Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Monthly Archives: March 2014

Perch positioning

It is important to carefully consider positioning of perches & swings in the cage.  I have made a mistake with positioning of a perch in Phinny’s cage.  Most mornings, I am presented with the following:

Poopy perch

Poopy perch

Phinny usually sleeps overnight on the ttmss swing.  As it is just him sitting on it, it dips down quite a bit on one side & it is that angle that often results in a poopy perch below.  Sometimes the ttmss swing shifts along the bars a fraction & that means the poops miss the perch & land on the cage floor, where they are meant to be.

Some more tweaking is necessary for an optimum poop-free perch position.

Phinny no-mates

Phineas still adores Cagney.  As soon as Cagney moves, Phineas is there, right in front of him, following behind him or above him on the bars.

Cagney, did you call?

Cagney, did you call?

Cagney does not feel the same way about Phineas.  If truth be told, I believe Cagney gets frustrated at not being about to move without having to push past Phineas.  Sometimes he cannot eat because Phineas is trying to kiss him at the same time.  As nice as it must be to have such attention, it must be wearing to have it all the time!

Phineas tries too hard with Cagney.  He does not know when to stop or to hold back.   Add to this, that he chases Bezukhov away as he wants Cagney all to himself.  This action in itself would not endear him to Cagney as Cagney is very fond of his mate Bezukhov.  It certainly does not endear him to Bezukhov.  There are times when Bezukhov stops Phineas in his tracks to engage him in a conversation.  Phineas seems surprised by this & although he tentatively gives Bezukhov a listening ear, does not appear to respond or further the conversation.

Bezukhov is particularly wary of Phineas as there have been about 3 occasions when he has not run away quick enough & Phineas has grabbed him by the wing or the head (when leaning over the top of the cage).

Probably unsurprisingly, Cagney & Bezukhov have not wanted Phineas to sleep overnight with them.  They make this quite clear.  During the evening, as it comes to bedtime, if Phineas sits in Manor loft area, both Cagney & Bezukhov will vacate it.  Read more of this post

A pretend peg

A favourite perch is the wooden peg.  For some time now, years in fact, a peg has been positioned on the inside of the Manor landing platform.  Sitting on it affords good views across the room. Its most attractive feature is most probably that there is only space for one bird to sit on it at a time.  It has been used by all: Atilla, Raspy, Cagney, Bezukhov, Phineas & Thomas.

There is one disadvantage of this peg.  To me, that is.  When the landing platform is lowered, the peg has to be removed as it is redundant & just flops there, taking up space.  During recent turbulent times when the landing platform was raised & lowered many times an hour, it occurred to me there must be a more efficient way to deal with this that could satisfy both myself & the toyboys (current Manor occupants).

Enter The Natural Bird Product Company (http://www.naturalbirdco.co.uk/)

When I broached them about this dilemma, they agreed to make a smaller version of one of their existing designs.  And here it is!

Dinky perch: length 10cm, stem height 6cm

Dinky perch: length 10cm, stem height 6cm

This new dinky T-shaped perch mimics the qualities of the peg inside the manor but when the landing platform is lowered, turns into a useful perch.  Of course there has been some avoidance of this new perch by Cagney & Bezukhov, but I can say now, a few weeks after its introduction, that it has been accepted, & here is the evidence:

(Click on photos to enlarge)

Rogue fluff

Despite all the preening & sorting out of their feathers, every so often, a rogue bit of fluff spoils their image….

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… apart from Thomas… he still managed to look cool. 🙂

No photos of Cagney here.  I think that is because he panics so much that I feel bad taking a photo!

Dodgy poops & more worry

Yesterday (Saturday), Phineas presented me with a few things to worry about:

  • Firstly, on uncovering him in the morning, I scanned for his overnight poops but could not find any.  I found that very puzzling.  There is always a poop pile the next morning.  Odd.
  • Secondly, when I offered Phinny an in-cage jiggy-jiggy, his bottom area felt different.  Swollen.  Softer.
  • Thirdly, when Phinny pooped during the day, they were abnormal.  As you can see from the photos, they were a very murky yellowy colour.  A few times he just pooped water.
  • Fourthly, when Phineas preened his bottom area, it looked a bit red.  It is generally a little bald, due to his “bot rubs” but more pinky.
  • Fifthly, he slept a lot.  He rarely sleeps during the day.  When Cagney & Bezukhov are sleeping then he may, at a push, have a quick nap, but he certainly never sleeps if they are not sleeping.

