Food in the morning, out at night?

vljenewein

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I am NEW to Parakeets, and noticed that my 2, I recently got, were coming to the floor of the cage to eat a millet spray I was holding in my hand The female, Adrian, would even perch on my finger and thumb to eat it. (both fairly new to us since first of Dec). Then I checked their food container I put in a few days earlier and dumped it to put in fresh, though it seemed like there was plenty in there. Most of what was in there when I dumped it in the trash was husks,and residue. As soon as I put in fresh food "Kaytees Parakeet" They immediately started eating the food from the container.

Then the next day, I offered the millet spray and no one came to eat. Only if I had it in my hand and moved it up to their level on the perch would Adrian eat, and Rocky was pretty indifferent. So I got an idea. A couple nights ago I took their food out of the cage in the evening, and then later covered them for the night. Then the next morning, after they had the cover removed and became more awake, I offered Millet spray again and they would eat. Not as enthusiastic as before , but eat nonetheless.
I was thinking to get the idea across that 1, my hand is safe, 2. I offer treat (millet) and 3. After they eat from me holding the millet, their food dish reappears with fresh food.

Bad idea? I figure they probably don't eat a lot from early evening until morning, and might be an incentive to get them to eat the millet. BTW Adrian was bought at VI Pets in Holland MI on 29th of November and Rocky (male) from same place on the 8th of December 2021. So basically just getting started in the bonding thing. Ever since I brought home Rocky, the blue Parakeet male, Adrian quite pacing back and forth in her cage (video attached) They ALWAYS have fresh water available to them. Also seem to like pears.
 

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foxgloveparrot

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Hello. The Kaytee seed brand can cause serious problems in birds. I highly encourage you to switch them to a healthier pellet as the base diet.
As for the actual question, it's a good idea but it's best to have fresh food always available to your bird, in and out of the cage. I prefer target training for building a good relationship with the bird.
One more thing-the cage looks a bit too small for two budgies. I don't know how long they are out of the cage, but it does look really small.
I hope I was helpful.
 

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Yeah I would definitely switch to a pellet like TOPs or harrisons. I would get a better seed mix also like Dr harveys best parakeet food
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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Hello. The Kaytee seed brand can cause serious problems in birds. I highly encourage you to switch them to a healthier pellet as the base diet.
As for the actual question, it's a good idea but it's best to have fresh food always available to your bird, in and out of the cage. I prefer target training for building a good relationship with the bird.
One more thing-the cage looks a bit too small for two budgies. I don't know how long they are out of the cage, but it does look really small.
I hope I was helpful.

Well, this is rather funny. On Facebook forum for Budgies, Kaytee was recommended to me over pellets. In fact an Admin. over there made the recommendation. I have looked at Lafeber ( link: https://lafeber.com/pet-birds) as it is made with less heat and pressure than extruded "pellets" of some varieties... which means less nutrient loss. I have been told to stay with seeds, and not pellets, but I DO think pellets, if made correctly, can be beneficial.

Cage is fairly large for our small house. 26" W x 22.5" Tall X 14" in depth. Has 2 feed doors and 1 BIG front door that has an extra door in the main door. We live in a small double wide that is going through remodeling at the moment... painting walls, pulling carpeting and putting in hard wood floors. Most rooms, except for the 1 spare bedroom are packed with stuff that gets moved from room to room as we do the painting/flooring. So getting a larger cage is not in the works at the time.

There is no out of cage flight time. We have 4 Toy Fox Terriers and a black cat who is outside a lot and kills off rabbits as well as other rodents as well as I have seen bird remains as well. He is indoors several hours out of the day. The birds wings were clipped at the pet store, so they can't fly. If I let them out, I risk them getting eaten by the cat or the dogs. My wife will not tolerate any bird poop on the floors or furniture. So I do not see any flight time in the foreseeable future. Right now they are too skiddish to even think of being out of the cage, as they would try to hide, which would be disastrous for them.

