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Ally Cat's Mommy
07-09-2005, 04:16 PM
Thanks to all of you who left comments and replies in my other thread.

I called the local shelter today, and no-one has reported a budgie missing. They will put him on the local radio station's "Pet Report" on Wednesday morning (they list lost and found animals to try and find the owners), but the sanctuary manager said that as she hasn't has a phone call from a worried owner, the bird was probably released on purpose. (Local culture here is that if you have a pet and you are fed up with it, you just release it "back into the wild" - they do it with cats, dogs, birds etc :rolleyes:

Anyway the sactuary loaned me a cage, as I don;t want to buy one and then have to return the bird to it's owner, but if no-one has claimed him by Wednesday, then I am keeping him, so I have a few questions:

1. How long should it take to tame him enough that he will climb onto my hand etc, and how should I go about it?

2. What size cage should I buy, and what things do I need in the cage?

3. Are they happier with another budgie to keep them company? If so should I get another males, or a female? (Also what size cage for two??)

4. Re temperatures, what is a good temp to keep them at - we have the aircons running as it is very hot here, but some parts of the house get a bit cold

5. Should he be covered at night for sleep?

Sorry - I have never had a bird (my Mum said they were dirty and messy, so I was never allowed one :( ), so forgive me for all the stupid questions!!

Here's another pic taken today:

http://www.imagestation.com/picture/sraid177/p67e205c59c42264d4d0a146758cc3051/f35655be.jpg

moosmom
07-09-2005, 04:55 PM
Ally Cat's Mommy,

I grew up with budgies!! They are great pets! I would definitely get him a companion. They love company.

At night, cover the cage so. NEVER put a budgie outside, or in a draft as they chill easily.

I'd go to a reputable pet store and ask them what size cage you'll need.

As far as training them, it takes alot of time and patience, but it is SO worth it!!

To train them to go on your hand, (and it will take time) put your hand in the cage so they get used to it, and speak softly. Try to do it a couple times a day. As the days progress, put your finger out and near his feet. Eventually he'll hop on it once he knows that the hand isn't going to hurt him.

Get a cuddle bone. It's a white thing that helps them keep their beaks trimmed.

If you want him to talk, just sit by his cage and repeat things. Eventually he will get the idea.

When I was a kid, we had a pair of budgies. We'd let them out around the house and they'd actually land on our airedale terriers!! The dogs didn't mind it at all.

Good luck and keep us posted.

Tweety_Pie
07-09-2005, 06:20 PM
Aww, he is such a cute birdie!!!

When I first got Tweety, she was the first bird I ever had. I knew NOTHING about budgies!! I found this website and it was so amazingly helpful to me!! It will answer pretty much all your questions. If you want to keep it so you don't have bird seed all over the place, you can buy very cheap mesh like nets that slip around the bottom of the cage. I have one myself because Tweety and Dexter love throwing their seeds EVERYWHERE!! If you don't know what im talking bout I'd be happy to take a picture so you can see what it looks like:)

"Are they happier with another budgie to keep them company? If so should I get another males, or a female? (Also what size cage for two??)"

If you get another budgie, he will become more attached to the other budgie instead of you. But if you keep him by himself he will become more attached to you! If you are planning to keep him by himself, and you are worried he might get bored...when you add toys change them around every once in a while, as it will keep him entertained:)

When I got Tweety she was NOT tame at all!! It took about 2 months just to get her sitting on my hand...in the cage! But remember all birds are different so it might take less time for your little guy. Eventually I ended up getting Tweety a friend (Dexter). I chose a male hand-tamed budgie because I heard males are more mello than females. I wanted to see if it would mello her out, and it did! Before I got Dexter, she was scared and very nervous.. but now with him I can tell she feals alot safer.

You can also buy sand paper pearches incase you are worried about his nails getting to long. I bought sand paper pearches and I put one in every couple of weeks. A cuttle bone is always good too!!!

Good Luck with your little guy!! Keep us updated:)!


Also, here is the website I was talking about:)

http://www.budgies.org/info/faq.html

tikeyas_mom
07-11-2005, 08:41 PM
i am happy he flew into the arms of a loving pettalker :D..

How long should it take to tame him enough that he will climb onto my hand etc, and how should I go about it? clip his wings first.. you will never be able to tame him if his wings are fully grown. if you clip them (or a get a local vet to) he wont be able to fly away. Tamming varies from bird to bird, some birds are untamable, others can be tamed within a couple weeks. just take your time and be patient.

here is a great site!! they have step by step taming advise for new owners :). Click HERE (http://www.lisashea.com/petinfo/articles/bird_hand.html)


2. What size cage should I buy, and what things do I need in the cage? minimum 18" x 18" inches with 1/2" bar spacing


3. Are they happier with another budgie to keep them company? If so should I get another males, or a female? (Also what size cage for two??) Budgies are highly social birds. they love company. They thrive being with other birds and or people. keep in mind if you get another bird it will be harder to tame your current one..

