A much needed bird update! - Talk Parrots Forums

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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-30-2016, 05:33 PM Thread Starter



 
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Talking A much needed bird update!

I don't even know where to begin here. I'll have to list everything! I will be doing other updates on my reptiles, furries and life in general seeing as I haven't been very chatty myself. Plenty of stuff to tell!

Anyway, here we go! Going to make it as swift as possible because it's late, I'm tired and I have work in the morning. Any questions feel free to ask!

- About a year and a half ago I found an Alexandrine parakeet in need of a new home fairly urgently. I saw the photo for the bird in the advert and I didn't even think twice. She was found 21 years ago in a guys back yard and she couldn't fly. She was very happy to spend time with him but unfortunately the man passed away. His mom and dad took the bird when they cleared his house and they kept her in a room upstairs on her own. It took me a 9 hour round journey to fetch 'Polly' (now renamed HOLLY) but it was so worth it. They gave me a bag of peanuts and sunflower seeds to take with her as I insisted that I didn't want her cage. She looked pretty rough and you can see the damage a bad diet can do. I chucked it out into some bushes on the way home for the wild birds. They would appreciate it far more than I do! We have no idea how old she actually is and the only bit of information we have is that she has had her disability since they found her. She holds her wings slightly down and can't use them at all, not even to flap. She gets around brilliantly though and she's built up her strength fantastically. She loves her natural perches and she will chew them to oblivion. She isn't keen on toys and I have to be super careful how many she has in her cage otherwise she can bump into them and become a bit panicked. She has towels on the bottom of her cage should she slip off her perches but she hasn't had a fall in about a year now. She isn't hands on but she can't stand being away from you. She has to know where you are at all times and she will consistently say hello when you're in the room! I'm not going to ramble too much because there's so much to discuss but here's some photos (not many so I don't take up the thread!)

The photo from the ad...



The day we bought her home



And this was her recently (don't tell me she doesn't look miles better!)



- I'd been after a male Alexandrine for my other hen for a while and one of the nights I was at a bird sale I was asked if I knew anybody that wanted an adult male Alexandrine. I asked how much and I was offered a good price. They told me I could fetch him whenever (I also bought a load of aluminium cages off the owner too). George is about 13 years old, has bred before and is not hands on BUT is very sweet and likes to hang out with you. He won't step up but if your shoulder is near the cage he does make his way down. He talks up a storm but when you're near him he CONSTANTLY mumbles to himself. He's hilarious and such a sweetheart. He's very handsome and quite the charmer





- At the beginning of the year I was asked if I wanted to take on an Indian ringneck but I'd said no. I was asked again about 6 months after. Still no. I was asked again and then sent a photo of her and I said yes. They had no information on the bird other than she belonged to a relative, was called Skye and needed a home. I had her off them a month or so ago and she's only just had her disease testing results back so she's been in quarantine since. She came to me clipped but I'm very glad to say that her flights are coming back in and with that she's becoming less inclined to step up. That isn't a problem for me, I just want her to be happy and if she doesn't wanna hang out then that's fine. No need to stroke my ego! I'm hoping to look for a mate for her when I can guarantee her sex. Her ring appears to be foreign so I'm not sure where she's from but it seems like the Netherlands. If it is and I'm reading it correctly then she should be 3 years old and definitely female. She's certainly got the dark low mandible and adult eyes but now she's starting to moult out a bit I am sure I can see a ring. My hen Alexandrine has one though and she's laid eggs! She was very scruffy looking when I got her but she's looking great already after a diet change and loads of mistings

The day I got her



A week in



Last week



If that comes up sideways I apologise, I'm using TinyPic because photobucket no longer works for me and it's terrible

- A pair of my cockatiels had this lovely cinnamon cock chick that I kept as a hold back. I have lovingly named him Lucifer (he was named Tiny Satan prior to this... he wasn't the nicest chick haha!). He's just had a moult and his head has really brightened up so I need to get some new photos of him





