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Newbie
katy
Posts: 1
Registered: ‎07-31-2011

What kind of bird should I get?

I am 16 years old and I really want a bird. I have never owned a bird myself, but my mom had an African Grey and a few of my friends have had parakeets. I'm looking for something a little bigger than a parakeet and I want a bird that will be friendly with me. I have looked into Cockatiels, Green Cheek Conures, and Quaker Parrots, but I'm still not sure. Any suggestions?
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Regular Contributor
birdsforever123
Posts: 215
Registered: ‎08-01-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

<div>Well personally I would just START with parakeets then after you get used to owning birds step it up to something bigger.There is always a chance that birds might not be your thing! Ya know I tried fish.  Ugh slimey and nasty!!! Well that is just me!!! My sis owns a few fish and that is ok but nevermind!!! But since your mom has experience with birds she might be able to help you out and I'm sure she would she sounds nice. Note that african greys can live 80 years! So if you plan to go to college then you might have to give your bird to your mom which can unstrengthen the bond with your bird since your basically giving it up. But on the other hand you might be able to take them to the college you might go to but always be prepared for anything!<br />
    Otherwise I would say Cockatiels are a good choice but do your homework and think it through.Birds can be a bid responsibility!!!! When I got my first bird  (parakeet) I knew absoulutely nothing about bird after only 2 years he died. We didn't even have an avian vet for him (which of course you may already know you will need). So read up about each specific birds needs. I recommend going to birdchannel.com they are totally awesome (just sayin). You can even get stuff for free!!!! Plus great discounts anyway. Money is another thing (Oh here we go). If you can handle all the expenses great if not then reconsider. They are high mantainence exotic pets not to be taken lightly by their size! Well I do know from a lot of personal experience and work that it isn't the easiest thing to do in all cases. But after losing a few parakeets also consider if you'll be able to make it through when it does die. Because it really scars you and you have to really think  through getting any kind of bird. I would not recommend finches or canaries becuase they can get lost easily and are way to fidgety for me plus too hard to train never did try the squirmy things too! Well it is all up to you. Noise level might be hard with bigger birds too! So consider all these things and more and then pick what is right for you! My picks for you would be cockatiel, parakeet, sun conure, lovebird. They are adorable and cute birds! Birdchannel.com is a place to check out bye!!!! </div>
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Respected Contributor
huachinango
Posts: 5,406
Registered: ‎07-22-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

Birdsforever: You give good advice. The idea of owning a bird and actually living with it are two different things. I wish this weren't true, but it is. I think parrots of all sizes are incredible animals, and they are admirable, smart,  lovely and  loud.
 
I loved my parakeets and my cockatiel, except for the noise. Nonstop noise. I ended up not being able to keep them, and I found great homes for all three. Yet I still dream of owning a pionus parrot or a senegal or a blossom-headed parakeet. Alas. What if I were to spend the better part of a grand on any of these, only to find that I still can't deal with the noise?
 
So that's why I am a finch man, now.
“The oceans are the planet's last great living wilderness, man's only remaining frontier on Earth, and perhaps his last chance to prove himself a rational species.”
― John L. Culliney
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Valued Contributor
KatS
Posts: 1,633
Registered: ‎06-02-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

Parakeets, really are the first stop in the bird world. They can  be very entertaining. They are very social and some can be taught how to talk . My dad did when I was a very young. Since then I haven't been able to get not one to talk. When you are looking at "bigger" birds you really do have to look at the big picture. Avian vets are very hard to come by and are expensive. The food is more expensive, they are louder and some live for a very long time. 

Personally, I would wait on an African Grey until you are a little more experienced and you know exactly what you are getting yourself into. Right now I have a 15 year old Mexican red headed amazon, who is my buddy. He greets me when I walk in, knows my moods, burps, talks and is a pain in the butt sometimes. He hates men, but will tolerate my oldest. Anyone else may have a bloody nob for a hand if they try and touch him. The huge draw back is that I have to make plans if something should happen to me (since I'm not a youngster anymore) to take care of him. He really is only a teenager. He will live 65 + years, so unless I live to be 93 he might outlive me.

Cockatiels, personalities varies. It's better to get one that is hand raised and fed. You can still work with parent raised ones but it will take some time. I had awesome one that passed away and the one we have right now doesn't care for other birds or people for that fact. He has a nice big cage and lets me know when I have forgotten to feed him or he needs water.

