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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Guys,


I've gotten an unweaned budgie from the breeder yesterday.
He looks perfectly healthy and so does his parents.

However, I'm trying to feed him using the formula I have and he is kind of refusing it, I know he is hungry and wants to eat, but to my surprise although he is only 3 weeks old as it seems, he is weaned.
He grabbed some pellets, seeds and veggies from near my other budgie's cage, he ate them on his own from the floor.. What do I do? He doesn't want me to feed him and his eating on his own, the only problem is I'm not sure whether it's okay for him to do that at this age. Could it be that the parents stopped feeding him and he started to eat on his own right before I took him?
Another funny thing, he sleeps a lot throughout the day, I know budgie aren't supposed to be THAT sleepy otherwise it's alarming, but since he is a baby and didn't have a perfect 12 hour sleep last night, I guess that's normal, right? He already preens on his own, plays around his nesting box (he is obviously not in a cage yet).

Please help me understand him better.

I do understand that the temperature, thickness and taste of the formula effects his reactions, I'm making it the best way possible based on the instructions.
His crop seems to be quite emptied, not full when I try to feed him.
I pinch it very slightly with my thumb and index finger and can barely hold anything.

Thanks~
 

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The bird is way too young to have been taken from the parents, what was the breeder thinking in doing this? If you are not experienced in hand feeding you can do a lot of damage to the little one. See if you can return the bird to the breeder until it is more mature or contact an avian vet for help in hand feeding. You must take action quickly or the bird may not survive, a baby bird cannot go without nourishment.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The bird is way too young to have been taken from the parents, what was the breeder thinking in doing this? If you are not experienced in hand feeding you can do a lot of damage to the little one. See if you can return the bird to the breeder until it is more mature or contact an avian vet for help in hand feeding. You must take action quickly or the bird may not survive, a baby bird cannot go without nourishment.

Thanks for replying.
I've fed injured/baby birds for years as a part of a rescue program, I do have experience, however, I've never encountered a baby bird that isn't hungry or isn't accepting the formula. I know that this is bad of course, and that it should eat ASAP, and it is eating, it's just weird how it does it.
At first, it is accepting the food from the spoon and going crazy for it for like 1-2 seconds, and then he stops and isn't willing to eat anymore, he probably eats like 1-2mils....He seems way more interested in picking up food from the ground around him, like the ones I've mentioned in the post above.
Could it possibly be that he doesn't want to be hand fed anymore and wants to start eating on his own? At this age, he isn't even fully feathered yet, it's just new to me that budgies can do that.
 

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Can you see any of the formula in the crop after he/she initially eats?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Can you see any of the formula in the crop after he/she initially eats?
Not see, but feel. His feathers cover the crop so seeing is impossible.
I can feel very little of it because very little is what he is accepting.
His droppings look very normal as well, big and firm, not runny.

Here is a picture of him (he actually stretches a lot, chirps, and when he is outside of that box he walks around)
Could it be that he is eating and is fine and I'm nervous for no reason?


256585
 

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Was the breeder hand feeding this bird or was it just taken from the parents and given to you? If the breeder says that the baby is weaned what has it been eating?
 

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Where are you located?

The very best thing for this baby's health and well-being is to take it back to the breeder and put it in with the father until the chick is fully weaned and fledged. Even though you have experience in hand-feeding and rescue, this is a very different situation. In this case the health and well-being of the chick should be first and foremost. Baby budgies are much better off remaining with their parents until they reach at least 8 weeks old.
This allows the baby to be socialized as a bird. The baby can still be handled during that time which we refer to as "Co-Parenting". This is preferable to pulling chicks for hand feeding as they get both the benefit of being with the parent as well as the benefit of being "socialized" to human interaction.

How well do you know this breeder? Why did they choose to release the chick so early?
Even 8 week old chicks will sometimes regress when removed from the parent and end up dying because they
refuse to eat on their own or accept being hand fed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Where are you located?

The very best thing for this baby's health and well-being is to take it back to the breeder and put it in with the father until the chick is fully weaned and fledged. Even though you have experience in hand-feeding and rescue, this is a very different situation. In this case the health and well-being of the chick should be first and foremost. Baby budgies are much better off remaining with their parents until they reach at least 8 weeks old.
This allows the baby to be socialized as a bird. The baby can still be handled during that time which we refer to as "Co-Parenting". This is preferable to pulling chicks for hand feeding as they get both the benefit of being with the parent as well as the benefit of being "socialized" to human interaction.

How well do you know this breeder? Why did they choose to release the chick so early?
Even 8 week old chicks will sometimes regress when removed from the parent and end up dying because they
refuse to eat on their own or accept being hand fed.
Hi, thanks for replying.

Giving the chick back to the parents isn't an option. I live in Israel, that breeder is about 3 hours away, and I called him and he said there is nothing he can do about it.
He just told me that it's because he is in a new environment, and to continue trying to feed him with the formula even if he refuses, and to put some seeds/pellets around him.
I'm well aware on how to take care of a bird, particularly a budgie, but this time it's a bit different and I'm getting in touch with plenty of people trying to see what can be done so I can help him.
 

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It saddens me greatly that this chick has regressed and cannot be reunited with the parent bird(s).

I will never understand why breeders think it is acceptable to release a chick at 3 weeks old.
Obviously, this goes against what this forum promotes with regard to "Best Practices" in caring for budgies for their optimum health and well-being.

I hope the little chick makes it.
Good Luck.

Edit: I was writing my message as you were writing your last one.

That is good news. I sincerely hope the baby will take to the formula now and will survive and thrive.
Please keep us updated in this thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Do you have a bent spoon made for feeding hookbills, like the one in this link? Bent Spoons-Handfeeding tools-Bird Supplies-Glamorous Gouldians it might make it easier to feed with this, if you cannot get this you may be able to gently heat a plastic spoon and bend it into this shape.
That's a good idea. I'll do that.
He just ate about 3 spoons half filled with the formula, he is sitting on my stomach right now covered with my hands to warm him up a bit.
I will feed him again in about 4 hours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I just fed him again, he started crying and I do think that the crop wasn't full although he did eat 3 half filled spoons.
His crop is now filled to the right extent, I put him back in his nesting box and he is sleeping in a warm environment.
I appreciate the help from both of you, and I will keep you posted on what happens tomorrow as well.
It's 7pm here right now, I'll make sure to feed him again later on today if need be. I don't want him to go without food for more than 8 hours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Was the breeder hand feeding this bird or was it just taken from the parents and given to you? If the breeder says that the baby is weaned what has it been eating?
He was fed by his parents, that's why it probably took me a whole day to make him get used to the spoon.
I hope it stays that way.
 
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