Birds won’t drink their worming medication? Try red cordial.

Worming and parasite control syrups administered through your bird’s drinking water can make the water taste “funny,” leading birds to avoid drinking it.

A “home remedy” that’s been used by breeders for decades is to mix in a small amount of red cordial to give it a sweeter fruity taste. The volume to add varies depending on who you ask, but the general consensus seems to hover at around 5ml/litre.

Breeders have also claimed that adding red cordial has anti-bacterial properties and can ward off stomach bugs. This “old wive’s tale” about red cordial has existed for a long time, but recent-ish research by Dr Heather Cavanagh has suggested there may be some truth to these claims.