Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Tag Archives: Ferplast

Repurposing a door

As previously posted, Perry & Lennie had found the way to come out.  Over the following days I noticed they had some difficulty in using the small doorway of the quarantine cage.  That particular cage has doors that slide upwards.  Being a hoarder (!) I remembered I kept the little doors from the old Ferplast.  I used one of these to fashion a small landing platform.  I prized open the hooks enough to slide through the bars & used a rope perch to balance it on, held firm with some paper rope.  It seemed to work well…..

 

 

Interestingly, if Perry came out without Lennie noticing (he may have been chewing on a toy or something), then Lennie seemed to not know how to then come out.  After this happened a few times, I noticed that when on the threshold of the doorway, Perry would wait until Lennie was paying attention, & then fly out, knowing that Lennie would follow him.  Smart or what?

 

 

Medication & the Ferplast

Manor with cover that I stand underneath

Manor with cover that I stand underneath

With the manor, I had a routine established regarding giving Bezukhov his every-other-morning medication.  Though the cage is big, the large front door allows me access to all areas.  To stop Bezukhov escaping out that big door, I wrap a sheet around myself & the cage.  Once he is safely contained in my hands, I duck under the sheet, into the light, to administer medication (or more to the point try to administer medication).

Bezukhov would then be returned to the manor where he could take his time to recover.

Since Bezukhov has been sleeping overnight in the Ferplast, things have been tricky.  The Ferplast has some good points but sadly the cage is not designed for catching Bezukhov.  It has two small doors on the front, that only one hand/arm can fit.  If I position my left arm in the left door & my right arm in the right door, I still do not have access to all areas of the cage.  For example, if Bezukhov is at the far left, I am unable to bend my left arm around, which means I have to use my right arm but as it is in the right door, it does not fully reach the left side of the cage.  [Are you keeping up?!]   The alternative is to put the most suitable arm in the appropriate door (left or right) during the chase, but this carries the risk of leaving the unused door open for Bezukhov to cunningly escape through.

Even when I am lucky enough to grab Bezukhov, I then need the other hand to contain him, otherwise he wriggles free in no time.  In summary, a stressful job got even more stressful.

I don't want any medicine!!

I don’t want any medicine!!

 

So, can I somehow get Bezukhov to sleep overnight in the Manor, particularly the night before medication-morning?  Well, if he was to go in there at a convenient time in the evening & I lock him in, he gets stressed being on his own.  He rarely goes near the Manor in the evening though as he now eats his bedtime seed in the Ferplast.  Phineas generally does not consider sleeping overnight in the Manor & why would he?  He has a perfectly comfortable set up in the Ferplast.  And do not forget that apart from when Thomas was around, he has been sleeping on his own so is used to it.

So, for the time being we are muddling along…

 

 

An Upgrade, a Move & some Tweaking

Cagney & Bezukhov live in the Manor.  They were originally quarantined in the old Ferplast (OF).  Phineas lives in the folding cage, where he was quarantined too.  Thomas was quarantined in the OF but then went to live with Phineas in the folding cage.

The OF, when not in use, has often been a chilling out cage.  However, I wanted to phase it out as there was some damage to the bars in places & I did not feel it was safe any more.

Enter the new Ferplast (NF).

The NF is basically the upgraded version of the OF, with a few design changes.  (The jury is still out on whether those changes are “improvements”).  My plan was for Phineas & Thomas to move into the NF as it is much bigger than the folding cage.  I felt that Thomas would appreciate the extra space to get away from Phineas at times.

Due to Thomas being unwell, I put off moving him & Phineas into their new home until he was feeling better, but the NF was set up & moved into the room, as the replacement chill-out cage.  Phineas did go in there briefly but otherwise it was completely ignored, most certainly by the scaredy-cat Toyboys because of its different colour (e.g., black bars instead of white).

Sadly, Thomas is now no longer with us.  I went ahead with the move anyway as the NF was ready & waiting.

Moving day was last week.  Read more of this post

Switching cages

Since young Thomas has emerged from the Ferplast, we have been playing a rather complicated game of musical cages.

Initially, I let Thomas roam about on his own, without the others to distract him.  He generally settled on either the Manor where the toyboys tried to woo him or on Phinny’s cage where Phinny generally ignored him.

After awhile, I let Phineas out.  He seemed a bit put out that Cagney was showing interest in this new, young whippersnapper.  Whilst he was civil to Thomas, once any serious flirting got underway between Thomas & Cagney through the cage bars, he was not quite so magnanimous.

Letting out Cagney & Bezukhov & therefore having all 4 out at the same time proved a little chaotic.  Thomas, being new to being out, was getting stressed at all the comings & goings.  He tried to eat seed in the Manor but Cagney kept trying to kiss him.  Not to mention Phineas trying to stop Cagney from kissing Thomas.  At one point, Thomas was in the Manor alone, so I quickly locked him in to give him time to collect his thoughts & also to eat some seed in peace.

After that episode, I tried letting Thomas, Cagney & Bezukhov out, but not Phineas.  Phinny would go crazy in his cage watching Cagney flirt with Thomas.

Another time, Cagney & Bezukhov were in the Ferplast with Thomas but when Thomas came out I locked both Cagney & Bezukhov in, once again, to give Thomas some breathing space.

Like I say, it has all been rather complicated.  There must be a formula for success that is already in existence.  I need to do some research….

Tempting Thomas out

The Ferplast is a very nice cage.  A good size & roomy; especially for just one bird, in this case, Thomas.

It is possible it is too nice as it has taken Thomas 3 weeks to leave it & venture into the big, wide world (lounge).

