Puddings & Toyboys

A blog about my beautiful budgies.

Tag Archives: introduction

Operation Getting the Flock Together

Since presenting Moriarty to Perry & Lennie on the 8th November, we have embarked on a gradual introduction programme.

The first priority is to ensure that Perry feels safe & protected.  His health issues have highlighted extra vulnerability in particular with limited mobility.  I decided at the outset to ensure his cage is a safe haven & therefore to not allow entry to Moriarty.

Of course preparation is key.  Before letting Moriarty out, I needed a way to encourage him to go back in!  I had noticed that Moriarty does not eat much during the day & although he likes millet, could leave a fresh piece untouched all day until evening time.  It seems millet would not be an adequate enticer.  Enter the green peg!  Yes, he seems attached to a green peg.  This would be my means of control!  With that decided, after giving Moriarty a week to acclimatise to his new surroundings, I let him out on the 15th of November.  Perry & Lennie were locked in.

Moriarty strolled out onto the door platform to greet the green peg.  He was immediately intrigued by the curtains just by his cage & stepped up on my finger where I could take him closer whereby he had a good chat.  He returned to the peg on the door platform.  He then plucked up courage to have a fly!  He did several laps of the room & then landed on Dalai’s cage.  He again returned to the green peg.  I ushered him inside so we could all recover!  Perry & Lennie were a bit shell-shocked at suddenly seeing this mad green thing zooming around the room!

First time out:

 

Unfortunately, because I was closely monitoring Moriarty’s adventures, there are few photos/videos.  Plus, the days have been so dark, photos look pretty bad!

We proceeded with short outings, building up to 30 mins to an hour (depending on when he would voluntarily go back inside his cage).  These would happen up to three times a day.

I will detail some of the outings in further posts.

We have got to a point where Moriarty regularly visits Perry & Lennie.  Perry finds it stressful when Moriarty is prowling around on top of their cage so I put a line of curly paper along a perch that Perry usually sits on.  Moriarty is indifferent to curly paper, though he likes crinkle paper.  For a time, he avoided the curly paper meaning Perry was comfortable beneath.  It was not long before he started chewing it though, so I switched to a covered strip of lino which, so far, he has not paid attention to.

Once secure in knowing Moriarty was not crawling about above him, Perry could relax & have a grumble, a snooze or a preen.  Sadly, he has chosen not to interact with Moriarty & I think his general well-being has coloured that decision because under normal circumstances I am sure he would have been very welcoming.  Fortunately he is not jealous that Lennie is pursuing a friendship with Moriarty.

 

Lennie & Moriarty have lots of beak taps & flirty moments through the bars.  When Moriarty is locked in, Lennie now regularly visits him.  Admittedly, millet played a part in prizing him out initially, but gradually he has become more confident & routinely goes over to Moriarty’s cage & sits on the visitor’s perch.

On the 11th of December, we had another milestone where Lennie & Moriarty met ‘in person’, i.e., without cage bars between them!  That will be detailed in another post!

I am very proud of Moriarty.  He has an easy confidence that helps enormously when he is negotiating new surroundings.  I am also very proud of Lennie.  He has summoned courage to come back out of his cage & to jump & leap ‘into the unknown’ (as far as he is concerned).  Though Perry appears to have opted out of a new friendship, he has graciously allowed Lennie to forge ahead without displaying anything negative, such as jealousy, to hold him back.

I have three very different, but amazing boys!

 

Introducing Morty Moriarty!

Please welcome our new addition to the flock, Morty Moriarty!

Morty Moriarty

 

He is a rehome & was dropped off here by his concerned owners who felt he was not getting the attention he deserved.  He arrived on Friday the 16th October, with a large cage & a bag of food, toys & accessories.  After a little over three weeks of quarantine in my bedroom, on Sunday 8th November, I wheeled him into the room to meet Perry & Lennie.

 

I have not let Morty Moriarty out yet.  Though Perry & Lennie have had a few days with him, getting used to the extra noise, so far they have not gone to visit him.  Moriarty is the other side of Dalai’s cage (that seems to be the name for the Silver Villa now…) which is quite a trek given that their health/flying problems have curtailed their movements somewhat.

Perry & Lennie’s cage | Dalai’s cage | Moriarty’s cage

 

Nevertheless, on the first day, Lennie did venture out onto the top of their cage door & peered across at Moriarty, so I am hoping he will pluck up a bit more courage in the next few days & maybe go into Dalai’s cage to get a closer look.

 

Moriarty is less than one year old & still has a young outlook.  He is very lively.  He is not afraid of hands though does like to bite, however, he loves bells, so if he is on my hand, biting, I just steer him towards a bell & he is distracted!

