2007-08-11

Birds. It's really a coincidence me and the wifey got into birds. Wifey likes cats. Me allergic. Fish are too boring although beutiful to look at. Reptiles, eg snakes, creeps me out and wifey alike. Dogs are not an option because we have irregular hours at work and a very small apartment, besides the fact that a dog needs walking on a regular basis. Enter the idea of a bird.

I've always fancied parrots, so this was a natural starter. Wifey thought this was a great idea, so presto we started looking into parrots. We quickly realised that a full-size parrot like a grey jacko was both expensive and would likely drive our neighbours crazy as they are pretty loud, not to mention seriously expensive, so we figured on the smaller parrots like budgies. Here I voiced an opinion that I wanted something bigger than a budgie that wouldn't hop and skip around so much, but rather act like its bigger sibblings, so we researched some more and came up with cockatiels. According to all texts on the internet and in several books, 'tiels are gentle and easy to handle and a perfect starter-bird, better so in fact than the otherwise common budgie. Cockatiels aren't too big either, and they have a very gentle personality. We had a winner!

So we shopped around for cockatiels in our local petshops and came across a lutino 'tiel that was sooooo beautiful, never mind it was rather old and was a little stand-offish. We wanted this particular bird, so we bought it. Tito became our first bird and we doted on this bird like it was a baby-child. We soon wanted more birds and decided on another budgie, Pinochet. The little budgie got on well with Tito but we felt a partner would be in order so we bough another budgie, Bill. Then I wanted another companion for Tito and we bough Bamse (or rather he picked me...). Then one day Bill suddenly died and Pinochet began screaming so we got her another companion, Pinochet. The partnership between Bamse and Tito never took off, so we got another cockatiel-male, Jena and these two seem to accept each other better. We now had five birds.

When we bought Bamse we realised he'd been living next to a finch-cage before so he sang like a finch, a very pleasant low cooing so we got interested in getting a pair of finches as well. After some time we found a pair and cheap at that, so there wasn't any real reason not to get these birds, so we did. Romeo and Julia came to live with us as well!

Then one day I when I got home after work I found Tito lying on the cage-floor bottom and things went really haywire. Jena's beloved partner was gone and he started screaming for her for hours on end. Wifey and me decided this couldn't go on, or the neighbours might start gathering outside our door with torches and pitchforks in a mob, so we went 'tiel-shopping again. We found a likely breeder and called and sure enough, the breeder had some tame female-cockatiels for sale and we could come over and have a look. We brought Jena along so that e could have his say as well.

The breeder currently had an older rescued female from a negligent previous owner and a younger one as well. We put the older bird in the transport-cage with Jena, but it seemed like he didn't fancy her, so we put the other female as well. Suddenly Jena seemed more attracted to the older bird and completely ignored the younger one. There's nothing like a little competition I gather... ;-) So we went home with Saphir, the ugliest bird on this end of the galaxy, but oh-so-social. She readily climbed up on my finger and handling her is a proverbial walk in the park.

And that's where we are today, three cockatiels, two budgerigars and two zebra-finches.. Currently we have a ban on buying new birds, as we're running out of space in our living-room for cages!

 

2015-02-28

It's been a while since the last update, and most of our birds have passed away due to sickness or old age. The only remaining one is the ever-whistling Jena. Currently I'm trying to re-socialise with him since his partner died some months ago. It's slow going as he's been with a real 'tiel partner for so long. At least he obliges me with climbing up on my finger, although he seems to prefer my shoulder.

This year, 2015, marks Jena's about eleventh birthday!

 

Family namePinochet Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signPinochet
AliasThe Bitchy Budgie, The Belsebudgie, The Budgie of Doom, Pinochetan, Skrikhalsen.
RaceBudgerigar (with english blood; big bird)
GenderFemale
BirthdataBought 2004-06-15, approx 12 weeks old at time.
DescriptionBig half-english breed. Yellow-green with gray on wings.
TameHand-tame sometimes. Depends on bribe.
MiscEasy to bribe with spray millet. Bites hard but without letting blood, if she's unsure of the surroundings. Doesn't bite as hard as before, at least not me. Could be that my intensive handling has softened her up a bit. Mutters most of the time. Holds the morning serenade. Chirps in the morning till she's had the breakfast and you've spent a little time next to the cage. We should have known what we were getting into with, when she tried to gnaw her way out of the box we transported here home in... "Budgies are not at all aggressive" my foot!! Used to be best buddy with Fidel. After Fidel's death, we moved her to the cockatiel cage and now she sounds like one too...
Family nameWilliam Clinton Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signBill
AliasBill
RaceBudgerigar
GenderMale
BirthdataBought 2005-01-11, approx 12-18 weeks old at time. Dead february/march 2005.
DescriptionBlue base with white and black areas.
TameHand-tame.
MiscThe most endearable budgie to date! Left us all too soon.
Family nameFidel Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signFidel
AliasFidel
RaceBudgerigar
GenderMale
BirthdataBought 2005-08-09, approx 3 months old at time. Dead 2008-01-04.
DescriptionGreen base with black areas on wings and tendency to blue on tail-feathers.
TameNot at all, but was once. Kinda'...
MiscChatters away most of the day. The flock's master-chatterer. Very fluttery. When released, makes through the whole living-room in record-time. Flies very good. Holds the morning-serenade. Best friend with Pinochet and His Royal Protector of the Budgie-cage. Territorial is just the first name... Has learned to screech like a jackdaw to our dismay. Wifey spent a small fortune to have Fidel recovered from a crop-infection. After a weeks medication he seemed to be well. A few weeks later he got the same thing again and slimmed down fast and most noticable. At the vet' we decided to let Fidel go to the final sleep. He will be missed.

