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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys :)

One day, when I leave home and have a place of my own, I'm really keen to have a bird (and some lizards, and some mice!). Anyway. If there's one in the RSPCA I'd love to adopt it, if it isn't a crazy bird that needs an expert, but if there isn't, I'll try and get one from a breeder. I've narrowed it down to a list of birds I'd be interested in:

1) Canaries/finches - they are pretty, they make pretty noises, and I'd like to decorate a lovely little habitat for them. However, I know they aren't really social birds with humans.

2) Budgie - from what I know, they are pretty social to humans and make nice noises.

3) Cockatiels - I love them because they are cheeky and funny.

4) Lovebirds - they are so pretty, and I gather they are rather friendly.

5) Lorikeets - they are an Australian native. We used to be visited by lots of them when we lived in NSW, and I know how friendly and curious they can be.

I love big parrots like galahs and cockatoos, but I know they aren't beginner birds. I know how much of a commitment pets are, so don't worry, I'd never do this without research. :) I'd just like to hear from some clever bird people of what is what in terms of these birds. Are they good for a first-time bird owner? Are there others I should consider?

Thanks to anyone who answers. :)
 

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err... If you cannot stand loud and obnoxious sounds, a lovebird may not be the best. I had to work with lovebirds, even the "hand fed" ones and they tend to attach to one or two people, and are not so keen on strangers. They tend to squawk loud and obnoxiously when they are scared, angry or sometimes when they do not get their way :lol: you'd want one that was hand raised, hand fed, and held.

Budgies are good for beginners, and do not have as strong of a bite as lovebirds (if you intend on getting a non-trained one) and generally they'll get along with most animals, most people, and some are just naturally friendlier. Those I've worked with too, and have come across some of the flighty biters, and the "okay you caught me, I'm done panicking" ones, and the "sup?" kind :lol: I perosnally love budgies. They love making noise though!! :lol:
I've also dealt with a lovely parakeet I died for in the store that lived with budgies. She'd been there for a few years, then when I went to get her she was sold x.x -sigh- She was a fairly good size. and generally, friendly as well.

Canaries and finches make the most pretty sounds, with their comical head tilt. They aren't as interactive, and depending if you want interaction or not these birds are considered better for apartments or places with thinner walls as they tend to be more quiet (I loved this one yellow canary!!! <3) and have more soothing sounds than a budgie or lovebird. I personally find budgies easier to handle than lovebirds... but, that's just me :)

As for the...loirkeets...never heard nor seen one :p
 

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cockatiels are amazing little birds. They live anywhere from 15-25 years depending on health and living conditions but if your going to get one of those its best to get one young, and ONLY ONE. I can't stress how important just getting one is. If you get two their probably a mating pair and that's a bear to deal with.
Coming from a previous family will be hard and it may take a couple months for the bird just to climb on your hand willingly. They form bonds with the people their with and don't like changing their persons.
They are Cheeky and funny but they have a good stubborn streak to them as well. If you can get one young enough then you should be good. They can be loud but most of the time they'll sit somewhere your in their line of sight and preen, sleep or just chill. Their good mimics too. Whistling almost seems natural to them and some learn to talk. Look up "cockatiel sings if you happy and you know it" on youtube. Makes me giggle when he does the clapping part.

Budgees are nice but require alot of training if you dont want a bird just flying around the house, without interacting with you. We had one once and that thing was mean, we had to use a towel to catch him and put him back in his cage. He never interacted with us and just did his own thing, and we tried training him in all sorts of ways. My sister who bred birds at the time, came over and tried her best but to no avail. but I've also the "sup" kind and they're pretty cute.
 

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I also highly recommend cockatiels, and even though we suggest only getting one it's ok to add another in half a year as long as it has it's own cage. My friend has a 7 year old fully flighted female and a year old male who play together and because they have their own cages it's easier to keep them from being a pair.
 

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If it were me I would go with a budgie or a cockatiel as a first bird.

finches and canaries don't really interact with you. Some canaries can sing like the dickens though..... You pay up the wazoo for singing canaries... if you want a pretty songbird to listen to, a canary would be it.

A hand fed baby cockatiel would probably be the most fun since they have goofy quirks that you won't really get with budgies unless you're lucky. Cockatiels can be real screamers though. If you wanted to transition to a larger parrot at some point a cockatiel would probably be the better of the two to start with IMO. They have more of a "big bird personality" in a small body. (and no not big bird from sesame street lol)

Any of the cockatoos are really wonderful birds, I wouldn't say they are beginner birds but most cockatoos would connect themselves surgically to you somewhere and demand attention and petting 24/7 if they could. Because of this a lot of them end up plucking feathers if they aren't getting the attention they need, or feel they need lol.

I've never owned a lorikeet but have owned a red lory... Red lorys are DEFINATELY NOT beginners birds.... But one of the most fun and unique birds i've ever owned personality wise.

Now that i've talked in circles... It's kind of up to you. If you can, go visit breeders with cockatiels budgies and lorikeets and see what you bond most with.

Edited to add: Yep that cockatiel singing "If you're happy and you know it" on Youtube is a really cute video :D I love when he "claps" and bobs his head up and down LOL
 

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I don't think canaries or love birds are good for starters. Mostly because canaries are expensive and high mainatnence (if you don't feed them right, their feather colors can fade).

