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Old 05-31-2019, 07:44 PM
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Picky Picky Picky little budgies

So my circular little budgie babies have become elongated and developed little shoulders. Green-stripey Jefferson has developed the alien-brain-style yellow-puffball-forehead that says, well, they are growing into beautiful little ladies.

This growing-up is happening despite their absolute refusal to consider accepting any form of pellets as food.

--Yes I have tried to get them to eat pellets. Various methods, repeatedly. Sunny happily eats the budgies' pellets, so not a complete waste, but the budgies adamantly refuse. (Actually, it's Jefferson who refuses. But Calliope trusts Jefferson's judgement and will only eat whatever Jefferson is eating, so Calliope refuses too.)--

I have been feeding them Higgins Sunburst parakeet blend, with the hope that the variety of ingredients, along with the birdie salad I offer them (most days: boston lettuce, radish, bell pepper & broccoli tops), might make up for whatever they miss from the pellets.

However I kind of suspected they were picking through the Sunburst Blend. Recently I've verified this. In fact--their little picky selves!--they are picking thru it Entirely and only eating the millet seeds out of it. They are leaving everything else behind.

So why am I spending money on this blend? I wonder if maybe I should just say heck-with-it, and go to WholeFoods or somewhere & just buy organic millet seeds only for them. That plus their birdy-salad is really all they're eating anyway.

Any thoughts?
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Old 05-31-2019, 08:00 PM
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Re: Picky Picky Picky little budgies

I once had a mature aged cockatiel who point blank refused to convert to pellets, her companion cockatiel munched happily away on his but she was having none of it. After trying everything recommended to me by my vet, the manufacturer and “Dr Google” what finally worked was grinding the pellets to a powder in a mortar and pestle, and sprinkling it over her food to at least get her accustomed to the taste. Virtually overnight she was eating her pellets like she had done so all her life!
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Old 05-31-2019, 08:16 PM
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Re: Picky Picky Picky little budgies

I offer new foods on JoJo’s treat table only!
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Old 06-02-2019, 09:01 AM
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Re: Picky Picky Picky little budgies

Please do not EVER just feed them Millet!!! This will only result in them dying very young from Fatty Liver Disease!!!

Even Budgies on an all-seed diet need to be fed at the very least a healthy, varied, high-quality seed-mix and not just "junk food"...And in the parrot world the "junk food" when it comes to seeds are the Millet seeds and the Sunflower seeds. You would quickly see their health deterioriate if you took away the Higgins mixed seed and started feeding them nothing but Millet. Their feathers will start to dull and look rough, their energy levels will start to fade, their skin will start to dry and get rough, their coloring will turn pale, and they typically do eventually start to at least Barber, if not Pluck...So that's not the solution at all...

I got my first Budgie (first pet) at the age of 6. My mom was a breeder/hand-raiser, and I was allowed to choose one of the baby English Budgies from a current clutch right after it hatched...He got a blue dot on his back so that we'd know which one he was, and at 2 weeks-old he went into the Brooder and I was allowed to "help" my mom hand-feed him, lol...Most of the time I watched her, lol...He lived to be just shy of 19 years-old...And he never once ate a single pellet his entire life. No joke. I too bred both American and English Budgies for about 20 years, and currently have 8 English/American Hybrid Budgies who are just turning 6 years-old and were the last clutch of parrots I ever bred/hand-raised. And even though I also bred and always hand-raised/hand-fed many other species of parrots such as Cockatiels, different sub-species of Conures, and many sub-species of the Parakeet family (Linnies, Bourkes, BeeBees, Princess of Wales, etc.), and most all of them I weaned onto first Pellets and then also Seed-Mix, along with fresh Veggies and Dark, Leafy Greens, I have always approached specifically the Budgies in a little different way than any of the other species of parrots I have bred/hand-raised or owned as pets...Maybe because it's what my Mom and Grandmother did and what they both taught me when I was learning how to breed, hand-raise, hand-feed, etc., or maybe it's just because Budgies always seem to act differently than any other parrot species when it comes to their food, but either way, at least in my own personal and professional experience, the daily diet of Budgies can be handled a bit differently than other parrots, and it's okay as long as you don't do what you just suggested that you might do with the Millet...

***Now you can absolutely try some different methods to try to get them to eat the pellets if you haven't already tried them, such as moistening them with "No Sugar Added", natural Fruit Juices, or crushing them up into a powder...which actually leads me to one of my own suggestions...But I also realize that you're not feeding them a Pellet and then a separate Seed-Mix, but rather a varied Seed-Mix that has Pellets in it, correct? So that makes it very hard and a pain in the ass to pick out each tiny pellet so that you can moisten them, etc. To those members reading this that do not and have not owned Budgies, the commercial food options for them are different than what is available for larger parrots, at least in-regard to the Pellets...Most of the Pellets that are made in the size for Budgies are not sold alone, but are rather mixed into a varied Seed-Mix. So this makes things a little more difficult when it comes to the Pellets.

