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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering (sorry if this has been discussed before please link me to the post if it has) if you should have 2 or will one be happy alone. Burdy seems happy plays eats well is adjusting to me.
Would she do better with a buddy? Be happier?
Will it be harder to bond with 2 at one time?
Would adding a buddy now be better then later in say 6 months? She is 13 weeks old.

Please give me the reasons for having a single bird VS a pair.
Also would you do same sex or a cage mate. Babies are fine if they have them. I am researching here a bit more!!! I just want a happy BURDY.

Thank You
 

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My Chipper girl is my only parrot. We are very close. I spend a lot of time with her. I am home all day. She has a huge, wonderful cage, playgyms and a really fun life. We adore her. She gets my full attention, well, my little dog gets my atten. also. She is so sweet and I enjoy having one, my little baby!
 

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I’ve just recently changed my mind on this issue. I believed everything I’ve read about Parrotlets and most everything I’ve read stated not to have more than one because they are better kept as single birds because of their aggressive, jealous nature and they will not be tame if kept in pairs.

This never really made sense to me because they are birds and they live together in the wild – I dismissed this because I thought keeping them in cages is quite different than their wild counterparts so I left it at that – and continued to believe its best to keep them single.

Then I noticed a change in my single male – he started to bond quite heavily with a toy – became obsessed with it and was torn between it and coming out of his cage – the problem worsened and he became very protective of it and agitated – He would fight with it constantly and then love on it – it was very sad for me to watch as I knew this was going to drive the poor bird crazy as he wasn’t getting the response from the toy that he wanted – he remained tame when away from the toy but put him by the toy and all he wanted to do was to protect it.

I gave another thought to getting another Parrotlet but wanted my bird to be tame and bond with me so everything I was being told and reading kept popping up in my head – ‘don’t get another bird’ -

However, I sat down and took a hard, honest look at how I was caring for him. In my mind I gave him the best of everything – he had a big cage with lots of toys – the best food, I even cooked for him [and I don’t cook :p ] but when I actually sat down and looked at his life from HIS prospective – I realized I really wasn’t giving him the best he could have.

I work and so he sat in his cage alone with his toys – I always figured I work 8 hrs a day and so he got out of cage time when I got home – but realistically I work 8 to 9 hrs a day – and add an hour or so of travel time – and then add to that the other times I am away from the house – and given his bed time for his 12 hours of sleep, going to bed at 7pm - It really started to show the bird was alone A LOT more than I was willing to admit.

So with that I decided what was really best for my Bird and not for ME was to add another bird – even if it meant he would bond with the bird and not want anything to do with me – I could live with that so he had a companion.

I started searching for someone who believed as I did and could give me guidance on how to go about doing this.

I found such a lady and she affirmed my belief that Parrots live in flocks and need constant companionship – that is around the clock 24 hours a day. They are hard wired for this and do not understand anything different. Being alone is not natural for them – it is not part of their makeup to be alone, ever. That being said, having a human as a chosen mate is not natural for them either.

Now we can choose to ignore this and convince ourselves we can give the bird what it needs – but if you really think about it – we can’t. We can pretend we are giving our birds the best of everything but we are not giving them that which they crave the most – a mate of their own species and constant companionship.

I added a female – Both my birds are young – my male is just under a year and my female is 4 months. I don’t house them together because she can not fly so I will keep them in separate cages until she can fly and move about freely as they will get into squabbles from time to time and she will need her wings to move away.

But so far they get along splendidly and have no issues – for now they have time together daily when I am home and they sit and preen each other and follow each other around like they have known each other all their lives. They are bonded and adore each other.

The kicker to all this is my male is as tame and friendly as ever – I do watch his moods because he at times is protective of her but I read his body language and don’t push him – he comes to me when he wants human attention and she is coming to trust humans also and loves human attention.

All my males’ obsessive and aggressive behavior with the toy – stopped the SECOND he saw the female.

I don’t know what the future holds as they mature together but from what I can see they are going to have a happy life together and I know I did the right thing. Watching how they are together I now believe even if I was home full time, I could not give my bird what he gets from his mate.

If given the proper conditions in our homes there is no reason they cannot be kept safely together in a pair.

Sorry for the long post but I’m fairly passionate about this subject:

:)
 

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one or two

hi pado.
nice one, my thoughts are the same.
i am at home most of the day unless i go out.
my man seems to get on really well with our budgie, they are both males.
he call for him when i spray them in the morning, they preen each other on the playstand.
but at the end of the day it is a budgie not a p'lett.
he is only 12 weeks old.
in another 2 weeks we will be getting a female.
i will post pics when she arrives and keepyou informed.
all the best steve.
 

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Steve thats great - I'm sure your little man is grateful also :D

I look forward to seeing some pictures when she arrives.
 

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I have to say this so if everyone thinks that Pado's experience will be their own...1st he is very knowledgable about birds 2nd his bird was receptive to the baby girl and lastly I always hate saying this but everyone needs a reality check when they think that life is always so rosey...My little bird killed her mate she was offered by her pervious owner. Sorry but just remember all birds are different and if you don't have a real and true understanding about birds and especially your bird then adding a new bird with out knowledge is a recipe for disaster. If you are a new owner and have limited bird experience then I would say wait and learn all you can to make an educated decision. If you think it hurts when they bite you , them you can only imagine what it would be like for the rejected bird trapped in a cage with an aggressive p'let. Not trying to be Debbie Downer but sometimes we get into the mutual admiration society and we need hard facts to learn from...
 

