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Old 06-06-2018, 01:40 PM
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Welcoming a new wildish Budgie, budgie time vs human time

Hello parrot people!
My girlfriend and I have a gcc, Liu, and an english budgie, Rigby. Recently due to our college and work schedules picking up, we have been away from the house more often and our budgie has been seeming a little depressed. It is now the summer and I have much more time at home so we decided to get a new budgie so that we could socialize and interact with him now so that by the time the semester starts again we cold put the budgies together so that they could keep each other company.

A little over a week ago the budgie, Dexter, arrived from Finch Farm. He is a beautiful and energetic little guy. Finch Farm told us that he is around a year old and he is clearly a male with a pretty blue cere.

We have been taking is slow with him since he seems to be hen raised. He is getting comfortable with us sitting next to his cage but he is still very nervous about our hands being on the outside.

Our two budgies seem to get along very well. After two weeks of them listening to each other we let them meet, with Dexter still in his cage and Rigby outside his cage. Now whenever I open Rigby's cage, all she wants to do is go see Dexter and they clearly really like eachother.

My question is, would it be harmful or helpful to my girlfriend and my relationship to Dexter to let the two spend so much time together?

Whenever Rigby gets to see Dexter Sophia or I are always right there watching and talking to them and Dexter clearly sees me interacting with Rigby gently and happily. I am just worried they will start to become too attached to each other and since Dexter won't need us, he wont bond to us.

Thoughts?
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Old 06-06-2018, 02:44 PM
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Re: Welcoming a new wildish Budgie, budgie time vs human time

Well, you nailed the issue right on the head...If your two Budgies closely bond with each other, you're going to have 2 separate issues: #1) It's very likely that once they are closely bonded with each other that neither of them will really want much at all to do with any humans. And can you blame them really, lol? Basically the bottom-line to that is that if you have one bird and you are the only living creature for them to bond with, then they will bond very closely with you, just like you are another bird. However, if another bird comes along, and they both decide that they like each other, then it's just a matter of them preferring one of their own-kind to being closely bonded with a human anymore. So IF your two budgies do seemingly really like each other, it's reciprocated by both birds, and they are allowed to become very closely bonded with each other (which based on what you're describing is going to happen with your two birds if you place them in the same cage together at any point), then you are going to lose any "close" bond that you or your girlfriend have with either of them. They may still come to you, step-up for you, allow you to pet them, or they may not want anything to do with you at all, or anything in-between, there's no way to tell how distant they will become from you guys until it happens. But you can pretty much guarantee that you will not have anywhere near the relationship with them that you have now.

This is exactly what happens when someone decides to get a second bird "for their current bird", which you should never, ever do, you should only get a second bird if you want a second bird for yourself. While there is absolutely no guarantee that any new bird of the same species that you bring home will get along with your current bird, or vice versa, getting a second bird to "entertain" your first bird is a horrible idea (usually people do this because they are afraid that their bird is "lonely" while they are at work). There are 3 possibilities that can happen when a new bird of the same species is brought home to your current bird: They can hate each other or at least one bird hates the other, they can simply tolerate each other and be kind to each other but not bond closely, or they can closely bond with each other. And it sounds like this is what is happening with your two birds right now...

Problem #2 that you're going to have if you allow your two Budgies to closely bond with each other is that they are of the opposite sex, and this is what pretty much guarantees that neither bird is going to stay bonded to any humans at all, and they may actually start to reject you touching them or interacting closely with them at all. This is why most pairs of parrots that are being sold together are advertised as "Breeding-Pairs" and they will actually state that "They are not pet birds". This is because USUALLY when two birds of the same species and the opposite gender closely bond with each other, they eventually (sooner than later usually) start breeding, and this obviously creates the type of bond between the two birds that they will never have, and could never have with you. I know lots of people who have lost their bond with a bird because they purposely wanted to breed them and they bought an opposite-sex bird of the same species in-order to do so, and if the two birds bonded, that was it for the owner. This usually results in the birds being rehomed as a "Breeding Pair", unless the owner actually wants to breed their birds...which brings me to the second issue you'll have...

I'm assuming that you do not want to breed Budgies, and if it's in the back of your mind now it shouldn't be, at least not until you do a ton of research on the subject and you learn how to hand-feed, as even if you allow babies to be "parent-raised", things go wrong, the babies are rejected by the parents, kicked-out of the nest box, hurt by the parents, etc., and you can easily and suddenly end-up having to pull them and hand-raise them yourselves, which requires way more time than you guys have right now. Feedings every 2-3 hours including throughout the night for the first 4 weeks, and then every 4-5 hours after that!!!! And you have to buy a Brooder and all of the hand-feeding equipment/supplies, and you need to know what you're doing, as it is not at all an easy thing to do.

You need to know that if your birds are getting along as well as you say already, and you put them in the same cage together, they are going to start breeding. When that happens not only will you not have the same relationship with either bird that you now do (and remember it's possible you won't have any relationship with them at all, that's all up to them and there is no way to predict what will happen), but you'll also have eggs and babies, and have to worry about the female becoming egg-bound, and worry about having to hand-raise babies who are rejected for any number of reasons, etc. And based on your schedules and the concern that you have about possibly losing your current bond with your birds, it's my advice that you do not ever put both Budgies in the same cage to live together. You can put their cages beside each other, but keep in-mind that if you have them out together and they are bonded, which can still happen even when they are not living together, that they will still mate when you're not looking. It's a tough situation and you have to decide what is most important to you, and what is best for the life and the health of your birds. I can tell you right now that you do not at all want them to breed, not with your schedules such as they are. And if you want to keep your strong-bond with your male Budgie you need to make a decision about limiting their time together...but you definitely should not ever house them together, as that has a sure end-result...
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Old 06-06-2018, 02:47 PM
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Re: Welcoming a new wildish Budgie, budgie time vs human time

If Rugby is a girl, then they will likely try to breed if kept together and not want to bond with the two humans in the household as much. Aviary/hen raised birds often feel more comfortable around other birds, but this does present a problem if the other bid is a female. They have intense instincts to breed and reproduce, and so many members who own budgies here keep males and females all separated to prevent eggs and babies.

The Finch Farm puts out many aviary raised birds (I see their ads everywhere) and so next thing would be to get him a vet check as I doubt they do health testing... just to ensure he's healthy! After that I suggest you keep all bids separated and supervise their play time
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Old 06-07-2018, 08:43 AM
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Re: Welcoming a new wildish Budgie, budgie time vs human time

I'm glad that Itzjbean said something about "Finch Farms", as I wasn't sure if I should or not...

I wouldn't buy anymore birds from Finch Farms, as they are nothing but a huge bird-mill. They mass-breed their birds, and don't know who the father/mother of any babies are, and they are certainly well-inbred. It's the same type of place that supplies Petco and PetSmart with their Budgies unfortunately. So I'd definitely get your bird a complete wellness-exam with a Certified Avian vet asap, and then please do not buy any more birds from Finch Farms. I know it's hard to know what places are private breeders and which are bird-mills, but once you find out it's best not to support them any more...
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Old 06-07-2018, 08:47 AM
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Re: Welcoming a new wildish Budgie, budgie time vs human time

Good considerations!

Fpr additional reading, here's a great thread by our very own budgie-whisperer member "reeb".
Taming and bonding with budgerigars: tips for beginners
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