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So Banjo has been home with me for just over two weeks now and he is definitely starting to settle in. He is about 7 years old, so I've been impressed with his adaptability.

He now beak grinding a lot when he's relaxed and mimicking a duck 'quack' when he's really excited (previous owner taught him this). I even caught him singing/dancing around a bit yesterday. Someday I HAVE to get that on camera!

He eats like a pig... which in my mind is better than not eating! I am switching him over to EcoTrition now and hope that will work for him. He seems to like it.

Our main issue is out-of-cage time, as he really doesn't like leaving the cage. After I do get him out, he will only stay with me if I let him hang out on my shoulder and play with my hair. Otherwise, he tries to fly back to the cage. The beautiful playpen I bought.... he hates it, lol. He does 'step up' though and he will occasionally let me give him a scratch.

Do you guys have some recommendations as far as getting him out of the cage willingly? I read someone mentioned to use spray-millet as an out-of-cage treat only... that may be worth trying. I'm open to other ideas too!

Also - any advice on how to get him to use his happy hut? he sleeps on top of it sometimes... but never goes in!

Ok, as promised, here is our latest photo from this morning:



Thanks guys, as always!
 

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He is adorable and seems to be settling in as witnessed by him starting to talk and eating like a little pig. Mine (before I knew you were not supposed to give a hut to a female) only like being on top and never once went inside it. She liked sleeping on top of it. So if that's what he likes that's what he likes. There is a sticky thread in training and bonding which you should read on how to use the millet for training. I used to leave the door open and sit by the cage and talk and do things and Ms. Nosy would wander out and come by me. Once she was out of the cage or on the door (it was like a castle drawbridge type) of her cage I would train her to do step up. She was very territorial of her cage. Now I can ask her from inside the cage to step up but it took awhile. After a year of the only place Baby wanted to be which was on me, I found a toy she loves and will leave me willingly to go be by it. First she fights with it then she cuddles up to it once she has won the battle and takes a nap. Her favorite toy, you ask is a pill bottle filled with tic tacs. I bought a play gym she would kill herself to get away from it. I gave it away after I did all the tricks everyone said so she would go on it and she never did. They have very distinct likes and dislikes and it takes a lot of trial and error to find what it is they like. Good luck but I would say he is doing really well for being rehomed at his age.
 

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He is adorable. I am not much help with getting them out of the cage. Bella is cage aggressive and can be a pain to get out of her cage unless she comes out on her own. But she is so sweet and fun once she is out.
 

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Do you know if he was out of the cage much in his previous owners house? It could be that he is just not used to his surroundings yet, and feels more safe on your shoulder where he can hide in your hair. Rio was like that when I first got him. He was always flying back to his cage unless he was hiding in my hair. So I would bring him to a different room so he couldnt fly back to his cage and just hold him and talk to him and give him treats for about ten minutes a couple times a day. Now he has a playgym branch on top of his cage that he loves to be on and he will stay out for hours.
Maybe if you move some of his favorite toys and millet to his playgym while he is out, he will recognize it at "his space"
 

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He's adorable! Mine never liked the happy hut either... just sat on top of it and pooped.

Have you tried putting perches on the door (if it swings out) or from inside the cage going out if you have a bendable rope perch?
 

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Great progress with Banjo! A few weeks is not a very long time so he may decide he would like to bravely explore the outside-of-cage world in the coming weeks. I like Jinx's idea of a perch on the door. I put a perch across my cockatiel's doorway (it is the slide up type) and he loves to just hang out there.

Skye is always looking to get out as soon as she sees anyone approach the cage, while C usually needs a reason, like food or some interesting toy. They sleep on top of their snuggly instead of against it and the tiel sleeps on top of his hut. Guess they just like the feel of that soft fuzzy stuff under their little feet!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone for the amazing advice... I'm going to take.. probably all of it! ha

I think I do need some kind of perch for the outside of the cage as a first step. I also wonder if putting his 'playground' on top of the cage with some millet might make it easier for him to enjoy some low-pressure outside time.

Unfortunately I'm not sure how much time he had outside of the cage at his previous home, so it's hard to know where i'm starting from. But I think with your suggestions, I have enough ideas to slowly get him to a good place.

Also, this is a real newb question... but should I really take the mirror out of his cage?

Thanks everyone!
 

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I have been told do not use a mirror with a p'let. They can get attached to the birdie in the mirror and then not want as much to do with you.
 

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Mirrors can make them very aggressive. They think the bird in the mirror is their mate. Best advice is to take it out.
 

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My bird did not like her happy hut for a while, I just kept it in there. Eventually, after a long time, 1 yr. ? He now goes in there for "nite nite"! I know this because I saw him one early morning in there, and now, of course, he leaves some feathers in there. I do throw the happy hut in the wash sometimes, but I always have another one to replace it.
Your patience will reward you!
 

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No mirrors, that's what the breeder told me, too. He is colorful and beautiful, as most males. I have a female who has to be "conned" out of her cage with millet. Will not step-up yet. Still working on it.
 
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