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Old 12-03-2018, 09:47 AM
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Need help with new teil

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Hi,
I need help with Fuzzy our new feathered family member. He was given by a friend who has to move to the US for a project for 2 years. I just couldnt say NO to such a cute face. But I no knowledge of tiels at all.


A few details regarding Fuzzy
1. Fuzzy according to his previous owner is a boy and aroung 5 months old . I have attached two pics . Can you help me with the gender and age?
2. He eats nothing but seed
3. He has come yesterday to us and is in extra cage I had with only perches. I have ordered some toys online should get them in a week
4. I am going to start with fresh food that my Alex and budgies get. What is most preferred choice of fresh food for tiels?
5. As of now Fuzzy is separated for the rest but as he was an only bird for 5 months can his cage be kept in the same room with my Alex and the budgies?

Thank you in advance for the help. Ill try to update as frequently as I can . There is a medical emergency in my family so things are bit chaotic
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Last edited by Leena; 12-03-2018 at 10:38 AM. Reason: corrected age
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Old 12-03-2018, 03:06 PM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Welcome to the community! Fuzzy looks like to be a very adorable and healthy little Cockatiel, and is definitely young, I'd say 5-6 months is pretty accurate...

With Cockatiels you sometimes cannot tell the gender just by looking at them, sometimes you can, it depends on the mutation...But at only 5-6 months old you definitely cannot tell the gender, only after their first big molt (around a year old) will it be possible to tell Fuzzy's gender...You can't see it in the photos you posted, but if you look at the underside of Fuzzy's tail-feathers and right beneath Fuzzy's vent, you'll probably see some white/yellow striping...If Fuzzy keeps that striping after the first big molt that Fuzzy goes through, then Fuzzy is a female...If after Fuzzy molts those stripes/markings on the underside of his tail go away, then Fuzzy is a male...But you'll have to wait until Fuzzy goes through that first big molt, which usually happens when they are between 8-12 months old...Otherwise, you can always take Fuzzy to any Avian Vet and have a blood-test done to determine the gender, which you sometimes have to do anyway depending on the mutation...Or there are labs online that you can actually have test for gender through the mail by simply plucking a few of Fuzzy's fresh chest feathers out, and then you send them to the lab in the test-kit they send you once you order it...You order the test kit, they send it to you, you pluck a couple fresh chest feathers and send them in to the lab, and in a couple of weeks you'll know his gender...

You should ALWAYS do at least a 30-day quarantine whenever you bring home a new bird, regardless of where the new bird came from or whether it was around other birds...The 30-day quarantine should be done in an entirely different room than your other birds, and ideally behind a closed door...Once the 30 days is up and assuming Fuzzy is not showing any signs of illness, then you can locate his cage in the same room as your other birds, though you need to introduce them to each other outside of their cages very slowly, only under supervision, and you must be prepared for them to not get along or to even be aggressive towards each other...So they may or may not be able to be out of their cages together or not, you'll not know until you introduce them and they spend some time with their cages in the same room together after Fuzzy's 30-day quarantine...

As far as the proper diet for a Cockatiel, it's not any different than your other birds really...Yes, a main staple-diet of pellets is much healthier than a seed-mix staple diet, but if you can choose a healthy, low-fat seed-mix that contains NO sunflower seeds, NO nuts of any kind, and NO dried or cracked corn kernels, then it's much better for Fuzzy's health and will help to prevent Fuzzy from developing Fatty Liver Disease over time....There are many low-fat, healthy seed-mixes available online and in pet shops, you just have to read the ingredients and look for ones that say that they are "Sunflower Free", a lot actually say this right on the front of the packaging, then look for a sunflower free mix that also has no nuts (specifically peanuts, they are not good for your birds), and no corn kernels or cracked corn...And once you get Fuzzy eating a healthy, low-fat seed-mix, then you can start to slowly transition him over to a pellet staple diet...If you go to the Harrison's Bird Food website, they have a wonderful "Seed to Pellet Transition" plan that you can print-out and follow that usually works very, very well to switch them over from seeds to pellets...