- Does anybody here remember my old peach faced lovies, Blackjack and Picasso? Picasso passed away years ago as many of you know but Blackjack went to live with a friend and her flock. She recently contacted me to tell me that she was moving away and she would like me to take him back. Of course I wouldn't say no to that! He's in with my other lovies and is just as happy and as sweet as ever. I was thrilled to have him back. I'd missed him over these years! It always amazes me how well he does for such an old boy



- Long story short, my cockatiels double clutched and hatched two chicks. Fine by me. What wasn't fine was that they were only feeding them late on an evening so I had to step in and co-parent the chicks. I didn't want to fully hand rear unless I had to but I did need to step in. They were stunted and their development was about 2 weeks behind normal growth, very dehydrated and struggled to open their eyes. After the first feed they perked up tons. I would add coconut water to their formula for a little boost too. They're doing great now and are flying around the aviary. They are eating on their own but the eldest still begs for food occasionally (from the parents!). I took pics of them every day but I'll just throw in a few so you can see how they get on. I have kept them myself as after the ordeal of trying to 'fix' them I couldn't bring myself to let them go. They don't have names just yet but I have some in mind

They were two weeks old at Day 1 of co-parenting













The girls get a lot of compliments on their colouration. They're cinnamon pearl lutinos split to pied!

This year I haven't been breeding much at all because of the multitude of things that are going on in my life. I produced two clutches of budgies, all of which have gone to fantastic new homes and the cockatiels who have stayed with myself

I have built a purpose built building for the more indoor birds to go outside in. It has heating, electrics, sound proofing, double glazed windows and a bright roof to let as much light in as possible without it getting hot in there. I just need to put some nice wooden flooring down now because the floor is kinda ugly and put some tapestry, posters or anything on the walls to make it look less dull! It is getting there though and I'm sure it will be great when it's 100% finished. I was originally going to house my aluminium cages in there but it's not big enough to put all 6 in there so I'm moving on to the garage next and finally gutting it all out. I can't wait! I'm also hoping to build the new aviaries for my cockatiels and kakarikis in the new year before I do anything else

That's about all I can think of right now to be honest! I've tried to keep it to the point Sorry I haven't been around as much as I'd of liked to have been. I'll have plenty of things to discuss though!
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Last edited by catalinadee; 11-01-2016 at 05:56 AM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 10-31-2016, 12:10 PM



 
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Absolutely amazing thread and pics! I can't believe the magic you've done with Polly and Skye they are like 2 new birds and I bet they are just as happy living in such a great home now.

The baby tiels with their crests at day 4 and older are hilarious! They look like something from Jurassic Park.

Thanks for the update!
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 11-01-2016, 06:01 AM Thread Starter



 
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Absolutely amazing thread and pics! I can't believe the magic you've done with Polly and Skye they are like 2 new birds and I bet they are just as happy living in such a great home now.

The baby tiels with their crests at day 4 and older are hilarious! They look like something from Jurassic Park.

Thanks for the update!
No problem Mr Peepers! Thank you for your kind words I completely forgot to add (I have edited it now haha) that I changed Polly's name. Not by a lot though. 20 odd years of the same name you can't really change so I called her Holly She's great. She has so much attitude for such an old girl and she's full of beans. She eats like a pig, doesn't drop a thing! The only issue I've had with her has been her not liking to bathe. She hates being misted and won't take a dip in her bowl or anything. I do give her a spray down every now and then to encourage her to preen but she wobbles a bit when she preens so I don't do it too often. Behaviour-wise she's very clingy in a sense that you can't leave her on her own but she will not sit on you or anything. She has a chronic screaming problem but since moving her in with the others she's been a lot better
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-22-2016, 04:14 AM Thread Starter



 
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I thought that I would add to this thread instead of making a new one as it is still fairly recent and not many people seem to have seen it

