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My Budgie Has Started Biting :(

BananaBird

Walking the driveway
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1/28/21
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181
Sorry, I'm not sure if this is the right forum to post in, but my budgie has recently started biting me. She'll just come up and bite me. It doesn't hurt that bad, but I don't really want her to continue this bad behavior. She usually stops when I say no, I don't yell it, just say it firmly, but then she'll do it right away again.

Am I doing the right thing? Is there a better way to teach her that biting isn't something she should do?
Thanks in advance!
 

Sunni Tiel

Rollerblading along the road
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Rachel
How old is she? Is she going through hormones? Did anything in her life change? (cage location, your hair/nail color, rough handling, less sleep?)

Sorry for all the questions, I might be able to help more with this information. Thanks!
 

BananaBird

Walking the driveway
Joined
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Messages
181
How old is she? Is she going through hormones? Did anything in her life change? (cage location, your hair/nail color, rough handling, less sleep?)

Sorry for all the questions, I might be able to help more with this information. Thanks!
I got her at petland, so I don't know her exact age :( My hair is the same, and my nails never change. I'm the only one wo handles her, and I'm never rough at all. I don't think she sleeps any less

Thanks for the reply, I hope this helps you!
 

Destiny

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It is okay if you don't know her exact age - How long ago did you get her? Most petshop budgies are pretty young, less than 6 months old, although they will sometimes have older birds.

Have you noticed if her cere (nostrils) has changed color recently? That can be a sign of hormonal changes that can sometimes trigger behaviors, like chewing or biting.

Do you notice any patterns related to when or where she bites? Like does it happen around her cage or early in the day or when she has been out of her cage for a while?

When did this behavior start? How often does it happen on a typical day?
 

Sunni Tiel

Rollerblading along the road
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Location
Missouri
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Rachel
I got her at petland, so I don't know her exact age :( My hair is the same, and my nails never change. I'm the only one wo handles her, and I'm never rough at all. I don't think she sleeps any less

Thanks for the reply, I hope this helps you!
Usually the ones at pet stores are sold when they're about 3 months old, sometimes later. It sounds like hormones, very likely because it's spring. It should pass within a couple months, I'm not sure how long budgie mating hormones last. Do you have her clicker trained or target trained? This can help as a distraction.
 
Last edited:

Destiny

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Budgies are opportunistic breeders, so if conditions are right, they can stay in breeding condition for a long time - practically year round. On the flip side, if conditions don't favor breeding, they might not go into season for years. It can be quite variable.

There are a few simple things and some more involved steps that you can take to discourage breeding, if the biting is hormone-related.

A great first step would be to rearrange the cage, along with adding more fun toys, and REMOVING any nests, boxes, or enclosed nest-like toys (coconut shells, snuggle dens, etc). Chew toys and shredding toys are usually well-received at this time because female budgies have a natural urge to carve out a cavity for nesting. Just avoid providing an actual cavity or you could end up with some eggs. This might happen anyways, but since we are trying to reduce hormonal behavior, it is counter-productive to provide an ideal nesting location.

Additional fun distractions might help with the biting even if it is not hormonal, but there are many reasons why a bird might bite. The first step in solving a biting problem is usually narrowing down the triggers so you can work out WHY or at least WHEN the bird will bite. With that information, you can work on an effective plan for avoiding or redirecting the behavior.
 

BananaBird

Walking the driveway
Joined
1/28/21
Messages
181
It is okay if you don't know her exact age - How long ago did you get her? Most petshop budgies are pretty young, less than 6 months old, although they will sometimes have older birds.

Have you noticed if her cere (nostrils) has changed color recently? That can be a sign of hormonal changes that can sometimes trigger behaviors, like chewing or biting.

Do you notice any patterns related to when or where she bites? Like does it happen around her cage or early in the day or when she has been out of her cage for a while?

When did this behavior start? How often does it happen on a typical day?
I got her just about 2 monthes ago.

I haven't noticed them changing, I think they're the same-ish

She usually bites right before stepping up onto my finger, no particular time of day. Usually near her cage.

It probably started a week ago? Maybe. Really just whenever she's out of her cage, and around me
Thanks!
 

BananaBird

Walking the driveway
Joined
1/28/21
Messages
181
Usually the ones at pet stores are sold when they're about 3 months old, sometimes later. It sounds like hormones, very likely because it's spring. It should pass within a couple months, I'm not sure how long budgie mating hormones last. Do you have her clicker trained or target trained? This can help as a distraction.
Ok, thanks. I do not, she's just getting comfortable with stepping up, she was pretty skittish when I got her.
 

BananaBird

Walking the driveway
Joined
1/28/21
Messages
181
Budgies are opportunistic breeders, so if conditions are right, they can stay in breeding condition for a long time - practically year round. On the flip side, if conditions don't favor breeding, they might not go into season for years. It can be quite variable.

There are a few simple things and some more involved steps that you can take to discourage breeding, if the biting is hormone-related.

A great first step would be to rearrange the cage, along with adding more fun toys, and REMOVING any nests, boxes, or enclosed nest-like toys (coconut shells, snuggle dens, etc). Chew toys and shredding toys are usually well-received at this time because female budgies have a natural urge to carve out a cavity for nesting. Just avoid providing an actual cavity or you could end up with some eggs. This might happen anyways, but since we are trying to reduce hormonal behavior, it is counter-productive to provide an ideal nesting location.

Additional fun distractions might help with the biting even if it is not hormonal, but there are many reasons why a bird might bite. The first step in solving a biting problem is usually narrowing down the triggers so you can work out WHY or at least WHEN the bird will bite. With that information, you can work on an effective plan for avoiding or redirecting the behavior.
I don't have anything in there that resembles a nest, but I'll add more fun stuff!

OK, thanks. I'll work on that.
 
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