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Old 03-25-2019, 07:23 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

LOL, you weren't thinking about that abomination to nature the parrot chiclid were you?
Chiclids are just as horrible as guppies: they breed like crazy.
(The first nest/ litter is fun, the 50th not so much / unless your cat really appreciates fresh fish...)


but I have to agree: running out for a few days on a well balanced, cyled and really stabile tank is do-able, running out on a parrot is animalcruelty.


(I only could get back to keeping parrots after my father passed away and I did not have to drop everything I was doing because there was yet another life or death health-crisis going on for who knows how long.)
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:11 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Quote: Originally Posted by Cardinal View Post
Here is my 10 cents

I think Aquarium Fish especially Cichlids can make great pets for someone with a busy schedule like you.

Cichlids are colourful, active and many of them are very intelligent and almost all have very good breeding and parental care behaviour.

In fact I am primarily an Aquarium hobbyist who ended up having an abandoned non tame cockatiel.

Here is a good place to get started

10 Best Cichlids for Beginners! - YouTube


I agree with Cardinal 100%, not only is keeping Aquarium Fish a hobby that can become an obsession, but African and South American Cichlids are awesome pets and are fun tanks to build, set-up, and modify over time. Another species of freshwater fish that make good pets are Oscars (can't have much else in their tank except for the Oscars, and you need a large tank, but they are very cool fish with personalities)..I kept a 75-gallon freshwater rock tank that I designed myself and kept both African and South American Cichlids in it for about 10 years after I first left graduate school, and I actually miss them, they're such beautiful, intelligent, and interesting fish to keep as pets. And designing/building/modifying a large freshwater tank can become both a hobby and an obsession, and a great place to put extra money...And it's quite easy to keep even a very large, freshwater aquarium with tropical fish like Cichlids when you're often away from home for more than a day at a time...Parrots just don't work in that lifestyle at all, and that's why unfortunately there are so many parrots up for re-homing and who are self-mutilators and pluckers, because they really do need the attention of a young child...It's rough...

I can't speak on the life of a commercial pilot, but I can speak about being a professional car salesperson and trying to not only keep parrots as pets/family members, but also breeding and hand-raising/hand-feeding babies...It's a tough gig!!! And I live in a state (PA) where by some miracle it's still illegal to sell cars on Sundays due to the old "Blue-Laws" still being active (they just recently changed the Blue-Law about selling alcohol on Sundays a few years ago in PA, lol...And you still see most small businesses either closed all day on Wednesdays, or they are only open on Wednesdays until noon)...So as a professional Car Salesperson I USED TO WORK Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and then on Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., with one day off during the week (but where you are usually having to come in on your only day off because a customer wants to come in on that particular day, so you'll lose the deal if you don't come in too)...As much as I loved parrots/birds and missed having them in my life after growing-up with so many and breeding them for so long, there was no way I would have EVER even thought about bringing a parrot into my life while I was working those hours, it would have been extremely selfish of me, unfair to the bird, and just wouldn't have worked...I hardly had time to do laundry, clean, go shopping, etc., let alone spend adequate time every day with a parrot who has the intelligence and needs of a young human child...

It wasn't until I was promoted to sales management that I started to get some semblance of a normal life, or a life at all...And then I was diagnosed with stage 1 Endometrial Cancer in 2012, and I made the decision that I could work as kind of an "Independent Auto Broker" type of salesperson, still working for a dealership for benefits and stability, but I basically work enough to make the money I need to pay bills and until I feel like I'm good for the month, and then I'm done....But I'm very lucky, not only did I start selling cars when I was only 23 years old and still in grad school, so I learned the ropes very young, but I also caught-on to it very quickly, and became a 15-20+ car-a-month salesperson very quickly...And once you start selling that many cars a month, you can write your own ticket and do whatever you want to do, because you're bringing in so much money for both the owners of the dealership and your new and used car sales managers that they leave you alone as long as you keep producing...It's a weird profession but a very fun and rewarding one if you're good at it, and that's the ONLY REASON I was able to buy my home in 2010 and ONLY THEN made the decision to start building my family about 4 years ago, bringing home my 4 little babies and breeding/hand-raising a clutch of 8 Budgies...

