Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Happy Dance (sort of)

So, the new computer aka "New Hotness" (thanks Will Smith for the name), is finally here & all set up.  It's fast enough to work on EVERYTHING I need it to.  So Happy Dance there.

Not so Happy Dance is the three hospital visits this year, which added another 2 illnesses to my already overwhelming list.  But none are fatal yet so I'm working as hard as possible to get back to accomplishing things.

Got lots of very nice birds from my friend Yvonne, who can no longer keep birds.  So I have gorgeous Normal Greys with great bloodlines, beautiful Pieds, and Lutinos ranging from vary pale to bright yellow.  As a result, I took a lot of my birds to the Bird Fair in Orlando last April and sold them.  Since most of them were boys & they were related to most of my girls, it made room for the new bloodlines.  It has been so worth it.

Buddy, who lost his beloved Ginger last year, finally got a new Lutino mate, Shrinking Violet (she's not).  The babies are spectacular.  I can't help but feel sorry for whoever lost him several years ago as he has good bloodlines and is the best Dad we have.  I'll post pix of their babies later.  The two oldest, a Cinnamon Pearl & a Pearl, are star quality.

Other excitement - I finally got a baby out of Puffy, my Whiteface hen.  Of course, she rejected it immediately, but luckily, I had another pair who had just laid so I stuck him in there.  He is growing very well.  He looks like he might be a Whiteface Pied, like his Dad, Romeo.  It's the first baby I've gotten from either of them.  Puffy is now sitting on another 4 eggs.  She sits like a champ, doesn't leave the nest box hardly at all.  Apparently though, she loses interest when they are born.  We'll see how it goes with this clutch.

Doc finally got a mate.  He is a Cinnamon and I put him with Pearlie Mae, a very pretty Cinnamon Pearl.  They had 4 Cinnamon babies, 2 of which look to be the darker, brownish color I'm looking for.

Precious, who placed on the Novice Bench at the Specialty Show last November, was to be paired with Ajax, who placed 2 place higher.  Unfortunately, she didn't like that idea.  Wanted nothing to do with him, but, when she saw Smeagol through the bars of their respective cages, she was smitten.  So was he.  He spent the afternoon trying to get to her through the bars.  (So, obviously he had to be named Smeagol.)

Ajax tried, but she was in love and that was that.  So Precious and Smeagol were put together.  Only 1 egg hatched, but we got Nazgul, a very pretty pearl with almost no yellow coloring so s/he looks almost like a Whiteface Pearl.  Nazgul started feeding the younger babies put in the habitat with him/her so I guess s/he won't be going to the pet store.  Someone who is willing to feed orphans is too valuable to send off.  We'll just have to wait & see if that behavior holds to adulthood.  Smeagol & Precious, btw, are the ones fostering the Whiteface chick.

We also now have Ginger Beer, a Great-Granddaughter of Ginger.  She really channels her G-Grandma.  She acts hand raised, although she wasn't.  She loves people, attention, head rubs and groats, just like Ginger.  So, even though she is a baldy Lutino, she will not go to the pet store either.  When we find a perfect family for her, she will go.  Until then, she stays.

One of the new Pieds is a hen so I've put her with a Pied boy.  They are now mating so we should have some exquisite Pieds soon.  Can't wait.  Also, my friend, Sara, gave me Chantilly, a Cinnamon Whiteface Pearl Pied who has finally given in to Zorro's (Whiteface, split Pied) attentions and she has laid her first egg.  I put her with Romeo first, but again, my skills as a matchmaker apparently suck bilge water.  She wouldn't even look at him.  So Romeo went to Puffy & Zorro, my only other Whiteface, got Chantilly.

So much excitement.  I can't wait to see what else comes out of the eggs.  What the heck...


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Escape Artist

I had to go to Marathon yesterday for a dr appt.  So I did stopped by Home Depot to get something to replace the missing flooring on the newest cage and then did some grocery shopping.  When I got home, I walked out to the street to check the mail before I started unloading the car.

Walking back to the car, my attention was captured by something fluttering in the window of my computer room.  Realizing what it was, I rushed into the house.  Sure enough, there was Doc, desperately trying to get out the window.  I caught him & put him back into the Bachelor cage.  It took a while, but I figured out how he had escaped - one of the small side doors at the top of the cage had somehow gotten open.  Luckily, it was only Doc that escaped.

I snapped the latch on the small door and didn't think about it.  Today, when I got up after my morning nap, lo & behold, who was on top of the Bachelorette cage flirting with Lady Chablis?  Yep. Doc again.  He'd made his escape the same way.  I told myself I'd have to put a zip tie on it, then got busy feeding people so I didn't do it.

After feeding everyone & spraying down the birds, something that was long overdue as last night Sinatra was trying to take a bath under the drip from his water bottle, I went to the couch to lie down for a few minutes.  AGAIN I saw Doc at the small cage after Lady Chablis.  AGAIN I netted him & dumped him in the cage. AGAIN I got distracted and didn't go out to the car to get the zip ties I just bought at Home Depot the day before.

Do you sense a pattern here??

Finally, after catching him for a FOURTH time, I said a bad word, put on shoes & walked out to the car to get the zip ties.  I put one on the door.  Just in time as one of the other boys was investigating the magic door.  Now they can investigate it to their hearts' content.  It is secured by a neon yellow zip tie.  If only Doc doesn't figure out there's an identical door on the other end of the cage.

