Any Bird Experts Here?

Discussion in 'The Okie Corral' started by bluenoise, Oct 27, 2010.

  1. bluenoise

    bluenoise

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    Up until last Friday, we had a pet parakeet named Blue. We had never considered being bird owners until this stray little blue parakeet came around a few years ago and wouldn't leave. We tried to find his home to no avail. We adopted him, got him a large cage and have enjoyed having him up until he died last Friday. We took him to the vet a few weeks ago when he stopped singing and wouldn't stand on his left leg. It seems he developed a tumor. He was good company and had a large vocabulary of sounds and phrases. Guests never believed us that he talked, until they'd hear him chat up a storm. His favorite phrases were mimicking the alarm panel near his cage. "Fault, Garage Door," for example. He enjoyed lying on a chest when one of us would lie on the sofa. He'd snuggle up under a chin and go to sleep.

    Now, we really miss him and would like to get another bird (or birds) to fill his former cage. The cage is about 30" W, 18" D, and 36" tall. We would love to get another talking bird, but not one that is really loud, like larger parrots tend to be. We also would rather not spend hundreds or thousands of dollars. What kinds of birds should we consider? Where should we look? We are planning a trip to the bird store where we bought the cage, as opposed to going to Petco or a similar store.

    Thanks for the advice in advance. :wavey:
     
  2. FCastle88

    FCastle88

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    I've never had a pet bird, but I thought about it a couple years ago and did a lot of research. Senegal Parrots are small enough for your cage, tame easily, can talk and are unusually quiet for a parrot, probably going to cost around $200-$300 though. If you don't want to spend that much about all I can think of is more parakeets or a cockatiel.
     

  3. npatel

    npatel

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    I've owned several pet birds, and currently have a Indian Ringneck Parakeet. I wouldn't take any "this breed is the best" advice, since I've find in my own experience that a bird's personality and rearing have a lot more to do with how it behaves with people.

    However, I have found that more intelligent birds (ie, the ones that you can teach to mimic the most words) will also get bored quickly, and therefore will make noise when you can't always pay constant attention to them.

    For your size, I have played with some quakers that I have found to be quite affectionate, even though they are not great talkers.

    Please keep in mind when buying a bird that they have really long lifespans -- I hate to see older birds up for adoption or released into the wild to die because the owner didn't realize that most birds are at least a 15-30 year commitment. Also, older birds don't always have the same personality as when they are young, so please make a responsible decision and only get a new bird if you can provide for it and give it affection for its whole lifetime.
     
  4. npatel

    npatel

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    To add--

    For the cost issue, try to find a good breeder. Pet stores will often charge at least a 100% or greater premium on birds, and a pet store generally isn't the best environment for a bird. A good avian vet should be able to direct you to a breeder or to someone that can help you find a good breeder for whatever species you decide on.

    My family lives in Atlanta, but we ended up getting our Indian Ringneck in South Florida, and paid $175 for a bird that pet stores / birds shows wanted $400 for in our area.
     
  5. Santa CruZin

    Santa CruZin Searching

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    I only know a few rules of thumb with regard to caged birds: The cage size should be at least twice the wingspan and the bars should be horizontal (not vertical) for gripping.

    If your parakeet was such a great experience, why not get another one or two? Keep in mind if you get two, they may be into each other more than you.

    Look at Conures too.
     
  6. SouthernGal

    SouthernGal What's Up Dox?

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    My best guy friend from high school has had several in his lifetime. He's currently got a cockatoo that was a "rescue bird". He says right now a lot of folks are giving up their birds because they can no longer afford them (he lives in FL which tops the list on foreclosures).

    If you are so inclined, you may want to check out and see if there is a local bird rescue near you. Some birds don't bond easily though and it might be that my friend just got lucky.
     
  7. bluenoise

    bluenoise

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    Thank you, everyone, for all the great information. You've given us a good starting point for our research.
     
