So I got her a nestbox....

Kitekeeper

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Thank you very much for the news!!!!

You have a beautiful flock!! It has been my biggest challenge too, to let some of the babies go to another home....who knows if they will be well treated?

I think Tiny and Patchouli are not of the same sex, they will have different ceres. The more violet is the cere at that age the more likely the budgie is a male. The paler (blueish) the cere, the odds are for a female...
 

Laurasea

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I had a feeling you might be able to part with any!! Look at all those beautiful happy birdies!! Congrats on your flock!
Maybe a plastic leg band on one?
I want more pictures !
 
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fiddlejen

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I had a feeling you might be able to part with any!! Look at all those beautiful happy birdies!! Congrats on your flock!
Maybe a plastic leg band on one?
I want more pictures !
Plastic leg band. Hm, I might look into that. Thank you for the suggestion!

More pics hm. Okay, will work on a few more closeups over the next few days. :)
 
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fiddlejen

fiddlejen

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Thank you very much for the news!!!!

You have a beautiful flock!! It has been my biggest challenge too, to let some of the babies go to another home....who knows if they will be well treated?

I think Tiny and Patchouli are not of the same sex, they will have different ceres. The more violet is the cere at that age the more likely the budgie is a male. The paler (blueish) the cere, the odds are for a female...
Well I kinda wish all the babies would be males... i think that would make life simpler! But other than that silliness, i do hope you're right, because if Tiny & Patchouli's ceres are not different, they will be identical.
 

Kitekeeper

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Well I kinda wish all the babies would be males.
😬 I might be wrong as it is still early to determine their sex, but looking at the pictures I think Patchouli is the only male of the clutch.

Females can be very gentle, in fact some of my most affectionate budgies were females. If there is no nestbox, I hardly think any of them would become aggressive.

Males in the other hand, kind of have that never ending energy that sometimes can bother the other budgies, mostly if he is trying to convince her to mate (and they try all the time even without nestboxes).

:)
 
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fiddlejen

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I removed the nestbox Sunday. Monday was fine but Tuesday all Calliope would do, was hunt for the nestbox. And she was soo happy when I had first given it to her. So I had put it back up yesterday. She was happy, and she went back to being her recent relaxed self. I figured IF more eggs appear i will follow the discard-and-replace protocol.

But if three of the babies are female, obviously this will get more complicated. I guess I will have to take Calliope's box away, and go back to defending against holes being chewed in windowframes and everywhere else....
 

Kitekeeper

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Tuesday all Calliope would do, was hunt for the nestbox. And she was soo happy when I had first given it to her. So I had put it back up yesterday. She was happy,
That´s maybe the last critical phase of budgies reproduction. Yes, Calliope will love to have her nestbox back. That´s Calliope purpose as "mother nature" sees it, to breed. Her mindset and her hormones are still in this and will remain until she can no longer do it.

Reproduction has a high cost, even more for females. It accelerates metabolism and if done continuously it cost lifespan.

If Calliope can continue to have access to her nestbox, she will breed again with Jefferson. In this process she may turn so protective of her eggs that she can act aggressively toward Jefferson again and also toward the whole flock.

If you keep them apart but provide the nestbox, she will lay blank eggs that will cost her calcium and eventually health strength, including the possibility of egg binding.

I know she will be a little upset for not having the nestbox anymore for some time, but in my view it is for her best.
 
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fiddlejen

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That´s maybe the last critical phase of budgies reproduction. Yes, Calliope will love to have her nestbox back. That´s Calliope purpose as "mother nature" sees it, to breed. Her mindset and her hormones are still in this and will remain until she can no longer do it.

Reproduction has a high cost, even more for females. It accelerates metabolism and if done continuously it cost lifespan.

If Calliope can continue to have access to her nestbox, she will breed again with Jefferson. In this process she may turn so protective of her eggs that she can act aggressively toward Jefferson again and also toward the whole flock.

If you keep them apart but provide the nestbox, she will lay blank eggs that will cost her calcium and eventually health strength, including the possibility of egg binding.

I know she will be a little upset for not having the nestbox anymore for some time, but in my view it is for her best.
Okay. I will remove it again. Poor Calliope. I think laying eggs and having teeny tiny babies is really the only thing she wants in life.
 