4. Re temperatures, what is a good temp to keep them at - we have the aircons running as it is very hot here, but some parts of the house get a bit cold place your budgies cage away from doors, windows, vents, drafts, air conditioning, and heaters.. the cage should be in a room where people often visit. like a living room.

5. Should he be covered at night for sleep? yes.

Giselle
07-11-2005, 11:05 PM
Originally posted by tikeyas_mom


How long should it take to tame him enough that he will climb onto my hand etc, and how should I go about it? clip his wings first.. you will never be able to tame him if his wings are fully grown.


Not necessarily ;) I breed budgies (mainly for color and temperament) and Apricot was parent-raised and is full flighted and he's as tame as ever! In fact, he LOVES to play with my hands. Whenever I toss the bell around his cage, he'll give the signs of happiness (fluttering, doing the feather shake, clucking, head bob) and climb over my hands with ambition and exuberance. Clipped wings certainly do speed up taming and training, but it isn't impossible :)

As for your questions, allow me to write my novel :D

1. How long should it take to tame him enough that he will climb onto my hand etc, and how should I go about it?
It usually takes from a couple weeks to a couple months depending on the frequency of the training. Ideally, training should happen multiple times *each day*. In a perfect world, one should interact with the budgie each day, around 2-4 times a day for 5-15 minutes. I admit, most people cannot keep this rigorous training up, so this sets taming and training back a week or two. To train your budgie, I agree with Tikeyas_mom's link. The very first thing to do is to get the budgie to trust and be excited about your hands (via feeding seeds by hand). Then, so on and so on as is descripted in the link :-P

2. What size cage should I buy, and what things do I need in the cage?

The BARE MINIMUM for a single budgie is 14"x14"x14", granted the budgie is let out frequently throughout the day. However, a more comfortable cage size would be 16"x16"x16", though an 18" cubed cage is wonderful as well ;) What should you buy? TOYS!!!!! Budgies LOVE bells and shiny objects like mirrors and keys. You can find budgie-safe toys at your local pet shop.

3. Are they happier with another budgie to keep them company? If so should I get another males, or a female? (Also what size cage for two??)
If you plan to keep this budgie as a sole companion and want him to bond strongly with you, then I'd advise you to not get another budgie. However, if you simply cannot allow the budgie time outside of his cage regularly and you can't give him more than 20-30 minutes of your time each day, then yes, I'd advise a budgie friend. Now, what's greyt about budgie males is that they tend to be more gregarious and jovial. Therefore, you can opt with either gender- male, female, it doesn't really matter. However, when dealing with female budgies, you need to prevent the pair from mating and producing fertile eggs. Also, even though a female budgie doesn't need to mate to produce fertile eggs, she can still produce blank eggs which can cause her to egg bind (and die, if not treated quickly). As for a suitable cage for a pair of budgies: 18" cubed sounds about right.

4. Re temperatures, what is a good temp to keep them at - we have the aircons running as it is very hot here, but some parts of the house get a bit cold

Since you have a 3-4 month old budgie, I'd suggest keeping the temp at a steady low 70 degrees Fahrenheit. I also agree that you should protect the cage from drafts. To avoid drafts, avoid placing the cage in hallways, near windows, and doors. Also, if you want to know if a certain place is drafty, light a candle and examine the smoke. If the smoke frequently shifts, do NOT place the budgie's cage in that area. If the smoke is straight, this place is presumably draft-free.

5. Should he be covered at night for sleep?

Sure, why not?:p It's really your choice, but it is advised to cover the cage at night. Use a dark color like black or brown (use neutrals).

And I noticed some people are talking about cuttlefish bone. Cuttlefish bone and mineral blocks are highly recommended for all budgies and, imo, no budgie should be without one. Cuttlefish bones provide an excellent source of calcium while mineral blocks provide trace minerals absent in a seed only diet. Which brings me to my next topic...Food! I highly suggest finding some pellets (brands include Lafeber, Roudybush, Zupreem, Harrisons, and KayTee). You can pulverize these pellets and dump them into a separate food cup for your budgie to nibble at every now and then. Meanwhile, continue to feed a good budgie-specific seed with nutritious and yummy dark greens (this includes kale, occasional spinach, bok choy, etc. etc. NOTE: Iceberg lettuce has very little nutritional value as it is mostly water).

Whew! I hope I didn't bore you :p

Edit: Is Mr. Budgie in a cylinder cage? If so, I'd advise to go out and buy a square or rectangular cage as soon as possible. Round cages confuse and upset birds, as well as cause the chafing of their wings.

Ally Cat's Mommy
07-14-2005, 03:06 PM
Thanks for the great info and links!! I don't know what I would do without your help!!!