I have been doing some much needed decision making regarding my flock. I have been having some help from a good friend who has given me a kick up the butt to change things. I have a lot of birds. I don't really have companion birds except for my Alexandrines but they too are in their breeding aviary, so I'm not overwhelmed or anything along those lines. The issue I have come across is that I feel it may be best to start downsizing my budgie flock. The majority of my birds are budgies and when you consider how many I have... that's one big flock of budgies! I chose to not breed much at all this year, I believe I had only had two clutches. I have been struggling a lot with my depression so I didn't have the energy to breed. Most of my birds are birds I have bred myself and have been holdbacks because I like their mutations and so on so forth. Not too long ago I took down my budgie aviary to build an outdoor building for the parrots. The problem is that I walked out of my job earlier this year and at the time that was when I was supposed to be getting the new aviary up. I haven't been able to do that because of finances. When I was breeding my birds on a larger scale (ie 2015!) I was making plenty of money back off the chicks to be able to maintain my flock to the best standards I could provide. New toys all the time, great food, new bloodlines too. As I haven't bred much this year I have not made the money I usually would to be footing the bill for the birds so everything has been coming out of my pocket. With the job situation (I am now employed again and in a MUCH better job where I'm very happy) I wasn't able to get my new aviary up soon enough so the budgie flock have been spending their time in the breeding cages. I hate this. They live all year round in a nice aviary and then put in the breeders so I don't colony breed. Well that's for maybe 2 months. Now they've been in there 2-3 months and I can't stand it. Money is starting to come back in but I have decided to make the decision to reduce the number of my budgies I am keeping. It's been really hard to even consider it but I know that it is the right thing to do. My friend is a reptile breeder and he was telling me that there is a point where you have animals of little monetary value and even if you love them they are not going to pay for themselves. He said I'd be better off breeding my 'higher end' birds that would be able to give me some decent return. Don't get me wrong! I have NEVER bred for money!!! But it would be nice to have the birds pay for themselves with their food, toys, vets bills and so on so forth

SO! My plans are to drastically reduce the number of budgies in my flock so I'm left with perhaps 5 pairs. I then need to consider what to do with my other birds. I have 2 cock black cheeked lovebirds that I am considering finding an aviary home for that actually has hens available. I would rather do that than add another 2 birds to the flock when I want to focus on other projects. As well as these lovies I do have a few more lovebirds of various species that I would potentially like to go to an aviary breeder too. I'm having a good hard think about it at the moment because it is quite a difficult decision and I don't take any of it lightly. I need to reduce my numbers right down to the birds that I know will give me some return and a few others that I can't be without (ie my cockatiels, red fronted kakarikis and peach faced lovebird)

I managed to sell three pairs of budgies to somebody I know last night and they are very happy with them and I am equally as happy that I know they're going to somebody that I'm confident will care for them well. I'm putting them up in small amounts for now because I don't want to suddenly cut my numbers down and be left a little shocked from the ordeal! It's very strange cutting back as I've always had a fairly large flock of budgies over the last 5 or 6 years. I used to breed them as a child too and I had a lot of them then which I sold up to get my Harris' hawk

The ultimate goal is - to breed mid to higher end birds that will be able to pay for themselves AND to have less birds. I would rather have less pairs I can put more time and effort into that I KNOW people will want than mass breeding my budgies for pennies

It all sounds a little bit heartless I guess but please know that I have literally been crying over this for about two weeks now. I just don't want them to go! It is for the best though. The money I am making from selling up is going straight into building my new aviary block for the birds I have left and finishing the outdoor bird building. It's just hard. I do think it is the right thing to do though

That said, I did purchase my first 'project' birds at the beginning of the month. I had gone to a bird sale with the intention of looking for a cock Indian ringneck to go with Skye, my hen. I couldn't actually find a suitable bird or any that I would have been happy with. My reptile friend had come with me and he saw a bird that he just kept going back to. He doesn't have birds himself... yet! But he does want to. He said if his aviaries had of been up he'd of snatched said bird up right away. He was up for a pretty penny though and I said I can't justify it if he's going to be living on his own until I get myself a hen. So off we plod rather sadly around the rest of the show. It's now the end of the show and everybody is packing away. I notice the little sticker on said birds cage had been scribbled out and a new price was on him. I thought my friend was going to fall over because he ran so fast to get to him as other people were going over. After a conversation with the breeder I handed him the money while I went to get a box. On the way through I found a hen that had also been reduced for the end of the show... how lucky!? So for the price of one bird I ended up getting the pair

They don't have names yet and I don't have good photos of them but you will sort of see them here...





