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neoow

Alfie's Aviary

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I've been planning to have some kind of outside enclosure for Alfie for a long time. My dad helped me all summer sorting out my garden and redesigning it and we created an area where an aviary could fit. I had to wait until now before I could actually order the aviary as there was no point buying it right before winter as it would sit there unused for most of it. I knew I had a week off work this week so I ordered it in time to be delivered on Monday. Then the snow hit...

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This was the snow from yesterday. It's deeper today.
So now I have a stack of panels in the middle of the garden waiting to be built. The weather forecast looks pretty rotten for the rest of the week with more snow yet to come.
I will post photos once we are able to actually get out there a build it. Then the fun part comes... finding toys and perches to fill it with!
It's going to be dual use- for Alfie and the cats (not at the same time for obvious reasons...!) so I'll need to find some things for the cats to climb on and play with as well.

It will be located at the back of the garden, behind the garage on the right. It will then overlook the whole garden and the back of the house but will get some shade in the afternoons.

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Sure wish your weather would have cooperated!  That's the way is goes it seems.  Can't wait to see pictures of the finished product :)

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More snow incoming this evening and tomorrow. Hmpff!

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Its up! Its up! Its up!

It took myself and my housemate three hours to figure out but we got there in the end. We made a slight mistake when putting the first corner together which affected the roof panels but once we realised and checked the diagram again we fixed it and it went (mostly) without a hitch.

The doors were fairly awkward as we had some fixings and no instructions on what they were for. There also wasn't enough space for the inside door to open outwards so it opens inwards with the bolt on the inside. I can get in and out but it might be easy for Alfie or the cats to open it. Will need to monitor that one and maybe get a bit creative there.

The weather is still too cold for Alfie to go outside but I'm so pleased it's finally there. I can now continue shopping for toys and perches etc to fill it with. I have to bear in mind that the cats will need to use it too so there may be some larger platforms installed for them to climb. I haven't worked that bit out yet.

It is 12ft long, 6ft wide and 6ft tall so lots of space for Alfie to climb and play in. Can't wait for some warmer weather so he can check it out!

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Very nice!  Make sure and take some pics when it gets warm enough to put it to use :)

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Alfie is going to love it and your cats too. Great job !!!

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My housemate added a couple of shelves to the aviary this week to give the cats something to climb/jump up to.

Both cats have been out there now. They had to go separately as one of them had to have some teeth pulled earlier this week and now the other cat hates him because he came back smelling like vets (and she really doesn't like the smell of vets!). So we're letting things settle. I did try to put both of them out there earlier but she was having none of it so I brought her back inside whilst he explored.

Alfie hasn't been out there yet. It's all been a bit crazy with the cats and I've been ill all week with a bad bout of tonsillitis so despite the weather being perfect for him to go outside and play, I just haven't been able to get him out there yet. I have, however, been stockpiling lots of large boings and toys for him to play on once he finally gets out there.

Will take photos/videos as soon as I get the opportunity to get him outside and settled in!

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That’s cool!  So you are going to use it for your cats, and Alfie?

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On 4/22/2018 at 5:09 PM, Talon said:

That’s cool!  So you are going to use it for your cats, and Alfie?

Yes it's going to be multi-use for the cats and Alfie... but not to share at the same time for obvious reasons! Alfie has a box full of toys, perches and swings out there so when he is able to go outside I can hang them all up and make it fun for him. I can then pack these away when the cats go out there. They will have the two shelves and the box to climb on. I'm also on the lookout for some trees/branches I can use for them to climb on and destroy.

My cats are indoor cats so it allows them to enjoy the outdoors in a safe way. I wouldn't trust them to go outside and roam because there are a lot of neighbourhood cats they could start a fight with and I wouldn't be able to forgive myself if they got injured or worse, as they have never been outside on their own before. So the enclosure should give them enough space to climb, play and lounge around and enjoy some sunshine.