Doc is such a bad influence.


Here is a picture of the newest baby I had to pull for handfeeding.  Tentatively named "Sonny" (or "Sunnie" if a girl), he is the only child of Rico & Mickey.  They decided that 13 days was old enough to wean, I guess.  They have been spending more & more time out of the nest box in the last week & I had noticed that the baby didn't ever seem to have a full crop.

Saturday morning, Adrian looked in the nest box &, while Mickey & Rico were in it, they were on the other side, completely ignoring Sonny.  So we set up the aquarium, which is right next to where I sit on the couch & knit, for single occupancy.  I got the stuffed chicken at the Salvation Army Thrift Store so Sonny wouldn't be alone.  He has figured out the the syringe is the bringer of food and sucks it right down now.

I'm trying to nap here!

Adrian was holding him last night after the 5 pm feeding.  Sonny fell asleep in his hands.  I leaned down to listen.  Sonny mutters in his sleep.  Little peeps and other noises.  Adrian says that means he's a he, since male cockatiels are usually more vocal than females.


In retrospect, using Adrian's Xbox 360 magazine for a platform for the picture probably wasn't the smartest thing to do.  But you can see from the picture that Sonny is going to be a pearl. I'm hoping he isn't a he, as the males lose their pearling as they mature.

As it turns out, there was a reason Mickey & Rico were sitting on the other side of the box.  She laid another egg today.

Friday, October 15, 2010

That's What I Get...

...for not paying attention.  I check nest boxes every day to see when my mating pairs lay their eggs, usually in the morning.  But I didn't check Sinatra & Chimay's yesterday.  I realized this morning that I hadn't seen her yesterday so I peeked in the box.  There she was, valiantly protecting her egg.  First one of the new clutch.  So I wrote it on the calendar, like I always do.

Later, I checked again & lo & behold, there is a SECOND egg.  So apparently the first egg was not laid this morning.  Either yesterday or the day before, but I'm betting yesterday.

Now to see how many she lays and whether we get any more of those lovely Lutinos like Chablis.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Happy Dance

Chablis has no bald spot!!

When the Lutino color was first discovered in cockatiels, apparently in the rush to get more of this unique color, many breeders were not too picky about other characteristics.  So Lutinos ended up with a glaring genetic fault - the bald spot.  Behind their crest is bald,  You usually can't see it unless the crest is erect, but when it is, the spot is very apparent.

Chablis' maternal grandmother, Ginger, had a huge bald spot.  Her father, Sinatra (bred by Sara at Sarafim Avairy) is from a line with no bald spot anywhere.  It looks like the no bald spot genes won out.  This time.  Chablis' parents, Sinatra & Chimay, are mating again so it'll be interesting to see what the new ones look like.

So Chablis is DEFINITELY a keeper.  Of course we were going to keep her anyway, but this assures her a spot in the breeding cages.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

It's been a while....Again

Still using my daughter's old clunker, but thought I'd update anyway.

Babies are growing so fast.  Bier, Sprite & Duck are now feeding themselves but not without lots of complaining on their parts.  Especially when they see us feeding Chimay & Sinatra's babies.

Cold Duck



We lost the oldest of Chimay & Sinatra's babies.  He had what's called Sour Crop, which means his crop wasn't emptying fast enough to keep him alive.  We tried everything we could, he fought to live for a week, then finally gave up last Sunday and died in my hands.  I cried for the rest of the day and want to cry while I'm typing this.  RIP Tiny Tim.

The other 3 are fiesty and healthy.  When I discovered the sour crop, we pulled them all for hand feeding.  Luckily Adrian was on vacation last week so when I was feeding all 6 at the beginning of the week it was much easier.  The Lutino, Lady Chablis, is larger than the next youngest, Monster, who is actually only one day younger.  Sammy, the youngest, is 6 days younger than Monster but seems to hold his own just fine.
The Lady Chablis



Only one of the eggs that Micky & Rico had hatched, but that baby is very well.  Rico fed Mickey for most of her time on the nest. She rarely came out once she finished laying.  They are both lavishing care on the baby.  I told Adrian it was going to look like a pteradactyl by the time Rico got done feeding it.

Sinny Buns & Arthur are finally mating & she's been in the nest box some.  So we're keeping our fingers crossed for that.

Sinatra & Chimay are mating again so we may see more from them this year.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Bird Photos

Here are some photos of the new adult birds.  I had put Doc in with Sinny Buns but she was totally not interested in him.  She rejected his advances for a couple of weeks so I put Doc back in the Bachelor cage & got Arthur, who was with Sinny Buns & Zorro originally.  She does let Arthur get close so she may have formed an attachment with him already.  We'll see if eggs come of this pairing.

I am not totally sure about what color to classify them as.  Sinny Buns is a Cinnamon but I'm wondering if she is a very light pied?  Arthur is a Normal Grey, but appears to have some pearling on his back so he may be a pearl also?  Can't wait so see babies to get an idea.

Left Side of Sinny Buns

Right side of Sinny Buns & Arthur back

Another view of Arthur's back.  This pix is a little light, the other is more true to color.