Now that being said, companies like Harrisons and TOPS do make a Budgie Pellet that is sold in bags of just the Pellets, which are the healthy, low-fat, low-sugar, "Natural" flavor Pellets...But other than those 2 much more expensive options, the only other companies who make Pellets for Budgies (size-wise I mean) that are sold as bags of just Pellets by themselves are Zupreem and Kaytee...And this leads me to my point to the OP...

****TO THE OP:***

What a lot of parrot owners do not understand AT ALL is that just because you're feeding your pet parrot/bird "Pellets" as their daily staple-diet, that does not at all mean that you are doing them any favors, or that their daily diet is better than that of a parrot/bird who eats only a varied Seed-Mix with no Pellets; in-fact, it's usually the opposite! And that goes for the Higgins pellets you've been feeding your Budgies (or trying to feed them, lol), because they are just another "Fruit-flavored" pellet that are loaded with sugar, which is turned into fat and stored in their livers, just like the fat from the junky, cheap Seed-Mixes you can buy in Grocery Stores and at places like Walmart...So not all Avian Pellets are created equal, and when it comes to Budgies your options for a low-fat, high-protein, "Natural" flavor of Pellet are extremely limited, basically to Harrisons and TOPS.

So my point here is that just because your Budgies refuse to eat the brightly-colored, fruity, sugary pellets that are a part of the varied Higgins Seed-Mix you're feeding them, this isn't necessarily a bad thing, nor is it the end of the world, and in-fact it's probably better!!! Why people think that their pet Parrots and Birds are better-off in the long-run, healthier, and will live longer because they eat Fruit-flavored Pellets as their daily staple-diet instead of a varied, low-fat, high-protein Seed-Mix as their daily staple-diet is beyond me; I've tried to explain it to people before, but for whatever reason people see the word "Pellet" printed on the bag and they automatically equate it with good, while they see the word "Seed" and equate it with bad...And most of them don't even read the ingredients on the back of the bag of Pellets, or the amount of "Added Sugars" in them, which is really the key to whether or not they are Pellets that are actually much worse for your pet/captive birds and parrots than a varied, low-fat, high-protein Seed-Mix. [B]For those of you who are very conscious of your own health or that of your human-kids and you watch what you and your family eat and drink, then you'll understand this in-terms of thinking that just because you buy yourself and/or your kids "Fruit Juice" to drink that this means that what you/they are drinking is better for you/them than Soda is...WRONG!!! A lot of popular Fruit-Juices actually contain more sugar than Pepsi, Coke, Mountain Dew, etc. I love Cranberry Juice, specifically Cran-Grape, but I ALWAYS BUY the "No Sugar Added/100% Fruit Juice" Cranberry Juice, because if you just drink the regular bottle of Ocean Spray Cran-Grape Juice, you're going to be drinking more sugar in one glass of that than in a glass of Pepsi. [B]And the same thing applies to Fruit-flavored Avian Pellets (as well as any of the companies who make/sell "Nut" flavored Pellets, like Zupreem does, they are actually LOADED WITH SATURATED FATS because they flavor these Pellets with the Oils from the actual Nuts, such as Peanut Oil)...So the bottom-line is that sometimes feeding your birds/parrots a daily staple-diet of a healthy, extremely varied, low-fat, high-protein Seed-Mix is much better for them than feeding them a daily staple-diet of Fruit-Flavored or Nut-Flavored Avian Pellets (I haven't looked at any of the "Veggie" Flavored Pellets to see what they are like, such as the Veggie-flavored Pellets that Zupreem sells, so I can't comment on them in-comparison to the Natural-flavored Pellets)...
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Old 07-04-2019, 09:32 PM
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Sunny Conure Monkeybird (hatch 9-2018); & pair-o-keets: Mr. Bossypants Jefferson (green stripey watchbudgie) & Miss Calliope the Housekeeping Albino Acrobat (both appx 11/2018)
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Re: Picky Picky Picky little budgies

Hi, so it's been a while since I first posted about the budgies eating habits. I thought it was suggested here, to try Kaytee Forti-Pro instead, and I wanted to say, Thanks! But, rereading, I don't see that post. Maybe I'm missing it, or maybe it was a different thread. But anyway the Forti-Pro seems better (in that, they are eating most of it).

The problem with the Higgins Sunburst really was, they were picking thru it and eating Only the Millet. Sunburst contains lots of other good stuff like Oats and Flaxseed & etc, but they were ONLY eating the Millet from it. They were leaving everything else untouched.

When I was talking about pellets, I was actually not even thinking of the pellets IN the seedmix. Those are beyond hope. For months I have tried every way to get them to try Harrison's pellets. (Also I tried the Goldenobles superfine - turns out I'm allergic to those! Even the smell, which is pleasant, just in the same room, I'm allergic.) But the budgies just turn up their little beakie beaks at every pellet, no matter it's nutrition.

But anyway at this point they Are eating most of the Forti Pro. Well, not its little pellets, but Most of the rest of it. They are Not picking out Only its millet, like they were with the Sunburst.

(Also, I do always give them plenty of produce (lettuce, broccoli, radishes, etc), which they love to eat when it's hanging in their cage or chopped on a plate. So they're not getting ONLY millet even when they do pick thru their mix. )
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