael has visited Breeders in India, New Zealand, Costa Rica and other places overseas to increase his knowledge of the variety of Macaw species. His presentation this evening began with an explanation of how he maintains the extensive records of his birds for his own and future owner’s benefits. He is able to very quickly trace the history (DNA, previous owner, number of chicks, complete heritage etc) of any of the Macaws in his collection regardless of age. He then moved on to discuss an interesting approach to breeding for a particular outcome i.e. male /female chicks. By manipulating the diet and thus altering the condition of the breeding pair and paying particular attention to the other factors such as temperature, weather etc Michael suggested that over the last two breeding seasons he was able to reasonably predict a favourable outcome with the chicks he bred. He was only able to give the results of chicks for two seasons…7cocks/ 2 hens first season and 7 hens/ 2 cocks with the opposite manipulation… Michael suggested he would continue to see what results appeared like over a longer period.

Michael spoke about what you should be aware of when purchasing any Macaw. He suggested…Always view the bird and its environment. Observe Perches, Branches, Nesting materials Toys. Take particular notice of Feathers, Feet, Eyes, Mandible, Vent, Wings, Skin and how the bird is breathing.

Michael then showed a number of photos of current Blue and Gold mutations which included Lutino, Opaline, Pied, Green, Blue, Blue Spangle, Blue Opaline, Buffon to name a few. He discussed the 11 species of Macaw which have become extinct since 1864 due mainly to the logging of its natural habitat.

Michael finished his presentation with a short 5 minute film which he had recently completed titled  ”When you believe”. He then answered questions from the floor and was then thanked by Matt Baird for his presentation and presented with a Certificate of Appreciation from the Society

General Business:

  1. Competitions: The Lucky Door Prize…Graeme Smith won the $10 Voucher donated by Nunawading Birds & Pets. The Lucky Name Badge Prize, a $15 Voucher also from Nunawading Birds & Pets was won by Max Thomas. Raffle winners for the evening were: Charlie Mizzi won a 20kg bag of seed donated by Dandenong Stock Feeds, Geoff Collier won the 20 kg bag of seed donated by Ian Hendy, Nate Kilb won a Swivel feeder donated by Mick Harrison and Lisa Dall’Est won Nest Boxes donated by Joe Bolyos.
  2. New Members: Lou welcomed the new members and thanked them for attending and commented that he hoped they enjoyed their association with the ASA.
  3. Next Month’s Program:    Eric Antheunisse  “Breeding Parrots..Not just a Hobby”
  4. Lost and Found: (TH) Nil
  5. Service Items: (JP) At the back of the Hall.

                                                            Other Business:

  1. Treasurer, Warwick Remington, informed members present that the Committee had decided to change the Financial Year to July – June which will more accurately reflect the financial business of the Society in future. Renewal of Membership dates will remain the same.
  2. Lou mentioned the upcoming Bird Expos suggesting the dates had all been approved and details and contact numbers for bookings appear elsewhere in this Journal.
  3. John Pope informed members of the upcoming visit to Ballarat on the 14th and 15th of April. The bus will leave from Upwey at approximately 8.30am on Saturday morning and proceed to Ballarat with one or two stops along the way. It is intended to visit 8-10 aviaries over the weekend and hopefully include Ballarat Bird World. The cost will be $200 with a $50 deposit to be paid by the March meeting and the balance paid one week before the trip. The cost includes Bus Hire, Lunch Saturday, overnight accommodation at Ballarat and Breakfast and Lunch Sunday with wives and partners most welcome.

For Bookings or any further information please feel free to contact John Pope on 0419 691 869

  1. A reminder that Wildlife returns are due and must be returned by the 14th of April. Make sure if required you submit your return by the due date.

Meeting closed at 9.35pm and members enjoyed a chat over a coffee.



February 2018



Minutes of General Meeting 28th February 2018

Held at “The Pines Learning Centre” 520 Blackburn Road, East Doncaster.

The Chairman Lou Dall’Est opened the February meeting of the Society at 8.20pm welcoming the 83 members in attendance.

Visitors and long distance travellers: Lou thanked all long distance travellers for their attendance this evening. He made particular reference to visitors Templestowe College staff, Mark Cameron and Simon Mallinson.

