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Old 05-07-2008, 04:09 AM
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Which Species for Me?

Hello,

I am hoping for some advice. I have a rather short but specific list of requirements, and a pretty well unlimited budget (within reason, of course). I am having trouble choosing a species.

1. I require a QUIET bird, good for a condo, as birds go. I am aware that birds are not quiet like fish. I am also aware that some species are generally quiet, while others are generally loud, so I need one of the generally quiet species.

2. Talking ability is of ZERO concern for me, but I need a cuddly, playful bird. A "lap parrot" if you will. Something that will want to cuddle up, even fall asleep tucked under my chin. I don't care if he ever says a single word, if he meets this criteria.

3. Low maintenance, as parrots go. Again, I know parrots are higher maintenance than many pets, but some are HIGH maintenance or they pluck, while others can handle if I am having a busy exam week, as long as they are safe and fed.

4. GENTLE! This would be my very first bird ever, so calm and peacable and not likely to bite me too hard or too often and scare me away from birds forever.

5. Not given to switch loyalties!!! This is a huge huge factor, because it would be just heartbreaking for my bird to immediately bond with the first person to come into its life that isn't me, after the bird reaches sexual maturity.

6. NOT a budgie. Sorry to all the budgie lovers, but I just don't like budgies. And while I MIGHT consider a cockatiel if I could be suitably convinced there was no better option, I really was hoping for a larger, lesser-common parrot of some sort.

Again, I am open to the best match for me given these criteria... I really am eager to look into everything. Thank you so much!
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Old 05-07-2008, 07:02 AM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

sorry but for that list of requirements you can't beat a cockatiel.

all those things are general guidelines you aren't guaranteed that sweet loving baby you bring home won't turn into a monster. Get a handfed well socialized teil that already lets you handle it and you will have a friend for life.

they can have a piercing whistle but it's not like a scream from my conure. most of the time your neighbors if they hear it will think it's an outdoor bird. we had a teil in an apartment and never got any complaints.

one of my teils the one that was well socialized as a baby just can't get enough of her head scratches she will put her head down and just let you scratch away.

there bite doesn't hurt unless they are really mad.

they will probably have a favorite person usually the primary caregiver but if well socialized will pretty much go to anyone without a fuss.

a cockatiel was my first bird and i always reccomend them as first birds.

make sure you get a cage with seed guards around it for easier maintenance

if you really don't want a teil i would wait till your out of college and have living arrangements that would allow for a louder birds.
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Old 05-07-2008, 07:46 AM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

You may want to look it to a Pionus. They seem to fit all of your requirements. Cockatiels are also a fit I have 2 one would fit one is loud. Both are active. I also have a Senegal he is quiet and cuddly but I know many are not as much a lap Parrot as mine is. If you go looking at some different birds one will hopefully pick you.
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Old 05-07-2008, 12:40 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

Well, if your number one requirement is important I'd suspect it rules out everything BUT budgies, and perhaps cockatiels.

I have a dusky conure who fits ALL of your other criteria excellently, but he is most certainly NOT quiet. However I have had him in an apartment for three years and I have not had a single complaint about him making noise. Any bird would be loud enough to prevent being hidden if they are against condo association rules, however conures will most likely not get you in trouble for noise.

So is your 'quiet' criteria for wanting peace and quiet, to prevent neighbors from KNOWING you have a bird, or to prevent neighbors from CARING if you have a bird? Once again if its either of the first two that rules out just about any bird, if its the last I suspect conures, senegals, quakers, and a number of others may be worth consideration.
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Old 05-07-2008, 12:59 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

i just wanted to say the type of conure make a difference. Sidney my jenday screams so loud that i can hear him the moment i get out of the car before i go inside and if i go check the mail i can hear him all the way out there. Nandays are REALLY loud also.
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Old 05-07-2008, 01:47 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

How about a caique? We almost got one once. It was a sweet little bird, made very little noise, very friendly. They always seem quiet when I see them but I have the two chatterboxes at home to compare to. They make a 747 seem quiet.

Julie
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Old 05-07-2008, 05:10 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

Wow! That is quite a list!

