As most of you know, I just got a new boy, Dorian, and I have been working with him and Rio to try to tame them. Before Bleu died, I would give her flight time in my room 2 or 3 days a week. She was only half tamed, so I had to get creative on how I got her back into the cage. When I decided I had enough time to let her out, I would take away her food about 30 minutes before I would open her cage. After I let her out, she would spend a lot of time on my ceiling fan (turned off, of course) and flying from high furniture to the top of my drapes and back to the ceiling fan. When she seemed to be tired, I would start trying to get her back into the cage. I would use a long dowel perch (about 30 inches) to try to get her to step up. Sometimes she would step up onto it, and I could get her back into her cage. If that didn't work, then I would hang some millet right inside her open cage door. I had two perches outside the cage, and she would usually fly to a perch and climb back in. Sometimes this could take a while, but I wanted her to have some flight time each week to keep her healthy and happy.
Rio, on the other hand, has never been outside his cage. Even when Bleu was around, he wouldn't come out. If she was out, he would spend most of his time squaking and squeeling at her. I imagine he was yelling something like, "Are you crazy, woman? Get back in here!" Now that he is in his new flight cage, he probably won't want to come out, but I feel like he needs to stretch his wings, so to speak.
So, I guess my question is, should I try to get him to come out and fly, even though he's not hand tamed yet, and maybe never will be? Or should I just leave him alone and let him stay in his cage? I feel like if Rio comes out, then when Dorian joins him in the new cage, he will come out, too.
This is a tricky one, some budgies do like to stay in their comfort zone and be safe. I haven't had a budgie who chooses this option all of my birds have loved to be out of the cage.
Is Bleu happy to step up? If not , I would work on this before trying to get him to come out, Let him feel safe on your finger, then work on him sitting on a perch on the outside of the cage. Slowly but surely.
Bleu has passed, but I did start with stepping up on my finger with her. She would step up on my hand to eat. Eventually, she would step up on my finger, but usually is was for seed or millet. When she was out of her cage, she would occasionally land on my hand to eat a treat.
I think I will do the same with Rio and Dorian. Right now they will both take millet from my hand. They are not as skittish as in the beginning. Once they are more comfortable with that, I will hold seed or millet in my hand and try to get them to step up. After they are comfortable with that, I will try to bring one of them out of the cage to sit on a perch. I will have to observe them closely to see which one is more outgoing and bring him out first.
I agree I think that your plan is very good. Some budgies prefer to be in their "comfort zone" as Cathy said, but as long as you're in the room you can leave their door open and maybe put out a little play gym with millet to see if that entices them. If one of them goes out, chances are the other will learn from the "role model". Also, since they are in a flight cage now, he does have room to stretch his wings so if he really refuses to come out, just keep offering the chance to him and maybe someday he'll decide to explore
and Princess Mallorn!
Thank you to Deb for her wonderful Faery magic