The American Pictorial Home Book
or Housekeeper's Encyclopedia - online book

A reference manual of household management in Victorian times.

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502                                       CANARY BIRDS.
Powdered Potash.—If powdered, thrown and scattered in the haunts of rats, it will drive them away.
Dead Rats.—To free a room from the smell.—Take a small earthern vessel into which put saltpetre, a little, or more accord­ing to the size of the room; pour upon this enough oil of vitrol to separate it, and shut the room close for one hour, the offensive smell will be gone.
To Destroy Rats.—Cats are the most reliable rat-traps. There is no difficulty in poisoning rats, but they die in the wall, produc­ing a dreadful effluvia, which it takes a long time to get rid of; remove or cover all water vessels, even the well or cistern, when poison is attempted. Set traps and put inside a few drops of rhodium the rats are fond of it. As it produces thirst, let a large shallow open vessel of water be left in the rear yard. They will drink and die there.
To Drive away Rats.—Put chloride of lime in their holes.
Bait fo Catch Rats and Mice.—If a drop of oil of rhodium be poured upon some bait in a common wire or spring trap, and the trap be set in an infested locality, and in a short time the cage will be occupied by vermin. Rats and mice possess great liking for the oil and will risk anything to obtain it.
Canary, to Distinguish the Sex.—The throat of the male vibrates while singing. This never happens with the hen. The males are larger, more yellow about the throat and in the pinions of the wings. The body of the male is larger and more tapering.
Best Singers.—Birds with long, straight and tapering bodies are the best singers. By putting 2 or 3 birds together they will vie with each other.
Drooping.—When this is the case, give the bird a little powdered charcoal mixed with bread and egg.
Lice.—Put sticks in the bottom of the cage, and the lice will col­lect on them.
For a Broken Leg or Wing.—Put the bird in a cage without perches and covered at the bottom with soft hay. Let its food be within easy reach, and keep the cage covered.
Moulting.—Avoid cold; give plenty of sun shine, some bread and egg, with saffron water.
Fits.—Cut two of the claws short enough to bleed.
Egg-Bound from Cold,—Give a little moist sugar; anoint the abdomerf with sweet oil; if this fails, give a drop of castor oil.
Iron Dust.—Mixed in with the straw for bird's or canary's nests