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Old 08-24-2012, 12:57 PM
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Peach faced lovebird Basil
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new lovebird owner

We have had our peach faced lovebird for 3 months now. Basil was about a year old when we got him from a breeder (we think he's a male, but not confirmed). He is not hand tamed but has made great strides (I hope) since he's been with us. He comes to us at the cage, will take treats from our hands outside the cage and isn't afraid of my arms being in the cage to change his papers. He has figured out the my arms come through the door and is very interested in getting out. He will take treats from me inside the cage too. He's only been out a couple of times and has seemed frightened and unwilling to leave the security of the roof of his cage. He will not come to my hand or perch on my arm. We have converted him to Harrison's pellets from a homemade seed mix diet. He also eats kale, broccoli, romaine lettuce and fresh spinach. He's not interested in fruit. Seeds are for treats now.

My questions:

Will he ever be comfortable enough with me to step up onto my hand? I desperately want to give this sweet little bird some affection. He does let me and my daughter scratch his head through the cage but only if we are offering him treats with our other hands. Otherwise, he will just nip at our fingers through the cage.

My other question is whether we should get another bird or birds. We have been home most of the time this summer and I am not looking forward to when the kids are back at school and I am working again Will he be lonely? Would he tolerate sharing a cage with another lovebird? Should I get a separate cage and a couple of budgies just to keep him company? Will the presence of other birds stress him out or cause him not to bond with us?

We love our Basil to pieces. He is so cute and has such a personality. He is very clever and has even learned a few tricks (within the confines of his cage). He sings beautifully and likes it when we take him outside on the deck to talk to the outside birdies (but only for a short while as it's very exciting for him). He really is a wonderful addition to the family.

Look forward to hearing from you lovebird experts.
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Old 08-24-2012, 04:21 PM
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Re: new lovebird owner

Before I answer, I must say that I love lovebirds, and have always had at least 1 in my flock, all my life. "Lovebird" is a misnomer. These birds do not love othere birds, and don't easily get along with other lovebirds! If you house him with another bird, they will bond with each other, and have no interest in interacting with you. Lert him go at his own pace. If he'll sit atop his cage, accept that for now. Little by little, you can entice him to join you. Sit by him, and talk to him. Give him treats. Show him that being friends with you has certain rewards. It will dawn on him. Be patient. And try mashing his veggies & fruits. They seem to be more willing to try a mash than a solid piece of something.
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Old 08-25-2012, 09:53 PM
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Peach faced lovebird Basil
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Re: new lovebird owner

Thanks so much for the advice. My 10 yr old daughter tells me daily that "you don't know how much I love Basil" and I remind her that yes, I do know, because I love him that much too!

Would he appreciate a pair of budgies in an adjacent cage to keep him company when we were out? Or would they bother him? I just feel so bad going out (and we are a busy family with kids in sports and other activities that will be starting up very soon) and leaving him alone.
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