Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Category Archives: flying

Flying pictures

With all the manic flying that goes on, thanks to a troublesome little grey man (!), I decided to try & get some flying pictures.  Of all that I took, only two were half decent:

Phineas & Cagney landing on playgym

Phineas & Cagney landing on playgym

Phineas

Phineas

Atilla’s outing

Atilla had a fly today.  First time in ages.

She was sat on the top, bedtime perch this morning & had a little seed that I offered her.  Then she started looking like she wanted to go somewhere….. she jumped onto the landing platform & without hesitation launched herself off across the room.  She did not get far, but I was there to pick her up.  She seemed to want to go to the playgym so I placed her there.  She settled for a good few minutes.  Cagney was not far behind & regurgitated some seed for her which she readily took.

After a little rest, she looked like she wanted to return home.  She got on my hand but I was evidently too slow taking her over to the Manor as she decided to fly back herself but landed by the side.  I helped her into the Manor where she had a good, long rest after her exertions.

Atilla on the playgym with Cagney

Up and over

Atilla is still coping with her lump.  It has got bigger again but is still a bit floppy rather than solid like it had been pre-Easter Sunday.  She occasionally gets a poop caught on it, but it never stays there long – either I manage to discreetly flick it off whilst it is fresh, or Atilla attacks it during a botty preen.

She gets about, as always, trailing the lump behind her.  She does not seem to mind & just hauls it around.  When she steps up on my finger from a perch or swing, I have to remember the up & over motion otherwise the lump will get caught.

Here she is on the swing – she got there herself.  She was not very relaxed as she saw me with the camera…

She is still making her own way down under the Manor to check out the mirror there…

The other day I caught her exploring the rest of the area under the Manor – she did a circuit of the tray, returning to the mirror & made her way up to the Manor as per usual.

Atilla doing a circuit of the tray under the Manor

Atilla is very independent & I admire her greatly.

Long time no see!

Atilla was well enough to visit the Poang chair today!  I’m sure the chair gave a sigh of relief to feel her chewing it.

The last couple of days Atilla has been quite lively, in her non-sleeping moments.  She tentatively made her way over to the chair, via a pathway of my palms (bit like a sideways one-potato-two-potato with palms, not clenched fist).  Once there, she rested & got her bearings. 

Since then, she has managed to fly there herself, thundering across from the manor.  It was a pleasure to hear the heavy beating of her wings & feel the turbulence in the air where it was displaced as she bombed her way over.  There was no time for exchanging any pleasantries or long-time-no-see’s, as she immediately commenced her chewing.  “Welcome back Atilla!” the chair seemed to say. 🙂

Video proof:

Poop mountain, reinforcements & misting

Even though Mr Exotic Vet had cleared poop away from Atilla’s lump, it started building up.  I can only assume this was happening because the poop was either too runny, and/or she was too weak to do her squat & wriggle to propel the poop away from her vent & the lump.  I tried a couple of times to catch her to clean the poop but found it impossible to keep her still in my hand – she could wriggle & squirm for England.  That in itself was quite reassuring in that she was not so ill that she could not resist.

Spinach leaves

In the hope of loosening the poop mountain, I gave Atilla & the toyboys a misting.  As far as leaves, they only had spinach, so I picked out a few large leaves & hoped they would be tempted to get wet.  Atilla came out onto the landing platform quite quickly to investigate but I can only assume the water temperature was not quite to her liking as she turned her back & retired to her perch.  The boys had a little play in the wet spinach but I guess followed their leader & were not able to drum up much enthusiasm.

So, there was no luck with soaking Atilla’s poop, however the poop had to be cleared as it would not be long before it would be mounting up & blocking the vent area.  I decided to call in reinforcements for the next day.

Surprisingly Atilla was quite alert the next morning.  So much so that when I opened up the Manor she clearly wanted to fly & stretch her wings.  She promptly landed on the floor, but when I returned her to the Manor she flew off again, got further around the room but landed on the floor again.  No matter… I felt this was a good sign as she clearly wanted to be active.

Unfortunately, her activity did not shift the ever-growing poop mountain on her lump.

Not long after Atilla’s little fly, the poop-clearing troops arrived (my mum).  After much discussion, we decided the poop should be soaked for at least a minute & the best way to do this would be to put Atilla in a bird bath.  I would be the one to catch/hold her & mum would be armed with cotton buds & cotton wool for shifting the poop.

As a precursor I gave them all another spinach misting (in the hope that Atilla could soak her lump herself!)  Atilla did not have the energy to roll in the spinach but did get a little wet.  Cagney had a crawl through the spinach leaves & got a nice wet belly & Bezukhov had a romp & a dance over the leaves & I think he forgot that he was actually meant to wash himself!