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fiddlejen

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Five Budgies Looking Out Window;
D73D109F-7CCA-4D01-B073-700058BB9321.jpeg
 

LaManuka

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As the mother of one obsessive egg-laying little hen to another, I wish you every success in keeping Calliope from laying again. As you may know, my Lilly the lorikeet is a chronic layer and it is a daily struggle to keep her on the "straight and narrow", and I keep a little stash of faux eggs on standby just in case one day she falls off the wagon! Once they get into that mindset it can be very difficult to disavow them of the idea but I've (largely) managed it with Lilly so I hope you are able to do it with Calliope - although it must be said that she does not have the temptation of a handsome rooster like Jefferson about to tempt her even further the way that Calliope does! Thankfully Lilly has not laid a clutch of infertile eggs since December 2019 but she does still try to access her favourite nesting sites around the house almost every day, and particularly during her very long breeding season.

Oh and I love this last pic of your little "explorer team" as Kitekeeper described them, they're just gorgeous :)
 
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fiddlejen

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Photos can be so difficult to get…
I think this will be final Family Photo for this thread, and some new update posts to make now, and then I shall need to start a new Flock Thread (“SIX Budgies a Conure and a Fiddle”).

Yesterday’s Family Photo:
D51D1D78-350D-460C-9EA5-B04990E518DC.jpeg

Oh, and today me and Sunny went to the beach. Afternoon, so sun at an angle, lots of glare on the pic. (That’s Not a second orange bird in there, it’s a half-a-bell-pepper for her to snack on or play with.).

Sunny at the beach:
6EA8991A-BDD5-4586-A778-9264F5941D58.jpeg
 
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fiddlejen

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Regarding that nestbox. The thing about it - with it there, Calliope does Not keep trying to chew holes through the windowframes. I am resigned that I cannot keep it; with more than one female, i know that will lead to fighting.

I did, however, put it back temporarily after all. BUT what I am doing, is leaving it OPEN during the day. I think this is the best choice, as Calliope has stopped a lot of her guarding behavior while the nestbox lid is Open. I plan to remove the whole thing again before too much longer, and then perhaps leave that cage-opening Up (open) for another week or so at that point. She just seems so much less distressed this way!

SO far I have not seen another egg, despite the box. (I do check it daily to make sure. And, I have full set of dummy eggs ready to go as soon as needed!)

Tonight after returning from the beach, the budgies had all tucked themselves into their cage, waiting patiently for me to cover them & outen the lights. BUT of course there are seedshells and food, etc all over the floor which must be swept... you all know the drill. So do they, or they should. But no, they decided it must be daytime again. So, by the time I was ready to cover them, they were scattered around the room... except the three atop their cage: Jefferson, Calliope, and one of the Blue Babies. (Probably Keye.)

Well Mama and Papa had decided to have-at-it, but seems little Keye was VERY CURIOUS about these goings-ons. Keye moved in so close to observe, that Jefferson could not get a wing in edgewise across Mama, where it needed to go. And when he tried to adjust, curious Keye just moved in even closer for better observation. Those big baby eyes staring! And, totally in-the-way!

Mama Calliope eventually got annoyed and flew off. And Jefferson seemed Quite Miffed when I couldn't not laugh. I tried to explain I wasn't laughing at HIM, but at his baby, but he just "humphhffd" his little ruffled feathers at me.
 
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fiddlejen

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Regarding colors, and telling apart my tiny flying people...

Riker is undeniably beautiful. I was resigned that, once the head stripes retreat, I will have multiple pairs of non-distinguishable birds. But was feeling a bit sad about this. I've mentioned elsewhere, the whole point of them having babies, is to make JEFFERSON happy. How can he boss me around if I can't tell who he is???

Turns out, however, that Riker is NOT the same color as Jefferson. I don't think anybody is! Jefferson colors match his personality. He is Not Merely green and yellow. He is DAY-GLO GREEN and DAY-GLO YELLOW. Riker is a very nice, intense green and yellow. Certainly not in any way "muted," except, only in comparison to Jefferson. Riker's colors are Not the Day-Glo colors that Jefferson has. And, this difference actually is visible in most light. In some light, i have to look, and in some light, it Pops.

And Tiny. Well, I lost track of which Blue Baby is Who. A couple days ago, Tiny started the day with the same beautiful blue dye-job. I did notice a few smears had gotten onto the other Blue Babies. BUT. Come nighttime, there was no dye in sight. And, when I emptied the waters, one of the bowls had turned blue... hm.... can I solve this mystery?

Thankfully, I can still figure out who is Tiny. It's not easy, but possible.

First, all the lighting has to be the same for everyone. Then of two blue babies who are the same shade, they need to be in separate locations. Then, I take a Guess, and casually move my hand near one of them. Jefferson has been teaching everyone to fly away if my hand comes near, and the only one Not learning that lesson, is Tiny. So, if I guess wrong, the Blue Baby flies away when my hand gets near, and I know it was Patchouli.

If I guessed correctly, the Blue Baby sees my hand and comes to investigate, hops on & starts preening. This, of course, is Tiny.

Once I know which baby is which, it seems Tiny is still, well, Tiny. That is, Tiny still appears a little smaller than the others. BUT, I can only see this confidently After identification, not before.

(OR, if the lighting is perfect, I can do a matching game of "Two blue babies are the exact same shade. The other is Keye. Of the two Matching blue babies, one has a Different cere from Keye. That is Patchouli. The remaining blue baby is Tiny!)
 
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fiddlejen

fiddlejen

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Regarding pellets. I had hoped to have them, from the beginning, along with seeds also eating pellets. I was offering Lefebers parakeet food, because that is the only one Mama and Papa have (somewhat, occasionally) accepted. But I realized they were having trouble eating them with their baby beaks. Like, maybe they are too hard? SO. I bought some Zupreem fruitblend pellets.

Aaaannd... it seems the babies are pretty okay with the Zupreem pellets. Or they were. And then. I watched Jefferson determinedly teaching the babies NOT to eat pellets. Here's how it works: Baby is happily munching on fruity pebbles. Jefferson sees this. Jefferson flies over near baby, gets baby's attention. And proceeds to pick up pellets and Spit Them Out. Repeatedly, making sure baby is watching. Until baby gets the idea and abandons the pellets.!! Really Jefferson? Really?!!?
 
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fiddlejen

fiddlejen

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As mentioned, at this point I plan to start a new Whole-Flock thread.

So regarding this thread, I need to say SO MUCH THANKS, thank you and thank you again to all!

And ESPECIALLY kitekeeper! First, I'm not sure I wouldve taken action regarding Tiny soon enough without your advice, and second your encouragement and advice in general has been so helpful to me all the way through. I really appreciate the time you've taken to follow along and give me really helpful input and advice. (My baby budgies don't seem to understand they should appreciate this. But, if they could they would. So I'm saying "Thank You!!" from them also!)

And Second, everyone else who has added any comment at all, thank you, every single thought or response or even "Like" has been so encouraging and helpful. I don't always manage to quote directly nor always reply by name in my posts, but I have really appreciated every thought and encouragement! So in case I missed saying it at some point in this thread, thank you so much! I have really appreciated it!!

(I will come back here and add a link to a whole-flock thread for my birdies once I have got it started. Thanks again!)
 
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Kitekeeper

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Thank you Jen for the update and for your kind words! :) :)

I love your remarks regarding their behaviour, that final remark on Jefferson spitting out pellets was just perfect! I think it is quite possible that he is really trying to convince them to not eat pellets.

That last picture of the whole flock is just wonderful, not only because all of them are together in the same frame, but also because is a picture full of action! Well done!

It has been a pleasure to follow this thread and also inspiring in so many ways. You know, this thread encouraged me to carry on with my goal to show my daughter the miracle of life and the whole process of eggs, babies and young birds. I was trying for some time with several setbacks and then you started the thread. She developed interest for zebra finches which produced 5 babies and I was able to save two. They are really sweet and so social with everyone.

Your thread also brought me back to my teenager days breeding budgies and gave me the satisfaction to help to save Tiny, a debt that I had with my own budgies of that time in my life as I was never able to save the last born babies.

This thread also made me rethink the role of budgies in our house as we had just one happy male. Eventually a friend offered me a female that was alone for some time and I accepted. The pair is possibly about to lay their own eggs in the coming days.

Last but not least, the species I was trying to breed since the beginning with several setbacks for the last 12 months is the peachfaced lovebird. I would have gave up if it was not for the whole fiddeljen flock adventure and now we are waiting five eggs to hatch in early October...

So thank you very much for sharing so much!!
 

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