Here's the latest:

1. Despite ads in the local newspaper, plus listing him as "found and in foster care" with the shelter he hasn't been claimed. (I even got 2 of the local DJs on the radio who I am friends with to announce on their show, and still no-one claimed him, so I think I can keep him with a clear concience!:D

I have already found a great cage for him - Hubby is back from Europe on Sunday so we will go pick it up on Monday (I dont have much cash on me at the moment, and this little Pet Shop which wells bird supplies doesn't take credit cards!!). I will be sure to get him a nice big one so he will have room for a friend. I looked in the shop for another Budgie to keep him company, but all their budgies seem much older and more mature, and MUCH bigger than him, so I think I might either wait a while or try another shop for one which is closer to him in age and size.

Re his food, none of the shops I have tried yet have the pellets, I will probably have to order them online and get them couriered over. (The Pet Shops here are absolutely RUBBISH - some have only dog accessories and goldfish, and some are dowright inhumane, so I refuse to buy anything from them. I am giving him special Budgie Seed, and also those Millett "branches"- he LOVES them!! Also some dark greens, and I have tried him with thin apple slices but he doesn't like them yet! I have also put a cuttlefish bone in his cage, but so far he hasn't touched it. I get the impression he wasn't well looked after before - he hasnt got a taste for different foods, and up till yesterday was quiet and not playing :(

YESTERDAY for the first time he played with the mirror and bell I have hung in his cage. He has also been shaking his feathers a bit, and chirping too !!! (Before yesterday he was totally silent).

I followed the advice here and on the web sites you gave me - for the first few days I only put my hand into the cage for water, food etc, and he freaked out every time! After that he was a bit calmer, but I still didn't touch him. Today he let me stroke him for a few seconds!!!! He is such a cutie!!!

tikeyas_mom
07-14-2005, 04:10 PM
From experience, All the budgies I have owned, I found it alot easier to tame with their wings clipped... because if they have full grown wings they use them to FLY away once you get the bird out of the cage... and it isnt fun trying to catch budgie as he uses your house as a flying GYM!! haha ;)

DJFyrewolf36
07-14-2005, 05:12 PM
He sure does look cute!

I love budgies. My moms first pair was a rescue from these really icky people who smoked near them all the time and never cleaned the cage. They were fed mouse food and as a result were stunted. Poor little guys. Once in good conditons though they opened up and were singing fools :D I find though that people seem to think budgies are "throw away" birds :(. They really are great little critters though, and easily tameable if you've got the patence!

I'm glad you rescued this little guy :D It makes me happy to see a birdy in a good home!

Have you picked out a name?

Giselle
07-14-2005, 05:43 PM
Originally posted by tikeyas_mom
From experience, All the budgies I have owned, I found it alot easier to tame with their wings clipped... because if they have full grown wings they use them to FLY away once you get the bird out of the cage... and it isnt fun trying to catch budgie as he uses your house as a flying GYM!! haha ;)

Well, I can't argue with that. It all depends on how the budgie was fed/trained as a chick (IMO). Apricot was bred by myself and so he was parent raised. However, I handled him on a daily basis and so he's as tame as a handfed now. Unforunately, most budgie owners can't change how their babies were raised, so wing clipping is perhaps the most humane procedure to quicken taming and training.

Alley Cat's Mom, I think it's hilarious how you got your DJ friends to announce about your budgie on the radio. LOL. How generous of them:D It sounds like you're doing fabulous and I'm glad you've been introducing him to so many different food items. My only advice is to not fret about him not eating the apple slices. In my experience, budgies like leafy dark greens (carrot tops, bok choy leaves, parsely) better than fruits. Weird, huh?
I can't believe he's letting you pet him! That evokes a well deserved "AWWWWWWW"! You're doing a greyt job!!!!

P.S. Do you need some pointers on picking out a young, female budgie? I'd be more than willing to help! Also, the "large" budgies you see at the pet shop *may* be English budgies, which are naturally double the size of your budgie :) Or they could just be old, LOL. Good Luck taming and training your baby. And I agree with DJFyrewolf...Have you named him yet??????

Logan
07-14-2005, 06:17 PM
Julie, I missed your earlier post and will have to go search it out. But what a wonderful surprise!

I only have experience, limited as it is, with the Cockatiels, but I absolutely love being a bird owner. If I didn't have so many other pets (dogs and cats), I would love to have more birds. :)

I would definitely bond with this bird before you introduce another one. We had Roger for 3 months before we introduced Milly. It was enough time for him to know us and bond with us. She is now his "best" friend, but he responds well to Helen and me, still.

Best of luck to you! I'm delighted for you!!!!!! :D

tikeyas_mom
07-14-2005, 06:18 PM
Originally posted by Giselle
Well, I can't argue with that. It all depends on how the budgie was fed/trained as a chick (IMO).

agree 100%
all my budgies were bought from petstores, or givin to me.. they were not hand raised at all.