We also have 2 Zebra Finches, from the same VI Pets store, and I got them ZuPreem Smart Selects at the store. It has seeds and pellets mixed in it. Was told at another forum this is not good (pellets) and to just stick with seeds. So many opinions, would like links and facts to back up any of the opinions regarding food for small birds. :)

This is a link to the bird cage I got for them, but bought it at Tractor Supply store when it was on sale for $79.00. Prevue Hendryx flight cage... link: https://tinyurl.com/2p9cbmmp

Back to food. What is so wrong with Kaytee Parakeet food over the cheaper Wild Harvest food we find at Walmart?
 

foxgloveparrot

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Well, this is rather funny. On Facebook forum for Budgies, Kaytee was recommended to me over pellets. In fact an Admin. over there made the recommendation. I have looked at Lafeber ( link: https://lafeber.com/pet-birds) as it is made with less heat and pressure than extruded "pellets" of some varieties... which means less nutrient loss. I have been told to stay with seeds, and not pellets, but I DO think pellets, if made correctly, can be beneficial.

Cage is fairly large for our small house. 26" W x 22.5" Tall X 14" in depth. Has 2 feed doors and 1 BIG front door that has an extra door in the main door. We live in a small double wide that is going through remodeling at the moment... painting walls, pulling carpeting and putting in hard wood floors. Most rooms, except for the 1 spare bedroom are packed with stuff that gets moved from room to room as we do the painting/flooring. So getting a larger cage is not in the works at the time.

There is no out of cage flight time. We have 4 Toy Fox Terriers and a black cat who is outside a lot and kills off rabbits as well as other rodents as well as I have seen bird remains as well. He is indoors several hours out of the day. The birds wings were clipped at the pet store, so they can't fly. If I let them out, I risk them getting eaten by the cat or the dogs. My wife will not tolerate any bird poop on the floors or furniture. So I do not see any flight time in the foreseeable future. Right now they are too skiddish to even think of being out of the cage, as they would try to hide, which would be disastrous for them.

We also have 2 Zebra Finches, from the same VI Pets store, and I got them ZuPreem Smart Selects at the store. It has seeds and pellets mixed in it. Was told at another forum this is not good (pellets) and to just stick with seeds. So many opinions, would like links and facts to back up any of the opinions regarding food for small birds. :)

This is a link to the bird cage I got for them, but bought it at Tractor Supply store when it was on sale for $79.00. Prevue Hendryx flight cage... link: https://tinyurl.com/2p9cbmmp

Back to food. What is so wrong with Kaytee Parakeet food over the cheaper Wild Harvest food we find at Walmart?
The Kaytee seed brand has been linked to strokes and death in birds. There honestly is no excuse to keep your birds on a seed diet. It costs just as much as a healthier pellet and even thought the diet conversion process can take a while, isn't the health of your bird worth it?
Also, what about fresh vegetables and chop? I don't think you mentioned them at all.
And birds REALLY need out-of-cage time. If you have other pets, lock the birds in a room when they are out. Bird poop is super easy to clean. So please consider letting them out.
Cage is an acceptable size for budgies as long as they get plenty of daily playtime out of the cage.
And, if your birds are skittish, then get them tamed. And if they are clipped, well, there's nothing you can do about it, but that should never be an excuse to keep them in the cage.
Oh, and the pacing probably means she wants to come out.
I'm really sorry if this sounds rude but I'm just concerned about the well-being of your budgies and am trying to help.
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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Oh, and the pacing probably means she wants to come out.
She no longer paces. That was before I brought home Rocky (male). I DID mention that in my original post above..... Now they both sit on the perch and don't try to escape nor do either of them pace back and forth. I think it was she wanted one of her "companions" from the pet store, or she was seeing the Finches , which at the time, we only about 2 feet from the cage and in full view, when she was in there by herself.

I give them veggies and fruits like pears, apples and oranges.
 
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foxgloveparrot

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She no longer paces. That was before I brought home Rocky (male). Now they both sit on the perch and don't try to escape nor do either of them pace back and forth. I think it was she wanted one of her "companions" from the pet store, or she was seeing the Finches , which at the time, we only about 2 feet from the cage and in full view, when she was in there by herself.

I give them veggies and fruits like pears, apples and oranges.
Just remember that birds don't need fruit in their diet. It's high in sugar and makes a good treat. And please get them off Kaytee and onto pellets.
 
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Birdgirl24

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I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
Red flags on food always are A. Artificial sweeteners like sugar and fruit

and B. A crazy number of vitamins the only time you should be feeding extra vitamins is if your vet tells you too or through fresh veg.


