Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Socialites - Peter and Ava

After researching and deciding I really would like to rehome a bird, I started checking Petfinder regularly. Peter, a blue budgie, came up in an animal shelter near my doctor, so of course I went to see him. According to the lady at the shelter, he had been caught loose on the seventh floor dorm of a local university. As he was caught loose, they could not adopt him out for another 8 days, so I went home and returned the next week. The night before I returned, someone left a yellow budgie in the night deposit box. (I know, how could you do that?) As Peter (the blue budgie) and Ava (what I named the yellow budgie) were already calling to each other, I took them both.

First we all had several days of adjustment. Mostly them adjusting, I was constantly being awed by everyth
ing they did. I sat with them, read to them, watched tv with them, waiting until they seemed pretty comfortable with me. Then I put my hand on the outside of the cage next to their food dish, after feeding them, and stayed very still. They soon became comfortable enough with this to not even hesitate jumping to eat. I then began putting my hand in the cage, with food in my palm, and leaving it in there, just inside the door, for around 15 minutes at a time. After a while, they began to come closer, and then get on my hand to eat. After they would readily jump on my hand for the food, I would try moving it, slowly and gently, back and forth in the cage. Once they would stay on it for that, I began trying to pull my hand out of the cage with them on it. That took longer.

After about a month, Ava was getting pretty tame, so I decided to get them a big cage together. Once they were in a larger cage together, I let them out to play on their playgym, and they could have each other's company when I wasn't there. Plus, since Ava was tame, it became easier to tame Peter. It still took another three months, but on Christmas day, he got on my hand, voluntarily and without prompting or food. What a great present!

Edited to add: After Peter and Ava had a violent, if drawn out, split, they became increasingly unhappy even being in the same house and hearing each other's calls. Peter would get territorial, Ava depressed. I finally decided it was only fair to both of them that I separate them completely, and my parents happily agreed to keep Peter.

The beautiful blue Peter

Gorgeous Ava. She is named for Ava Gardner, and with
those long eye-lash looking feathers, can't you see why?

Peter, enjoying the winter weather outside the window.
He always looks great in black and white.

Ava, having a bath.

And the two of them together.


Mary said...

What a great story! I just love it when budgies are allowed to reach their potential and find themselves in loving homes :)

Peter and Ava are very beautiful!

Peter said...

What a coincidence, my wife and I are Peter and Ava too. I'll send this over to my wife too.

And I agree with Mary... Peter and Ava are beautiful