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Cockatiel help?

sfel31

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11/16/22
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Real Name
Stefanie
Good morning everyone! I’m a newbie here but my name is Stefanie. My question is can you bond to young cockatiels that are already bonded together? I got a pair of cockatiels (brother and sister I was told) that have not been DNA tested. The yellow one is Bowie and the grey one is Halen. They’re weaned and 8-9 weeks old. They were parent raised but had a little bit of human interaction daily, like for food and when she would go hang out in the bird room. They had like 5 other birds in the room with them, including mom, dad, and uncle. They were not ever stuck in cages, they were always open so they had access to fly around with the other birds. From what I am told and the little bit I have seen, they are attached at the hip. They are getting used to me, and I have gotten them both to take food from and eat from my hand. Other than that they mostly step up on my finger or palm, and will stay on my shoulder until I sit on the couch. They the one will jump off onto the back of the couch and go to the other bird. I know they’re super young but any advice, tips or tricks to help would be greatly appreciated!
 

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Kiwi's Dad

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:welcome2: Stefanie! Bowie and Halen are very cute :heart: Are they housed together? I believe you're asking why they are so close. Don't quote me on this but the brother and sister bond may diminish over time. (Just an idea. I'm not sure) I would start target training but besides that, it sounds like you're off to a great start. @flyzipper might be able to help
 

flyzipper

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At 8-9 weeks old they're still babies, so I agree with @Kiwi's Dad that their bond will change over time.
At this stage, it's natural behaviour to huddle together with nestmates for safety, and play together to explore surroundings and themselves.
At 8-9 weeks nothing is set in stone and everything is yet to emerge. They may end up with completely opposite personalities, or they may be very much the same.
Time will tell :)

They are getting used to me, and I have gotten them both to take food from and eat from my hand. Other than that they mostly step up on my finger or palm, and will stay on my shoulder until I sit on the couch. They the one will jump off onto the back of the couch and go to the other bird.
This sounds like you're off to an excellent start.
When they go off and do their own thing, I'd encourage you to think of that as them building healthy independence skills and that it's a positive thing.
That will pay dividends down the road when you need to do something on your own, or simply leave the room for a moment, and not have them yelling for you because they're too attached.

Regarding tips, what are you interested in or curious about?
It's usually best to learn what's most pressing at first, and see where that leads.
Reading and participating in the forums is a great general start, so welcome.
 

jh81

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I think its awesome that you got them both! I firmly believe no animal should ever be alone, wether they are parrots, finches or cats and dogs.

as you can see from my avatar, its very much possible to bond with two cockatiels. It may be a bit harder because at times they have more fun together then with you, but it certainly is possible!
 

sfel31

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Stefanie
:welcome2: Stefanie! Bowie and Halen are very cute :heart: Are they housed together? I believe you're asking why they are so close. Don't quote me on this but the brother and sister bond may diminish over time. (Just an idea. I'm not sure) I would start target training but besides that, it sounds like you're off to a great start. @flyzipper might be able to help
They are housed together, but I have another cage just as an extra laying around. Would it be better to separate them? Their cage has a play thing and perch on top of it with bowls for food and water. They’re out of the cage from morning until bedtime and it’s in the living room so they see everyone all day. I try to spend time with each individually (when I can sneak one away) and then together. They’re doing good on riding on the shoulders, but I think they’re still a little clumsy still. I just wasn’t sure if once they “bond” together it would even be possible for me to even be an option. I appreciate everyone’s advice so far so thank you guys!
 

sfel31

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Stefanie
At 8-9 weeks old they're still babies, so I agree with @Kiwi's Dad that their bond will change over time.
At this stage, it's natural behaviour to huddle together with nestmates for safety, and play together to explore surroundings and themselves.
At 8-9 weeks nothing is set in stone and everything is yet to emerge. They may end up with completely opposite personalities, or they may be very much the same.
Time will tell :)


This sounds like you're off to an excellent start.
When they go off and do their own thing, I'd encourage you to think of that as them building healthy independence skills and that it's a positive thing.
That will pay dividends down the road when you need to do something on your own, or simply leave the room for a moment, and not have them yelling for you because they're too attached.

Regarding tips, what are you interested in or curious about?
It's usually best to learn what's most pressing at first, and see where that leads.
Reading and participating in the forums is a great general start, so welcome.
I guess what I’m most interested in is getting them used to hands and bonding with them and getting them to trust me. Some of the time they step up on my finger no problems, but the other times they open their beaks. No hissing or anything like they did when I first got them, so I know that’s a plus. I guess I’m wanting to know if there’s an order that works best or certain things that seem to work better for babies. Sorry for all the questions lol and thanks for your help!
 

flyzipper

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I guess I’m wanting to know if there’s an order that works best
The one dictated by the individual bird :)
Also, the order that builds on a past success.
If one bird steps up, use that as their base to move forward from.
If one bird doesn't, observe what they are comfortable with and proceed from there.
Some of the time they step up on my finger no problems, but the other times they open their beaks.
What's different between those times (from their perspective)?
My guys react differently based on time of day, whether they're hungry or thirsty, if they're tired, if they're interested in doing their own thing vs more interested in what I'm doing, etc. One gives me the cold shoulder for a couple days if I shave after letting my beard grow for a bit. One is suspicious of my motives if I have something in my hand. It varies. One won't step down to their perch unless the other one I'm holding does first. Pay attention and you'll learn the quirks of your own.

Overall, let each bird determine the pace at which things progress. Observe and observe some more to learn the birds' body language because there's deep meaning there. Always ask for a behaviour don't force them. Respecting their current boundaries will quickly establish trust, and as trust is built those boundaries will certainly expand over time as the bird becomes more comfortable. Back off when they show they're uncomfortable. Always take the bird's feedback at face value (there's no "bluffing", contrary to that popular trope), so if they open their beak as a sign they're not comfortable with something, figure out a different approach that's welcome.
 

sfel31

Checking out the neighborhood
Joined
11/16/22
Messages
4
Real Name
Stefanie
The one dictated by the individual bird :)
Also, the order that builds on a past success.
If one bird steps up, use that as their base to move forward from.
If one bird doesn't, observe what they are comfortable with and proceed from there.

What's different between those times (from their perspective)?
My guys react differently based on time of day, whether they're hungry or thirsty, if they're tired, if they're interested in doing their own thing vs more interested in what I'm doing, etc. One gives me the cold shoulder for a couple days if I shave after letting my beard grow for a bit. One is suspicious of my motives if I have something in my hand. It varies. One won't step down to their perch unless the other one I'm holding does first. Pay attention and you'll learn the quirks of your own.

Overall, let each bird determine the pace at which things progress. Observe and observe some more to learn the birds' body language because there's deep meaning there. Always ask for a behaviour don't force them. Respecting their current boundaries will quickly establish trust, and as trust is built those boundaries will certainly expand over time as the bird becomes more comfortable. Back off when they show they're uncomfortable. Always take the bird's feedback at face value (there's no "bluffing", contrary to that popular trope), so if they open their beak as a sign they're not comfortable with something, figure out a different approach that's welcome.
THANK YOU!!
 
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