And just an opinion you were scammed on the cage you go you could have spent 20 extra bucks and got A 2x bigger cage.
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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A parakeet food review, and guess what comes out on top? https://petkeen.com/best-parakeet-foods/
BTW, I am NOT affiliated with or receive ANY renumeration from any pet food manufacture, just to set the tone right.
Also as was said above "Artificial sweeteners like sugar and fruit" Except fruit and sugar are not artificial. I worked in the lab at a winery for over 20 years, and sugar is added to the gape juice to boost ending alcohol content or to sweeten it just before bottling. Artificial is Sorbitol, Aspartame and others. Some fruit is good. Not on a daily deal as Parakeets east mostly seeds, grains and grasses in the wild, with some fruit and greens along the way. Opportunist feeders. Read the above article link.

Remember, I did not start this thread to argue food. I just asked IF one could withhold food overnight to encourage eating a few millet pieces from the hand. I figured if they ate, THEN put the food dish back in. THIS is what I was inquiring, not cage size, not foods. From now on what I feed will NOT EVER be mentioned. It is a personal choice.
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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And just an opinion you were scammed on the cage you go you could have spent 20 extra bucks and got A 2x bigger cage.
I do not WANT a 2x bigger cage. Our house, in the country is small and being remodeled. 26" wide is really about as big as it's going to be. So, not scammed, as I was looking for something actually just a bit smaller.
 

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Dear members, I think it's time to get this thread back on track, as it appears to be deviating away from vljenewein's original intent. If everyone could please respect the OP and please kindly stay on topic in this thread it would be much appreciated. Thank you :)
 

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My birds don't eat overnight, so they would be fine if I removed their food. However, if your birds are afraid, they most likely will need some time to get used to you before they will eat out of your hand whether they had the food or not. I think it is much better to have them want to eat from your hand than to do it because they are too hungry not to. Gaining their trust is the hard part, but so worth it.
. Perhaps you could start by adding a piece of millet in their cage so they can try it first. Slowly you can work your way to holding it.
Here is a great thread:

Tips for Bonding and Building Trust

Do you have a room you can take their cage to so they aren't distracted by the dogs?
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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However, if your birds are afraid, they most likely will need some time to get used to you before they will eat out of your hand whether they had the food or not. I think it is much better to have them want to eat from your hand than to do it because they are too hungry not to. Gaining their trust is the hard part, but so worth it.
. Perhaps you could start by adding a piece of millet in their cage so they can try it first. Slowly you can work your way to holding it.
I understand birds are still afraid. They have only been here in our home, from the pet store, for 2 weeks. It will take some time. I appreciate the feedback and comment. First one to address the idea. :) I do feel, however, that they are intelligent animals, and will quickly figure out one thing. They eat millet from my hand (and they did eat out of hand again tonight) They get fresh food. Not to starve them, but to give them a lesson, and incentive. I will, of course, give them their food, but would like to get them to learn a valuable lesson.... his hand is safe... he has millet.. we eat the millet and he gives us fresh food. After they ate "some" millet from my hand tonight, I immediately dumped out their food dish and put in fresh food, which they then chowed down on.

The dogs don't pay any attention to the birds, and the birds don't seem to pay any attention to the dogs. Most of the time, the Toy Fox Terriers (all senior dogs, 2 are rescues) are on the couch or even on our bed. The cat pays no attention to the birds, nor is he sitting there looking at them, or they even see him. He sleeps in the house under our bed, at the moment, during the day. At night he sleeps on the couch, (off and on) but the bird's cage is covered for the night. It is in our kitchen so they can see me at the laptop and when I'm eating , drinking my coffee, etc. I cook so I am in the kitchen quite a bit.
 
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foxgloveparrot

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A parakeet food review, and guess what comes out on top? https://petkeen.com/best-parakeet-foods/
BTW, I am NOT affiliated with or receive ANY renumeration from any pet food manufacture, just to set the tone right.
Also as was said above "Artificial sweeteners like sugar and fruit" Except fruit and sugar are not artificial. I worked in the lab at a winery for over 20 years, and sugar is added to the gape juice to boost ending alcohol content or to sweeten it just before bottling. Artificial is Sorbitol, Aspartame and others. Some fruit is good. Not on a daily deal as Parakeets east mostly seeds, grains and grasses in the wild, with some fruit and greens along the way. Opportunist feeders. Read the above article link.

