I've worked with birds for a while, budgies being one of them, but recently I adopted a budgie that was surrendered by a previous owner, this is my first time owning birds.
As far as I'm aware, she was not there long. As everything in the cage is new, and even the cage seems to be in decent condition.
I was told that she was constantly noisy in her old house, hence why she was turned in, so I got her a roommate. Both birds I have are female now, and I'm not quite sure if they are getting along.
It's been a few days, they live in a decently large cage together and their behaviour seems to flip-flop back and forth depending on the situation.
In the first few hours of them meeting, one had stayed on the highest toy while the newer bird had been clinging to the side of the cage. After those hours, however, they ended up both sitting on the swinging perch that they have, and one preened the other, the favour was not returned.
In the following days I've noticed they will sit together a lot, mostly on the top toy (they're aware of spots it is hard for me to touch them in, still allowing them to adapt to my family and I) and they will often sit together on the various places in the cage.
However, I have noticed that sometimes the newer one will be warded off by the other one when attempting to get food from the food dish (to solve that at the moment, I'm placing a second one in the cage. That will hopefully solve the issue while they adjust.)
I have also noticed that they will have very short screeching matches, that last maybe 1-3 seconds, but other than that I have not noticed anything else that could be perceived as negative. They have been sitting together the entire time I'm writing this and have appeared calm. I guess I just want to make sure my girls will be okay and enjoy each others company.
EDIT: The newer bird also tends to eat spilled food on the bottom of the cage, and I've noticed that the first one, the one who was in the cage first has been puffing up a lot more than when she was the only one in the cage.
They also don't move a lot, they occasionally move around to get water, food, but other than that they just sit.
It sounds like you did not quarantine the new bird before introducing her to your existing bird, it is always advisable to do so in case the new bird is hiding any illness that could be passed to others. If you just put the new bird right into the cage with the existing one it is like an invasion of her territory. An introduction should be gradual after quarantine, each bird in their own cage in the same room then gradually bring the cages closer together so they get to know each other.
If you see any aggression you need to separate them so no harm is done to either bird. How large is the cage, have you provided them with toys to keep busy? Budgies will puff slightly when sleepy but if she is puffy a lot of the time it may be she is not feeling well. Do you have an avian vet?
When I received the birds I was told they were both illness free and quarantine was not needed for purposes of illness and they had said to see how well they got along as soon as I got home and separate them if needed, since they weren't showing any signs of violence or extreme aggression I left them together.
When they do have any screaming matches or one tries to ward the other off, I tend to intervene and then they calm down and get along, it feels like I'm dealing with toddlers. Which I guess I am as they are both estimated to be two years old at maximum.
The cage is roughly 1.5x1.5ft and almost 3ft tall with plenty of toys but also enough space to move around and let them each have their own space.
I ended up watching them a bit more and it seems that she is only puffy when it appears that I may be trying to touch them (when I change food, water, etc) and at bed time so I think she should be fine on that part, but I am going to be taking them to a local vet in the near future just to make sure everything is up to date for them.
Having your budgie examined by an Avian Vet allows you to develop a good relationship with the vet in case your bird needs care for an injury or illness in the future. Additionally, it is always helpful for the vet to have a baseline for your bird to refer to should it need future treatment.
It generally takes about two weeks for budgies to settle into a new environment. Covering the top and three sides of the cage as well as playing music for the birds can help.
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