  8. USMCsilver

    USMCsilver Boat Life ©

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    Not dissin' you by any means, but I always found it "wrong" to have a pet bird. What does every man want to be able to do -- fly.

    Now you've got a perfectly good creature which God granted the gift of flight and we, as humans, want to keep them cooped up in a cage so we can look at/listen to them.

    Again, not bustin' on the thread, but I just don't understand...
     
  9. bluenoise

    bluenoise

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    I understand what you're saying. I have felt the same way about birds and fish before. However, Blue came to us while we were outside and he wouldn't leave after a couple days. He wanted to be with people. After we had him a while, we'd open his cage door and offer him free roam. He might climb out onto his cage, but he always went back in on his own. He genuinely preferred being in his cage, even when we placed food, water, and his favorite toy outside.
     
  10. DonMcnut

    DonMcnut

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    You mentioned not wanting to spend thousands some that is going to rule out many of the "big" birds like Macaws. I never owned one but helped my brother who worked at a vet's office that had 3 or 4. Not only are the bigger birds much smarter but they are also emotional. Some birds will only imprint on ONE person and the Military Macaw they had at the vet's office was like that. ANY male that walked by his cage (he was male) would make him do a really shrill screech and act aggressive. When the receptionist he imprinted on would take him out of the cage he was like a puppy. He loved on her and would never act badly around her.

    Also remember that if you have little ones in the house, beaks can break fingers pretty easy.
     
  11. DonMcnut

    DonMcnut

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    You forgot the part about feeding them, cleaning them and paying their vet bills. Not a lot of wild birds get that level of care.
     
  12. kingrex

    kingrex

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    Since your experience is with a smaller bird (parakeet) I think you should stick to these birds. I've owned and raised birds for several years and no bird on earth has more charm than these little creatures. If you perfer one that sings, get a male. Its easy to sex a parakeet. their cere (nose) is blue. Not all will be talkers but many will develop a small vocabulary. I actually had one live to be 12 years old. Most live 5-7 years. It is true that some form of cancer takes their lives more often than anything else. Seems strange doesn't it. They are the "crown jewel" of the bird world in my opinion. Too many people exclude them as a choice because they're small, inexpensive, and considered a beginners bird. I've owned several birds including, cockatiels, a double yellow head amazon, sun conure, love birds, and an african grey. My favorite bird was a standard blue parakeet named George. More personality and grit than all the others combined......well maybe the sun conure was close. His name was Joe. Joe loved to take baths. If you poured water on the kitchen floor he'd role around in it. What a character. Good luck with your choice.
     
  13. USMCsilver

    USMCsilver Boat Life ©

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    True...to an extent.

    Birds, like all other creatures, have a natural instinct to survive. You know this; I know this... They seem to do a mighty damn fine job surviving this way, and have done so for eons You don't see birds falling outta the sky due to starvation. If we didn't cage them, there'd be no reason to feed them.

    As far as cleaning out cages -- well, birds know not to crap where they eat. They don't use their nests as their toilets. They have our heads, cars, and rooftops to litter with their feces. If we didn't cage them, there'd be no cage to clean.

    Vet bills? Yup, the worst of the three evils. "Pet birds" are of a typical species. I wonder with all the breeding, interbreeding, etc. of these average breeds, if by some shape or form we've lessened the breed and made them more dependant on human care. We all know about natural selection, etc. The weak grow weeker, the strong, stronger. If we didn't cage them, we wouldn't have to help heal sick birds. And, one may even ask -- if they weren't caged, would they have become sick in the first place.

    This is, again, all just food for thought, or mindless rambling. Someone mentioned fish... Awe, hell, it's just a fish. :whistling:
     
  14. bluenoise

    bluenoise

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    We did some reading and visited some local bird shops and a couple of breeders. It's looking like we will be going with a pair of cockatiels. A local breeder has some that will be ready this upcoming weekend. He will send us pictures this week.

    My kids are very excited. :)