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Old 08-01-2014, 08:26 PM
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Small spot of rust on Kiwi's cage- to worry or not?

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The latch that "locks" the top of Kiwi's cage has a small spot of rust I noticed this morning. Looks like where it would scrape when I latch it up (it has always been a pain to latch, a tad too secure lol). I do open the top every day (sometimes it's opened/closed multiple times in a day, if I go out), so it's something that gets a lot of daily wear and tear. Not the greatest photo ever, but the rust is on the the upper part of the bottom half of the latch in a line. I've had this cage for about 4 years, and have never seen Kiwi mess with the latch. Heck, I don't even know if that little rust could hurt a bird.



Is this something to ignore, or possibly look into a replacement latch? Any clue where to even find such a latch in stainless?
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Old 08-01-2014, 08:41 PM
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Re: Small spot of rust on Kiwi's cage- to worry or not?

If it was a "rusty old cage" then of course it goes without saying it would be bad, as "technically" the rust is poisonous. BUT, I would venture to say that MANY cages out there have a minuscule amount of rust somewhere on it especially if it's more or less 10 years old. That's MANY people's cages out there. I doubt most parrots go straight to a minuscule rust spot and lick the exact area!
Robin has some minute spots here and there, and Raven's had it on the screws. I read that hairspray removes it. I bought the cheapest White Rain hairspray and a firm toothbrush, and it worked. It still has some stain but it really got much better. Just spray clean with water. As long as there isn't an extensive amount or flaking rust (which there isn't) should be okay. Make sure you don't spray Kiwi with hairspray or you might just set a new hairstyle on him
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Old 08-01-2014, 09:25 PM
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Re: Small spot of rust on Kiwi's cage- to worry or not?

I kind of figured it wasn't a big deal, but I also had some *crazy scenario* in my head that there could be 50 different ways leaving it be could kill him that I never knew. This cage was never "top of the line" in the first place, but I'm trying to keep it in livable shape for at least a few more years. Being we have moved 2X since we got Kiwi and lived in small apartments with little available space, I don't want to get some bird mansion that costs $1500 and have to get rid of it because it won't font in the next place or something (especially since Kiwi barely spends time in his cage anyways). Once we buy a house, I want to get him a bigger cage overall and a stainless one
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Old 08-01-2014, 11:51 PM
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Re: Small spot of rust on Kiwi's cage- to worry or not?

RG's right, if your bird doesn't worry with the rust, now I might be inclined, if it bothered me, to use the hairspray method to remove it when Kiwi's out of the cage for several hours.

Powdered rust (iron oxide) in small doses, by itself is insoluble and not poisonous and though not the best way to administer it, can be absorbed by a body low in iron, yours, mine or Kiwi's and a body that does not need the iron, will pass it out. Now if you introduce an acid to rust, depending on the acid, you can can turn it into iron chloride, iron nitrate or iron chloride. Also, if you cook with cast iron pots/pans, cooking tomatoes or applesauce in them will cause an amount of iron to leach into your food...get a solubility table & look it up.

Now, as RG mentioned, flaking rust is a different story, and while I know of cases where chelation therapy has been used to remove flaked rust from both 'tiels and budgies, there is always the chance that the rust flakes might lance a bird's digestive system.

As to finding a stainless steel latch to replace yours...maybe and maybe not...there are a couple of places that offer different types of replacement parts, but if your cage's manufacturer can't help you out, you're probably in for quite a bit of research. I might offer a warning before you start unscrewing screws...not all hidden nuts (nuts inside tubing) are fixed/tacked/welded & when you unscrew them, they fall loose inside the tubing.

Hope this helps.....

Last edited by weco; 08-01-2014 at 11:54 PM. Reason: Iron sulphate instead of the second iron chloride
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Old 08-01-2014, 11:58 PM
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Re: Small spot of rust on Kiwi's cage- to worry or not?

Weco, thanks for elaborating from the more scientific side
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