I've read through some of the threads about taking your indoor budgie outside and I have a couple of questions:
1. What temps are too hot for my budgie? I know I need to provide them with shade, and maybe a bath to cool off in, but at what point would you just not take them out? I live in northern California and generally speaking the weather is beautiful but there are days that are in the mid-high 90's, is this too high?
2. What do I need to do to make my cage safe for my budgie to be outside alone? I know most of the threads on this topic say to never leave your indoor budgie outside alone because of possible predators but some people's budgies live outside all the time so it must be possible to make it safe right? I have a small fully fenced yard so I don't need to worry about large predators, but how do you keep them safe from neighborhood cats? Are rodents a danger? I don't want to leave them out there all the time, but I'm sure they would love to spend an afternoon out there on a nice day while I check on them from time to time. Our weather is so nice here I feel like it is a shame to keep them from enjoying it!
It is not adviseable to leave a smaller cage outside unattended for any period of time. Neighborhood cats, hawks, etc. can easily overturn the cage and kill your bird.
Rodents, coyotes, snakes, foxes, etc. are all dangers as well.
Even budgies kept in large aviaries are sometimes attacked by hawks and severely injured or killed if they were perching on the wire sides of the aviary.
I personally would not take my budgies outside if the temperature was over 80 degrees or the humidity was especially high.
Budgies that live in outdoor aviaries have adapted to the higher temperatures.
Sudden temperature changes are not good for your budgie. If you are taking a bird outdoors from an air-conditioned house into high heat it can shock the bird's system leading to illness or death.
Before I take my budgies out, I make sure the bottoms of the cages are fully secured and placed in, I also check all doors, even the littlest ones used for food/water containers and place zip ties on all possible escape routes for extra safety.
I also closely supervise when my birds are outside, I will either sit with them or stay by my bedroom's window which is in very close reach (I can touch the cages from my window) due to the fact the wall in my bedroom is the same my bird's cages are placed in when outside. In my case, I always have to be on the lookout mainly because of the stray cats.
RIP sweet Tito (Summer 2008 - January 17th 2013).
You are missed and never will be forgotten.
Thanks for the response. I would never want to do anything to put them in danger!
I'll definitely use zip ties and keep them supervised while they are in the indoor cage I have if I take them out, but I would like to make a set up so they can spend a little more time outside.
So it sounds like I would need a large sturdy cage if I wanted them to go outside regularly? I live in a very suburban area in a large city so I would be shocked to see something like a coyote, fox, or snake in my yard. The only animals I could think of that could be issues would be cats, raccoons, or skunks. Even the raccoons and skunks are pretty rare in this area and nocturnal and I would never leave them outside over night. I think cats would be the major issue.
We have a very dry heat here so humidity is not an issue. My house (along with most homes in this area) don't have AC because most of the time the temperature is so pleasant we don't need it. So my birds are used to the temperature adjusting with the outside temp because we generally keep our windows open to regulate the temperature in the house (they are away from the open windows to avoid the drafts). If it is hot outside it is generally only slightly cooler in the house, sometimes it even feels hotter because it gets stuffy. I've only had them for a few days but they aren't showing any signs of being overheated. Are they able to withstand higher temperatures if they are used to it?
I guess you would be in for a surprise, because foxes have been known to live in cities for many years now, I hear coyotes are rumored to have moved in as well. Sensible choice: plenty of food, no predators.
Just because you don't see them does not mean they are not there.
The other day I had a hawk swoop down on my cage. it was sitting by the patio door, inside the kitchen. That was quite the shock for us. Again, I had not seen the hawk before hand (but I think I heard him)
Of course, secure all doors, and the bottom to the cage. My flight cage scares me: when I remove the crate for cleaning, the cap at the bottom between the tray and the side panel is HUGE! I would rather not have the crate in, but for that reason, it stays in.
Also, provide shade for the birds. Which also doubles as blinds for aerial predators. A piece of cardboard over the top should do fine.
As to temperature. It really depends on what your birds are used to: If you keep the inside near 65, the throwing them out into 90 degree heat would be a killer! (it is hard on me, just from getting out of the car and walking into a store! The difference is simply brutal.
if you have a small cage, you could put up a small shelf to which you could secure it.
I have unfortunately lost budgies to predator birds, one from an outdoor aviary the budgie was sleeping on the side of the cage, I won't go in details. the other was in a flight cage that was actually on top of a table on my back porch, but a hawk still managed to grab the budgie, budgies that are born and raised in captivity do not realise the dangers! Be warned it does happen.
Ok, I won't leave them out there unattended. I would hate for something terrible to happen to them! I did take them out for a little bit yesterday while I sat with them and they loved it! They were so talkative and playing and even took a quick bath! I think we will make that part of our regular routine