So even though I know it's difficult to do once you start thinking about adding a parrot to your life, you really do need to put the welfare of the bird first and think about what the bird's life will be like while you're a commercial pilot. If you aren't 100% certain that you can spend a good 4-5 hours at the very least, every single day, with the bird being out of it's cage and spending time and getting direct-attention from you, then it's probably not going to work...That's not to say you can't have pets, but a parrot isn't the pet for someone who is often working over-nights for work and who is often away from home for more than 8-10 hours a day for work...Again, maybe that's not the situation with the commercial pilot job you're going to be working, I don't have a clue about that...I only know of a few Flight-Attendants and Pilots who I know of who work for large commercial airlines like US Air and Delta, and they always have a fully-packed bag with them on every flight, and they do over-night trips several times every week, whether they are staying away at some destination that they flew to, or they are always staying in the cities where their airline's "Hub" airport is at, like Charlotte, Chicago, etc. I don't know if all commercial pilots work that way or not...For all I know you are planning on being a commerical pilot for a small, privately owned company who does charter-flights or something similar where you work a 9-5 schedule M-F, lol...So if that's the case then that's a totally different story obviously...
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Old 03-25-2019, 02:41 PM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Ok, so my opinion is slightly different. I think it's great that you want birds and also fitting because you love to fly. I'm not sure what kind of schedule you have-my sister used to be an EMT and had 24 hour shifts. So the 3-4 days you are gone, I'm not sure if that is weekly, monthly or what.

The thing is, a single bird will need a lot of your time and commitment and they are flock creatures so being alone for several days is kind of cruel if it's on a regular basis-even if someone stops by once or twice a day to check up. They really need companionship. Now, if you have a significant other who is there who can partake in all of this that's a different story-but also keep in mind that alliance can change. Little snots. :\

If you want two-then you face the possibility that they will prefer each other and no you, especially if they have little handling. This might be fine. If you want birds but don't have the time to be hands on on a regular basis, you could look into having an aviary. What about finches? Budgies? Cockatiels? (cockatiels are so amazing) or if those birds don't flip your crest, what about something that you do want that isn't hand tamed?

There are a lot of birds out there that need homes that aren't hand tamed but they do enjoy the company of other birds. It would be best to find a pair that are already bonded (I don't mean breeding bonded) and you can just enjoy them and enjoy keeping a huge cage for them.

Oh yea, also remember the longer a bird is caged-the larger it's cage really should be. So it all depends on your circumstances and what you want out of the relationship. I think that if you are just gone 3-4 days every two to three weeks or more, that it's doable. If you want a sweet cuddly bird though you are going to have to put in a lot of time when you are home-and have another person there who can put in a lot of time when you are not home and then, are they going to switch alliances on you when you're not there and are you going to be ok with that?

I find cockatiels are less complicated (and they are one of my favorites) but I also think if you're going to get a bird, you're going to need to get one that you want that you will commit to. Birds do need stability so if you can put a stable and steady environment in place for one or a few-then why not?

Good luck in whatever you decide.

Last edited by Shellie; 03-25-2019 at 02:44 PM.
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2019, 01:23 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Quote: Originally Posted by ChristaNL View Post
LOL, you weren't thinking about that abomination to nature the parrot chiclid were you?
Chiclids are just as horrible as guppies: they breed like crazy.
(The first nest/ litter is fun, the 50th not so much / unless your cat really appreciates fresh fish...)


but I have to agree: running out for a few days on a well balanced, cyled and really stabile tank is do-able, running out on a parrot is animalcruelty.


(I only could get back to keeping parrots after my father passed away and I did not have to drop everything I was doing because there was yet another life or death health-crisis going on for who knows how long.)

No I was not referring to the Blood Parrot. Truly an abomination. But even worse in my opinion is the flower horn. It has become a big craze in India because it is a so called "Vaasthu Fish" - a silly superstition.

You may enjoy this article ; probably you have already read it

https://malawicichlids.com/mw01013.htm


I have kept Angels, Kenyis, Auratus, Oscars and Jewels but have never managed to breed them- of course I have not made the necessary effort.

The only fish I have successfully bred are livebearers and Boesemani rainbows. Bettas bred but the young did not survive.

I am in the process of setting a new species specific breeding tank- still not decided on species- Electric Yellows have appealed for a long time and have not kept them.

What would you suggest?

And as you said , you can leave a well cycled spacious aquarium with good stocking for 4 days and may be even upto a week without risk of fish dying but for birds even 36 hours can be potentially fatal and even if not fatal, extremely stressful.