To be honest, there is no such thing as the perfect bird. The one that would best fit for you, IMO, is a budgie. Bear in mind that every bird is the exception to the rule. Even in a quiet species there is a bird that makes noise. I happen to have the most insanely quiet macaw (sometimes its scary!). I would go to birds shows and do your research. Here are a few suggestions:

-Budgie. I know you are greatly opposed to this, but unfortunatly, these guys make great companions if you are just starting out.

-Cockateil. I'm sort of so-so on this one. They can be VERY high pitched and though very sweet, will get tempermental.

-Pionus. GREAT bird! Very sweet, though they can be pretty difficult to find.

-Greek Cheek Conure. Unlike most of the conure species, these little guys are found to be the most quiet. Very cuddy, like to play and generally pretty quiet.

I personally wouldn't recommend a Caique because they are the MOST ACTIVE bird I have EVER seen! They are everywhere! NTM, they can SCREAM when they get hormonal. However, this was only a select few. Just remember to keep your options open and do thorough research
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Old 05-07-2008, 05:54 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

Wow thanks for all the suggestions so far! T clarify a few things, I am not living in a dorm, and I am not on a budget. I have a full-time career that pays well and affords me much free time... I do an online correspondence course for my MBA part-time.

I don't need to "hide" a bird, it's more a matter of wanting to not be kicked out of my apartment every month and having to find a new place. There's noise from a bird, and then there's NOISE from a bird. I would only ever be in a living situation that welcomed my bird, but the welcome would be short-lived if he was such a nuisance. It's like, if someone has a party and they're up till 3am making noise a few times during the playoffs, no one complains. But if it's an EVERY DAY or EVERY WEEKEND occurrence, it would get to be much. Similarly, people have babies and babies can scream... But they don't do it continually. As long as my bird is quieter and less frequently disturbing than the average 4-year-old, we are good.

A note on first birds; while it is TRUE this would be my first bird, I am not one of those "starter bird" believers. I want a bird that won't scare me off and will be gentle, but I want ONE bird, not a collection. So given that a properly cared for bird lives decades, I'll be past retirement by the time I am looking at getting a second bird. With this in mind I was always REALLY careful not to jump into ownership of a bird I will soon feel the need to "move up" from. This would be the case with a budgie or a cockatiel. So while a bird being appropriate for a beginner is important, I want to be careful not to dwell TOO much on this criteria. I am a quick learner and dedicated... I can care for ANY bird with at least the ability of the part-time students who work in the local Petco. I just wanted to stay away from those species known for hormonal and dangerous mood swings, as facial scars aren't my cup of tea. I remember I met a lady in a bird store once and her hands up to her elbows were covered in scars... She rescued birds, including Amazons and Macaws. God bless her but I draw the line at requiring reconstructive surgery.

The Pionus look WONDERFUL... I am a little confused though because some sources don't consider them quiet enough for an apartment... I'll keep digging. I think the Blue Headed Pionus is a lovely bird. Oh, and I looked into the caiques as well... Not known for being quiet, but definitely not one to rule out. I tend to shy away from species that list in a few sources "definitely not apartment birds"... The caiques are delightful though.

Last edited by Which14Me; 05-07-2008 at 05:56 PM.
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Old 05-08-2008, 11:50 AM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

I think a great idea would be to spend time at a breeder, shelter, or even a pet store and interact with different birds.
All of the "requirements" you have listed really depends on the BIRD, NOT the species. There may be super-cuddly quiet cockatiels, but I know of some cockatiels that scream all day and are really energetic. FYI, caiques and conures CAN be quiet but if they decide it is "loud day" their calls can be heard from a block away. Same goes for Pionus. Most are fairly quiet, but there are some that scream their heads off!
As for how gentle the parrot is, that depends on how he/she is raised. There is also a huge difference in behavior between baby parrots and post-puberty parrots. You might find a cuddly baby parrot but it might be very nippy as a grown bird.
I hope this helps...
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Old 05-08-2008, 12:29 PM
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Re: Which Species for Me?

Oh and one more thing... I think you should always be prepared for ANY parrot to be high maintenance!
What if your parrot becomes sick or develops a disorder where they need to be hand-fed or be given medications?
always good to be prepared, right?
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