Posted Jul 06, 2015
Skyblue Normal budgerigars are small intelligent pets and they provide companionship for their owners. They are most suitable if you are at home most of the time to interact with them.
They enjoy being in a couple or a group so that they have bird playmates.
It’s best for them to be with budgies from the same aviary and of the same sex.
A cautionary note, my grandparents once got two boys and one took an intense dislike to the other, he pecked him to death overnight. Mercifully, such events are rare.
Baby budgies have pink ceres, the waxy lump at the top of their beaks, and by four months old a male will have a royal blue cere and a female has a brown or sometimes white cere.
Our budgie was called Snoopy. He was about seven inches in height and very active. He lived until the age of eleven.
Rather like humans budgies need entertainment and room to move, to stretch, preen, exercise and play.
They also like a nap, usually around lunchtime.
A spacious cage positioned out of the main thoroughfare and away from direct sunlight with a bird bath, swinging perches and a number of toys is excellent. We found that a mirror fascinated Snoopy more than his toys, perhaps it was vanity.
Preferably space to fly outside of the cage should be provided too.
Budgies can be trained, perhaps that should say bribed, with treats to hop on to your finger and to do other tricks.
Snoopy was fond of eating the lining paper beneath the sand at the bottom of his cage and his mirror frame.
Budgies like to chew anything they can get their beaks on so owners need be careful on two counts. One, that their prized possessions don’t get nibbled and two, that whatever the budgie plays with won’t be poisonous. Zinc, paints and varnishes are all detrimental to budgie health.
A diet consisting of seeds alone is not only dull but it inevitably leads to obesity.
A mixture of nuts and seeds with portions of chopped fruits or vegetables is far more healthy and enticing. Snoopy devoured grated carrot and almonds as humans eat chocolate.
It’s important not to try too many new items in their diet at once because this can upset their digestive systems, an experience that no one enjoys.
Their water should be changed at least once a day and replenished frequently in hot weather.
The cage should be cleaned out daily, new lining paper and sand provided and fresh food with the water. We used to refer to this as additional housework or “clearing the Snoopy poop.”
Budgies try to hide it if their health is suffering but if they start to look miserable or are hunched over, are on the floor of their cage for long periods, have a discharge coming from their nostrils or their poop is odd, seek a vets advice.
They might need to see a vet to trim their beak and their nails but if the right rough textured perches are provided and there are enough things to nibble the lengths of these should be maintained through activity.
It’s interesting to note that most budgie cages from shops have a smooth dowelling perch in them and that is so unhelpful to a budgie’s nail welfare.
It was almost unknown for Snoopy to peck someone but if he did it was because they (normally children) were being too energetic or noisy and so were threatening, in this instance parental supervision is welcome.
Snoopy was not a talkative bird but he had a lot of personality and he was a firm friend and member of the household.