I am looking forward to telling you more about him & also reporting on new flock dynamics which I am hoping will be all positive!

Moriarty

 

 

Blue newbies – the first 3 weeks

So, how have Perry & Lennie integrated with the existing flock of Bezukhov & Dalai?

The first few weeks of them being out was fraught with tension!

The two camps

They were very much in two separate camps, two tribes.  The key problem was, I think, that they just did not seem to ‘talk’ to each other.  Every so often, Bezukhov would attempt to communicate with Perry & Lennie through the bars but they would just jump up to the bars & stare at him.  Being sensitive this would unnerve him so he would retreat to gather his confidence again. When out, if they approached Bezukhov they would just look at him (again, no chat) & he would not know how to deal with that, so off he would fly.  However, they would fly after him, which made him feel like he was being chased, which upset him!

Dalai wanted nothing to do with them.  He could be quite ‘jabby’ with his beak & it is fortunate the new boys are quick to get out of his way, otherwise there may have been injuries!

Lennie watching Dalai & Bezukhov

To try & lessen the tension I would try different combinations of who was out, but because of Dalai being quite snarly, he was usually locked in, often with a cover over the cage to protect any dangling toes!

Dalai confirmed that he is very capable of looking after himself.  I had seen him peck at Perry/Lennie in the face if they came too close & jump at them & knock them off the perch.   One time, on the landing platform, he pulled on Perry’s tail so that Perry was gradually sliding back towards Dalai, no doubt to get a thump, but fortunately I distracted Dalai before any actual harm was done.

In contrast, Bezukhov avoids confrontation.  He is certainly capable of standing up for himself (see this post) but it really is a last resort.

So, both tribes were/are very different.  To be fair to Dalai, he may have been a little under the weather due to moulting.  Both he & Bezukhov may have been intimidated by how fast & quick the blue newbies are.  On the other side, Perry & Lennie are two young boys, very enthusiastic & wanting to chew, touch & investigate everything!  They have not helped matters by flying directly at someone, including me – there have been several occasion when I got a face full of feathers & claws!  They seemed to have difficulty landing on a perch beside Bezukhov or Dalai & not on top of them.  These actions were not endearing them to their elders!

Newbies watching Dalai & Bezukhov in the Villa

Even after about 3 weeks of trying to get them together, there still did not appear to be any common ground.

If Bezukhov was in the Villa & Dalai in the manor when the newbies came out, Dalai would try to get to the villa to be with Bezukhov.  This would look like a game of Bulldogs, where Dalai would attempt to get past Perry & Lennie without them touching him.  The newbies would usually be on the landing platform facing Dalai in the manor. He would make a run for it & I would be ready to close the door behind him when he got inside the villa.  It could take up to 4 or 5 attempts before he was successful.

Dalai even went though a phase of having a tantrum each morning, that I am convinced was directed at the newbies.  I am sure he was saying, “Jeez, are you two STILL here?“.

 

 

Above was a video of Dalai having a morning tantrum.  Below is a video of Perry & Lennie spending time in the Villa whilst Bezukhov & Dalai were locked in the Manor:

 

 

Blue newbies – first day of adventures

At long last, Perry & Lennie were out of their quarantine cage (see previous post)!  I say ‘at long last’ but of course from when their little door was opened, it only took them a few days to venture out, unlike Dalai & Thomas who took weeks to pluck up the courage to go through the open door.

Perry & Lennie had no trouble with flying.  It is always gratifying to see a budgie, who has been confined, able to stretch their wings & have a good fly & zoom around the room.  The blue newbies typically found the highest points to land, such as the curtain rail & the string lights across the window.  They also landed on the manor – the first encounter between all four of them without bars between them.  It was a bit tense to say the least.

 

Dalai was clearly uncomfortable & lunged at Perry when he got too close.  Bezukhov ran away from Perry.  To settle my nerves, I locked Bezukhov & Dalai in the manor as soon as I could.  This way, Perry & Lennie could concentrate on getting to know their wider surroundings without causing upset.

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Blue newbies – their first fly

About a week after I moved the blue newbies next to the Silver Villa (click here to read that post), I started opening their door for them to come out.  To entice them, I tied raffia around the door opening for them to chew on.  At times they would come tantalisingly close to the open door:

 

 

On the 23rd December 2016, Perry was the first to venture out:

 

Then he was off, followed closely by Lennie:

 

That is always the nerve-wracking part, especially when you know they have not previously had an opportunity for a proper fly.  They did quite a few laps of the room before landing on the manor, where Bezukhov & Dalai were.  That was the cue for more holding of breath.  What happened next is in the next post….