Green cheeks are a nice small bird and of the conures bit more quiet then say a sun conure. I have to say I really love our Quaker parrot. They are great talkers, not as clear as my amazon but he has a bigger vocabulary.  It's funny because I have noticed that once they start talking that they seem to squawk less. Mine will practice his vocabulary over and over. Not to say that if you got one it would talk. Males talk more then females ( I know just the opposites then in the human world) but it's not a guarantee. They are known for being feather pluckers and mine is. We have tried a to find a cause, but 3 years later he is still a plucker. I call him my ugly little bird, but I love him to bits and feathers.

Whatever you choose, just do lot of research. Some areas of the country prohibit Quakers. Here in the Chicagoland area we have wild Quakers that are not native. Even though they are a South American bird they have adapted to urban life and cold temps. 
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Respected Contributor
huachinango
Posts: 5,406
Registered: ‎07-22-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

The quaker nest in Hyde Park is really something to see. It's in the park just off 53rd street, and the late Harold Washington lived right across from the tree the nest is in. He loved them. Despite how long they have been in the city, the fears that their population will explode and that they will become a pest species seem unwarranted. They are tough, though, and when I lived in Hyde Park I was always amused to see them duking it out with the gulls, pigeons and crows for some stale popcorn or french fries.
 
Their native country, Argentina, gets a bit wintry, too. Maybe that's why they have coped so well. Some people think their presence is horrible, but the Quakers honestly don't seem to compete with any native species. The introduction in the early part of the twentieth century of European Starlings and English Sparrows had a disastrous and widespread effect on native birds. Cavity nesters like bluebirds and  woodpeckers were badly affected. But Quakers build their own nest. And besides, the US lost out on the one species of native parrot it had when early farmers blasted the Carolina Parakeet (actually a conure) out of existence. I for one like having an "American Parrot" even if it is an immigrant from South America!
“The oceans are the planet's last great living wilderness, man's only remaining frontier on Earth, and perhaps his last chance to prove himself a rational species.”
― John L. Culliney
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Occasional Contributor
brookeytime
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎08-01-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

cockatiels are amazing
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Occasional Contributor
brookeytime
Posts: 10
Registered: ‎08-01-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

i personally am a cockatiel girl, i mean thair soo cute i love their bright orange cheeks and their yellow mohawks. but they are cuddley,friendly,best friends well when their tame.i fell in love with mine named julius at the pet store, he is still new to my home and he is irritable but i love him so much and if you get one i recamend you get a tame one. their way nicer oh and a hand fed and hand raised. so cockateils are a good way to go and their not so vocal if their female. males are loud though,if you plan to go to collage you can take it if they allow it or you would need to find a good home for it well hope this helps
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Respected Contributor
huachinango
Posts: 5,406
Registered: ‎07-22-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

Nobody has said anything about lovebirds, which do not need to be in pairs, are not noisy, come in lots of varieties, and when well socialized are little sweet clowns. They are also pretty economical. Love dem love birds.
“The oceans are the planet's last great living wilderness, man's only remaining frontier on Earth, and perhaps his last chance to prove himself a rational species.”
― John L. Culliney
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Occasional Contributor
shakeapaw
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎08-13-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

You should start with a parakeet and then work your way up to more complicated birds. :smileyhappy:
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Respected Contributor
huachinango
Posts: 5,406
Registered: ‎07-22-2011

RE: What kind of bird should I get?

Or you could rent a parakeet or babysit a friend's parakeet and see if you can take the noise.
 
Seriously. I will never forget it. I brought this little bird into my home, and it completely shattered my peace and quiet. I knew within twenty four hours that just wasn't cut out to be a parakeet owner.
 
If I had birds today, I would have to have an aviary set-up, and some birds don't like their owners to be out of sight. Parrots are increasingly demanding the larger you go. And Amazons, Cockatoos, African Greys, and the larger Macaws are great examples of needy birds. Don't get me wrong, these are fabulous pets for very dedicated and knowledgeable bird owners. All parrots are exceedingly smart, social birds, so unless you have pairs that are geared more toward breeding versus being pets, it seems unfair to them not to give them the attention they crave.
“The oceans are the planet's last great living wilderness, man's only remaining frontier on Earth, and perhaps his last chance to prove himself a rational species.”
― John L. Culliney
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