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Old 07-21-2017, 11:49 AM
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Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

My mom has been thinking about buying a parrot for the past couple of months, both as a pet and as a companion to our cockatiel. (The vet advised buying it a companion once the other parrot we had died) I've been telling her that a parrot is a big investment on the scale of twenty years or so, but she doesn't seem to mind. She's been taking care of the ones we had previously for years, so I figure she's not naive when it comes to the mess + noise.
Either way, she's been thinking about buying a plum-head she saw at the local pet store. It's a cute and very quiet bird (supposedly hardly ever makes any noises). However, it's still not tame and will move away when you put your hand near its cage. Recently, the store acquired a hand-reared young monk parakeet that apparently someone was selling due to being unable to take care of yet another one. It was very sociable and wanted both me and my mother pet it. Given that neither of us can dedicate a lot of time to a rigorous training/taming regime, all the birds we've had thus far were half-tame at best (no touching, even with the best of efforts), so an "easier" bird is definitely attractive. Still, it feels a bit like cheating, as though we owed the plum-head to buy it, since we visited it at the store multiple times in the past.
I'm not sure what to do. I know that some birds will never like being touched, and I don't want my mom to be disappointed by getting herself another "distant" bird, nor do I want the bird to suffer having an owner they don't get along with. Even though she seems to be dedicated to the idea, I was thinking whether getting a bird would be right at all. Any advice?
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Old 07-21-2017, 07:13 PM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

Hello and welcome!

I understand wanting to provide a new companion for your cockatiel but it is impossible to predict how any two birds will react to each other. I have no experience with Plum heads but quakers or monk parakeets aren't the easiest birds to care for even though they are small. If no one has extra time to care for a second bird I would really give the decision a lot of thought. Thank you for reaching out, I wish you the best. Let us know what you decide.

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Old 07-21-2017, 08:40 PM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

I have two red lored amazons and they do not get along at all.

it is not easy.

but I would not trade it for the world because i have such a strong bond with both of them (separately)

If you want another parrot for yourselves, then you should do it.
(I love monks.)

one nice thing about having multiple birds is that when they do
actually allow me to leave the house,
they at least have each other for some type of companionship.
even if it is from across the room.

I honestly don't want them to be isolated,
I want them to know that others of their kind exist.
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:21 PM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

The Rb is so ferocious and territorial and aggressive that I've never even thought seriously about another bird. Maybe it's a blessing, otherwise, I'd have a flock of 'tiels, a rainbow of lories, a swarm of budgies, a Golden Conure, a Hawkhead, a Bourke's, oh, and a Military, and at least a pair of lovebirds, and...
Good luck to you!
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Old 07-21-2017, 09:32 PM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

I can tell you from experience, the Plum Headed parakeets are not known be "cuddly", and as a general rule, in fact quite the opposite. Plum Headed are even less likely than the other Psittacula to tolerate being cuddly. It's generally not in their nature. Maybe if one is hand fed by a breeder and really handled from the beginning, they might like sitting on your shoulder or arm and maybe tolerate a neck scratch, and that's being raised from a baby. After they're weaned and sitting in a store, Psittacula family parakeets can start to go wild rather quickly. Many people have PH as aviary birds. The mature males are pure eye candy!

IMO and IME, I think your mom will be disappointed if she doesn't want another "distant" bird. As others have said, you never know if a newcomer will get along with the cockatiel. Birds are pretty particular about liking other birds. If she truly wants another bird and is willing to accept if they don't get along, how about a sweet little hand raised Green Cheek conure?
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Old 07-22-2017, 04:41 AM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

Don't feel obligated to bring a parrot into the family because you've formed a little bit of an emotional attachment. That reads really cold hearted! But you know, factually, what your human needs are and so you'd be letting the wee plum-head down for being disappointed in him in the long term, and yourselves down for not considering your interests and intentions.

My 'tiel is a bit of a lonely old lady - she's like the grumpy old great aunt of the flock. She doesn't want anyone in, around or near her cage, of any species. But, she does enjoy watching the others in their cages, and will chat away to them. I think she likes that there are other avians around.

So if you didn't have your 'tiel, you'd still want another parrot? Maybe go right back to the very beginning, and think about a wee shopping list. Again, sounds cold, but it's kinda practical. What size bird would you like? How much room have you got in your house for cages, playstands? Are you keen on a chatty bird? (gee...if so, be careful what you wish for...I was trying to write an essay tonight and both IRN's were in fine form. More hands onish? Does fancy trick training interest you? Then, if you have some rescues/specialist stores or centres /clubs around you go visiting! visit visit visit and see which you connect with and what connects with you.

I started wanting a SC2. I ended up with a budgie who was a workmate, a cockatiel, two IRN's and a lovie. I dream of the day my home is a suitable environment for an african grey. It's a big wide colourul feathery squarky world out there to explore!
EthylHenry ClarkeSkittles
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Old 07-23-2017, 06:52 AM
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Re: Second parrot - to buy or not to buy?

Thanks for the replies everyone. I kept on reminding my mom (since she is the one who was so interested in getting another bird) over and over that a bird is a lot of work, and she kept on saying that she understands, so I think she really does (she can remember having both the rosella and the tiel). I don't think I would personally be able to dedicate more than a few quarter-hour sized chunks spread throughout the day on most weekdays (assuming no changes to my daily obligations). She usually has more time that she spends everyday near the cockatiel anyway. I don't think either of us cares about fancy tricks or the parrot learning to say anything specific. We've been just fine with the hardly-any-tricks, one melody tiel. Sadly, there are no rescues near me. From the time we've spent at the pet store, I would say that the quaker was definitely the friendliest parrot I've met yet.
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