We have, of course, been trying to tempt Thomas to come out.  Food was the obvious choice: millet and/or fresh seeded grass.  Many times Thomas sat in the open doorway eating his treat.  Many times Thomas sat on the open door itself, eating his treat, but still turned his back & retreated to the safety of the Ferplast.

It is possible he was intimidated by the others & in fact Cagney & Bezukhov were very quick to go in to visit Thomas rather than wait for him to come out.  This meant a lot of the enticing was done whilst the others were locked up.  I particularly wanted him to come out on his own as I feared the others would be too excited & chase him, making Thomas panic & possibly crash land somewhere & either hurt himself or put himself off of coming out again!

To see him finally choose to come out was a lovely moment.

He proved himself to be quite the thinker, taking his time before moving forward with his next step/jump/fly.  He carefully climbed from his open doorway to the top of his cage.  Then he jumped across to Phinny’s cage & slowly & cautiously made his way across.  After some deliberation, he then made his final leap onto the Manor & greeted Cagney & Bezukhov.

 

The Jealousy Wing-Flap

Phineas is still obsessed with Cagney.

Unfortunately for Phineas, Cagney quite likes Thomas.

Phineas really does NOT like it when Cagney flirts with Thomas.

He expresses this dislike by wing flapping in a rather intimidating way.

The Jealousy Wing-Flap is not exclusive to Phineas though.  Cagney has also had a wing-flap when Bezukhov has flirted with Thomas.  The last time I saw Cagney wing-flap was on the very rare occasion that Bezukhov had a tiny flirt with Atilla.

With all the flapping chaos, I felt a cold shower would help restore order.  But that will be another post… 🙂   The top of the Ferplast has certainly seen an increase in jealousy wing-flapping since handsome young Thomas arrived on the scene.

Advantage Toyboys

Toyboys taking nap whilst visiting Thomas

Toyboys taking nap whilst visiting Thomas

Young Thomas is staying in the Ferplast.

Both Cagney & Bezukhov originally stayed in that cage during their quarantine weeks.  When they moved in with the Puddings, the Ferplast then became a chill-out cage (mostly for Raspy to get away from Cagney when he was being a little overbearing!) & extra play area.  There are many pluses to the design of the Ferplast cage but one negative is the size of the doors.  All four doors are small.  I have found that sometimes budgies do not like going in & out of small doors & sometimes need some persuading.

However, the toyboys are old hands at tackling the tiny doors.  When I opened one of the doors for Thomas to come out, it did not take too long for Cagney & Bezukhov to find their way in.  Young Thomas has coped very well with his new visitors.

Cagney visits Thomas:

Bezukhov visits Thomas:

So, what do you think?  Friends?  More than friends??  I suspect Thomas is a little enamoured with Bezukhov…

A pet shop

I no longer have a lounge; I have a pet shop.

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My lounge is now dominated by three cages:

  • The Manor with the toyboys (left)
  • The folding cage with Phineas (centre)
  • The ferplast with Thomas (right)

The playgym is temporarily in my bedroom.  It used to be where Thomas’s cage now is.

So, both Phineas & Thomas, after quarantine & staggered introduction, were wheeled in to be with the toyboys.

What a loud welcome Cagney & Bezukhov gave them, though I think most of that was for the return of Cagney’s shadow, the inimitable Phineas!

So, the plan was to keep Thomas in his cage for a little while to let him acclimatise to his new surroundings, the new room occupants & our routine.  I would let the others out so they could make their introductions to our new boy.

Phineas was the first to say hello & was followed quickly by Cagney.  Interestingly, but not surprisingly, Bezukhov was conspicuous by his absence.  He held back in meeting Thomas.  He let Phineas & Cagney inspect the new boy whilst he stayed in the Manor, minding his own business.

The following day however, Bezukhov did go over to Thomas but unlike the others who were very upfront, he did not really show great interest in Thomas himself but in his seed bell that he could eat through the cage bars.  This turned out to be cunning plan.  Thomas chose to eat the seed bell with him.  I suspect this quiet & more low-key approach was a more rewarding bonding moment that all the fuss & furore that Cagney & Phineas were creating…

Bangs & boogie-woogie

The last couple of evenings have been hectic.  I feel I know what it must be like to run a creche. 

The good news is that puddings & toyboys have not been bothered by any loud bangs from fireworks.

The bad news is that the toyboys are naughty boys!  Cagney is obviously the most naughty, but Bezukhov has not been far behind.  Cagney has been relentlessly pursuing Raspy for a kiss & has even jumped on her back (how disrespectful!)  Raspy is NOT succumbing to his “charms”. 

Last night Raspy was in & out the Ferplast & I was up & down opening & closing the Ferplast cage door, either to lock her in or let her out when she wanted to stretch her wings.  Surprisingly, for most of her time in the Ferplast, Bezukhov kept her company. Bezukhov was pestering Raspy more than usual, but that’s allowed as he is her boyfriend but she still “squiggled” at him to get out of her face… off her tail… & off her back….

Cagney appeared a little lonely not having his mate to run around with, but it was his own fault for not leaving Raspy alone!  He still gave attention to Atilla but even there he was naughty, force-feeding her regurgitated seed that landed up all down her face, neck & back.  He’s been such a handful!

Several times, yesterday evening, Bezukhov & Raspy boogie-woogied in the comfort & relative privacy of the locked Ferplast.  That incensed Cagney as he desperately wanted to join in.  At one point, when Cagney was chasing Raspy around the Manor, I managed to grab him & lock him in the Ferplast on his own.  There was a collective sigh of relief in the Manor.  I did not have the heart to lock him up for long though, as he was pacing/flying & squarking like mad.  As soon as I let him loose again, he made a beeline for Raspy.

The end result was bedtime in separate cages: Atilla & Cagney in the Manor & Raspy & Bezukhov tucked up in the Ferplast.