When my aviaries up and they're no longer in the bird room I'll take some considerably better photos than these ones haha. They are Pennant's parrots AKA crimson rosellas. But they're not just any ordinary crimson rosellas! My cock bird is a silver. He has next to no colour on him what so ever except for very very faded cheek patches and a silver flight feather. He is what made us get these guys. I have always liked them but I've never gotten around to doing more research into keeping them myself. Over the last few months I had been looking at noise levels etc. because of neighbours at our new home and I'm glad to say they have a very soft and pleasant call. The hen is a cinnamon blue and a little scruffy but with some TLC she is starting to look better. I say scruffy, she's just got a broken tail is all. Easily fixed with a moult! They're hilarious birds, well, the cock bird is. He's such a friendly boy. I don't think they'll be breeding until either late 2017 or 2018 but at least I have somewhere to start

I'll be sure to keep you lot updated on where I go with the birds and such. I hope you all understand the decision that I'm making. It just makes more sense to me and it's better for the birds at the end of the day
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-22-2016, 01:23 PM



 
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I can imagine the Crimson's would be quite expensive as those mutations are still quite rare over here. I have lots of Crimson's around me at my new home. I even have a pair that are breeding in the disused chimney at the back of the house. She goes down through the chimney top and comes out of a hole in the old laundry to get back outside. So I have to leave the door of the laundry open so she does not get trapped in there.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-23-2016, 03:23 AM Thread Starter



 
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I can imagine the Crimson's would be quite expensive as those mutations are still quite rare over here. I have lots of Crimson's around me at my new home. I even have a pair that are breeding in the disused chimney at the back of the house. She goes down through the chimney top and comes out of a hole in the old laundry to get back outside. So I have to leave the door of the laundry open so she does not get trapped in there.
These guys weren't overly expensive to be honest. A crimson here usually goes for about 30-50. Pet shop prices about 70. Blues go for about 50-80, pet shop up to 110. I've never seen a silver available here. I'm hoping to prove out what they're hiding because both of their parents were pied birds. I have little to no knowledge of rosella mutations though. It's a learning curve and hopefully it will be a nice surprise when the chicks hatch! I would love to see them wild. From the videos I have seen of them in their native land they seem to be very confident birds! I can't say the same for captive birds, which is quite strange
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-23-2016, 02:05 PM



 
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Mutation Crimsons are rarely seen here, I have only ever seen a few. When you see a wild Crimson, their colours are so vibrant, captive bred birds just don't seem to have the depth of colour. The pair that I have breeding here seem to be quite timid, I have scared the living daylights out of the hen if I go into the laundry. But it is really lovely to stand at the kitchen window and see the pair roosting on the top of the slippery dip.

There are also Eastern Rosella's here too. Caught one the other day stealing my cherry plums off the tree and yesterday morning there was 3 of them sitting on the back fence.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-24-2016, 05:30 PM Thread Starter



 
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I actually prefer the naturally occurring colours of the crimson, they're so pretty! Mutations do taint a lot of birds that are perfect the way they are. Unfortunately it's what most people seem to want
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 12-24-2016, 07:30 PM



 
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I agree Daisy, I much prefer the natural colour of most birds too. And you are right people do want the mutations, probably because they are worth so much more money and will get a higher return when bred for sale and profit.
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 01-30-2017, 10:16 PM
 
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Daisy, thanks for sharing your story and Beautiful pictures of your flock.
Hopefully you are more settled now with a reduced flock. Any updates? Thanks
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