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I got my first cockatiel, Halley, when I was eleven years old. Put simply, he changed my life. He passed away in the autumn of 2009. I haven't gotten over it. I probably never will.

Currently, I have two cockatiels: Echo (born Jan '09; owned since Apr '09) and Foxtrot (born Sep '10; owned since Jan '11). They are unique little guys, and put simply, they teach me things every day.

This is not your typical cockatiel care blog. It is not here to shame you or guilt you into taking better care of your bird if you have one. It will never claim that anything I do is THE ONLY WAY TO DO IT. But I do have over ten years' experience with birds, and so if you're looking for advice, I hope you find it here.

I also hope that, even if you don't own cockatiels, what I have to say will hold your interest. And maybe even convince you to try owning these amazing creatures. It could change your life.

So, welcome to my blog! Let's talk about birds, yeah?

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26 January 12
Posted: 11:27 PM

Update.

Um, hi.

It’s been almost a year since I posted here. I’ve decided to start again.

Echo and Fox are doing great. Echo is more or less back to the happy, people-friendly bird he was when I first got him. Fox is more anxious and a little cage-bound. However, he’ll happily fly out of the cage on his own (usually following Echo) and will interact with people without an issue outside of the cage.

We’ve since added a pitbull puppy, Rhea, to our home and after the initial “WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT THING?!?!” reaction, the birds adjusted well. They only come out when Rhea’s around under SERIOUS SUPERVISION but so far, so good.

Echo’s third birthday is…well, in mere minutes, as I type this.

How about some pictures?

6 April 11

Have you heard? Fox is a boy.

And his new hobby is TELLING US ABOUT IT. CONSTANTLY.

16 March 11

True facts.

  • When Fox doesn’t understand something, he screams at it until it makes sense to him. 
  • This includes ferrets.

I moved the birds out of my room and into the living room, now that it’s warm enough. You can imagine how Fox is handling this.

12 March 11
This is Foxtrot. He might be a girl, we don’t know yet. He likes being near the window until I take a camera out and then EVERYTHING IS BAD. He doesn’t like being taken away from Echo. They flock-call to each other like I’m killing one of them.

This is Foxtrot. He might be a girl, we don’t know yet. He likes being near the window until I take a camera out and then EVERYTHING IS BAD. He doesn’t like being taken away from Echo. They flock-call to each other like I’m killing one of them.

Posted: 10:40 AM

And here’s a video of Echo, back before Fox when he was still loving and happy to see me.

Echo is part monkey, in case you didn’t know.

2 March 11

Vet visit? Check.

Healthy birds? Double check. =D

1 March 11

Vet appointment

Tomorrow, I take the birds to the vet. It’s Fox’s first appointment ever, and Echo’s second (I’m a few months behind on his yearly visit, shhh).

I feel certain that Echo will put the “cock” in “cockatiel.”

Last night, though, the poor birds had a night fright. I wasn’t in the room, but I heard one of them screaming, so I hurried into my bedroom. Sure enough, they were flapping and flopping around like their lives depended on it. I turned on the light and uncovered them and they STILL wouldn’t calm down. Night-frights like these happen from time to time…usually it’s just Fox, though, what with Echo being cool as a cucumber 95% of the time. The weirdest part was that Echo wasn’t flying. He was just as flightless as Fox at the bottom of the cage. As he climbed onto the side of the cage, I saw that his wings were SHORT, like he’d been clipped. And then I saw about a dozen flight feathers all over the floor. He’d managed to knock out every last one of them in his frenzy. He was more scared and traumatized than I’ve ever seen him. I stuck my finger through the bars, and just like he used to pre-Fox, he perched there, petrified. He was suddenly my sweet baby again. I talked softly to them and tried to see if either one of them was hurt…especially Echo, with all his missing feathers. If he’d hit a blood feather, he could bleed to death. I saw no blood, though, and after a few minutes Echo remembered that he hated me and retreated to a perch. His wing feathers were still really ruffled and I watched him for awhile to see if he was in any pain. (He lost two more flight feathers while preening.) 

There’s been no blood but I’m happy the vet visit is tomorrow…I want to make sure his wings are all right.

27 February 11

So I may be getting a new cockatiel.

embraceyourname:

This cockatiel, to be specific:

I hope I hope I hope!!

I posted this in January, just as I made a split decision to get another cockatiel.

Came across this in my archives, and felt nostalgic. It’s only been a month and a half, but Fox fits in so well. And even though Echo is still MONSTROUS, they’re little buddies, and it makes me so happy to see.

Reblogged: dickenchippers

25 February 11

"Why keep them together?"

I haven’t been asked this, exactly, but I know I’d be thinking it if this situation was someone else’s. Echo is SUCH a nightmare…so why not separate him from Fox? 

  1. Echo is ridiculously happy. Hating us, yes, but he adores Fox and, being alone a lot of the time, it’s important to me that he’s not lonely.
  2. Fox has made SUCH a positive change. During quarantine, he hardly moved. He was constantly anxious and alert, rarely relaxing. He’d sleep on the bottom of his cage, underneath his food dish, where he felt safe. He didn’t play with toys. He was touch-and-go on stepping onto my hand—sometimes he was okay with it, sometimes it terrified him. I suspected that his anxiety stemmed from suddenly being the only bird around, and I was right…immediately upon meeting Echo, he relaxed. The second I put him in Echo’s cage, he started exploring, playing with toys, relaxing. He’ll almost always step up and come out of the cage now. He never goes to the bottom of the cage. It’s a 180 degree difference for the better.

So I don’t want to resort to separating them. I also don’t want to completely lose my bond with Echo, so separating them isn’t completely out of the question. I’m just going to wait and see.

Themed by Hunson. Originally by Josh