A friend of mine recently decided to give away a budgie that she wasn't allowed to have in her apartment. Izmir is mine now, and I love him dearly. However, I have classes from very early in the morning to around 3, so I got him a friend because I read that budgies can get quite lonely and depressed when they're alone for a while. They seem to have bonded with each other (on a separate note, is it okay if they occasionally squabble, fighting a little with beaks? They never do real harm to each other, but I would like to be sure that that's normal. They are very lovey-dovey otherwise), and I am fine with that.
The catch is that they are terrified of me. I spend time talking to them, playing the guitar next to them (softly), sitting with them, and trying to slowly introduce my hand into their cage. Despite my best efforts, they hate me. They only tolerate me replacing their food and cleaning their cage.
I'd like to change their toys and perches around pretty often, but it makes me so nervous. I cover the windows and mirrors in the bathroom with towels and open their cage. Twenty minutes of waiting and they don't fly out... So I try to introduce my hand to them. It goes in their cage an inch and they freak out, flapping around and knocking into things. I really don't want them to hurt themselves! When they are out of the cage, they are a little more tolerant of me. The original bird, Izmir understands how to step up, but does so begrudgingly and is really flighty. The other bird, Yzma, just flaps away. Neither of them will accept food from my hand.
What else can I do to tame them without traumatizing them? Can I bind with a pair of bonded budgies? They don't necessarily have to be my best friends, but I would like to make them at least comfortable with me handling them, in case of vet visits or otherwise.
Thanks so much for any advice!
To build your budgies' trust, sit by their cage and read, talk or sing quietly to them for a period of at least 10-15 minutes, 3 or 4 times day. After the 2nd or 3rd day, rest your hand on the outside of the cage when you talk to them so they'll learn that your hand is safe and will not hurt them.
After a week, rest your hand inside the cage when you talk.
Donít make sudden moves, donít try to touch them.
Let them get used to the idea that the hand is now in their safe place and not harming them.
After 2 weeks, begin moving your hand slowly toward your budgies. If they become agitated, stop moving your hand and just hold very still until they calm down. When they are comfortable with your hand near them, you can offer thema bit of millet or a few seeds. In a few more days, you can begin your taming and bonding sessions.
Always work at your budgies' pace.
Move slowly and talk reassuringly and calmly to them whenever you interact with them.
greetings and welcome to the forum.faerybee has given you some wonderful advice for taming budgies.
Also talking with them daily will help build a bond ,if you can get just 1to bond.the other might join in seeing it as alright to trust you.it took me a month before my Gracie started to trust me more.now she accepts millet sprays from me and loved to chirp and sing along with me.even though I can't sing for nothing lol.
Try this I'm working on understanding budgie behavior.when she chirps I chirp back at her.the same when she whistles or talks to me I repeat what she does and it works great.now all budgies aren't the same,each having a unique personality.
But I think that if you act like them it just might get there interested in you.I've learned this from some wonderful people advice .its like talking to a child.sometimes we have to get into there head and show them we're there for them by understanding them.
Pardon my way of thinking.I hope you have great success and study up on our training threads,they're are some wonderful helpful techniques you can use.blessings and keep us posted.
princess Gracie Barber welcomes you all and blessings
Thank you all so much for replying so quickly with overwhelmingly kind and helpful responses! I talk with them every day, and they now seem more comfortable playing and chirping with me in the room, as opposed to standing stock still and terrified . I'm transitioning them off of their previous seed only diet that my friend had them on, which should be great for their overall health and happiness. Thanks again!
I agree with Shane about mimicking their behaviour. It won't tame a budgie on its own, but in my experience that is a great shortcut to making them more comfortable and accepting of your presence. And you can mimick just about all that they do and most budgies will understand. You can feel a bit silly doing some of it though - if you are easily embarrassed make sure no one sees you!
Last edited by Penzance; 05-27-2016 at 02:57 AM.