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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, my name is Carlo and my female cockatiel is Amidala "Lala". I live in Sydney and I just got her yesterday after doing a lot of research on them. For some time now I have been deciding between a budgie or a tiel but decided to go with tiels as they are absolutely gorgeous birds.

Anyway, I got Lala from a breeder. She is only 8 weeks old but has not been handled that often. She does not bite but she is not fully hand-tamed as well. She is still scared of my hand but today I have been able to feed her veggies off of my hand inside her cage. I guess that is a good sign.

I have 2 questions...

1. Will it be difficult to hand tame her at this age and should she have been tamed when she was younger?

2. What sort of temperatures can tiels handle? What do you do to heat them up during the winter? Where do I buy heaters for them?

Thanks,
Carlo
 

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Hi Carlo welcome to the forum, Congrats on your new tiel, 8 weeks is not that old so I don't think you will have any problems hand taming her sounds like your already making progress with her eating veggies out of your hand inside the cage, thats a good sign that she is already starting to trust you, just keep doing that and in no time she will be jumping on your hand :)

As far as the temperatures I have read the average temperature you should keep them in is about 68-72 degrees I would avoid having her near any drafts or windows it is very cold where I am right now, I don't use any special heaters for them I just have the heat on I figure whats good for us seems to be good for them, I hate the cold so I usually keep it warm in my place ;) things to watch out for as far as temperatures are
When birds are cold, they will often “fluff” their feathers up and they may shiver. If a bird is too warm, they will often hold their wings slightly away from their body and “pant” or open mouth breathe.
 

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Hi and welcome! I agree with Laura...they should be somewhere in the 70's F. Good to hear that she's letting you put your hand inside to feed her. I would start to handle her right away-she should get use to you and not her cage. Keep her cage door open when it's safe and you're around so she can come out and explore a bit. When you feed her try putting your finger under her belly softly and say up- this might work better out of the cage for now but it will work both ways when you're done. She's still pretty young so you've got lots of time.
 

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Welcome to the forums!! :D

Like the others have said, she's about as young as you can buy a cockatiel (or as young as they *should* be sold anyway) so i highly doubt you will have troubles with taming.

With temperatures, i assume you keep her inside? If so, as long as she's away from windows and drafts, then if you're not too cold, she won't be too cold. Plenty of people keep tiels in aviaries outdoors with no heating in Australia, and we know our winters can drop below 0C during the night. Remember Australia is where wild cockatiels live, so they can cope with our climate. ;)

You're more likely to have problems with heat. If you don't have air conditioning, then it's a good idea to have a fan ready to have going back and forth near her cage. My guys all get a bit hot during the summer but the fan works great. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for the warm welcomes!

I have seen 2 camps with regards to taming. The more common one I've read is to wait for the bird to trust you which may take longer, but I've seen a thread on this forum where the untamed tiel was handled from day 1 (and involved a lot of biting). Which one would work best for an 8-week old tiel? Is it safe to just hold them even though they are avoiding you?
 

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Thank you for the warm welcomes!

I have seen 2 camps with regards to taming. The more common one I've read is to wait for the bird to trust you which may take longer, but I've seen a thread on this forum where the untamed tiel was handled from day 1 (and involved a lot of biting). Which one would work best for an 8-week old tiel? Is it safe to just hold them even though they are avoiding you?
To me waiting makes the bird's comfort zone be mostly when it's in the cage and to me that's not good. They should be comfortable around you first and then their surroundings which would build a strong bond (ie. the bird would run to you whenever it's scared, etc rather than away). I would handle them right away. I don't have any experience with biting tiels but I do have 8 budgies who were not nearly as tame when I brought them home and their bite can be vicious.
Also, is your tiel allowed out of the cage..etc? This will have alot to do with how use to you they are.
Last thing, make sure your tiel is comfortable with your hand inside their cage. If they are not then what's happeinging is they trust their cage more then you and they're become terretorial. The best thing to do in this cage is remove the territory (the cage). Then you have a neutral area where you can start things like finger taming..etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Aly. For the last couple of days I have opened the cage and she does come out willingly. I've actually held her a few times with some resistance and some nibbling (I don't think it was a real bite though), but she still walks away when I release her on my lap. Should I just keep doing this? I'm just afraid she's getting traumatised every time I hold her.
 

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I wouldn't actually hold her, just hang out with her. Maybe offer her some millet when she's with you so that you seem like more fun. :p It sounds like she's not too unfriendly as it is, so all you need to work on is bond.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Just thought I'd post an update.

Lala's still a little bit scared with my hand but one I get her to step up to my finger she doesn't run away anymore. A few times she has tried to fly away but I would say 4 out of 5 times she stays and I get to feed her. A couple of times she has been preening my facial hair. :)

Here's a pic of her on my hand btw.
 

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She is adorable! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thank you yes she is adorable. A little update...

I have earlier mentioned that my Lala is semi-tame. She does not bite but the breeder said she hasn't been handled much, and has spent a considerable amount of time with her parents.

Well this past week her progress has been very good. This is the first time she has allowed me to scritch her while she made small chirping sounds. I can see that she's getting attached because she tries to fly when i set her down on a table, and prefers hanging around in my body,...usually on my stomach when slouching and watching tv or on my shoulders.

I know that I should be careful about getting her too used to me that's why I do not get her out of the cage as soon as I get home and keep her in her cage at least a couple of hours before I sleep. Are there any other tips to make sure she does not scream for me in the future?
 
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