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Old 01-23-2019, 01:07 PM
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Unhappy Hostile Cockatiels Update

Edit: I am considering uploading update photos, including the Budgerigar. Would you guys mayhaps appreciate the photo updates more?
Hello everyone! I apologize for the lack of activity.

I'm a very anxious individual, so I tend to be stand-offish about a lot of responses and such.

HOWEVER I am here to update you all though, and tell you all what's been going down in the Veterinarian Lab at my High School.

(( It's been several months since I last uploaded here. I uploaded images and a paragraph or five providing context for the given situation.
For those of you who are not filled in, here's the forum I'm mentioning: FORUM ))

Since then I have been actively keeping in touch with the avian pair (I clean their cage every other day) and it seems that they have not improved at all. They look almost exactly like they do in the images I uploaded a while back.

Within the time that I was gone from the forums, we got a Budgerigar named Sunny D (she is yellow). Sunny D is a female, seemingly young, and is very troubled and anxious. I have a group of students helping me out with socializing her by playing her Budgerigar calls (which she loves!), and sitting next to her cage so she realizes that not all of us are bad (positive association- yay!)...

Aside from the Budgerigar, I am still *as mentioned* helping the Cockatiels to the best of my ability. I am only 16 and I can only do so much due to the fact that I have a teacher who is... very very into favoritism, unfortunately.

Also, as mentioned, I have anxiety. I am HORRIBLE at confrontation.

However I recently talked to a 'higher up' student in the FFA (Future Farmers of America) club who tried telling me off about the Cockatiels. I mentioned separating them and she said, and I quote, "That would DESTROY them.".... uhhhhh okay, yeah, I'm sure it will (sarcasm).

I think I will try and confront my teacher senior year to avoid any of the consequences of her horrible case of favoritism this year alone. I want to try and take the Cockatiels to my house senior year! I want to give them a better life.

I understand they may never become any less hostile, but I would rather them have a better living situation rather than stay here and be treated like feeder mice.

I hope you all can wish me luck- and any tips are EXTREMELY appreciated!
I am not 100% experienced in hostile birds, so any tips would be awesome.

Much love for you all, thank you for your kind words and support!
- Oswald

Last edited by socktheconure; 01-23-2019 at 01:17 PM.
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Old 01-23-2019, 06:04 PM
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Re: Hostile Cockatiels Update

Good luck! Man, that situation just sounds awful for them! The only tips I have to recommend is maybe try feeding them some millet everyday (if they'll take it from you and if you haven't tried it already)? They might slowly get used to you after a while and probably get less hostile. And maybe play some classical music to calm them down if you can... I hope these help at all, but good luck!
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Old 01-23-2019, 11:40 PM
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Re: Hostile Cockatiels Update

Thank you so so much Tootsie!

It's not a fun situation at all. It's incredibly upsetting and humiliating. We had an open house in the Vet Lab a week or two ago- everyone kept asking me about the conditions of the birds and it was hard having to tell them what was going on.

A lot of students have attempted to offer them millet. They ignore the millet and focus on the student's hand, instantly going into flight or fight mode.

Beau, the male cockatiel, is really bad about that. I'm hoping when I separate them he will get better.

And the music is a great idea! Beau especially loves to sing- I think music would definitely help him.

Thank you so so much for your tips- I will take them all into consideration!
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Old 02-04-2019, 12:33 PM
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Re: Hostile Cockatiels Update

I may have some input on your situation. Others may chime in with help as well. We had two parakeets (one passed recently) and the two were notorious for nesting and laying eggs. During the nesting period they would get moody, edgy, and anxious. Which is only to be expected when people are looming around your cage. Let me first make it clear we weren't trying to breed them. They more or less took the chance whenever they could and a coconut shell was it!(among other willing cage accessories)

When this happened we gave her a week or so to ride out the eggs and lay on them. Most of the eggs she kicked to the curb and we disposed of them. The others she laid on and nested. After about 2 weeks we checked the eggs and realized they weren't viable. We ended up taking the eggs away and the toy she nested in. To some this may sound cruel but the eggs in our case were never going to develop. We also didn't intend to cause the hormonal egg laying situation. For a few days the two were confused and lost. BUT they eventually over came it.

Being in a school with all the activity of students (assuming its some what loud and people are in their faces a lot) this could be causing a continued hostile attitude with the birds. Its probably also playing into some of the general stress of them feather plucking or showing bald patches.

See if your allowed to remove triggers that could cause hormones to rise. Anything that could be considered a nest, lighting, bedding etc... I'm new to this myself so some googling would be good.

Also research some other tips and tricks on earning trust with the birds. I'd then present that to the teacher. Ask your teacher for THEIR opinion on the research you did. Sometimes people like to think its their idea and since you say they choose favorites... this might play in your favor.

We recently adopted a male cockatiel who at first was pretty agitated, would lash out, loved to attack the cage trying to get your hand and it was ROUGH. We finally had a break through after about 2 months! We removed toys he was being aggressive towards, played music (which we discovered he LOVES), and found his treat of choice...millet or sun flower seeds. (I know sun flower seeds are a NO NO but they are limited and helped us make a break through) He now sings when we come in the room, and will come to the cage wall to watch us, eats SMALL pellets from our hands, and has since stopped his attacks.(still in the early stages of this though)

Best of luck, you clearly want to see things through to the best outcome-I have faith that you will find something that works!
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Old 02-04-2019, 01:55 PM
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Re: Hostile Cockatiels Update

You are amazing to work at overcoming social anxiety, and the stress of confrontation, as well as school politics, to help these cockatiels!!! Thank you for everything you have done and are trying to do!

People's minds get stuck in status quo.
sta·tus quo
/ˌstādəs ˈkwō/Submit
the existing state of affairs, especially regarding social or political issues.
"they have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo" because to change would be to admit to mistakes, or loose face ..ect
I don't know if you can take the a
Approach of let's do a remodel and update our class cockatiels cage/ environment, like a make over? People understand makeovers and updates and remodeling. As things get worn-out, and outdated.

And enrichment is an excepted idea for caged creatures. So I don't know if it can be a class project to come up with enrichment and foraging ideas.
Certainly the cage needs multiple perches of different types, toys at least one each of a noise maker, a shredder, a chewing toy like soft wood, a push pull , or sliding parts type toy, some type of foraging toy. If they are always surrounded by people, them a place to retreat that had a visual barrier, even hanging tous in front of a perch so it blocks the view... Opportunity for bathing.
I hope you can the staff to open their minds up and work on improvement of the lives of these intelligent creatures!
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Old 02-04-2019, 05:59 PM
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Re: Hostile Cockatiels Update


If they are laying and you don't want them to, you can replace the eggs with "dummy eggs" (available on for specific species) or, the other (possibly controversial/semi-depressing, but common) alternative is to quickly boil the eggs like you would a hard-boiled egg and return them to the cage until they lose interest --this prevents hatching and breaking etc)...I mean, if you eat chicken, then I guess it is no

After they lose interest, remove the nest box.
Make sure the female has a cuddle-bone for calcium + leafy green veg because of egg-binding risks.
You might also consider separating them, but that could cause further trauma...they will adjust in time hopefully, but there may be initial backlash.

Thanks for the update.

PS: if they have any snuggle huts or anything in their cages (shadowy spaces), you should remove those too.
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