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Peas for Feisty 
22nd-Sep-2015 05:01 pm
birds, peaceful

I wrote this on September 10th, but forgot to LJ it. Feisty took peas from my hand a second time :)


I was so proud of Feisty yesterday. As you may remember, he is as wild and untamed as the day we got him from the humane society. Yesterday he ate two peas from my fingertips. Years ago I discovered that he loved peas and always put some in his treat hopper.

Muffin had to be on probiotics back in May as the vet thought his fecal bacteria count was too high. This included Sunshine Factor. Muffin wouldn't take the syringe, so I got creative and dripped the dose over peas and he ate them from a spoon. Feisty saw this going on and would shyly come to the corner of the cage closest to me. Want peas!

His desire was mixed with fear and he wouldn't eat them off the spoon. The budgies, being untamed, kind of tolerate my hand. When I change their food or water they grip the perch with apprehension even though it's only the bird lady that grabs them.

Yesterday I was feeding peas to Muffin as a treat by hand and Feisty ventured over to the corner of the budgie cage. He fluffed up his head. Want peas!

I squished a pea open and held it through the bars. He flapped away, then flapped back, unsure. He approached it with that trepidation familiar to all budgie owners - close enough to reach, but far enough away just in case. I realized that I was part of the problem. Feisty doesn't like to be looked at. At the humane society he tried to make himself as invisible as possible :). I looked away and after a few moments, I felt a little tug.

He ate another pea, then decided that was enough for one day. I put more peas in his treat cup. I can't wait to try again :)

23rd-Sep-2015 10:41 am (UTC)
Aw! That's wonderful that he's taken this first step in learning to trust! I think that it's important to find a food that is your bird's favorite above all else, in case one needs to "hide" medication or bribe them for some reason. For my Lilac-crowned Amazon, Hobbes, that is chick peas. No matter what food I'm serving my birds, if it doesn't have chick peas in it, he gives me a quizzical look, as if to say "Where are the chick peas???" So even if I'm giving them some pasta or a stir fry (I usually give them some of whatever we're having), I must have chick peas handy to put in for him. (You should see him eating pita bread with some home-made hummus on it!) My Mealy, Mikey, loves apple. But not just any variety of apple. She has her favorites -- Galas and Jonathans among them. She has helped me to eat healthier, as I share an apple with my birds every evening after supper. And I buy almonds in bulk. I'm not kidding -- 25 pound bags at a time, because that is the treat they like the best of all.

Edited at 2015-09-23 10:42 am (UTC)
3rd-Oct-2015 02:32 pm (UTC)
Wow, that's a crazy amount of almonds!!

You are right though - they all have their favourite and it has come in handy. Feisty was once prescribed an antibiotic and I dripped it over peas and put it in his treat hopper. He got enough of it to get better.

Muffin loves anything mushy - it's a blessing and a curse sometimes :-) Do you have pictures of your birds online?
27th-Sep-2015 10:12 pm (UTC)
wahhhh! congratulations! I hope this leads to a step up or head scratch in the future! ;D
3rd-Oct-2015 02:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you :-) The budgies really view us humans with suspicion, so it's hard to build that trust. All my birds are second hand. I would love to get to the point where Muffin would like some scritchies, but however he was handled, he doesn't like being touched. Still...there's always hope :-)
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