Business Arising: Nil

Financial Statement: As posted    Moved: Warwick Remington        Seconded: Joe Bolyos

                                   

Main Feature:

Tonight’s feature…”Gadget Night and Breeding Results” really ended up being a little different as the night developed. Barrie Wicks introduced Joe Bolyos who wanted to speak about and clarify the different varieties of Grasses that he spoke about at the January Panel Discussion.  Joe explained about Saltbush and the different colour varieties available suggesting it could be grown in pots and rotated in flights or as large bushes permanently situated in the flight. He feeds to parrots and Finches and has observed Crimson Rosellas and Silvereyes feeding on the seeds from the Saltbush.

Graham Mitchell then joined the discussion again focusing on seeding grasses. He spoke about the benefits of feeding Wire Weed, Barnyard grass, Peppercress and Wild lettuce to finches and small Parrots. Graham spoke about the danger of feeding Paspalum and Fairy Grass to birds as they host “Ergot” which is a toxic fungus. Warwick Remington then continued with the Seeding grasses discussion and spoke about Milk Thistle, Fat Hen and Phalaris as being appropriate to feed to parrots and finches. It was suggested that if you cultivate the seeding grasses carefully you will have a supply available for a majority of the season.

The second part of the evening was devoted to a brief demonstration by Warwick Remington as to the method used to worm parrots using a Crop needle and Panacur 2.5. Lou contributed to the discussion by suggesting that he now worms his birds using Ivomec and places a drop or two on the bird’s neck. In both cases it was stressed that you should always be vigilant with hygiene and wear gloves when worming your birds.

At this point the members were totally involved in the discussion and different directions were taken from specific questions from the floor. The night provided another enjoyable discussion where members totally participated and a great deal of information was exchanged throughout the evening.

General Business:

1. Competitions: The Lucky Door Prize…Charlie Mizzi won the $10 Voucher donated by Nunawading Birds & Pets. The Lucky Name Badge Prize, a $15 Voucher also from Nunawading Birds & Pets was won by Simon Mallinson. Raffle winners for the evening were: Chris Farrell won a 20kg Bag of Seed donated by Dandenong Stock Feeds, Mick Harrison won Nest Box donated by Joe Bolyos. John Pope and Mark Dietrich won the Zupreem Cockatoo Biscuits and Pellets donated by Matt Baird and Suzie Lycett won the Photo donated by Gina Wilson.

2.  New Members: Lou welcomed the new members and thanked them for attending and commented that he hoped they enjoyed their association with the ASA.

3.   Next Month’s Program:     Michael Lee    “Macaws”

4. Lost and Found: (TH).. Lost…Scarlet Macaw..Bacchus Marsh area

5.   Service Items:  (JP)At the back of the Hall.

                                                           Other Business:

1.  Lou discussed the Bird Expos for 2018 and the Department Amnesty.

2.   Mark Hill spoke about the set up of the ASA Facebook page suggesting that it was now available for members to access and join. The page is for communication between members and of upcoming events etc…..To join you search for Avicultural Society of Australia and when prompted supply your membership number as it is a members only Facebook page.

3.  The Committee is investigating the possibility of a holding a “Conference” which would be held in the Bendigo area on the 12th, 13th &14th of April 2019. Arrangements are in the very early stages at this point .Further information and details as they become available.

4.   Committee Member John Pope spoke about his visit to Templestowe College and introduced Teacher Jasmine Pantelidis who spoke about the Schools Animal Program and in particular the Bird Aviaries. Jasmine was directed to John via the Healesville Sanctuary and John tabled the correspondence at the February committee meeting for discussion. As the schools representative, Jasmine was requesting some direction, assistance and specific recommendations in setting up the Aviaries. The Committee has offered assistance with a Society Membership to the School, Books and individual members to give assistance where required. John will act as the liaison person between the School and the Society. We hope that this assistance to a “very eager group of students” will enable them to set up and enjoy their school Aviary collection and take a long term view of Aviculture.