Similarly, Alfie doesn't go outside unless in a carrier, so this will give him the opportunity to enjoy some space to fly around and play outside in the sunshine... when we get some more!!

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That’s wonderful! You gave me thoughts for my indoor cat  !

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Both cats went out in the aviary for a few minutes when I got home from work as it was sunny and warm enough for them. Unfortunately it started to rain soon after so I had to bring them back inside again as they didn't appreciate getting wet and I didn't want to rock the boat too much as they were obviously a little on edge. Although they are getting along fine in the house now they were a bit creeped out by being in there together and didn't get much chance to settle before I had to bring them back inside. Wish the weather would make it's mind up! It's been sunny all day but as soon as I got them out there a big grey cloud formed and it keeps raining on and off.
It's a bit too cold to let Alfie out at the moment but the weather forecast looks good for this weekend. Fingers crossed that I can finally get him out there to see what he thinks! I missed a golden opportunity last week because I was ill when we had some really warm weather so I hope I get the chance to let him try it out this weekend.

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Looks great.  I know you put the platforms out there for the cats but my GreycieMae would be all over those!

 

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18 hours ago, SRSeedBurners said:

Looks great.  I know you put the platforms out there for the cats but my GreycieMae would be all over those!

 

Yeah no doubt Alfie will find his way up there too. I'll probably position food/water up there so it's easy for him to get too.
We deliberately bought the wood with the bark on the edges so he has something to destroy too, so again it's multipurpose for Alfie and the cats. :)

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Well today has been an adventure for Alfie! We have had some glorious weather this weekend so I decided to get Alfie out into the aviary for the first time. (The cats have had their fun earlier this weekend)

It might have taken me two and half hours to coax him into the travel cage.... (he was being a stubborn thing today and didn't want to play ball!) but it was totally worth it. After two hours of sitting on top of the travel cage inside the aviary and taking everything in, Alfie is now happily exploring the aviary and his new toys. He is now even making the odd vocalisation - mostly directed at the neighbours' noisy dog. He barked back at it and then whistled to it. 😂

I am so grateful that Alfie takes to changes so well. I'm sure other birds would have taken ages to come out and explore. I think 2 hours is pretty damn good.

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That's a really nice setup.   He's going to love that the more he gets to use it.   I love to see them out getting their sun.

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Wow, looks great!  Alfie seems to be taking right to it.  Loved the pics :)

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7 hours ago, SRSeedBurners said:

That's a really nice setup.   He's going to love that the more he gets to use it.   I love to see them out getting their sun.

He seemed to be enjoying himself today. I'm hoping that will continue the more he gets to go out there. He was out there for nearly 7 hours in the end. I made sure to provide plenty of shade as it was a particularly hot day (for us, anyway) and he doesn't spend much time outside. He investigated three toys- the bridge, one of the boings and a swing. He also discovered the bark edging on the front of one of the shelves and started shredding that.

All in all, I think it has been a success and I think he liked it.

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Also... the cats definitely love going out there, even though we haven't finished sorting toys/enrichment for them yet. They were very jealous of Alfie being out there and were very vocal about it!! 😂 I might have to set up a rota for who goes out when at this rate!

 

 

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Posted (edited)

 

Alfie got to go out to the aviary again today. It was his second outing.
There was a lot less faffing around today - he went into his travel cage quickly and spent most of the day outside. I set things up the same as I did last time so everything was roughly in the same place. He was happy to explore within minutes of getting out of the travel cage and was moving around a lot more this time.
 

Edited by neoow
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Alfie likes to crawl the wire like GreycieMae.  I'll bet he was totally pooped after coming in from a day in that aviary!

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21 hours ago, SRSeedBurners said:

Alfie likes to crawl the wire like GreycieMae.  I'll bet he was totally pooped after coming in from a day in that aviary!

Yes he was doing a lot of exploring yesterday and so lots of climbing. I got him in and he went straight back into his cage, had a bit of a preen and then it was feet (or rather, foot!) up and rest for the remainder of the evening! 😂

 

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