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I think what you have done is wonderful. We must always do what is best for our birds, not necessarily what is best for us! And yes, there are situations where good things can go terribly wrong. I have had single birds that are very happy and content, but give them a mate (and often it can take months for them to bond) but their quality of life multiplies from what it was. Birds are prey animals and instinctively NEED a mate around the clock. No person can do this.

My parrotlets pair best in a cage that is pretty large. An 18 x 18 is way too tiny as sometimes they will spat and fight and need their own quarters - just like many human couples. I have a pair in a King's 20 x 26 x 64 and they do pretty well. This same pair in an 18 x 18 fights terribly in b/t their sweet moments. I have housed two pairs in a 21 x 32 cage and that worked out great too!

I think everyone should/needs to do their homework and prepare to house their birds in pairs, it is only natural and fair. Of course a single bird will be content, they want to be happy! And of course a single bird will be a super sweet pet when you let them out of their cage - they are absolutely desperate for affection. My pairs of parrotlets play with me, they take turns snuggling too. The male or female will go off to be busy with something, while the other stays and play and cuddles. They take turns together and apart.

Just remember: It's shouldn't be about what we want our parrots to do for us, but what we can do for them.
 

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What you say makes a lot of sense Pado and Andrea. Of course, it can always go south as Memmy points out. Do you think this can be avoided if the birds are bought at the same time and put in a cage together from the start?

And now, on to the obvious. If I want to provide a mate, but don't want to find homes for babies, what do I do? I'm not even going to go into the various jokes that could be made here, but aside from sitting down and having a serious talk with the birds, what does one do?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I asked this as Burdy is new here and young at 13 weeks old. I was thinking that now would be my best window of opportunity if I was to add a mate.

I do not want to be selfish and keep her as an only bird if she would be happy with a feathered friend.
 

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It can sometimes be easier if the birds are acquired at the same time. Either way you just have to be mindful of using neutral territory, perhaps even redecorating their entire cage(s) with new things so that it doesn't look like their space to defend. There are many ways to prevent reproductive behavior, we should start a new thread on that and just link it here.
 

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Memmey what you say is very true and you’re not being a Debbie Downer [although, I like the term] your opinion is valid and people thinking of adding a second Parrotlet need to read it – what’s great about this board is seeing and hearing Parrotlet owners different view points and concerns.

For me, to just say something can go wrong so just don’t do it – is not in the birds best interest - and people looking to add a second bird need to do their homework and provide for what the birds need - this is very important.

We need to set up the correct cage size – be prepared to separate the birds into separate cages at times if need be or to have a cage divider – as Art has stated in the past a Plexiglas one is preferred to prevent the birds from getting at each others feet – Art mentioned drilling holes – I intend on having this on hand if needed.

As Andrea has stated cage size is important and everyone needs to do their homework – it can and does work and it’s natural and fair to the birds.

As noted my birds are currently housed separately but I know when it is time to place them together full time - with what I have learned I can and will make this work. I’m really not an expert or overly experienced with birds – I’m just doing my homework and I’m sure I will make mistakes but I will learn from them and do better. I don’t know what to expect when both my birds mature and aren’t cooperative babies any longer but I can’t let that prevent me from doing what I truly believe is in their best interest and that to me is to be paired with one of their own kind.

So anyone reading this – you really do need to do your homework - you can’t just get a cage and stick two Parrotlets in it and leave it at that. Cage size is very important and your supervision to insure the birds are getting along and one is not picking on the other etc, etc, etc -

Mememy - I have to assume that BitseyJo’s original owner did not do their homework and/or provide her and her mate with an ideal situation. I’m sure she is not a mate killer – her circumstances I believe were probably against her.

My goal here isn’t to have everyone with a single bird adopt my viewpoint and rush out and get a second bird. But it is for those – like myself who want to add a second bird but all they hear is to not do it. Because of the misconception that Parrotlets prefer to be kept alone and will become untame if kept in pairs and/or kill their companion etc.
 

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What you say makes a lot of sense Pado and Andrea. Of course, it can always go south as Memmy points out. Do you think this can be avoided if the birds are bought at the same time and put in a cage together from the start?quote]
If my birds were the same age I would have them housed together already. But with the male being older and flighted I felt the female was at a disadvantage.

So yes, I think it would be easier to get them together – but Andrea may be able to address this better – I think both birds would need to be tame and human friendly from the start and unrelated.

I believe if I had two birds like my female that needed work it would have been very difficult to train them. I’m getting my female to come around because my male is unafraid of me and she sees this and is following him.
 

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The plexi glass to protect toes - excellent point. Parrotlets are notorious for biting toes off!

So far as the babies maturing and not being cooperative, this does not have to happen. I have more fun with my older birds to be honest with you. The older my pairs get the more that I enjoy them.

Many people that experience mate aggression even killing have the birds in small housing with nothing to do and they don't observe the birds regularly. But these are also the type of people that would not be on the forum :( So it is hard to help them learn.

I do encourage the appropriate pair keeping, but I am mindful to individual circumstances where it just may not be safe for one reason or another.

I have tamed lovebirds and parrotlets by pairing them with an already tame hand-reared mate. That worked really well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
ok my cage is 30W X18D X 36H is this enough room? We are adding tpys often and move around the ones she has now. Takes a lot of toys to fill the cage lol!
 

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I would love to get Jo a companion but I guess I'm wary since the " incident" but wouldn't she be great with a friend. I want her to be happy oh -ell I want us all to be happy...can't we all just be happy
 

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Hey where is Art? He hasn't poked me in the eye in a while....it's not my birthday? Wonder what "Super" man is doing?
 
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