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Hello! I have a Lutino (?) unsure if boy/girl.

602 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  FaeryBee
This is Helios Popcorn, (my given name for him + my 3-year-olds given name lol) I have been working on the assumption he is a boy. But I wish it was more obvious 馃槄
I've had him for one week now and it's been great. I work from home so he's in my office with me and hears me talking most of the day, I also play soft music or a podcast so there are usually sounds and he seems like he is slowly getting comfortable. I have to say I have taken him out of the cage at least once a day, which after reading a bit more I may hold off on, but I always put him back within 20 minutes. I handle him gently and overall I think we are making progress every day with him being more comfortable.
Since I wanted to let him stay in his cage more than taking him out, I put some millet on the opening - I just changed his cage around after a week, but now i feel like that was a lot for him so ill keep it as is I suppose for a bit longer this time - There is a plank kind of perch by the main opening so he can chill and pick at the millet while getting used to the being by the opening is my idea-- it also leads down to a little natural playground for him so I want him to be comfortable looking at to explore eventually. He seems to be alright. Whenever I get up to say hi, he doesn't rush to scurry away but does like to go back to his fav perch. If he is already on there, then he usually does a little stretch on his legs and wings. He does preen so I feel like this is a good sign he is on his way to being more comfortable.

Any other tips that can help? I am trying to go slow and take it easy on him, he doesn't seem too put off by anything I've done so far.

Also on his head, are these just normal pin feathers from molting?? I did get him from PetSmart and have no idea how old he is. They said they had him for about 2 weeks, but do not know how old they are when they arrive :/

I am taking him to an Avian vet on Monday to check him all checked out and disease tested :)

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Hi there and welcome to the forums!

I absolutely love little Apollo's name. Popcorn Apollo is adorable, and yes, he's a boy. He's actually a creamino budgie, which is an albino budgie with yellowface :D Those are indeed pinfeathers and since he's already had his first moult at least then he's already an adult budgie. We can't tell his exact age because male Ino budgies retain the "baby" cere color even as adults, and a large portion of ino budgies do not have visible irises. It sounds like he's settling in well so far, but you may be rushing it a bit with him even though you said you are trying to go easy on him.

Budgies hate being grabbed or held, so if this is how you're getting him in and out of the cage, it may be worse for him in the long run as he may come to associate your hands with a negative experience. If he isn't struggling and seems generally to have very little reaction to things it's because he is being submissive as he is scared. One indicator that he is scared is his stretching when you approach the cage. In bonded budgies, some of them often stretch when you approach their cage because they immediately want to come up to you and see you close-up. That is to say, it is a response budgies have when they need to prepare to leave the perch and fly/climb towards or away from something. Since he is not coming up to you (and does his best to put distance in some cases), he is stretching because he is scared and instinctually is preparing to try and fly away.

The preening is a good sign, and it seems that he is eating and drinking, so I think some of his behaviors will go away gradually over the next few weeks if you don't try and touch him and instead focus your energy on talking to him often, sitting near his cage and reading out loud (this could be fun with your young child in the audience), and etc. to let him know with your presence that you're not there to hurt him.

I can tell you want to give Apollo the best possible care! Please be sure to read through the forums to ensure you're up to date on everything~ If you have any questions after doing so, feel free to ask as we'd love to help.

We hope to see you around :D
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Thank you for your response!
Yes, I appreciate all of the information that has been gathered here and I am happy to have found this forum today. I'll be surfing around and catching up on a lot of questions I know I'll have 馃槉
I can see what you mean about the stretching, sometimes it reminds me of putting on shoes and getting ready to make a run for it. But, I had heard it described as 'budgie yoga' so I wasn't sure if it was a comfortable sign or not.

Well so, prior to today (lol) I had been letting him pick pellets/seeds/millet/broccoli from my hand palm-up and then when he's fully stepped on my hand I will slowly take him out, Ill still hand feed. but let him come to the door as he wants to. Definitely there have been no overhand grabs. I would let my finger slowly come to him to step up, but I'm fine with giving him more choice in that and going slower. I did come across another post that said they could be stepping up as a submissive fear tactic and that does have me re-evaluating things.

When he is out I place him on a perch and we sort of just sit and exist in the space together outside of the cage in my office. Once he molts again and hopefully his flight feathers come back in (he was clipped prior) He will have free reign of my office while I work. It's pretty well bird safe and prepped :)

I did see him drinking today for the first time, so that was nice. And he made a few new sounds that weren't just the parakeet flock call.

Not to get too off-topic on this forum and get into behavior, but he did just start flapping his wings very quickly one early in the afternoon and then just now, which I think was more of a signal for bed. What does that sporadic random flapping generally say?
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Thanks for the extra information, it sounds like you're doing pretty great and not grabbing him is definitely a plus. He'll definitely keep settling in over the next few weeks.

Budgies do do the "stretching" sporadically sometimes too like before bed to get into a comfy position, etc, but when they do it if you approach it's because they're getting ready to get up for whatever reason (y)

Drinking in front of you is a great sign! It's when budgies are most vulnerable so when they're scared stiff they don't eat or drink with you in the room :)

As for the wing flapping, that's normal and is a way budgies exercise!
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Your little boy is absolutely precious!
Thank you for taking the time to read through the vast amount of information we have on the forums.
Since you indicated you've made a start, I won't give you all the links I normally provide when someone first joins the forum. LOL

I hope you'll consider starting an ongoing picture thread for him. I'm smitten and hope to see lots more pictures of him in the future.
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