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Thread: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

  1. #1
    Brand New Egg CrispyBits's Avatar
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    Question New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    Hello!

    Yesterday I bought a lovely 4 month old grey male from the pet shop named Blue - he lived with about 12 other birds in quite a small cage. Since he's "moved in" he hasn't made a sound, and just sits on his perch, he literally doesn't move. He doesn't make a noise, he's like a little statue. I understand it must be very disconcerting being on his own.

    His cage currently has a cuttlebone, a large mirror with a bell, a natural branch perch (one that you attach to the cage bars), a iodine block, a round swing, a ladder and a fruit seed stick. Does this sound too much or not enough? Of course he has fresh seed and water, but I have yet to see him eat or drink.

    Yesterday I let him have a fly around my bedroom (no dangers) and he perched quite happily on my finger. I've now left him in his cage to get used to it, and pretty much spent all day chatting to him, playing music and saying his name over and over.

    My questions:
    • How long will it take him to come out of his shell?

    • Is there anything I can do to make him feel more at home?
    • What can I feed him besides mixed seed?
    • How long do I leave him before I try handling him?



    We've tried popping in a grape and a bit of lettuce but as he's not eating they wen't brown so we've removed them. I put him by the window in the day so he has something to look at, and in the evening we put his cage close to us.

    Any advice would be great! Thank you very much!!

    I've uploaded a quick picture of Blue here:


    Last edited by CrispyBits; 02-18-2014 at 01:56 PM.


  2. #2
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    Aww! Blue is just precious! From what you have written I don't think there is one thing you have missed to get him started living his life with you. It is very normal that he isn't going to eat and drink. I've had budgies that have gone for up to four days without making a sound or eating and drinking, so I know your concern. You could get some millet sprigs and hang one of them in his cage close to the food cup, and also, since he is out flying and is setting on your finger, gently offer him that millet sprig in one hand while having him perched on your other hand (finger). He just might take a little of it. Millet is good nutrition and also has moisture in it, so if he hasn't had any water, the moisture in the millet will keep him hydrated and the seed will give him a little nutrition.

    I feed a mixed seed to my budgie and cockatiel. My birds also love red and green leaf lettuce, cilantro, dry cereals like cherrios and grapenuts (not sure you would have them in your country), but dry oatmeal, or quiona, or even wheat bran or wheat germ would be fine. You can mix some of those in the seed cup, or give him a separate seed cup with those dry cereals to him. I also feed pieces of whole wheat bread as well. I have found budgies are not into fruit much, so the fruit seed stick you got him was a great idea. Raw apple pieces are a hit for my birds. I wash the apple thoroughly and just cut it up in small pieces and place a piece between the cage bars. You also could feed the apple peels if you wash them thoroughly as well. Never feed apple seeds or other fruit seeds to him, because in my research, I have found they can be fatal to birds if they eat them.

    You might consider googling "good foods to feed budgies". There should be some great information to read. And while you are googling good foods, be sure to google "foods" that budgies should not and/or never eat. (Thankfully we have the world wide web that has so much information on it for us).

    I am giving you an A++ for all that you thought up to do for him. Sitting by his cage, the music, singing to him, talking to him, etc. etc. are super. My birds love to go on Youtube and see the birdies. We watch cockatiels and budgies, and they LOVE it! You can use the millet I spoke about as a training tool as well. But for now, I would just offer it to him so his little tummy will have a little food in it until he starts eating. Please let us know how things go for him. I fully expect him to be chittering and chattering to you in a day or so. Letting him fly free will also help him to trust your home and you and make him happy. Congratulations on bringing him home Blue! He is a beautiful and his name fits him perfectly!!
    Last edited by maxollie; 02-18-2014 at 02:04 PM.

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    Brand New Egg CrispyBits's Avatar
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    Hello again Maxollie! You're advice is super, and thank you for your compliments! How long have you owned birds?
    I actually was supposed to buy him some millet and forgot, I'll get him some tomorrow. Is the forum normally so quiet?

    A brill update, he has just been gnawing like a mad thing on his fruit stick! And then keeps making an expression like he's licking his lips! I don't know how often budgies drink but I'll make sure to give him the millet so he's got some liquid in him. The cereal is a great idea (and I eat it like its going outta fashion so I now have someone to share it with!) He also ate seed out my hand earlier. He is still very easily spooked though, so taking it slow.

    Do I put my hand in each day with millet, or just my hand? I am stumped on the training/taming thing, as the internet offers such conflicting advice. Is it best to let him settle in his cage first, then start by putting a hand in the cage until he stops flapping and panicking?

