Hello

Teddscau

Active member
Sep 25, 2015
640
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Ontario, Canada
Parrots
Budgies: Sunshine, Blanco, Azure; Peach-faced lovebirds: Rosie and Jaybird; YSA: Jasper (♀)
Hey everyone! I'm Robyn, and some of you may know me from another forum. I've lived with budgies for over 15 years, although that doesn't really mean that much since I'm only 19, but whatever.

I live in Ontario and currently have eight :greenyellow:, three of which I adopted from the Humane Society back in August, I think. Their names are Rumi, Lara, and Pollo, and had been at the Humane Society in Toronto for almost seven months, so I decided to get Dad to drive me there and back for the cuties, which is a four hour round trip. They had been in a Montreal shelter before ending up in Toronto.

During quarantine, I had to treat Rumi and Lara for bumblefoot, and converted them to a sprout diet.

Anyways, here's my budgies:

Samantha–
Female
Dark green, SF violet, opaline
Paulmac's Pets
~14

Charlie–
Male
Blue
Trent Pet
7 or 8

Ju–
Male with testicular cancer and weak lungs
Green
Trent Pet
~5

Rumi–
Female
Yellow
Toronto Humane Society, originally from Montreal
3

Lara–
Female
Green, half or full English
Toronto Humane Society, originally from Montreal
3

Pollo–
Male
Some sort of dilute green
Toronto Humane Society, originally from Montreal
3

Ziggy–
Male
Green
Kijiji rescue; found flying loose in a restaurant in Toronto
At least a year

Alice–
Female
Sky blue, clearwing
Kijiji rescue; was rescued from a hoarder who was going to "release her" in the middle of the winter when she was only a couple months old
A year in October

So, I got Ziggy and Alice in late January. Alice suffered from significant psychological, emotional, and behavioural issues for the first couple of months after I brought her home, but she's greatly improved since then. Oh, and Ziggy had some issues too. He'd been kept in too small of a cage, so he would pace a lot and was easily confused. I mean, he had a dish of seeds not three inches from his perch, and he'd sometimes pace back and forth for over five minutes while trying to figure out how to get to it! I ended up having to put a dish right at his perch so he could just turn his head a bit to eat. Oh, and he almost starved himself! The first few days I had him, I couldn't figure out why he wasn't eating! He'd eaten only a couple dozen seeds, so I was getting really worried! Turns out he didn't know to "sift" the seed in the dish to get to the uneaten stuff. And no guys, I was not being negligent! There was just this thin little layer of husks covering his seed. In the end, I had to blow the husks out of his dish every few hours so the little dummy wouldn't starve :p. Don't worry, I've since moved him to my double-flight cage and he is no longer pacing, and is now great at flying, navigating, problem solving, and eating.

Sorry about the big post, guys! I just thought I'd give you a little background on my most recent additions!

I keep all of my budgies in an A&E double-flight cage that's 64" x 21" x 35" (L x W x H). Their diet consists of 50% sprouts (millet, canary, flax, canola, mung, and lentils), 1/4—1/3 veggies, and the rest is dry seed, which I give them at night. I give them fresh RO water twice a day, and I sometimes put ACV in it. I also make them kelp tea from time to time for the iodine (they love the tea!). I've also been mixing ground up dandelion root in their sprouts for almost a year now since Juey developed cancer. It's been fighting the cancer and has prevented it from getting any worse. I also sprinkle Avitech Avigreens into their sprouts when they're going through a molt or are acting a bit off.

I make sure they get at least 14 hours of darkness since someone (Samantha) *cough cough* is a little too eager for baby making. Honestly, she's so promiscuous! She was with Ju, then Ziggy, then Ju, Ziggy again, Ju, and now she's with Charlie! Seriously, I bet she's going to mate with Pollo within two months' time! Oh, and that Ziggy! He's claimed all the females as his, and almost every time I walk in the room, he's humping his Planet Pleasures toy! Oh, and recently he's started making these creepy sounds when he's "playing" with the toy! Oh, and I almost forgot to mention how he tried to assault JuJu when Juey was vomiting the one day! Poor Ju. Ju's fine now. I was panicking and thought he was going to die because it was the long weekend and the vet was closed, but after vomiting and trembling for a few hours, he wolfed down a bunch of food and was flying all over the place and playing. Must have been a bad sprout or something. Honestly, the vomit looked like regurgitation, except it was involuntary and he was retching and shaking his head. He was so scared and exhausted! Then, Ziggy goes over to him, thinking Juey wants to mate with him, and Ziggy tries to mount him for a few minutes! You should have seen the look on poor Ju's face! Ziggy's been much nicer to Ju since then, as he used bully him relentlessly before, but now he'll play with Ju and eat from the same dish without constantly chasing the little guy off.

Man, is that a wall of text, or what! Anyways, the reason I joined this forum is so I could learn more about eclectus. I'm thinking of getting a male ekkie in the next ten years, and I think they're a good match for me, besides budgies. I keep reading about how "hard" their diet is, but it doesn't seem like too much more work than my budgies' diet. I mean, a third of an ekkie's diet is sprouts and micro-greens, then the rest is fruits and veggies.

You make up a bunch of chop ahead of time with a variety of raw veggies that have plenty of nutrients (especially vitamin A), but are not nutrient dense, since ekkies can't handle nutrient dense foods very well. You give them the sprouts, micro-greens, chop, and fresh fruits and veggies in the morning for breakfast. For supper you give them a cooked meal of wholesome grains, veggies, etc. You can also stuff foraging toys with homemade snacks (pellets, dried fruits and veggies, birdie bread). Obviously I'd make the pellets myself.

As for protein, it should be plant based proteins, such as quinoa, but not as much protein as you'd normally give other large parrots. You shouldn't give them anything synthetic or processed, and they shouldn't get any supplements such as spirulina because it is too dense in vitamins and whatnot. I covered pretty much the whole diet, right?
 
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RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,233
190
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
Hi Robyn, good to see you here too! I'm so glad to hear that Ju is doing well, and that Ziggy is being a bit nicer to him nowdays :).

I think you're someone who will succeed with the care of a larger parrot, and would be an ideal candidate for one, knowing you from the other forum, and about your knowledge on diet and natural supplements, and how seriously you take your budgies' health. I think your budgies receive excellent care.

This is a great place to do your parrot research. Lots of nice members here, and many experienced Ekkie people around to help familiarize you with the species and particulars. Many good threads here already too. Great to have you here!
 
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Teddscau

Teddscau

Active member
Sep 25, 2015
640
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Ontario, Canada
Parrots
Budgies: Sunshine, Blanco, Azure; Peach-faced lovebirds: Rosie and Jaybird; YSA: Jasper (♀)
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So this is where you sneak off to when you're not on the budgie forum, eh? :p I'm glad you think I'd be a good candidate for looking after a large parrot :). Ju isn't as active as he was before he got the cancer, but he's really active, happy, and social for at least a couple of hours a day. He can be quite worn out at times, but he seems to be pretty happy and in pretty good health for someone with cancer. He's still enjoying life, and he isn't getting any worse, so I'm happy :).

My only concern about getting an eclectus would be the amount of attention he would need. We had to get rid of our cockatiels a few years back because we just weren't a good match. They needed constant one on one attention, and would constantly scream! When we had them out, they couldn't just be content with being in the same room with us. Colipso constantly wanted to be petted, and Griffin would get all huffy because he didn't think Colipso should be spending time with anyone but him. As for Griffin, he'd want us to talk to him and keep his brain active, but Colipso would start screaming whenever we were getting him to practice speaking and mimicking sounds. Oh, and it was always a nightmare letting them out, because Griffin would always fly off onto the cabinets, and then start screaming because him and Colipso were separated! Then when we'd try to help him down, he'd attack us and get himself trapped somewhere else!

Ekkies aren't like that, right? I mean, I could have the little guy on a t-stand with some toys and stuff while I watch TV, and he wouldn't need to be on my lap, constantly needing to be talked to or petted, right? I mean, I'd try to spend at least an hour a day with him out of his cage, interacting with him, but I don't think I could handle someone who needs to have your full attention on them 24/7. Like, could we spend half an hour in the morning eating and showering together, then put him in his aviary for a few hours while I do other things? Like, he wouldn't be constantly screaming for attention or be depressed if I needed him to stay in his aviary for a few/several hours? I'd obviously spend at least an hour of quality time with him at some point, petting him, teaching him colours, reading to him, etc. I guess what I'm asking is if I would end up feeling guilty if I had to leave him alone in his aviary for several hours every now and then. Are they like dogs who are content with just being in the same room as you?

Thanks for the welcome you two!
 

Allee

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2013
16,852
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Texas
Parrots
U2-Poppy(Poppy lives with her new mommy, Misty now) CAG-Jack, YNA, Bingo, Budgie-Piper, Cockatiel-Sweet Pea Quakers-Harry, Sammy, Wilson ***Zeke (quaker) Twinkle (budgie) forever in our hearts
Hi Robyn! Welcome to the forums!
 
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Teddscau

Teddscau

Active member
Sep 25, 2015
640
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123
Ontario, Canada
Parrots
Budgies: Sunshine, Blanco, Azure; Peach-faced lovebirds: Rosie and Jaybird; YSA: Jasper (♀)
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Thanks for the welcome, Allee :). I really need to force myself to get off the forum and do my university course!
 

RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,233
190
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
Any parrot large or small needs to be taught independence, and learn that constant clinginess can't be happening. I still consider ambient attention while you're in the room as attention. Depending on the species too, you might find some are better able than others to accept more ambient attention (while you study for example) rather than direct hands on.
 
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Teddscau

Teddscau

Active member
Sep 25, 2015
640
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123
Ontario, Canada
Parrots
Budgies: Sunshine, Blanco, Azure; Peach-faced lovebirds: Rosie and Jaybird; YSA: Jasper (♀)
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Okay, good to hear :). Even if I couldn't get the cockatiels to be independent, I'm sure I could teach an ekkie to be. With the cockatiels, being in the same room as them without constantly touching them and talking to them made them behave even worse, as their screaming would become even more frantic when they saw us. Man, those few years we had the cockatiels for we're quite terrible, to be completely honest.

Again, as you said, every species and individual is different, but from what I've read it doesn't sound like eclectus are little leeches, unlike those cockatiels. I know, I shouldn't be so hard on the cockatiels :p. Believe me, we tried really hard to get those little crested devils to be at least a little independent.
 
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RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,233
190
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
Lol, sounds like you had some "mini" cockatoos who didn't learn their independence!

Just curious, what is it that made you consider an Eclectus in particular over another species? Maybe the more you're around and looking at the threads, you might become interested in other species as well.
 
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Teddscau

Teddscau

Active member
Sep 25, 2015
640
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Ontario, Canada
Parrots
Budgies: Sunshine, Blanco, Azure; Peach-faced lovebirds: Rosie and Jaybird; YSA: Jasper (♀)
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Oh man, that's exactly what those guys were! I also found them to be the least "parrot-like" of all parrots! They were just so weird and needy!

Anyways, several years ago, I saw an eclectus for the first time in a magazine, I believe. It was the male that caught my attention. Their gentle little eyes, their sleek, hair-like feathers, and their big, candy corn beak that has just the most amazing shape! Just by looking at their eyes and beaks, I just thought they looked so gentle and sensitive. Okay, so that's how I first got interested in them, but I always told myself I'd never adopt any parrots besides budgies, especially not such a sensitive, beautiful looking creature such as an ekkie.

Then, several months ago, I watched Parrot Confidential. I've read about all the heartbreaking stories about how parrots are often mistreated in captivity, but this documentary really got to me. I decided I would adopt budgies in need of homes. Then, when I was in Florida, I went to a bird rescue with my parents in Florida, called "Save Our Seabirds." They had tons of different birds there that they were rehabilitating, along with dozens who could never be released back into the wild because of what humans had done to them, such as the poor pelican who had one of his mandibles cut off by a fisherman for "stealing his fish". Anyways, they also had these large parrots, along with cockatiels there. There were different species of macaws and cockatoos, and they were probably going to be spending the rest of their lives at the bird rescue because they were unwanted. Anyways, I'm a sucker when it comes to animals.

So, one day I was talking about how I wouldn't be getting another dog after Teddy passes, and that I'd probably just keep budgies. Then, jokingly, I mentioned that the only other parrot I could maybe picture having was an eclectus. I mean, cockatoos tend to be very loud, cage aggressive, and from what I've read, they need tons of attention and mental stimulation. I know there's a ton of different species and subspecies of cockatoos, those little demon cockatiels being one of them :p. As for macaws, I was never really that interested in caring for one, but that's not to say I wouldn't take in an illness-free one that needed emergency housing.

Anyways, I'm not going to list every type of parrot out there and why I'd prefer an ekkie :p. Anyways, I find I can often tell what an animal is like based on their expressions and appearance. When I looked at pictures of eclectus, somehow they just seemed to be my type of bird. To me, their faces told me that they were sensitive, intelligent, pensive (as I keep reading :rolleyes:), gentle, quiet, and sweet. Yes, I got all that from a face :cool:. Anyways, when I decided to read up on them, it seems I was spot on. I'm not looking for a parrot that talks, does tricks, or is a Velcro bird, although I know ekkies can learn to talk and do tricks. What I want in a parrot, besides budgies of course, is someone who is: sensitive; calm; understanding; and gets lost in thought, contemplating his or her surroundings.

I often just want to take things easy, and other large parrots don't seem to fit the bill. They want a lot of attention, they're loud, and tend to have too big of personalities for me. I know it's an over generalization, but you know what I mean. Heck, even conures look too demanding for me. I can tell they want a lot of interaction and constant activity, but I'm often too tired to even throw a ball for the dogs. I mean, there's a lot of energy when it comes to playing with a dog, too much emotional drain. Man, I sound kind of depressed! I'm just really sleepy today so I'm a bit out of it. ;)

Anyways, that's why I'm thinking of going with a male ekkie. Don't know if my view on ekkies is skewed or not. Oh, and I didn't want a species that was known for cage aggression or attacking humans or animals that aren't their favourite person. Like how Griffin, the cockatiel, would attack my mom. He truly hated her :p.
 
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