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Old 03-26-2020, 11:28 AM
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should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

there is quite a story here, but I only want to do what is best for my bird and don't know what that is!!

I have a female Alex I got in November, she was 3 months old (I think??) when I got her. I took her to the vet to be checked up, and it became clear I had a very abused bird. I could list about 10 subtle physical features she has that point towards malnutrition, being kept in a small cage, excessive wing trimming, extreme stress, etc. she was very problematic behaviourally when I first got her. but we have persevered, and are bonded a lot, she wants to sit on my shoulder all day. only the past few weeks has she finally learned to step up, as she is VERY scared of hands. I was at the vet, and he said by now she should be flying really well; but she isn't. she has a curve in her back (because her mother was malnourished) that could be the cause. the vet strongly urged me to get her a female friend to increase her confidence, he said many reasons but I was feeling pretty overwhelmed and honestly can't remember them. but a previous visit, a different vet told me to NEVER get her a friend because he thinks she will be very territorial.
I would happily get her a friend. but its a VERY big step, and if it doesn't work out it would be a HUGE disaster. I live in an apartment, I don't have enough room to keep 2 massive cages in seperate areas. I just want to do what is best but I just don't know! any advice would be appreciated.

ps. both vets were from the same practice which only specialises in birds. so I trust everything they say, but now its contradicting.
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Old 03-26-2020, 11:49 AM
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Re: should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

As a rule of thumb "Never buy a bird for another bird"
That said I have on 3 occasions done just than.
For Lucky I bought baby and they are best friends. This was before I was a member of the PF.
I tried to get Pinky a friend twice and both times it was a failure. That did end up with a breeding pair of Cockatiels so it was not a total waste.

Just recently I bought a Green cheek amazon (about 2+ years ago) to be a companion to my rescued Green Cheek amazon. After 2 years they are still in separate cages though they do share out of cage time. They groom each other but they still squabble more that I feel comfortable with.

My long winded answer comes down to this. If you can't sustain 2 cages for a long time it's best to at least wait until you can.
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Old 04-03-2020, 06:42 PM
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Re: should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

I advise against it. This turns out poorly more often than not.

But you may consider a foster bird to see if she seems to enjoy the company of other birds? Where are you located?


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Old Yesterday, 07:45 AM
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Re: should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

I advise in favour of getting a friend. I've always kept my birds in opposite-sex pairs and never had moment's problem. The only time I *have* had a problem was with a same-sex pair of lovebirds where both females became super-hormonal and entered a cycle of continual egg-laying.

My two Alexandrines live happily together and are both bonded strongly to me and to each other. They mate frequently during nesting season but do not make a nest (or even seek to make one) because I don't provide materials for it. I believe the opportunity to mate enables them to release their hormonal needs and live more happily. Madge, my little hen, is extremely cage-aggressive but becomes an absolute sweetheart as soon as she comes outside. Barney is just a big boofhead and does whatever I or Madge tell him to do.

I'd add that the sight of a singleton parrot trying to - ah - relieve its needs is one of the saddest an owner will see. Why deprive your bird of a natural release and company during the times when you're absent or busy? A more confident mate might help your existing bird gain in confidence. At the very least, it would be someone to snuggle up to when roosting.

My friend, Umar (from Pakistan, where Alexes are native) keeps his birds in opposite-gender pairs and also reports no problems. Interestingly, when he wants his birds to breed, he provides them with a spent tandoor oven to nest in. This is brilliant because the oven is large enough for a great nesting space and its round shape prevents tail damage (which, as all Alex owners know, is a vital consideration).

Bottom line: it's your bird and you'll do what you feel will best suit her needs. Don't be afraid to make a decision and know you can always change your mind later. Good luck and do keep us posted!
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Old Yesterday, 08:15 AM
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Re: should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

Quote: Originally Posted by Betrisher View Post
I



My friend, Umar (from Pakistan, where Alexes are native) keeps his birds in opposite-gender pairs and also reports no problems. Interestingly, when he wants his birds to breed, he provides them with a spent tandoor oven to nest in. This is brilliant because the oven is large enough for a great nesting space and its round shape prevents tail damage (which, as all Alex owners know, is a vital consideration).

Bottom line: it's your bird and you'll do what you feel will best suit her needs. Don't be afraid to make a decision and know you can always change your mind later. Good luck and do keep us posted!

Very interesting fact about the Spent Tandoor. Must be quite spacious and also keep them cool in hot weather.
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Old Yesterday, 08:46 AM
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Re: should I get my anxious alexandrine a friend?

I agree with many of the things Betrisher says .

But my suggestion is to get a Budgie or Cockatiel that has been abandoned and these guys get abandoned very often. Keep this second bird in quarantine for 6 weeks to ensure that they are healthy.

Then Keep them in a separate cage in the same room. The Alexandrine will feel more secure with the presence of another bird.
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