    I'm honestly in love, he is the sweetest little fellow. When we said "Blue! Blue!" about 5 minutes ago, he chirped twice at us! It's only day 2 but these are good signs I take it?? I feel really bad I didn't get him a little friend, but we live in an apartment building and was worried about disturbing our neighbours(!!)

    Oooh? Any toy recommendations or ideas? Thanks so much again!


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    Egg's Cracking... soliel's Avatar
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    congratulations on your new friend Sophy and wish you have happy time with him, he looks so cute and apparently he is friendly too that will help you taming him, my first pair did not eat for a day when I first got them but on the next day when they watched us enough they started at their food with a good appetite so keep trying with him and follow Ellen advice on feeding him and I hope that you have a health happy friend

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    Tailfeather
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    Zahra has three new babies that her pair of budgies hatched. They are precious. She has posted pics on another thread. See if you can find that thread and take a peek at them. She really has done a great job with the breeding process considering she just got into it. Her little babies are sooooooooo sweet.

    All birds are afraid of hands, especially when you first bring them home. That is just a natural instinct that is inbred in them. Since it is only a few days, I would offer him the millet spray, but I wouldn't do the step up quite yet, with your other hand, because he is still so new to his environment. Let him eat off the millet spray as much as he wants. In a few days, when he starts eating his seeds and other foods, then you can limit the millet to mostly training. Personally, I think you have plenty of time for training him. He is so new to his home. Perhaps in another week or 10 days you could begin. Have you been on-line to Youtube and searched for budgie training. You might find something there that would be of interest to you. There is a training called clicker training. I'm not sure if it is used for small birds like budgies, or for bigger parrots only. I do know that it is used for cockatiels. For now, I would offer him the millet spray with my hand as far away from him as possible. Since he is already perching on your finger after flying free, I don't think you are going to have much of a challenge with him when it comes to stepping up and other commands. Many caregivers make up their own rules for training. That is fine as well.

    Now I will be giving my age away to you . . . I'm a grandma of four beautiful girls age 25, 23, 10 and 9. AND I've had budgies in my home for 60 years! So as you now can see, it is no wonder I LOVE my birds. I had my first budgie at 11 years of age. His name was Mickey, and he lived for 9 years, which was a very long time back in the day. I was 20 years old when he died. And back then I only fed him seed, and water. He had a cuttle bone and mineral block, a swing, and a very small cage. So that is a testimony to how long a budgie can live, and some live longer, especially now with all of the quality seeds and other foods we can feed them. I have been very fortunate through all the years to have healthy birds.

    As to toys, it is your choice. Mirrors are always a favorite of budgies. My little budgie that I have now, Muffin, LOVES his two mirror girlfriends. Their names are Bailee and Pearl. And he also loves his swing. And he loves to eat and chitter chatter. He is very intelligent, and makes every sound that my cockatiel makes, only in a "budgie voice"!

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    Brand New Egg CrispyBits's Avatar
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    Thank you Zahra! I've notocied the two cuties in your avatar photo, what are their names? Beautiful colours!
    Ellen, Muffin sounds an absolute character (and a right little charmer by the sound of things!) I will certainly be asking for more of your wisdom, 60 years experience is very impressive!! Do you rehome birds?


  7. #7
    Tailfeather
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    Re: New budgie......what's normal behaviour?

    I have had to rehome birds in the past, only because of having to move to different rental homes. Sometimes here in America, the Landlord has a limit on the number of birds one can have, so I did have to find homes for some of them. It really is heart breaking to have to make that decision, but sometimes it is necessary to make a move as well, so it is a catch 22. The most birds I ever had at one time was (11). I had 9 budgies . . . 4 of them were eggs that hatched. I had a pair of budgies mate and the hen sat on the eggs in a nestbox. I truly never thought I would breed birds, and thought I had 5 male budgies, only to find the four males sparring over the one female on Xmas. About a month later Niki, the male, won the "sparring match", and took Buttercup to be his mate. So I purchased a nest box and put it in the cage, and ended up with the four sweetest baby budgies. It was only a few months after the chicks hatched that I had to make a move and find homes for all of my birds but one (sigh), but I was lucky to give them to homes of friends and family, so I knew they were going to good homes.

    Since then I only have two, a budgie and a cockatiel. Now Sunny, my tiel, is quite the character as well. I got him from an owner that was moving and could not take him along because of lease conditions (same problem I had). I've had him for about 1 1/2 years. He barks like a little yorkie dog, whistles Andy Griffith and the Mickey Mouse Song, hammers and saws on the bottom of his cage, says Pretty Bird, wolf whistles, and I recently taught him to make the sound of a baby bird . "chip. chip. chip.".

    My birds LOVE music, especially classical and very soft music.

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