 

Blue newbies – new surroundings & new friends?

When Perry & Lennie arrived, they spent a few weeks in quarantine (click here to read that post).  On the 9th December 2016, they were wheeled into the lounge, to the opposite side of the room from their new friends (hopefully), Bezukhov & Dalai.

After some initial surprised chirping, Bezukhov & Dalai quickly reverted to ‘indifference’.

Perry was so shocked, he started panting & was rooted to the spot.  Lennie took the changes in his stride.  As you can see from the video below, Lennie attempted to calm Perry by chewing his toes:

 

After a short time, Perry began to loosen up & they both started to settle into their new surroundings:

 

From the photos below, you can see Perry & Lennie’s new position & also how Bezukhov & Dalai carried on as normal!

 

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Update on the Blue Newbies

It has been awhile since I posted about the new additions to our flock (click here).

Flock dynamics are still being established.  The blue newbies are being let out regularly for exercise & also to get to know their surroundings & new flock mates.  At the time of writing, if they are all out together, they are heavily supervised.  Bezukhov & Dalai are having to adjust to having two highly energetic youngsters in their midst & quite often need some ‘time out’, or rather ‘in’, i.e., in a locked cage for some peace.

The blue newbies now have names:

Spearmint Perry, otherwise known as Sperry Perry, appears to be the more dominant of the two.  He is possibly slightly more mature in character, though next to Bezukhov & Dalai, not in the slightest mature!

Spearmint Perry

Spearmint Perry

 

Lennie Denisov, otherwise known as Lennie Dennie, is very busy & playful.

Lennie Denisov

Lennie Denisov

 

Sperry Perry & Lennie Dennie get on well with each other, sometimes feeding & preening the other one.  They both enjoy playing with & chewing the toys in their cage.

Blue newbies playing with chewy toy

Blue newbies playing with chewy toy

 

I am sure they will generate lots of tales for this blog. 🙂

 

Blue Birds

Please welcome the new additions to our little flock!

Blue birds

Blue birds

 

These two beautiful blue birds came into our home on the 14th of November, at approximately 8 weeks old.  Last week, after just under 4 weeks quarantine, they were wheeled in to the same room as Bezukhov & Dalai.  I am giving them time to acclimatise to their new surroundings before letting them out.  Bezukhov & Dalai are also adjusting to having new blood in their midst!

I am enjoying getting to know their personalities & have yet to decide on names.  My hope is that all 4 will be happy together. 🙂

 

Dalai’s first day out

The three of them!

The three of them!

When Dalai finally came out of his quarantine cage, he was quietly confident.  Apart from the first few seconds of panic when I think he did not know how to fly lower than the ceiling, he coped very well.

On that first day, he proved himself to be a great flyer, despite being cooped up in a cage for weeks (possibly months – including his previous home).  Though his first landing was on the Silver Villa (a convenient flat top), his first port of exploration was the Manor (see video below – you can see Phineas bending Dalai’s ear whilst Bezukhov keeps a respectful distance).

To either show off how smart he was or to simply have a few minutes to recollect himself, Dalai expertly popped back into his own home at intervals.

It was not long before the Silver Villa was investigated.  Here he found seed so he was able to stop & refuel before continuing with his adventures.  He also found Phinny’s pink ttmss swing.  Whilst he was on there, Phineas felt the need to shadow him from above (see video below).  The swing turned out to be a nice place for Dalai to have a snooze too.

 

Dalai’s first visit to the Manor:

Dalai on the pink swing in the Silver Villa & Phineas prowling around on top:

 

 

Phineas introduces himself to Dalai

Two weeks after Bezukhov introduced himself to Dalai, Phineas also introduced himself.

Though Bezukhov would visit Dalai, the novelty seemed to wear off after a few days.  Nevertheless, Dalai seemed much happier to be around his own kind & would busy himself in his cage & if Bezukhov visited he would go over & have a chat with him.

The only time Dalai appeared troubled was after 8pm in the evening when he would have a brief restless phase.  I sensed that at bedtime he wanted to be either with the others or closer to them.

Around two weeks later, when I thought it was time to encourage Dalai to come out of the cage, I decided to move his cage where the play gym was, beside the Silver Villa.  This way, when he finally came out, he would not have as far to go to be near the others.

His close proximity finally piqued Phinny’s interest & he introduced himself!

Surprisingly, though Dalai presented his toes through the bars, Phineas was not tempted to bite them.  This was surely a good sign!

Then Bezukhov joined him: