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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!

A few years ago, maybe 2 or 3, my family and I adopted 3 budgies that were rescued from a family who had young children and couldn't care for their budgies. They were very timid and scared of us, but they seemed very happy together after we bought them a very large cage with lots of perches for them to fly around on. We didn't know their exact age, except that they are probably over 8 years old. About 6-7 months ago, one of the budgies died without any warning. :( Luckily, it wasn't an infection, so the other birds were fine. In fact, they didn't even seem too upset about it because they had each other. They loved to fly around the room we have for them and groom each other. Yesterday, sadly, the second budgie passed away from natural causes after he had been acting funny and we took him to the vet. They didn't know what was wrong, but his diet was good and he didn't seem to have an infection or sickness.

Unfortunately, now there's only one budgie left. His name is Kiwi and he's pretty timid. He's always been the tamest of the three (if you slowly put your hand in he'll sit on your finger) and he likes to fly around outside of the cage. I moved his cage to my room because that's where I work 90% of the day and I don't want him to get lonely. He's still pretty scared of me and avoids being on the side of the cage next to me. He's eating and drinking well, especially enjoying the fresh veggies I gave him as a special treat. I'm worried that he'll get depressed because he doesn't seem to enjoy being around me. How do I make him feel more comfortable? I've been playing soft music for him because when I stop playing music he starts chirping extremely loudly. I think it's probably a communication chirp. I'm worried he'll start looking for his friend... He doesn't seem too distressed but he's definitely been circling the cage maybe looking for Mango (the other bird that passed). We didn't show him the dead body because we didn't know if the other bird was sick and we didn't want to make him ill or anything. Does he know what's going on?

As for taming, I'm not too interested in taming him. He seems very content exploring outside of his cage by himself and I feed him every morning so he knows that I'm a safe person. It would be great if he would play with me but I don't want to make him unhappy. As mentioned above, I sit as my desk 80-90% of my day working so he always has the option to come up to me. Should I encourage his taming more or will he be happier if I just let him do his own thing? Also, I go to college in the fall and I'm really worried about that too. Again, he's probably around 10-11 (at minimum) now so I doubt he'll live for that much longer and I want to make him as comfortable as possible.

Thanks again!

One last thing. His nails are really long and we've trimmed them before but I don't want to traumatize him now that he's alone. I'm not worried about the trimming because we've done it lots of times by ourselves with bird nail clippers safely. Should I wait to trim them until he's more comfortable being the only bird or will it not make a difference?
 

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Sorry for your loss of Mango. I do think that birds have a sense when another is ill, I have observed that with my birds for sure. In the next several days you should be able to tell if Kiwi seems depressed at the loss. I would let him do whatver he is comfortable doing and not try to attempt any taming at this point, being the only bird now he may or may not decide that you are a suitable friend. Because you have moved him into your room he may seem a little uncomfortable for a bit as this is a new spce for him. When you go to college are there other household members that will be home a good deal of the time or at that point will Kiwi be all alone? At 10-11 years old he is considered an old guy but I would trim the nails since both of you are already used to that, if the nails get too long it can cause problems with the ability to grip and perch properly and the nails can get caught in things.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you! I have a sister and my parents and all of us love Kiwi. His cage used to be downstairs in the main family room and occasionally in a guest room when we would let them fly around in a safe room so he's used to being moved around. He's been pretty chipper this morning. I've noticed that playing music makes him a lot happier. Another thing I've noticed is that he'll walk around on the bottom of his cage chirping pretty loudly. I'm not sure if he's trying to call Mango but it's pretty ear piercing and he'll just squawk for a couple of seconds at a time really loudly mixed in with some normal chattering/happy noises. Should I be concerned that he's on the bottom of the cage? Not often, just like 10 minutes every hour or so. I feel like it's not normal for him to be on the bottom but I also could be overanalyzing his behavior (since I've been observing him nonstop). I plan on cutting his nails tonight before bed so he's tired.

Thanks again!
 

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Did Mango and Kiwi ever play at the bottom of the cage? It does seem odd but maybe that is his way of looking for Mango, the loud chirps are probably a flock call so he is calling for him.
A really ill bird will sit puffed up at the bottom of the cage but I am assuming that is not at all what Kiwi is doing.
 

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I'm sorry for your loss of Mango. It's never easy to say goodbye to one of our little ones.
I'm sure Kiwi misses him but it sounds as though he is adjusting as well as can be expected.
The fact that Kiwi is 10 or 11 years old is a great testament to the care you've provided for him.
I wouldn't be overly concerned about him visiting the bottom of the cage periodically. It may be something he's always done and you are just now noticing it since you are will him all day. My budgies will often hop around on the cage bottom for a bit before heading off to do something else they find interesting.
I'd basically let KIwi do his own thing. If he wants your company you are there and he can come to you if/when he feels comfortable in doing so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you so much for all your help! I feel so bad that he's lost two friends in the past year, so I really appreciate the advice! He seems very healthy so hopefully, he has a few more years in him.
 

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I'm so sorry to hear that Mango has passed on. Obviously he was very well cared for! It seems like despite the loss Kiwi will settle in just fine; I agree completely with Cody and FaeryBee. Best wishes for him, please keep us posted on how he's doing!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm so sorry to hear that Mango has passed on. Obviously he was very well cared for! It seems like despite the loss Kiwi will settle in just fine; I agree completely with Cody and FaeryBee. Best wishes for him, please keep us posted on how he's doing!
3 months later and Kiwi is doing better than ever. I set up a playground on top of his cage so that he can come and go as he pleases from inside his cage. He's been enjoying the summer weather and loves looking out my window. He hasn't seem depressed at all and no longer does any flocking calls. He has become much more tame and will hop on my finger when I offer him millet. He's also gained some weight (he was a skinny bird when there were two other friends who would eat more food than him), which is good. I've started giving him

He went to the vet recently to get a checkup and he's definitely an old guy (around 12 or 13 according to his vet) but he seems healthy! He's a little more clumsy than he was when he was younger and sometimes fluffs up more than he used to but the avian vet said that's a symptom of old age. I've also been giving him ACV as recommended by his vet for some dietary supplement (not sure what is does beyond probiotic supplement?).

His nails still seem to grow very fast even though he has all natural branches for perches as well as a pedi-perch. I trim them every month or so just a tiny bit because I don't want to trim too much. Is this just a normal thing for some budgies?

Thank you for all the help!
 

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Some budgies nails do grow faster than others.
Additionally, birds on an all seed diet will be more prone to issues with overgrowth of their nails and beaks due to the impact the fat has on their liver.
Just be careful you don't give him too much food and cause obesity. It's great he's doing well now which is a testament to your good care.
 
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