Lovebirds because if you don't interact with them daily, can be easily depressed. If you get a pair it wouldn't be so bad but agreeing with Twilight about paired birds it would be more hassle. And 1 bird can easily get lonely. (my sis had one, and it became a very bitter bird when she went to boot camp and eventually stopped eating, then sadly died).
 

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A hand fed baby cockatiel would probably be the most fun since they have goofy quirks that you won't really get with budgies unless you're lucky. Cockatiels can be real screamers though. If you wanted to transition to a larger parrot at some point a cockatiel would probably be the better of the two to start with IMO. They have more of a "big bird personality" in a small body. (and no not big bird from sesame street lol)

Edited to add: Yep that cockatiel singing "If you're happy and you know it" on Youtube is a really cute video :D I love when he "claps" and bobs his head up and down LOL
My cockatiel was a hand fed baby. Her parents booted her out of the nest because she has deformed feet. She used to scream when she couldn't see me, kinda like separation anxiety. I got her to quit by only entering the room when she was quiet.

The clapping part had me in tears from laughing so hard the first time I saw it
 

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Love birds have a nasty little bite too, much worse then a a cockatiel.


Ohhhh yes. I wore the heavy duty wool gloves used for mechanics for welding and such and that little bugger bit through THAT and left me a nice bruise -.-
 

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Have you considered an indoor dove/pigeon? Soo sweet. Larger and interactive but a lot quieter. Pigeons are the only pet birds I've had any experience with and not as indoor animals, but they are so great. :3 Here diamond doves are popular pets for people. If you get one they bond to you really well too. They are a calmer bird in general and tend to be easy to handle. Someone on here has a pigeon too, I remember.
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Oh, forgot about doves! They are gentler, I've noticed.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I love pigeons! I didn't realise you could get indoor varieties. Tell me lots. :)

Also, how do you prevent little birdie messes all over the place, regardless of what bird you have?
 

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If you have a good sized cage for the type of bird, have the floor (avoid putting on CARPET) covered in newspaper around the OUTSIDE of the cage. Trust me. Some birds are clean freaks and poop OUTSIDE their cages :roll: Not sure on the birds when they are being handled. Most tend to stick their bums over the edge of something to poop -.-

You will find most stores sell pigeons unless it is banned, or they just do no have a supplier.
 

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Rat lady isn't used to animal messes? :D
You can buy cages with trays around them that try to prevent seeds from spilling everywhere. Some people potty train birds... my friends canary was potty trained to go in his cage believe it or not. He was cool, he'd fly around the room and come say hi to her :s But it doesn't work out for a lot of people. Like potty training rats I guess?
 

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Sorry editing time ran out and I had some more info. Dx
They're sweet little guys. Get along with everyone. Their coos are really soothing in my opinion.
Here's a video of a ringneck dove tolerating a little kid. :

Diamond doves are pretty easy to find in pet stores:


They have solid white ones too. Otherwise you could try and find a bird auction. Livestock auctions will usually sell pigeons in at least pairs, but lot's of people sell singles of fancy breeds as well. Now I shall spam you with some "pigeon variety" photos. You want it, pigeons have it. I'm a huge fan of them in case you didn't know. :3 SOMEDAY I will have a huge flock. Someday.
http://www.pakhomers.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/08/modena-schietti.jpg
http://www.gypsyhavenmorgans.com/images/Critters/Frizzles/Frizzles.July26.2008.03.jpg
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/33/Ice_pigeon,_muffed(silver_chequer).jpg
http://www.unitedswallowclub.com/Zwonitz Photos/Red-Tiger.jpg
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_rY7HiV-yK...bPhyAdEr0OM/s1600/Old+German+Owl+Pigeon+1.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Rat lady is used to messes, but only in the cage or on holding towels. Not my carpet or furniture. :p

They are really sweet! So now it's a choice between a cockatiel and a dove (or pair). :p
 

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Unfortunately with my bird, flying where she pleases, she also poos where she pleases. (lol I just realized I said poo) With cockatiel its pretty easy to clean up. Wet or dry just a wet paper towel. For bad spots (spots they sit in normally there for poops there a lot) I put an old hanker-chief there. Although I do go on poop patrol all the time wiping up the misc missed ones. TV's will be a big attractant. Their high and warm, ceiling fans are just trees with nice flat branches and curtain hangers are another big one.
 

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I kind of have a ring neck dove, Her name is birdiebird... She actually belongs to my sister but she ploans on taking her soon now that they finally have their own place so I don't really count her as mine anymore.

I have to admit they are sweet and they don't bite at ALL. But ring necks are big time poopers.... 99% of the time its like a pellet and easy to clean up but ring necks go frequently.....

You can KIND OF train your bird where it's ok to "go" but it takes a lot of patience. When a bird is ready to go they lift up their tail. (You will get used to seeing the warning signs eventually.) If you are holding them in front of you if you push their tail down you can put it on hold long enough to place the bird back on their cage or a stand and when they get there they should do their business. If you reward them with praise while they are going then give them a good treat they like they do eventually start going where they should if they can get there. Some types of birds are much better at training this way then others though. The dove I never could but the larger parrots do pretty good at it. It's pretty rare when they have an accident now. I have no experience training a cockatiel this way, and my budgie is too paranoid to train this way.
 

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-gasp- the brown and white one is gorgeous <3 :lol:

Always depends on the personality of the bird, to "potty train" of course. Just like other critters like guineas or ferrets.
 
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