As far as fresh veggies, Cockatiels eat all of the same fresh veggies that other parrots do, all of the dark, leafy Greens, and then pretty much all fresh veggies except for Onions and Leeks, which are toxic to birds...Other than Onions and Leeks, most all fresh veggies and dark, leafy greens are fine, it's just a matter of trying different fresh Greens and Veggies and finding out which ones Fuzzy likes. He should have a bowl of his staple diet (either a seed-mix of pellets) in his cage at all times, and then should also get a nice big serving of fresh veggies and/or dark, leafy greens every single day.

As far as fresh Fruit goes, it should not be given every single day like the fresh veggies and greens are, because all Fruit contains a very high sugar content, and in captive/pet birds that aren't flying 10 miles or more a day, that extra sugar from fresh Fruit gets turned into fat that is stored in their livers, just like the fat from the sunflower seeds, the nuts, etc. So you should only give your bird fresh Fruit 3-4 times a week at most, as an added supplement or treat to his regular staple seeds and his fresh veggies...And pretty much all fresh Fruit is okay EXCEPT for Avocados, which are toxic to birds, and then you should also avoid giving your birds any Citrus Fruit, such as oranges, grapefruit, lemons, limes, etc., and also Tomatoes, because they are extremely high in Vitamin C, which greatly enhances a bird's absorption of Iron from the rest of their food,
and birds cannot absorb much Iron at all, because over time they can develop "Iron Storage Disease/Syndrome", which can eventually cause your bird to become extremely sick and cause them to die years to decades before they should...
However, there is no need to feed your birds Citrus Fruits or Avocado when there are so many other safe, healthy fresh Fruits you can give them as a treat, such as apples, bananas, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, seedless grapes, mango, guava, kiwi (remove the seeds), passion fruit, star fruit, coconut (in small quantities due to sugar content), pears, etc...Again, it's just about finding out which fresh fruit Fuzzy likes...

Other occasional treats can include sunflower seeds, nuts, and then other foods such as "people food" occasionally...If you can figure out what is Fuzzy's favorite treat, then that's the treat you want to save to be Fuzzy's "Training Treat", as Fuzzy will be more willing to work for his favorites...

I'm glad you've got toys on their way for Fuzzy, since he's going to be in quarantine by himself for the next month he needs lots of toys and foraging activities to keep himself entertained and his mind stimulated...He looks like a perfectly healthy, adorable little baby Cockatiel!
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Old 12-03-2018, 06:29 PM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Your teil seems to be a "normal grey" tiel.. the only experience I have had with cockatiels is with my BB. BB was 4.5 months old when he came home with me. With some teils after their first molt you can tell what sex they are. BB looked like yours does when I got him..maybe had a little more yellow on his face and crest. As he molted ( took him about 7 or 8 months to do this) he got more and more yellow. BB is definitely a male A female normal grey will have more of a grey face (like yours does) If I guessed right now,I'd say you have a female..BUT to be positively sure,you need to wait until the first molt,OR you can bring him/her to a CAV and have a DNA done..honestly,I would wait for the molt...its a lot cheaper!



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Old 12-03-2018, 06:35 PM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Welcome Leena and a warm welcome to your flock. It was very kind of you to help out a friend and a cute cockatiel. Adorable names for all your birds.

I would keep your new cockatiel separate from the rest of the flock for at least thirty days, it's a good precautionary measure and at the same time gives your newest flock member a chance to get accustomed to his new home before meeting his flockmates face to face. At around five months the all seed diet shouldn't be too difficult to change. As you mentioned, the daily fresh veggies you feed to your Alex and your budgies should be a great way to introduce veggies and fruits to Fuzzy. I would continue to make seed available to your cockatiel until you are sure he's eating enough fresh food and or pellets to replace the seed.

