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Getting a Friend for our Canary

Lilly H

Moving in
Joined
8/7/21
Messages
14
I am aware that in general, canaries are solitary birds and prefer their own space. Our girl Marigold is different. When we first got her, she was housed alone and was very needy, always looking for attention. Once she was housed with our other female (crested) canary named Tangerine, she was much happier and calmer. Marigold was constantly trying to make friends with Tangerine. Trying to preen her, trying to cuddle with her at night. Tangerine was NOT interested and rejected her repeatedly, but Marigold kept trying anyway.
They had to be separated during nesting season because Tangerine would bully her and bicker with her. But the rest of the year, Marigold definitely wanted her buddy with her. On the occasions where they had to be separated for brief periods of time, Marigold was clearly distressed at being alone, flying and hopping obsessively back and forth, trying to get back to Tangerine. Tangerine of course was unimpressed .
Unfortunately earlier this year, Tangerine passed away suddenly due to digestive issues (FYI- For those who may be concerned, once Tangerine died the cage got a thorough cleaning and Marigold has remained safe and healthy since then with zero digestive problems.) Marigold spent weeks after Tangerine's death looking for her and crying/chirping in frustration. She now seems to accept that her former cage mate is gone, but she's still acting very needy. When she's really worked up, the only thing that will calm her down is putting music on and sitting with her. She particularly loves when I sing to her. I don't cater to her every whim, but I've learned from experience that she can get stressed out if she's left alone for too long. I'm currently on medical leave but at some point I'll be returning back to work. And for whatever reason, Marigold hates being alone. So my husband and I have agreed at some point to try to find another companion for her. But the question is, what kind? Another female canary is risky because they can be very territorial (though Marigold isn't.) Male and female canaries can be housed together, but generally only during mating season, and she wants a companion year-round. Society finches get along well with everyone but since they're so tiny, it would be very easy for Marigold to hurt one, even accidentally. We considered Gouldian (sorry if the spelling is wrong) finches since they're closer to Marigold's size and generally live well in groups, but they're quite expensive. Any suggestions as to what breed/sex would be appropriate are welcome. Especially from anyone who's safely housed female canaries with other birds before in similar-sized flight cages (our birds are kept in large flight cages approximately 40" long and 26" tall) She's in the same room with our finches (who are both also female), so they spend the day chatting with each other. But she still keeps looking for a cage mate.
Regardless of the type of bird we get for her, I'm thinking probably it would be better to wait until after breeding season so we won't have to deal with the extra challenge of hormones. We only have experience with finches and canaries, but are open to bringing in a new breed of songbird as long as they're small and will get along with Marigold.
 

Lilly H

Moving in
Joined
8/7/21
Messages
14
Here's a photo of Marigold, for those who are curious. She has a very sweet and gentle disposition, and loves trying to sing along to music (though since she's a female, she's not terribly successful... but it's cute that she tries.)
 

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