Remember, I did not start this thread to argue food. I just asked IF one could withhold food overnight to encourage eating a few millet pieces from the hand. I figured if they ate, THEN put the food dish back in. THIS is what I was inquiring, not cage size, not foods. From now on what I feed will NOT EVER be mentioned. It is a personal choice.
Okay. Do what you wish, then. Thank you.
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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Time will tell, but might be working. It worked this morning. I removed the food container yesterday evening, and after uncovering this morning it was still out of their cage. I offered millet, with my hand in the cage, and no takers. So, I waited a couple hours (was early) and tried it again, going through the slide up door in the main big door, with millet in hand, and Adrian was first to eat.. then Rocky. Both were eating millet I was holding in my hand, and moving around the hand. As soon as I took out the millet, which I do not make as a meal, Rocky went straight to the area where the food container goes and waited. I put the food container, with food in it, back in the cage and both were chowing down on the food. (pic attached)
I think it gave them an idea that hand is not bad. That hand and millet will get the food dish "back" in their area.

They are not so skittish of me as in the beginning. I can make clicking noises with my lips, close to the cage, near them and they just look at me. I approach them and they don't scramble. And now, in 2 weeks have gotten them to eat the millet out of my hand as I hold it.

Taming is a process that takes time.

BTW, I keep a yellow plastic food clip on the OUTSIDE of the cage, right above he guillotine door (upward sliding) that prevents either of them from lifting the door with their beak. Adrian used to raise and drop the door, and was afraid she would get out or get hurt.
 

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foxgloveparrot

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Time will tell, but might be working. It worked this morning. I removed the food container yesterday evening, and after uncovering this morning it was still out of their cage. I offered millet, with my hand in the cage, and no takers. So, I waited a couple hours (was early) and tried it again, going through the slide up door in the main big door, with millet in hand, and Adrian was first to eat.. then Rocky. Both were eating millet I was holding in my hand, and moving around the hand. As soon as I took out the millet, which I do not make as a meal, Rocky went straight to the area where the food container goes and waited. I put the food container, with food in it, back in the cage and both were chowing down on the food. (pic attached)
I think it gave them an idea that hand is not bad. That hand and millet will get the food dish "back" in their area.

They are not so skittish of me as in the beginning. I can make clicking noises with my lips, close to the cage, near them and they just look at me. I approach them and they don't scramble. And now, in 2 weeks have gotten them to eat the millet out of my hand as I hold it.

Taming is a process that takes time.

BTW, I keep a yellow plastic food clip on the OUTSIDE of the cage, right above he guillotine door (upward sliding) that prevents either of them from lifting the door with their beak. Adrian used to raise and drop the door, and was afraid she would get out or get hurt.
That's good to hear. Keep going until they are fully tame
 
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vljenewein

vljenewein

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Update this evening: When we ate supper I took out their food container and set it aside. After supper and watching A Christmas Carol (Charles Dickens with Patrick Stewart) I went to the cage in the kitchen and asked them if they wanted a treat? Rocky was already down on the floor of the cage so I took the clip off the slide up door and put my hand in with the sprig of Millet. He started eating, and then Adrian saw him and she also came down and started eating. Both were eating for a little bit.... I don't give them much because I read they can become very addicted to it) . When I removed my hand and Millet, I put their food container back in immediately. Both Budgies went to eating.

We have only had them 2 weeks. Pet store had them in a sort of "Parakeet Pit" where it was open for anyone to reach in and disturb them. So I think I am gaining in the trust. At least they seem to be getting the idea that I am the food and treat guy. LOL As I type they are now sitting up on their perch, probably awaiting for me to cover them up for the night.
 
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vljenewein

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Just in case anyone was following. Wife took picture of me holding seeds in my hand and the pair of Budgies both eating out of my hand. Jan 8 will be around 1 month since we brought Rocky home and Dec 30 would be 1 month for Adrian (green female) .
 

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foxgloveparrot

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Just in case anyone was following. Wife took picture of me holding seeds in my hand and the pair of Budgies both eating out of my hand. Jan 8 will be around 1 month since we brought Rocky home and Dec 30 would be 1 month for Adrian (green female) .
This is great progress! Good to hear that they are eating out of your hand :)
Try getting them on the hand and taking them out for a moment? It doesn't have to be far. Only a step or two away from the cage is fine. But they do tend to gain more confidence in new things when out of the cage.
 

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