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Is my budgie okay?

Jazziebee

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Hi everyone, i hope someone can help me. I have to budgies and they are around 3 and 4 years old, the older one is male and called Coco and the younger is female and called Zoey.
For the past 1,5 years Zoey has occasionally portrayed different behaviour, and has a different appearance. Her feathers start looking scruffy, untidy and fluffy. Primarily around the head. She is usually really quiet but when she is like this she sometimes start making noises, and when she's like this Coco is particularly caring with her and helps her clean her feathers.
Usually her being like this only lasts a morning, and it isn't every morning. But today she was fine this morning and then around lunch she looked scruffy again and I got quite sad because I am afraid something is wrong.
It is around 1,5 years ago she also started "feeding" Coco and just spitting food everywhere occasionally, but i have seen him feed her as well, so i don't know if it is normal behahvior since they never made eggs. Other than that I noticed that some of her brown cere is gone, and I can see some blue cere instead.
Primarily I just want to know if anyone knows anything about why she is acting the way she is and looking the way she does! I really hope someone can help me, because I am worried about her. I really love them.
They are acually my little sisters birds, but because I had to move a little far away from home when going to university, I took them with me to keep me company.

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I have attached some pictures of her, one of how she normally looks and a couple of how she looks which causes me to worry. I don't know excatly how often she doesn't look normal, but I think it is once every couple of weeks, sometimes a couple of mornings in a row, but she always goes back to normal.
 

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PoukieBear

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It looks like a moult, and nothing to worry about. The extra attention that Coco shows her during this time is a good thing, he's helping her itch those new feathers that can be quite bothersome to budgies.
 

Ripshod

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When she was 'spitting food everywhere' was she shaking her head doing it. Did it stick to her or mess her feathers?
The rest does just sound like molting.
 

Gribouille

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the feeding eachother part is completely normal and doesn't have to be related with mating. My 2 male budgies fed eachother, one of them got sick and the other one was helping him, guiding him to food, water and perches when he got blind. He died last Summer, we now have a baby female, she and the adult male feed eachother although they are not a reproductive couple. It is just a bonding thing in those cases.
 

Jazziebee

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But do they molt often? Because sometimes I feel like she looks like that a bit too regularly.... and doesn't really look like that ever.

Sometimes she shakes her head everywhere when she does it, and sometimes it sticks to her. Sometimes it sticks to me when she does and while being out of the cage. But I am pretty sure it is not the reason behind her untidy feathers, because it is only seldom that it stays on her and she usually just shakes it off.

I am comforted by hearing how normal the feeding is, we have had budgies before, but they never did this.
Is it also normal for a male budgie not to try and mate with a female budgie?
 

Gribouille

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they can be friends without being mates. My male budgie was mating with the salad today, while the female was just in front of him. As I understand, the female is the one chosing her mate and not the opposite, but then I've had a female for 4.5 months only so I'm not that much of an expert yet.
I'm not sure about the appreance and molt but as a good rule, I'd say if she behaves the same as usual -attitude, food, flying, activity, chirp etc..- she is probably fine. If you notice that she begins to sit still, closing her eyes, looking tired or depressed and so on, then I'd take her to the vet.
 

Ripshod

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If she's just perching like this with her eyes closed a lot then something is wrong, especially as the male is obviously still active. I think the preening is him looking after his friend. From the photos in your first post my instinct is saying both birds should go to the vet. If it's something contagious odds are he has it too, even though he's not showing symptoms.
 

Lady Jane

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I think you should take her to avian vet for a gram stain . It's possibly yeast in the crop. Spitting of food has nothing to do with molt. The feathers get wet and sticky around the mouth. I have seen this before.
 

Ripshod

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Also don't worry about the cere color. It's changing back to baby blue because she's out of condition. Another indication of sickness.
 

Jazziebee

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I just made an appointment at the vet to have a look at her and Coco. Thank you for all of your replies. I really don't hope it is something extremely serious... I really love them and it hurts to think about if she will die.
 

Davi

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Sorry to hear she's not doing too well (potentially), but I'm glad you're taking them to the vet. Let us know what you find out, please. And best of luck. Hopefully she'll be back to her normal self soon!
 

Jazziebee

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Hi everyone,
I'm sorry I havn't updated you earlier but I have been really busy with university and focusing on my budgies.

So I took them to the vet last week, and he had a look at Zoey but he couldn't really say much about her. He thought it was something respirorial and gave me some antibiotics, which I have been giving her the past 5 days. So far she hasn't looked ill or anything, but I won't know for sure before more time has passed.
The vet did say that it was not something lifethreatening, and that she seemed like she was in a good condition and healthy. I have also been giving Coco the antibiotics because if Zoey was ill, she probably infected him, but he might not show it. They have both been in a really good mood and seem fine.

I think it is sad that the vet is so expensive, I could imagine that most people will not take their pets to the vet because of this. Here in Denmark the cheapest price is 77 dollars/59 pounds, and that is just a consultation for small birds like my budgies, bigger animals cost more. In Denmark human doctor consultations are free, and I feel like animals should be too, or at least just be affordable!!

Thank you all for your words and for helping me!
 

Davi

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Thank you for the update and glad to hear Zoey and Coco are doing ok. I agree with you and wish that taking animals to vets weren't so expensive (here in the US also).
 
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