Is it normal for new birds to not eat?

JoyousChaos

New member
Dec 21, 2022
3
10
The Woodlands, Texas
Parrots
1 Male blue Budgie/Parakeet
Hello all! I’m a first time bird owner and a very nervous one at that. I’m a young person and my dad (after years of begging) agreed to let me get a bird. And for the record, I’ve done my research and this was not an impulse purchase.

Okay with that out of the way, so on December 20th (yesterday as of writing) I bought my budgie. A blue male, if anyones curious.
Since putting him in the cage, setting him up with toys, food, perches and water, he hasn’t moved from his spot on one of the perches.

I’m just worried that he’s going to make himself sick if he doesn’t eat soon. I understand he needs time to get comfortable and I’m just wondering if anyone else had the same experience when they got their budgies. And if so, any tips on how to make my budgie more comfortable? Anything is appreciated. Thank you!
 
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Owlet

Well-known member
Oct 27, 2016
2,487
1,388
Colorado
Parrots
Lincoln (Eclectus), Apollo (Cockatiel), Aster (GCC)
It is not abnormal for a bird to not eat when they first come home.

However here are some questions that might help us help you:
Is he a recently weaned baby?
Are you feeding him the same food where you got him from was feeding him?
 

HeatherG

Well-known member
Apr 25, 2020
3,901
6,836
Another thing to consider: eating is a vulnerable time for birds. If they were outdoors, this would be a time predators lay in wait for them, trying to catch them. So a newer pet bird will also be shy about eating in front of you. When it knows you better it won’t care.
 
OP
JoyousChaos

JoyousChaos

New member
Dec 21, 2022
3
10
The Woodlands, Texas
Parrots
1 Male blue Budgie/Parakeet
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #4
It is not abnormal for a bird to not eat when they first come home.

However here are some questions that might help us help you:
Is he a recently weaned baby?
Are you feeding him the same food where you got him from was feeding him?
He is at least over 6 months, I’m not sure exactly about his age. The food is another thing. The place I got him from was feeding him a seed diet and I’ve been thinking of getting some to mix into the pellets I have to help him transfer.
Another thing to consider: eating is a vulnerable time for birds. If they were outdoors, this would be a time predators lay in wait for them, trying to catch them. So a newer pet bird will also be shy about eating in front of you. When it knows you better it won’t care.
That does help with reassuring me, I appreciate it!
 

SailBoat

Supporting Member
Jul 10, 2015
16,689
7,473
Western, Michigan
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DYH Amazon
Transitioning to a new diet should occur after they are settled and are eating what they are use too!
Slow-down a bit and move at the rate of your Parrot.
 

HowdyDoDee

Member
Jan 18, 2020
86
92
Minnesota
Parrots
Parakeet
Hello all! I’m a first time bird owner and a very nervous one at that. I’m a young person and my dad (after years of begging) agreed to let me get a bird. And for the record, I’ve done my research and this was not an impulse purchase.

Okay with that out of the way, so on December 20th (yesterday as of writing) I bought my budgie. A blue male, if anyones curious.
Since putting him in the cage, setting him up with toys, food, perches and water, he hasn’t moved from his spot on one of the perches.

I’m just worried that he’s going to make himself sick if he doesn’t eat soon. I understand he needs time to get comfortable and I’m just wondering if anyone else had the same experience when they got their budgies. And if so, any tips on how to make my budgie more comfortable? Anything is appreciated. Thank you!
Congratulations!

Budgies are very sensitive, vulnerable little creatures. Is his cage placed at least at counter height? Higher is better. Make sure the room temperature is relatively consistent, and he’s not exposed to drafty air. Also he should have relatively calm surroundings as he adjusts to his new home.

Always keep the cage covered on all sides except one to start with, and make sure he’s got places to hide in his cage. A hanging toy for example in the corner where he can perch, that should do. You can cover the cage with a dish towel or lightweight breathable blanket if you don’t have a cover. He’s learning his new home, studying everything that is going on around him. Be patient, and he’ll adapt just fine if you follow his lead. Some birds are more adventurous than others, and others are more cautious.

Try offering millet through the bars of the cage, then slipping it though if he doesn’t take it from you. Like you, I changed my birds food right away. I wasn’t going to buy the artificially flavored and sugary stuff they were feeding at the pet store. My keets did just fine. At least one did not eat right away either.

Don’t stress it, and certainly don’t rush it! Better to take it very slow than to try to give him too much freedom at once and end up losing trust with him. It’s all about earning his trust right now!
 