So worry I did.  Naturally, being the weekend, the vet’s was closed, although an emergency number is supplied.  I found myself searching on the internet for other exotic vets (an avian vet is now like gold dust ’round these parts).  I came across a veterinary hospital that has recently opened a new in-patients ward for exotics, & has its own vet with a special interest in exotics – reptiles & birds.  What is more…. it is open on Sundays!

I spent a worrying night as Phinny did not sleep on his swing (another departure from the norm) but fortunately awoke this morning to find he had pooped & they were back to a more normal looking colour.  He was also in good form & keen for an in-cage jiggy-jiggy.  His bottom area still felt swollen.

To be on the safe side, I booked an appointment at the veterinary hospital. Read more of this post

RBS – Randy Budgie Syndrome

It is a real thing.  Randy Budgie (or Bird) Syndrome is a recognised condition.  There are lots of references to it on the internet should you want to do some research.  I found this web page most interesting: http://www.budgiehealth.com/randy-budgie-syndrome.html.

RBS is primarily thought of as a behavioural problem.  I have occasionally wondered if Phineas ‘suffers’ from RBS.  Certainly when he is on form he is capable of jiggy-jiggying several times a day.  He used to use the bars of the cage, in the corner, but it appears his preferred location is my hand.  My right hand.

Did you know a budgie could be right or left handed/clawed?  Well Phinny is right-clawed.  If I offer my left hand, he gets all confused & just cannot get himself into position.  My right hand is a different matter entirely.

The link to the budgie health web page posted above, mentions a few behaviours to look out for.  Phineas does seem to fit the profile of some of them:

20130117_131433_sh21The regurgitating budgie.  Phineas will regurgitate to my finger or thumb many times a day – more if possible.  If really desperate he may consider, very briefly, regurgitating to a toy.  It is worth noting that he does gobble back all his regurgitated seed so my finger is left quite clean afterwards, apart from a thin layer of gunk.

Male budgie masterbation.  The article appears to suggest this happens to single budgies.  Obviously this is not the case with Phineas.  I do think he would far prefer Cagney to my hand but, as the saying goes, ‘budgies beggars can’t be choosers’.

Aggressive and possessive behaviour.  Phineas does exhibit this.  He is possessive over both Cagney (unrequited love is so hard) & my finger.  Being possessive over Cagney is pretty logical, particularly as Cagney is Mr Popular.  Being possessive over my finger is less logical as none of the other boys have any interest in my finger.  He can be aggressive too… or is he just being overly loyal?

The one behaviour he does not exhibit is The Mirror Addict.  He will chat to a mirror but does not have an attachment to any mirror.

The article states, quite rightly, that:

Read more of this post

Remembering my girls: Sleeves

Since the passing of my girls, my sleeves have seen no action.  Until a few days ago.

Can I have a sleeve?

Can I have a sleeve?

I was tending to Phineas & my arm was near the plant pot stand.  Suddenly, I felt a gentle tugging on my sleeve.  When I turned, I saw Bezukhov on the plant pot stand & he was chewing my sleeve.

To feel that tugging on my sleeve took me right back to those pudding days.

Bezukhov jumped on my arm to have a proper chew.  Cagney joined him.  Naturally, Phineas had to be involved & landed on my arm, in the middle of Cagney & Bezukhov, instantly dispersing them!

Previously, Bezukhov & Cagney only chewed my sleeve when the girls did.  Atilla & Raspy could spend hours chewing my sleeves so Cagney & Bezukhov, being devoted partners, would join them at some point.  The girls would have a crook of elbow each & the toyboys would have the length of my arms to play with.

As a reminder, here is Raspy having a good chew:

Incidentally, in the video I am wearing the same jumper that Bezukhov was pulling at this week. 🙂

2013 Review – Weird poses & funny faces

Following on from my review of Failures when attempting to photograph the boys during 2013, I belatedly give you weird poses & funny faces:

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It is interesting that I struggled to find weird poses & funny faces of Thomas.  He must have been especially photogenic.  🙂