cheers
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Old 03-26-2019, 01:27 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Quote: Originally Posted by EllenD View Post
I agree with Cardinal 100%, not only is keeping Aquarium Fish a hobby that can become an obsession, but African and South American Cichlids are awesome pets and are fun tanks to build, set-up, and modify over time. Another species of freshwater fish that make good pets are Oscars (can't have much else in their tank except for the Oscars, and you need a large tank, but they are very cool fish with personalities)..I kept a 75-gallon freshwater rock tank that I designed myself and kept both African and South American Cichlids in it for about 10 years after I first left graduate school, and I actually miss them, they're such beautiful, intelligent, and interesting fish to keep as pets. And designing/building/modifying a large freshwater tank can become both a hobby and an obsession, and a great place to put extra money...And it's quite easy to keep even a very large, freshwater aquarium with tropical fish like Cichlids when you're often away from home for more than a day at a time...Parrots just don't work in that lifestyle at all, and that's why unfortunately there are so many parrots up for re-homing and who are self-mutilators and pluckers, because they really do need the attention of a young child...It's rough...
Can't agree more! Would love to know more about the specific species you had kept, perhaps in another thread, in another section
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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 03-26-2019, 01:32 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Quote: Originally Posted by Shellie View Post
Ok, so my opinion is slightly different. I think it's great that you want birds and also fitting because you love to fly. I'm not sure what kind of schedule you have-my sister used to be an EMT and had 24 hour shifts. So the 3-4 days you are gone, I'm not sure if that is weekly, monthly or what.

The thing is, a single bird will need a lot of your time and commitment and they are flock creatures so being alone for several days is kind of cruel if it's on a regular basis-even if someone stops by once or twice a day to check up. They really need companionship. Now, if you have a significant other who is there who can partake in all of this that's a different story-but also keep in mind that alliance can change. Little snots. :\

If you want two-then you face the possibility that they will prefer each other and no you, especially if they have little handling. This might be fine. If you want birds but don't have the time to be hands on on a regular basis, you could look into having an aviary. What about finches? Budgies? Cockatiels? (cockatiels are so amazing) or if those birds don't flip your crest, what about something that you do want that isn't hand tamed?

There are a lot of birds out there that need homes that aren't hand tamed but they do enjoy the company of other birds. It would be best to find a pair that are already bonded (I don't mean breeding bonded) and you can just enjoy them and enjoy keeping a huge cage for them.

Oh yea, also remember the longer a bird is caged-the larger it's cage really should be. So it all depends on your circumstances and what you want out of the relationship. I think that if you are just gone 3-4 days every two to three weeks or more, that it's doable. If you want a sweet cuddly bird though you are going to have to put in a lot of time when you are home-and have another person there who can put in a lot of time when you are not home and then, are they going to switch alliances on you when you're not there and are you going to be ok with that?

I find cockatiels are less complicated (and they are one of my favorites) but I also think if you're going to get a bird, you're going to need to get one that you want that you will commit to. Birds do need stability so if you can put a stable and steady environment in place for one or a few-then why not?

Good luck in whatever you decide.
Yes ! I agree with you ! I gave my suggestion in the assumption that there may not be anyone in the house full time, during his 3 or 4 day absence. This can be dangerous for birds.

There are many non tame Budgies and Cockatiels that are in need of a new home and you could provide them.
A flock of 6 budgies -3 pairs would be delightful to have and would not be very noisy either.

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Old 03-26-2019, 01:56 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

I agree with the suggesion of keep a few birds "for the pleausere of watching them" but you still would have someone check on them twice a day.
And keeping them in pairs...the issues of breeding etc. raises its ugly head.
(that takes places for the babies to go/ never breed unwanted birds!/ but more important: somebody who is actually *there* in case of emergencies)
Of course (depending on the species!! Not all are as sociable) you could keep a same-sex group: still all the livelyness, none of the fertilisations.
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Old 03-26-2019, 06:15 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Two male budgies in a big flight cage could work provided there is someone to check on them on the days you are gone.
As far as a green cheek or sun conure or whatever, not sure that would work. A conure will not patiently "wait" until you are off and have time for it. They are very demanding.
I always know when Remi is not happy with my work schedule. He bites, lol.
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Old 03-26-2019, 11:21 AM
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Re: Owning a bird as a pilot

Quote: Originally Posted by Spinnern View Post
Let's cut to the chase. I am considering buying a green cheeked conure in the future, but I was wondering how they would adapt to my job. This summer, I will go and get my commercial pilot license (it's a 2-year study). As far as I know, I might not be home for 3-4 days. I was recommended buying two birds, as that would provide some social interaction for them (specifically they said that I should buy one male first, tame him, then buy a second female one). I hope that someone can provide some good info on this.
Welcome, and congratulations on your career endeavor. Airline pilots are and will be in great demand the next decade or so due to retirements and global expansion! Feel free to PM me if you have any questions or seek advice.

I recently retired from United Airlines and spent the past 28 years typically on a 4-on, 4-off flight schedule. With proper support you can be a good parront and pursue a career. Key is devoting abundant time during days off and having reliable, competent assistance. In my case, gf or family were nearly always in my home day and night.

As for multiple birds getting along, that is a tricky proposition. Very dependent on personality and other factors we can only imagine.
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