Remote Weighing Device For Small Birds



Equipment: Rice Lake Weighing Systems model #RLS3020 mini beam aluminum sensor; comes in load ratings of 2 lbs. (+/- 0.10 grams) and 5 lbs. (+/- 0.20 grams). Standard 25 ft cable to attach to the indicator but can special order with longer cable (add $3.00 per foot of cable). Match with O’Haus model #I5S digital indicator. Price for set is ~ $600. Should be available through any O’Haus scale products distributor. Note – the 5 lb. model comes with an overload warning feature that the 2 lb. capacity model doesn’t have.



The Set Up: The scale itself is a strip of metal measuring ~ 3/8 “ wide x 3” long. This metal strip has a lead wire to the 25 ft cable soldered to one end. The metal strip also has a small hole drilled in each end. Using these holes you bolt a small mounting bracket to one end and fix a perch to the other. Attach the mounting bracket to a firm vertical surface near a feed station or other area frequented by the birds. We mount it over the elevated food platforms the birds normally feed off of. One trick some keepers use is to move the food bowl with favored food items to the outside of the cage panel when needing a weight. Then the birds sit on the perch longer trying to figure out how to get to the food that is normally accessible but now just out of reach. We routinely weigh birds as small as North American Wood Warblers (6 – 10 grams) on the 2 lb. capacity scales.


Ken Reininger
Curator of Birds

North Carolina Zoo