I'm new here and just joined this forum to try and get some advice from other budgie owners on this particular issue, but hopefully it will be helpful for other stuff too and I'll stick around!
Anyway, a bit of background...
We have two budgies in our family - Bert and Tyler.
Bert joined us over a year ago now and he has settled in very well. Within the first couple of weeks he was stepping up onto fingers, then heads, shoulders etc. Within two months he was talking, and he hasn't stopped since. He wasn't always easy to train but overall he did respond well, and the results have been excellent.
More recently, we got Tyler, a companion for him. We got him in November so he's been with us just over two months now I'd say.
The birds have a very relaxed lifestyle. They have a sleep cage each (a small carry cage), and a day cage each - which is a large cage with room to fly. Apart from at night, the doors are left open at all times so they can free fly around the room. They also have two bird playgrounds in the bathroom which they like to hang out on. Tyler has become confident and comfortable with this scenario very quickly - within the first week. And he and Bert were friends almost immediately. They fly around with each other everywhere, and often hang out on the same perch or eat from the same tray. It's very cute.
The only issue has been training Tyler to get to the same stage Bert is at.
He's happy to fly onto heads more than fingers. He'll also sometimes do shoulders, or will rest inside my hood and let me walk around with him in there. He will also step up onto a stick. He will SOMETIMES step up onto fingers but only when he's inside his small sleep cage and has nowhere else to go.
I've been trying to apply the same training I did with Bert, which was basically place my hand inside the small cage, get him to step up, and just sit there with my hand in the cage and him on my finger for a bit while I talk to him. The problem is, he doesn't listen! He keeps his head down, doesn't look at me at all, and his tail will shake like he's scared and just wants the training session to be over as quick as possible. And once it's finished he flies off quick and seems perfectly happy again. So, he's not listening and he's not learning.
Bert is an enthusiastic talker and is always speaking in Tyler's face. Will he be able to learn words from Bert? Can birds teach each other to speak??
We still talk to him every day, regardless of whether he's listening or not. Bert's first words were "hello" and "good boy" so we've been repeating those. But he won't even step up comfortably without being under duress and it's been a couple months now. I don't really know what to do other than keep trying. I don't know why he's so scared of us when he can see for himself how comfortable and happy Bert is. I can literally hold up my finger and Bert will fly onto it from across the room, and Tyler watches all this yet still won't do it, lol!
Sorry for the long post and thank you to anyone who can read it all and offer suggestions!
EDIT: When I try and go to step him up when he's loose or in his big cage, he will fly away immediately. And he only steps up onto heads,s shoulders or sticks when HE chooses too, haha, not on command like how Bert will.
Another thing I've noticed about him is that he doesn't play! He'll fly and follow Bert around, but the rest of the time he'll just hang out on perches, look out the window, or eat. He doesn't touch any of the toys, whereas Bert is an active player. Is that just their two personality types? Maybe he's just not into playing?
Last edited by becton; 01-11-2019 at 06:03 AM.
Reason: Adding more information
When you start exploring some of the great information on Talk Budgies, you'll quickly discover that there are many ways we an enjoy our budgies, but that birds are all individuals and birds are not little feathered people. Budgies are prey animals and are hard wired to behave with caution around unusual situations. Tyler is very new since he hasn't been with you very long. Going very slowly with taming is the first thing that people keeping birds, need to understand. It also seems that you're expecting him to eventually become just like Bert which is not how to view an individual. Read the resources and be patient. This is the best site for information on anything budgie. Relax and focus on being calm with your hand...a hand that doesn't make them do things. You can't "bully a budgie" and remember that they are all individuals.
The first thing to remember is that birds are not domesticated animals, even though they’ve been bred in captivity for many generations. They are prey animals in nature, and they retain those instincts strongly.
As you’ve found, each budgie has an individual personality. Tyler might never become as human-oriented as Bert is. Or, it might take much longer. Either way, we can enjoy them for their individual uniqueness.
Many budgies; while they lose the fear of humans, still aren’t interested in becoming hand tame despite best efforts. Then many who do become hand tame, become less tolerant to it after sexual maturity. Some tame fairly easily and stay bonded to humans like Bert .
Be sure to supervise your budgies when their cage door is open. There are a lot of household dangers to be aware of. Some are obvious such as everyone making sure toilet lids are closed when they’re in your bathroom, watch when doors are opened, no ceiling fans, etc. But many dangers are not nearly as obvious. Make sure they can’t get to and chew on objects which are not made for birds. Many things we find in our homes that we never would have though of, are made with components which are toxic to birds if even a small bit is ingested.
We have a lot of current educational material here to take advantage of. Our Articles and the Stickies at the top of each forum section contain some useful information. Reading through these areas is a good place to start.
Looking forward to hearing more, and seeing pics of Bert and Tyler!
Last edited by RavensGryf; 01-11-2019 at 01:37 PM.
You've been given great advice above It's true that Tyler may never get to where Bert is, either because he's not as much of a "people bird" or because he was introduced to a household where there was another bird and he didn't see why he should spend more time with people. Over time, spending lots of time with them, etc. should at least make Tyler more comfortable around people!
Meanwhile you've come to a great place to learn even more about the best of budgie care practices! Please be sure to read though the forums' many budgie articles and "stickies" to ensure you're up to date on everything. If you have any questions after doing so, please be sure to ask as we'd love to help
Hope to see you around and to meet Bert and Tyler when you have a chance
and Princess Mallorn!
Thank you to Deb for her wonderful Faery magic
You have received excellent advice.
We'd love to see some pictures of Bert and Tyler if you have any you'd like to share.
Please take the time to read through the Site Guidelines, all of the How To Guides, the FAQs, the Budgie Articles and the stickies located at the top of each section of the forum.
Truly, the very BEST advice anyone can offer you is to take the time to read ALL of the stickies throughout the various Talk Budgie forums as well as the Budgie Articles we have posted.
These are great resources for Talk Budgie members and have a wealth of reliable information which will assist you to learn the best practices in caring for your budgies for their optimal health and well-being.
When you upload pictures as attachments directly from your computer, tablet or phone, the forum automatically defaults to landscape. Additionally, the picture appears as what we term a “thumbnail” attachment.
In a lot of ways, things are already going well with Tyler. Before you mentioned the training, he is already doing several things well. It could be that he does not enjoy this training you want him to excel at. Could just let him enjoy his life at your place, and not go too hard on the training. The first bird liked ot. Tyler does not.