Does anyone keep birds at home?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Blue Velvet, Dec 29, 2007.

  1. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #1
    I'm toying with the idea of getting some birds for my flat... and just was curious whether anyone else here keeps birds?

    I have a very small place on the top floor of a block, and occasionally pine for a pet of some kind, but can't have a cat or dog... and don't want a reptile or spider etc.

    I'm also aware that people have strong feelings about caged birds, and while I'm only exploring the idea at the moment, please don't flame me for considering it. I'm open to hearing all arguments and experiences of people who keep birds, the pros and cons etc.

    What sparked this idea was seeing someone else's birds and thinking they looked happy and added some life to the room. They were small ones that looked a bit like this. Anyone know what these are?


    [​IMG]
     
  2. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

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    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    Birds are constantly chirping, but if you can put up with that, I say go for it! :)
     
  3. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #3
    Those birds are Zebra Finches. I've got a few of those and some other types of finches.
     
  4. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    #4
    Do they need constant human company? I'm out at work for most of the day... I know the really clever ones like parrots would probably go stir-crazy but I'm thinking of smaller ones... nothing's decided until the kitchen is repainted and done up anyway. That's where they would live...

    I know very little about them, just asking n00b questions.
     
  5. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

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    Texas, unfortunately.
    #5
    We had parakeets for a number of years, and while they did need some human companionship, they were pretty happy just the two of them as well.

    If you just get one bird, it's obviously going to need more time from you, but if you don't mind that it/they will never shut up, then I say go for it.
     
  6. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    Jul 11, 2003
    #6
    Had birds as a kid and all I remember was all the noise they made and the nasty chore of cleaning out the cage. The noise might be even worse in a small flat.

    What about a small pet like a gineau pig? At least you could hold it and pet it. Very easy to care for.
     
  7. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

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    #7
    I think those are zebra finches, although I may be mistaken.

    When we were growing up, my dad kept a few budgies – one at a time, mind. They make great pets – very playful, friendly and surprisingly intelligent, common traits shared by those originally from down under. ;)

    One downside that springs to mind is that they can be a bit messy if they have a flap in their cage – bits of seed and fluff go flying...

    EDIT: As for leaving them alone, our budgies were often left for a big chunk of the day while the family was at school or work, and they didn't go mental or anything. Mind, they'd occasionally sulk at you for leaving them. :eek:

    Maybe in this instance two birds would be an idea, so they can keep each other company. I think two males are your best bet, as they're generally less likely to fight.
     
  8. ::Lisa:: macrumors 6502a

    ::Lisa::

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    Nottingham, UK
    #8
    I do. I have 4 parrots :)

    Ruby - Congo African Grey
    Robbie - Crimson Rosella
    Pepper - Yellowsided Green Cheek Conure
    Jack - Cinnamon Green Cheek Conure

    Here's pics..

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  9. mrkramer macrumors 603

    mrkramer

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    #9
    the Zebra finches that I have seem to be content to just fly around their cage, with the other finches, and never have a lot of human contact other than someone in my family going in to feed them. Their cage also is a fairly large outdoor one, so that may make some difference though.
     
  10. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    Jul 4, 2004
    #10
    I'm not a guinea pig person... it just doesn't gel with my oh-so-stylish Chelsea downtown media-yuppy lifestyle. :p ;)

    Nah, they're a bit stupid; I'd rather have a pet rat. :cool:


    I could call them Randy and Gary. :D


    They're absolutely beautiful, but I think I'd be too scared to deal with something prettier and smarter than me. Thanks for posting pics. :)


    Thanks for your help, it's given me some things to think about and do more research on. :)
     
  11. ::Lisa:: macrumors 6502a

    ::Lisa::

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    #11
    LOL! The smaller ones are pretty intelligent but nothing compared to Ruby and she's only a baby still. Amazing creatures the Greys are. We're getting a Greenwing Macaw next year. Now that size beak is pretty scary haha.

    Are the finches tame? If not, I always hear that they're relatively easy to tame (as are cockatiels) as they're happy little ones.
     
  12. r1ch4rd macrumors 6502a

    r1ch4rd

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    #12
    I had some Zebra finches when I was young. I liked them but they made a lot of mess so my parents weren't to keen. Cleaning the cage is a real chore. It took aaaages for them to get used to human contact and I could never have them perch on my hand or anything. They always seemed happy together though.