The aftermath

So, after that distraction, it actually took us two attempts to get rid of all the poop.  Both times, I managed to put Atilla into the bird bath with warm water & keep her in by placing my hand over the open doorway (where the bath should hook onto the cage bars).  Atilla attempted to bite a hole through my fingers to escape but the skin on my fingers are like leather now (thanks Atilla & Raspy) so I could withstand the biting.

The soaking definitely helped in removing the poop.  On the second try I managed to wrap Atilla in a tea-towel which made it a lot easier to hold her still for longer.  Once the poop was gone, before releasing Atilla, mum smeared some vaseline on her lump.  I had already mixed in some aloe vera gel from a plant into the vaseline.  I hoped this would protect the skin on her lump as it is difficult to pull off poop that has hardened.

The poop mountain

What a relief.  The deed was done.  Atilla tweeted as she ran back to her perch & I think she appreciated being rid of the poop though did not appreciate the dunking in the bird bath or the general indignity of the process.  I turned the electric blanket on so she could stay warm as her back end was still wet from the bath.

After she recovered she was able to preen her bottom/vent area & tidy it up a bit.

Hopalong Cagney

Cagney holding his right foot up slightly

Yesterday morning, when I woke Atilla & the toyboys up, I was alarmed to see Cagney stumbling about.

When I stopped to observe him, I could see he was struggling to put weight on his right leg.  It did not look red or swollen.  However, he was not able to stretch his left wing out as that would mean having to balance on his right leg to allow his left leg to stretch out behind him. When walking along the perch he limped.

He seemed in good spirits though.  Atilla was still “in bed” (on the bedtime swing) & in fact, got up much later than usual but Cagney still managed to supply her with breakfast in bed…. several times.  When she finally got up, Cagney managed to persuade her to partake in some hanky-panky, so his dodgy leg was clearly not holding him back in that department.

By chance, I was not able to let them out for a fly during the day which I think was a good thing as it gave Cagney a chance to rest his leg.  Whenever sat still on the perch (not that often, to be honest….) he would hold his right foot up. 

Hanky-panky still possible

Early evening, they were let out & Cagney had a good fly around as usual.  He seemed to be landing without any problems, but was still holding his foot up & limping when walking along.  When he sat on my finger, I could feel him resting his right foot lightly on my finger.  It certainly was not gripping tightly like his left foot.  More rest needed, I thought.

An early night was in order, so I locked them up fairly early.  At one point, when I came out the kitchen, Cagney was on the platform perch, looking at me with a pleading & slightly panicky look in his eyes. I opened up the Manor door & he came out & did about 8 or 9 mad laps of the room & went back in again.  Clearly, he was not quite ready to be locked up for bed.

Dodgy right foot

To me, it looks like Cagney has fallen or landed awkwardly on his foot & has sprained it.  Something similar happened to Raspy & after a few days she was fine.  Hopefully Cagney will be back to normal soon.



The flying wounded

Cagney & his head wound

One morning, last week, when I woke the puddings & toyboys up, I found Cagney had a wound on his head.  The only explanation is that the boys had an early morning fight.  Despite having an unsightly, red mark on his head, Cagney was his usual self.

Red-eyed Cagney

On returning home that evening, Cagney presented another injury to me  This time, the surrounding of his right eye was red.  Once again, he was fine in himself.  He did not appear to be irritated by the wound & his eye itself looked fine.  Admittedly, the red eye did make him look a little demented.  Again, I can only assume that this was the work of Bezukhov the Bruiser.

Atilla holding her foot up

If this was not enough, Atilla decided to stress me out further by holding her right foot up.  She still does this.  I am not sure what the problem is.  She can still grip with it but she seems to want to rest it more.  It’s possible she landed badly on it & just needs to rest it (Raspy had this problem a little while ago) or perhaps her fatty lump is pressing on a nerve that affects her leg & foot?

In fact, her fatty lump has turned into two fatty lumps…. 😦

Atilla laying across the perch

Atilla alarmed me further the other night by laying across her perch.  She has done this in the past on the cuttlefish but that looked more comfortable with it being wide & flat. 

To end on a more positive note & to link in with the “flying” of the post title, I got quite a good picture of Atilla landing on the landing platform with her wings spread out.  I think she looks magnificent!

Action shot of Atilla

Swapping puddings?

Occasionally, the toyboys confuse things. 

We know that Bezukhov & Raspy love each other.  We know that Cagney & Atilla love each other.  There are times Bezukhov cannot resist having a flirt with Atilla & this riles Cagney.  We also know Cagney likes to chase Raspy for a kiss despite Bezukhov flapping his wings in warning.  Neither pudding is interested in the potential change in partner so nothing comes of it, though I do expect one or other toyboy to be sporting a black eye one day….

