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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > General Budgie Talk > Budgie Behavior


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Old 02-28-2019, 09:13 PM
shilohpell (Shiloh)
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Default How do I know when my budgies are comfortable with my hand?

So I have two budgies. Mab and Titania. When I first brought them home, I left them in their cage right next to my desk. The plan was to let them get accustomed to their new home and having me next to them. I spend the majority of my time at home on my computer so I figured this would let them get used to me. It worked. They have no problems with me being in the room with me, love their home and their toys, make lots of lovely birdy noises, and chase each other around and act affectionate. They've really bonded with each other and have gotten to the point of loving their home and tolerating me next to them.

Then I went to hand training. I was told by a few budgie owners "If they don't go flying around trying to escape whenever you have to reach into their cage, they're calm enough to hand train." So I started with hand outside the cage. Did that for a few days. They seemed cautious but not really too concerned. So I went to putting my hand IN the cage with some millet in my palm.

After several days of doing this occasionally, they got to the point of VERY cautiously approaching to nibble millet in my hand, but every twitch and movement of my hand scared them and made them back off. I had to be very still for them to eat out of my hand, and even then they would move away to the far corners of their cage when I put my hand in or took it out. Not flying or anything. Just kinda giving me the "I don't trust you" look and shuffling as far on their perches I could get.

I was advised I may have gone from hand-out to hand-in training too quickly, so now I've moved back to hand-out training. They still shut up and watch very carefully whenever I reach over, so I presume I took a step backward by putting my hand in too quickly. So my question today is, how do I know when they ARE ready for hand-in training? I'm very willing to be patient. I just need to know what kinds of signs I should be watching for to suggest that they're ready for me to start reaching in to offer them treats and start training them to be comfortable with my hand being in their space?

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Old 03-01-2019, 02:10 AM
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To be honest, they'll reach out to you, not the other way around - budgies are flock animals, and by gaining their trust, you're not only getting them to feel comfortable you but they are also going to want to spend time with you and include you in their flock.

When you spend as much time with them as possible and talk to them, interact with them, etc. outside of the cage, eventually you'll see that they're moving around normally in their cage, acknowledging you, and they may even come up to the cage bars to "talk" to you or see you more closely.

Personally, I remember when my girl was fully comfortable with me outside the cage - up until then, I had spent a ton of time with her. I would go down early in the mornings just so we could wake up together, I'd put on soft music and talk to her as much as possible, I'd read to her, I played the violin for her, etc. and I also would put my face closer to the cage bars over time. One day, I was looking at her and talking to her through the bars, and she hopped onto the cage bars from her perch, she was just clinging there, looking at me calmly. We were so close her little foot brushed against my nose. I just remember being so proud of her, and so excited that she was ready to continue getting to know me.

It may not happen exactly like this for you but you'll definitely be able to tell when they're comfortable with you outside the cage. A good sign is when they're moving around a lot, playing with their toys, chirping at you, and being interested and curious about you instead of wary.

I hope that helps Best of luck!
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