    We had a male and a female which was a big mistake because they had 4 chicks :D
     
  13. rdowns macrumors Penryn

    rdowns

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    #13
    I'd be honored, unless they were gerbils. :eek:
     
  14. SpookTheHamster macrumors 65816

    SpookTheHamster

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    London
    #14
    Finches seem pretty content to be without people if you have more than one in a sensible sized cage.

    Have you thought about cockatiels? They're smallish birds with a little more personality than finches.

    My sister has a pet African Grey. The more intelligent birds tend to get a lot more depressed about things than the smaller ones, if you leave him alone for too long or change things too much he gets in a bad mood at you.
     
  15. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    #15

    That's the thing, I'm single and am out at work for most of the day, and sometimes will stay over at friend's houses for nights... if I can provide enough food and water for smaller, less needy birds, that might be a better fit for me. Keeping a smart bird cooped up without human contact for hours on end, strikes me as far more cruel than caging some little birds that are happy in each other's company.

    I'd also like to do some travelling this year, and wouldn't wish my parrot/cockatiel on anyone else. Fish are another option, but the hassle of fish-tanks and their general non-responsive fishyness doesn't appeal to me either.
     
  16. todd2000 macrumors 68000

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    Danville, VA
    #16
    I think you should get a Parakeet (Budgie). I used to have one and it was a great bird. I had mine trained to take off from the living room, and do a complete lap around the house, and lad back on my finger :). Personally I like the Blue, and Green variations, but there are others.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Mine was not that noisy, just got into a little chirping fit once in awhile. Just put a towel over the cage at night.
     
  17. pseudobrit macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

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    #17
    Keep in mind that birds need to eat constantly. One day without food is potentially enough to cause them irreversible damage. Birds make very interesting pets as their social behaviours are significantly different from cats or dogs. If you get one, make sure it was handfed and handtamed.
     
  18. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    #18

    I'd look after them, all right. Have no fears on that account. Any lengthy trips would involve a travelling cage and having a trusted friend to look after them or getting them housed in an aviary.

    I've been checking out UK zebra finch sites and the price of large cages, and might even go for breeding pairs rather than pet shop birds.

    It's all just thinking and planning at this stage, I tend not to rush into these sorts of things without knowing what I'm doing, especially where living things are concerned. :)

    Still, I'm fascinated to read about others' experiences with any kind of birds. Pics too are very welcome.
     
  19. pilotError macrumors 68020

    pilotError

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    Location:
    Long Island
    #19
    I'd say a parakeet would fit your lifestyle.

    Despite what others say, they don't chirp constantly.

    I've had cockatiels, I have an African Grey and a Macaw. My Nephew has a parakeet and its the cutest little thing. In fact I'm bird sitting now...

    I think in an apartment, its a small bird, it has a reasonably sized cage and you can pick the cage up and bring it to a friends house and let them watch it if you go away. There isn't a lot of upkeep in terms of cleaning, feeding, etc.

    You can leave enough food to do the overnight thing, they won't starve, the do eat like birds ;) :D

    Sometimes they do talk, but they are very affectionate. I would find a shop that deals in them and get a baby.

    Here's my son with his Macaw
     

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  20. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    Jul 4, 2004
    #20
    Do you mean budgies? Wikipedia says they shouldn't be kept alone, but should be in pairs. I dunno... other people's budgies have never really done it for me. I don't like the colours much either; that's how shallow I am. :eek:
     
  21. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #21
    I've thought about bringing a bird home, but I'm pretty sure my wife would object... ;)
     
  22. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    Texas, unfortunately.
    #22
    My first parakeet basically went insane because he was alone all the time.

    So if you're going to get a parakeet, make sure you get two. (And don't worry; they're available in many different colors. :))
     
  23. simontarr macrumors 6502

    simontarr

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    Location:
    England
    #23
    I could never keeps birds- it just seems wrong that they would never get to fly.

    Dog can be taken on walks, cats can do what they want, hamsters can run around in their lil balls....but you can't exactly let your pet budgie out to stretch its wings.
     
  24. valdore macrumors 65816

    valdore

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    #24
    My mom has cockatiels - the daddy cockatiel is my avatar...
     
  25. Blue Velvet thread starter Moderator emeritus

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    #25

    I know. But it also seems wrong that many beautiful birds die in the wild from predators and disease... whatever I end up getting, it/they will have a large cage, a well thought-out environment and have a good life, well-cared for.

    I've met budgie owners that used to let their birds out to fly.
     

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