Easier Difficult Nuts
Large nuts in the shell, like walnuts and Brazil nuts, are too difficult for my birds to open. Previously, I started to open them for them, but that’s too easy. So, I wanted to make them easier, but difficult, but not too difficult that they are impossible or make the birds give up. I devised the perfect system which requires several steps and a lot of time for the birds to get to the nut, but nothing so difficult that will cause them to give up. This is a very easy foraging toy to set up, but will give your birds at least 40 minutes a day of foraging activity if they take to it. And it takes me under 5 minutes a day to do.
Step one: Open the nut, a little bit. If using a walnut, use a butter knife right in the seam. Hold the nut tight in your hand, and insert the butter knife right in the seam, not very deep, and pry up while holding the nut tight. Hopefully you’ll end up with something like this:
Remove some of the nut meat with the knife to make room for the stuffing. You can reserve the nut pieces for another foraging toy.
Then, get some paper – crinkle paper from the gift shop/dollar store; shreds from your shredder; or even newspaper/plain paper towel (up to you, and what you feel is safe for your bird!) and stuff it into the hole. Like so:
You should end up with something like this:
THEN, I take it a step further and put the stuffed nut into a small cardboard box (regular readers will know that will know that my birds already know how to rip open cardboard boxes, and do so regularly).
Finally, and this step is optional, I put the box into my metal hanging nut cage. (You can just hang the box in the bird’s cage if you don’t have a metal nut cage):