However, there are the exceptions & these are when both boys do not seem to mind swapping puddings…..  The problem is, the girls do not want to swap!  It’s like the boys have thrown their keys in the dish but the girls are not picking up…  The girls can get a bit stressed in such a situation because they do not even have their boyfriend to help fight their corner because he is too busy trying to get off with her sister.  It’s all very fraught. 

This evening, Raspy seemed to be at a slight disadvantage as I think she has hurt her wing a little (she can still fly).  After about an hour of trying to diffuse the situation, I introduced Raspy to the Ferplast & she readily went in.  Cagney was prowling around on top of the cage so I put the cover over it.  After a short time, Bezukhov was looking for Raspy so I opened the Ferplast door & he went in to be with her. 

Calm has finally returned.  Raspy has tried out all perches/swings in the Ferplast but I think she may settle on one of the swings for the night.  Bezukhov still has not decided where to sleep but he has been stretching his wings so I am sure he will settle soon.  In the Manor, Atilla is still wrestling with the mirror but that is normal (for the last week at least) & Cagney is already perched on top of a swing. 

I will keep the two couples separated for a day as I will not have time to keep an eye on them tomorrow.  Hopefully Raspy’s wing will also be better too.

The carpet had to go!

Yes, the carpet had to go!

There were several reasons for the decision to replace the lounge carpet with laminate flooring:

  1. Food squashed in the carpet.  The boys think nothing of flying off with lumps of food in their beaks & dropping it in all manner of places.  Atilla also thinks nothing of tearing food to pieces & leaving a ring of destroyed vegetable around the Manor, with some pieces managing to find their way under the chairs & across the other side of the room.
  2. Pink poops staining the carpet.  Yes, the infamous beetroot stained poops.  Fairly easy to get off the carpet, but they do leave a little pink mark.
  3. Huge sloppy poops.  Not naming names….. but Atilla can drop some very large, messy poops which can be a little difficult to clean!

So, decision made, job booked & room emptied.  The puddings & toyboys were to take a little holiday in my bedroom whilst the work was being carried out.

Unfortunately, the work was undertaken on the hottest days of the year & my bedroom got very hot, even with the fan.  I would often find them all huddled together on the same perch, directly in line with the air from the fan!

The girls noticed every noise. There was a lot of banging & drilling to keep them on their toes.  The toyboys took it all in their stride & carried on as normal.

Here is Cagney preening Atilla (watch at 20 seconds in, where he tries to get into a better position by putting his foot on her head. :)):

The work spanned two days so in the evening, I gave the puddings & toyboys the option to have a fly around my bedroom.  Though the boys had been quarantined in that room, they were never let out so it would be a new experience for all of them.

After bird-proofing the room, I gingerly opened them up…… Unsurprisingly, Cagney was the first out & he expertly did a few laps.  Bezukhov came out & pottered on top of the Manor before doing a few laps himself.  Surprisingly, Atilla also emerged from the Manor & even more surprisingly, flew to the far wall, turned, & flew back to the Manor!  I think even she was surprised at her agility, so she did it again!  The third time she landed on the floor on the return lap (pity she missed the soft bed!) but all in all, she did very well.  Raspy had no desire to leave the Manor.

Unfortunately, during their imprisonment holiday, there was a major fight between the toyboys.  I watched it unfold & was unable to do anything because the floor was in progress & windows were open etc.  It was triggered by both pairs having synchronised “hanky-panky”.  When this happens, I always will Bezuky to finish before Cagney because if he doesn’t, there is a very high probability of a fight happening, as it did on this day.  Cagney finished first, & instead of letting Bezuky & Raspy complete their session, he tried to join in & unfortunately, Bezukhov the Bruiser was having none of it…. Both boys were rolling around the floor of the cage, neither willing to give in.  They were squarking & thrashing about…. I did not know where one finished & the other started, they were so entwined.  Somehow, the fight ended.  Bezukhov was clearly the winner & pranced about showing off.  Cagney, retired to the perch to quietly preen & recover.  I could see the poor boy had a tiny bit of blood on his head.  As the days have progressed, his injury is still noticeable.  Although the blood has gone, his feathers in that area are still at a funny angle.  It makes me think that this must be how he got his “quiff” a few months back.

(Click on photos to enlarge)

It was a relief when the floor was completed & puddings & toyboys could be wheeled back into the newly laminated lounge.  They made the most of the strange echo from the new flooring & lack of furniture by making a lot of noise!  It was not long before the floor was christened with poops & spinach.  Both toyboys tried out the floor early on.  Atilla even tried it during an unplanned landing where she skidded across half the room.  I think she quite enjoyed it!

Poor spider plant

Further to my post on “Cagney & the Spider Plants“, the two boys have really got the taste of the plant.  Now, when it goes quiet I look for the boys on top of the cabinet & often I will see them both there, chewing away.  I tell them they are naughty little boys.  I get them to step up & move them away but as soon as my back is turned, they just fly back.  My poor spider plant…