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Old 03-18-2013, 03:14 AM
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"New to me" Bird

Preface: To skip the sad story and get to the point of this post, read past the dotted line.

I have, for the last six years, been the "owner" of a beautiful lovebird named Klaus. I inherited him from a neglectful ex-roommate who was just going to give him away when she moved, but he and I had started to bond, so I agreed to keep him, even though at the time I was not quite a bird person. That was early on in our relationship, and over the next several years, we grew quite close, and though I've had other pets since, he and I have always been the closest.
Quite unfortunately, earlier this week, Klaus died and it has left a larger hole in my heart than I thought possible. I don't want to drag you, dear reader, through my sad story, but suffice it to say, as sad as I am without him, I can not bear not having a bird friend with me, and so even though I told myself I would wait a respectable time frame before thinking about getting another bird, it has become unmanageable. My wife and I went to a local bird store a few days ago just to be around the sounds again and have them perch on us for a while. While there we met a quite agreeable Blue Crowned Conure named Charlie. My questions are these:

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Though I thought I would want a younger bird, Charlie is six years old. How hard is it going to be for him to adapt to us at this age?
He is a very sweet and polite bird, but at this point can he truly bond to new people?
He already knows a few phrases and tricks. Not that it's a deal breaker, but at this age is he done learning new phrases, or is that something they continue until later in life?
If we decide to get him, what kinds of things can I do before hand to ease his transition and make him as comfortable as possible, and what should we do early on to balance between giving him room to adjust to us and our house, but while showing him love and support in our family?
Are there any questions that I should be thinking about that I'm not? Klaus was a very simple bird; all he needed was to be out a couple of times a day, and hang out on my shoulder and he was happy. I have no illusion that taking care of a conure will be nearly that simple, but I want to make sure that I am able to properly take care of one before I make any big decisions.

Thank you for any help you can give me.
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Old 03-18-2013, 03:19 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

Older birds can definately bond with you! both my girls are adoptees and are 6 and 9 years old. Vino my 6y alexandrine is now completely bonded to me and even though we've only had spot for just over a week she's already bonding to us
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Old 03-18-2013, 09:04 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

"Used" birds are awesome! You can certainly bond with and teach an adult bird.
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Old 03-18-2013, 10:02 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

I adopted my girls at 10 and 6 years and they are just as bonded to me as the male who I got as a baby. I think it's wonderful to adopt and if the bird has already shown interest in you so much the better!
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Old 03-18-2013, 10:40 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

I am sorry to hear about your loss. Rehoming an older bird is a wonderful gift to that bird and yourself. Any negatives can easily be outweighted by all the great positives.

The bird will most likely first be very agreeable to you as you stated, but may soon show some minor behavioral issues. Don't take this the wrong way. He just wants to test the boundaries. That's your time to shine and teach him. Birds can learn their entire life.

If possible it would be great if the pet store can give you a few of the items in his cage for you to place in his new home so there will be some familiar items.

I am not sure when you are planning on bringing him home, but visiting him as much as posibble will help him get to know you before hand.

Good luck!
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Old 03-18-2013, 12:06 PM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

I'm currently in one of those forever-after-love relationships with a special lovebird, so I can see how you became so attached to your Klaus. When it happens, it's so miraculous that it's hard to put into words. I do understand.

That said, I hope you decide to adopt another bird, be that the conure or another that needs a wonderful home.
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Old 03-19-2013, 02:06 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

Thank you all for the help and advice. Unfortunately it was all for naught; I went to the shop during my lunch break to see him again, and perhaps put a down payment on him so they could hold him for a few days until I had a day off to help him get used to the house. When I got there, they told me he was sold just a couple of hours ago. Oh well, I'm sure he will be quite happy at his new home. I had them take my name to call me if they had any more conures come in, as he was the only one they had at the time.

Later this evening my wife, while perusing Craigslist, saw an ad for an eight month old Indian Ringneck that we're hopefully going to be able to see in the next couple of days. I am a little worried about the potential deal though. They're selling (rehoming?) the bird and a pretty decent cage for $150 or "trade for a chihuahua for my son" so I'm not sure how well the bird has been taken care of. I guess I'll get a feel for it if I go over there. I suppose one problem that could arise is if it's in its bluffing stage, and I won't be able to tell if it's poorly socialized or just acting natural for its age. Any pointers there?
Again, thanks for the help.
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Old 03-19-2013, 05:27 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

Nice to hear that you made "contact" with your lovebird. Congrats on having your heart stolen by a masterful winged bandit!

As others have said, rehoming a bird is ideal if it works. As for the price, sometimes the sellers are motivated. Perhaps you can make your own vet checking out the bird part of the deal, kind of like a mechanic checking a car you want to buy.

It could just be that their son doesn't like the bird and no one wants the burden.

Last edited by goalerjones; 03-19-2013 at 05:29 AM.
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Old 03-19-2013, 10:32 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

It could be a good deal since the bird is young I would suspect it was an impulse buy and the kid got bit a time or two. I would do some research on ringnecks first if you can. Then go see the bird, If it appears healthy and the cage is decent you'll have decisions to make! The bird is young and any re-home can be worked with. Ask where they got the bird, whether it was hand tame when they got it, why they are re-homing and good luck!
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Old 03-19-2013, 10:37 AM
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Re: "New to me" Bird

I'm all for rehoming if its the right fit, both my girls are adoptees as I said before
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