Thursday, April 22, 2010

Baby Bourke Personalities

The three babies currently being hand fed are from two different clutches. The two largest with the most down and fewest feathers are siblings. They shared their nest with the pink-eyed albino baby previously discussed. They're very healthy.

One is outgoing and likes to wander. The larger of the two is very timid. He's no longer afraid of us, but likes to hide under a hand in preference to exploring.

The photos with me in them were taken early this morning. My tame birds like to investigate and mooch some of the Exact baby formula.

The third bird has a sibling too, but that one is being parent fed. This bird was much smaller and slower to develop than his sibling. I began to worry whether he was being pushed away and not fed enough. So, I pulled him to hand feed. He's at least a week older than the other two, but not any bigger than they are. He is very affectionate and nibbles on fingers. As I've gotten to work closely with him I realize he simply won't eat as much as the other baby birds do. When his crop is about half as full as the others, he's finished. Consequently, he needs to eat more often ... that's a nuisance! However, he's growing fast and seems to be catching up.

The photos of the two birds in the cage are a mother and her youngster. Notice that the adult's tail is longer. This is the sibling of the baby I'm hand feeding. It has been out of the box for about a week, so it's very far ahead of its brother. The hen laid four eggs and hatched two. Since Bourkes lay and hatch every other day, the second baby can only be 6 days younger than the other, at most.  It has developed much slower and I'm convinced it's because its crops is smaller. It will make a fine pet bird, but probably would not want to make a breeder out of him since he would have to store food to regurgitate for his/her offspring.

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