Family nameTito Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signTito
AliasTito
RaceCockatiel
GenderFemale
BirthdataBought 2004-07-17, approx 8-9 months old at time. Dead midsummer 2007.
DescriptionLutino
TameNot at all.
MiscBeautiful bird with a majestic grace, but rather introvert. We never managed to get in contact with her. Maybe lutinos aren't entirely properly wired, or was neglected in her early days, to become almost autistic. Loved to hang upside-down while spreading her wings, generally considered to be a sign of hapiness with cockatiels. Go figure... Was generally low-key but screeched very loud when she got into the mood. We initially though she was a he, thus the name. When we installed the daylight lamps in the livingroom, we saw the striped tailfeaters; indication of a female.
Family nameIdi Amin Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signBamse
AliasBamse
RaceCockatiel
GenderMale
BirthdataBought 2004-11-10, approx 2 years old at time.
DescriptionNormal darkish gray with pearly suggestion on back and wings.
TameOh, yeah!
MiscCrappy posture, but very social. He picked me out at the petstore. We wanted to buy another bird first, but who can resist a bird that trots up to you and wants his head head scratched? Never mind the much higher pricetag... Extremely social and evidently impressioned on humans rather than other 'tiels, prefers our company before the other 'tiel's. Extremely curious. When I tinker with anything in the livingroom, and he's out, he likes to land on my shoulder and slide down my arm to whatever I'm doing and "help out" or taste. They say birds can't express feelings but this bird sure can. Keep toast and biscuits away or you'll have this 'tiel on it in no time. 8-] Loves cheese for some reason... Ridiculously fond off red paprika and corn flakes. After having had paprika, especially the red kind, he's all red around the beak and looks scary because of this. Has tendecies to bring up pre-chewed food for me... As far as Bamse is concerned I'm his best buddy/mate(...).
Family nameGeorge Bush Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signJena
AliasJena
RaceCockatiel
GenderMale
BirthdataBought summer 2006, approx 2 years old at time.
DescriptionNormal gray. Googly-eyed and thin.
TameYes, hops up on my finger, hand and shoulder. Refuses anything else but a stick with wifey.
MiscHolds the morning and evening serenades. Fastest flyer of them all; races round the livingroom walls like a Nascar. Landing is a different story... Likes to perch on wifeys magazines and books to her dismay. Loves to gnaw on sticks, preferrably fresh ones, and especially snip off leaves - it's like a mania Excellent holder of stuff with foot like the bigger parrots. Apparantely right-footed. Mate with Tito until she passed away and called for her for several days to come back. Found a new life with Saphir.
No pic yet.Family nameCondoleezza Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signSaphir
AliasSaphir
RaceCockatiel
GenderFemale
BirthdataBougth 2007-08-09, approx 2 years old at time.
DescriptionNormal gray with tendencies to yellow on tailfeathers. Possibly pearled.
TameYes, extremely so. Readily hops up on my and wifey's finger, hand and shoulder from day one.
MiscNow Saphir is a sad story. The breeder we bought her from rescued her from a previous owner that had neglected her and had kept her with a lutino in a way to small cage (old-style budgie cage). The result was that poor Saphir had plucked herself on the entire body, except for the head, which she couldn't reach. After a year living with the breeder we got her from, she has grown back most of the feathers except for some areas on chest, back and wings. Saphir is ugly all day long but makes up for it with a truly wonderful personality. Likes to have her head and neck scratched. Quiet bird so far. Seems to have hit on a string with Jena, who guards her jealously from Bamse and me.

Family nameRomeo Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signRomeo
AliasRomeo
RaceZebra finch
GenderMale
BirthdataBought winter 2006/2007, approx 2 years old at time.
DescriptionNormal zebra coloured.
TameNo.
MiscFluttery little critter. Starts the morning serenade as soon as he sees a suggestion of first-light. Positively loves to bathe.
Family nameJulia Srbu Kjellgren
Call-signJulia
AliasJulia
RaceZebra finch
GenderFemale
BirthdataBought winter 2006/2007, approx 2 years old at time.
DescriptionNormal coloured
TameNo.
MiscA little more reserved than Romeo. Loves to bathe.