LoveOfallAnimals

Active member
Jul 17, 2022
88
209
Parrots
Female eclectus
I would give him seeds for now if that is what he is used to eating. He probably doesn't recognize pellets as food at this point and birds are very finicky eaters. Changing most birds diet isn't an easy task, and some birds would rather starve to death than try a new food.
 
OP
JoyousChaos

JoyousChaos

New member
Dec 21, 2022
3
10
The Woodlands, Texas
Parrots
1 Male blue Budgie/Parakeet
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #8
Hello all! I’m a first time bird owner and a very nervous one at that. I’m a young person and my dad (after years of begging) agreed to let me get a bird. And for the record, I’ve done my research and this was not an impulse purchase.

Okay with that out of the way, so on December 20th (yesterday as of writing) I bought my budgie. A blue male, if anyones curious.
Since putting him in the cage, setting him up with toys, food, perches and water, he hasn’t moved from his spot on one of the perches.

I’m just worried that he’s going to make himself sick if he doesn’t eat soon. I understand he needs time to get comfortable and I’m just wondering if anyone else had the same experience when they got their budgies. And if so, any tips on how to make my budgie more comfortable? Anything is appreciated. Thank you!
Positive update! He is eating! I got back from the store with the same food he was eating before I got him and I walked in to him lying INSIDE his dish picking at the mix of pellets and seeds. Frankly, I’m just happy he is comfortable eating around me now, hopefully now that he can eat around me in a few days I can start the taming and transition process :] thank you all for your tips! I appreciate it greatly!
 

lgallagher

Member
Oct 16, 2022
39
Media
3
59
Parrots
Conure: Edward Van Halen (Hatched 03.2022)
Hello all! I’m a first time bird owner and a very nervous one at that. I’m a young person and my dad (after years of begging) agreed to let me get a bird. And for the record, I’ve done my research and this was not an impulse purchase.

Okay with that out of the way, so on December 20th (yesterday as of writing) I bought my budgie. A blue male, if anyones curious.
Since putting him in the cage, setting him up with toys, food, perches and water, he hasn’t moved from his spot on one of the perches.

I’m just worried that he’s going to make himself sick if he doesn’t eat soon. I understand he needs time to get comfortable and I’m just wondering if anyone else had the same experience when they got their budgies. And if so, any tips on how to make my budgie more comfortable? Anything is appreciated. Thank you!
I, myself, just got a new conure, I already have one, and the pet store where I got her from was feeding a seed diet as well. The green cheek that I already have was transitioned to pellets so I didn't have any seed in the house so I bought a bag of seed for the new addition thinking that's what she would want.
I placed her in her cage, just as you did, and gave her the seed. She was almost reluctently eating it. So, I put a few pellets on top just to see if she would like them. All I can say is they were gone immediately.
I removed the seed and have been feeding her pellets now for a week and she loves them. She must have been fed pellets at the breeder because she is having no problem eating.
I don't know if your baby will immediately like pellets, but maybe give it a try.....it worked for mine.
I hope this helps.
Lori
 

DonnaBudgie

Member
Jan 24, 2023
38
49
Windham, Maine
Parrots
Budgies. Lotsa Budgies.
Hello all! I’m a first time bird owner and a very nervous one at that. I’m a young person and my dad (after years of begging) agreed to let me get a bird. And for the record, I’ve done my research and this was not an impulse purchase.

Okay with that out of the way, so on December 20th (yesterday as of writing) I bought my budgie. A blue male, if anyones curious.
Since putting him in the cage, setting him up with toys, food, perches and water, he hasn’t moved from his spot on one of the perches.

I’m just worried that he’s going to make himself sick if he doesn’t eat soon. I understand he needs time to get comfortable and I’m just wondering if anyone else had the same experience when they got their budgies. And if so, any tips on how to make my budgie more comfortable? Anything is appreciated. Thank you!
Congratulations on your first Budgie! They are the most lovable but underrated pet birds and I'm sure he will become your buddy soon if you are patient and gentle. The more time you spend with him, even just sitting and watching TV, the sooner he will bond with you. Years ago when I got a young pet store Budgie I would lie on my bed to watch TV or read and put the cage on the bed next to me with the door open and within a few weeks he, Buddy, began coming out on his own to explore and get to know me. I soon taught him to say "Who's your Buddy" and "Birds can't talk"! I had Buddy for 13 wonderful years. Best wishes!
 

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