I'm sorry to hear about the medical emergency in your family, I'm hoping for a good outcome for you. I think you'll love having a cockatiel. Please keep us updated on Fuzzy's progress when you have the time.
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Old 12-03-2018, 07:30 PM
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Re: Need help with new teil

I'm so happy you were able to take this adorable little tiel in!
My tiels eat the same chop as my other birds, just chopped very fine. They also go crazy for a leaf of kale attached to their cage.
I'm also sorry for the medical emergency in your family, I hope everything will be okay.
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Old 12-09-2018, 10:15 AM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Thank you Ellen for the detailed response . Really very very helpful. Fuzzy loves eating broccoli , ladyfinger , spinach and strawberries which are in season here . So we have cut down a lot of seed eating . I still keep a some little amount of seed when i go to work so he doesn't remain hungry . I have my house help come mid day who changes the parrots fresh food and water bowls but she tells me that Fuzzy hisses when she touches his cage .
Can teils do that? I really find it amusing as she is not afraid of Rio who has a much larger beak but then Rio knows her from the time he was her baby
Regarding gender I am concerned if female then the egg binding nightmare . No avain vets in my locality. Rio's vet is a regular vet who helps injured migratory birds as I stay close to a national park . Fuzzy even had a bath today and he loves it . I really hope Fuzzy is happy in our home . His previous owner loved him a lot and was very sad to leave him . Though not tame I saw Fuzzy allow his prev. owner touch him . He still doesnt allow me but will just perk up when he hears my daughter . He is sharing her room for now and will join the rest of the flock by this month end . I really hope he comes to trust us . He is so different from Rio but so adorable .

Jim I am def. going to wait for the molt. No feather plucking for me Imagine doing that to Rio I would def have some fingers missing I really love reading about Amy and BB. Hope you are feeling better after your health scare

Thanks Allee and Terry for the advice and things are improving after the health issues . Hopefully it will get better soon
Ill try post some Fuzzy pics soon
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Old 12-11-2018, 01:45 AM
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Re: Need help with new teil

That is great to hear. You will love Fuzzy. Definitely a normal grey! Tiels are wonderful birds. They do hiss as a warning. Baby looked like him (or her!) until around a year for his molt to come out. Very nice that he's already eating veggies. Baby likes them finely chopped or minced with some veggie pasta chop that I give him. A mix of seeds and pellets plus veggies will be good. Sounds like Fuzzy is settling in nicely.
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Old 12-11-2018, 09:40 AM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Egg-binding is always a fear, even just egg-laying can be a nightmare, but you'll be able to tell pretty directly as soon as Fuzzy molts...When I brought home Duff, who is also a normal Gray, I honestly was hoping for a male because of the egg situation...And then Duff molted and right away I could tell that the underside of her tail feathers were full of stripes and patterns, so no doubt Duff was a girl...But I love her very much, and she is literally, without a doubt, the sweetest parrot I've ever had the pleasure to know and love...She is the sweetest bird in the world...I give much credit to her breeder who also hand-raised her, she did a better job than I could have done myself by-far.

And Fuzzy will definitely come-around, it's a marathon, not a sprint, when it comes to them settling-in to their new home and new people...And once the Quarantine is over and her cage can be located among everyone, then Fuzzy will start opening-up more and more every day, it's amazing what just "Passive-Interaction" with them/around their cages every day can do...
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Old 01-03-2019, 02:22 AM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Fuzzy's owner has cancelled his work travel plans . He called me to ask if he could take Fuzzy back. He went back home on Christmas day. My daughter and Fuzzy had started to bond as he was quarantined in her bedroom. He had just started leaving his cage and would just play beside her while she would be busy with her school work. My daughter is still in tears and cries every time she sees Fuzzy's empty cage
Husband and I are planning to get her a cockateil . She surprised us both with her dedication to tame Fuzzy. She cut down her TV time to be with Fuzzy.
Fuzzy too would come out of his cage only if my daughter was in the room.
These are some last pics we took of Fuuzy. He has a nice bath and warm meal of beetroot and peas
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Old 01-03-2019, 09:13 AM
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Re: Need help with new teil

Awwww I feel sad for your daughter And it looks like Fuzzy was starting to like her too..



Jim
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Amy my beautiful Blue Front. Who was four months old when she picked me to go home with to her "forever" home in 4/1990.. DNA'd MALE in 2015
Jonesy, a cute Goffin 'too
that had to be rehomed :-(

And a Grey 'teil, BB...a.k.a. The Beebs
that was 18 weeks old 5/20/2016,






Rest in peace,my precious Smokey..4/2015 at 28 years young
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