5. John Pope informed members of the upcoming visit to Ballarat on the 14th and 15th of April. The bus will leave from Upwey at approximately 8.30am on Saturday morning and proceed to Ballarat with one or two stops along the way. It is intended to visit 8-10 aviaries over the weekend and hopefully include Ballarat Bird World. The cost will be $200 with a $50 deposit to be paid by the March meeting and the balance paid one week before the trip. The cost includes Bus Hire, Lunch Saturday, overnight accommodation at Ballarat and Breakfast and Lunch Sunday with wives and partners most welcome.

For Bookings or any further information please feel free to contact John Pope on 0419 691 869

6.  Warwick Remington advised that we had purchased some Parrot photographic books from Barry and Julie Blanch. There are 5 books in the series which describes cockatoos, Rosellas, Blue Bonnets, Lorikeets and Australian parrots. They will retail to members at $15 each.

Meeting closed at 9.45pm and members enjoyed a chat over a coffee.



January 2018



The Chairman Lou Dall’Est opened the January meeting of the Society at 8.16pm welcoming the 65 members in attendance.

Visitors and long distance travellers: Lou thanked all long distance travellers for their attendance this evening.

Business Arising: Nil

Financial Statement: As posted    Moved: Warwick Remington        Seconded: Chris Farrell

Main Feature:

The main feature for the evening with the theme “General Husbandry” was presented as two parts. Firstly Barrie Wicks was introduced by Lou Dall’Est and he explained the method he uses to produce live food for his Finches. Barrie’s method involves placing Bran in the bottom of a ventilated container, add Beetles, Banana or Carrot as food for the Beetles, cover all with hessian and allow the cycle to begin. The Beetles lay eggs which hatch as meal worms and these are fed to the finches and parrots. Barrie then went on to briefly speak about the production of Maggots which are also used as a source of food for his collection. Lou and Charlie, along with members of the audience joined in for an interesting discussion about the methods used to produce live food for their birds.

Lou then introduced a panel which included Barrie Wicks, Joe Bolyos, Stephen Maric, Warwick Remington and Charlie Mizzi. In total, the panel members represented an enormous amount of experience in aviculture and this was evident as the discussion developed. They were each given the opportunity to express their views on husbandry and the responses included..Observe your birds, clean flights and quality seed mix, clean water, feed greens & seeding grasses and purchase young birds of known sex. As the discussion continued the audience became totally involved which created a most enlightening discussion. The Panel was then thanked by Lou and applauded by the members present.

General Business:

  1. Competitions: The Lucky Door Prize…C.J.Dosser won the $10 Voucher donated by Nunawading Birds & Pets. The Lucky Name Badge Prize, a $15 Voucher also from Nunawading Birds & Pets was won by Petro Georgiou. Raffle winners for the evening were: John Brennan won a 20kg Bag of Seed donated by Dandenong Stock Feeds, Emanual Maric won Nest Boxes donated by Joe Bolyos. Jim Bennett and Roland Weeks won the Pellets donated by Matt Baird.
  2. New Members: Lou welcomed the new members and thanked them for attending and commented that he hoped they enjoyed their association with the ASA.
  3. Next Month’s Program:    Member Participation….”Breeding Results & Gadget Night”
  4. Lost and Found: (TH).. Eclectus Parrot lost Taylors Hill area and a pair of Quaker Parrots in the Clarinda area
  5. Service Items:(JP) At the back of the Hall

                                                            Other Business: 

  1. Lou asked if any member was willing to assist a Finch Photographer by allowing him to take some photos of Finches in their Aviary. Please see Graeme Lou for more details.
  2. Lou announced the Committee for 2018 and welcomed new member Chris Farrell for 2018

Meeting closed at 9.35pm and members enjoyed a chat over a coffee.


The Avicultural Society of Australia meets at 8.00pm on the fourth Wednesday of the month. This is a heated venue with wheelchair access and ample adjacent free car parking. The meetings feature guest speakers, Powerpoint colour slide presentations and topics of interest relating to aviary birds.

Avicultural accessories and bird books are available at reduced prices for members. Supper is provided free at the conclusion of the meetings and visitors are always welcome.

The Avicultural Society is always looking for guest speakers

Please contact Barrie Wicks on 9735 5462, or 0407 865 779 or

Email barriewicks40@gmail.com

 

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