DVD Review


Expert Companion Bird Care Series: Volume III

Avian Studios

Dr. M. Scott Echols & Dr. Brian L. Speer

Released: December 2011

Duration: 41 minutes


Available from Parrot Supplies Australia

Hot on the heels of Volume II, this next installment from Avian Studios continues to deliver Scott and Brian’s desire to provide solid, concise, practical and relevant information for bird owners. Each of the four chapters covers essential elements for anyone contemplating or owning a companion bird especially parrots. Scott and Brian have selected experienced presenters to provide each of the chapters from a professional point of view with credibility.


Chapter 1: Specialty Bird Pet Stores

Presented by Michelle Beckley

Michelle brings years of experience as a bird retailer, wholesaler and manufacturer to the author list. Her chapter looks closely at smaller specialty bird stores. She gives the novice great advice on what to expect and look for in your local bird store to make your custom worthwhile. Michelle covers a range of topics from good hygiene practices to purchasing with confidence. Her own business has an Aussie connection with its name of  Kookaburra Bird Shop. While Australia doesn’t have too many specialty bird stores when compared to the US, they are popping up more and more. They usually are a one-stop shop that can focus your attention on bird ownership support compared to a standard diverse species pet store.


Chapter 2: Obtaining Birds from Corporate Pet Stores

Presented by Dr. Tom Edling

Tom is the National Director of Veterinary Medicine for Petco and brings a wealth of explicit avian knowledge to the author mix. He explains the services that a large corporate pet store can bring to the bird owner through their large buying power and corporate approach to business. These large corporate chains are found more often than specialty pet stores in the community and therefore are more often than not the first pet bird  experience for most buyers. Tom’s experience helps the viewer to understand and appreciate these large stores and the role they play in aviculture.


Chapter 3: Grooming Pet Birds

Presented by Dr. Laurie Hess

Bird grooming is always a bone of contention for many as it deals with the controversial practice of wing trimming. While there are arguments for both sides of wing trimming, it is refreshing to see a professional avian veterinarian present the correct way for it to be done and why. Laurie is a Senior Editor for the Journal of Avian Medicine and Surgery and is a past President for the Association of Avian Veterinarians making her a great choice to present bird-grooming care. She demonstrates the entire range of key grooming practices including nail trims, beak trims and the importance of bathing. For those aviculturists that don’t understand their bird’s beak, toenail and wing anatomy, it is concise and visual way to learn it. For example, did you know that your parrot has a sensitive ‘Bill-Tip Organ’ and what its role is?


Chapter 4: DNA Sexing and Identification

Presented by Dr. Joy Halverson

Joy is an expert in DNA Typing and Forensic Identification who presents a fantastic visual guide to the sexing process for birds. While many aviculturists utilise the services of DNA companies to determine the bird’s sex they have bred or intend to sell or purchase, most do not understand  the process and how it is done. This chapter gives all bird owners, novice and experienced alike a simple understanding of the process and avian DNA. I found it fascinating to watch.


Final Say

Avian Studio’s mission to get useful and professional information out into the avian community impresses me. While this DVD series to date has been primarily targeted towards pet bird owners, it still holds relevance for breeding aviculturists too. The chapters are not long-winded and  give all of us insight into the full spectrum of bird ownership. If you’re a novice companion parrot owner, it’s a must see. For the experienced companion  parrot owner, it’s a valuable revision tool. For the novice aviculturist, it  sets the scene on many topics you will encounter on your bird-keeping journey.  And for the experienced aviculturist, it provides useful information enabling  you to support your buyers with professional information to reinforce your  reputation as a credible and experienced aviculturist.

With the downturn in many avicultural clubs and  organisations due to busy lifestyles and the technology age, much of the  information in this DVD that we learnt from others is not being passed on as  readily. Scott and Brian’s Expert Companion Bird Care Series fills the gap to  bring professional and expert knowledge into the avian community that is  trusted and essential. Their series is another valuable tool for all of us that  enjoy and support responsible bird ownership, novice and experienced alike.

Shane Hancock

Vice President of the Parrot Society of Australia

Published in Parrot
Society of Australia News
, March, 2012

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