Within a few hours of us putting the nestbox out, Opal has claimed it as her own and she started spending all of her time inside of it. After much flirting, woo-ing, bell-dinging, and head-bobbing, Boo won her heart and she accepted him as her mate. We aren't sure if she and Boo will be successful at having a family or not. So far, they have not been doing so well: everytime we have seen them trying to mate, Boo has fallen off.
June 3, 1997
Opal laid her first egg today, but we do not know if it is fertile or not.
June 15, 1997 Opal has now laid 7 eggs. When we want to check on the eggs we knock lightly on the side of her nesting box and tell Opal what we are going to do. Then we lift up the back and Opal scurries out and watched us from the inside of the cage. As soon as we close the back of the nestbox, she goes right back inside and situates herself on top of them all. She is just barely big enough to cover them all when she lays her entire body across them.
Boo is still going into the nesting box as well. We have seen him scratching Opal's head and feeding her. And last week we woke up to what seemed like a successful mating at about 5:30 in the morning.
June 22, 1997 - 4:30 p.m. Well, last week Opal laid a surprise egg number 8 but has since stopped laying eggs and is devoted to just sitting on them. Some of the eggs are beginning to really look dark and we are hoping for at least a couple of babies soon!
June 22, 1997 - 8:00 p.m. Sometime in between 5:00 and 7:45 tonight, we had out first hatching! Brad had gone into the room to get something and came back out with a big grin on his face and told me to come right away. When I got in the room, everything was quiet except for some teeny little chirpies coming from inside the nestbox. We opened the back of the box and looked in to see the tiniest flapping, chirpie-tweetering, little pink blob in between the other 7 eggs! It is seriously no bigger than the tip of a finger... I guess Boo was doing something right!
June 27, 1997 - 12:00 p.m. Came home from work for lunch today to find another little baby! I hadn't realized how much the first one had grown until I saw them together... Boo and Opal are both taking such good care of them though. I happened to peek inside the box to see Opal feeding the new one and Boo was feeding the older one. So sweet.
June 29, 1997 Arrived home from our short out of town trip to find another hatchling! They all seem to small when they are first born but now the first one seem just monstrously large! We cleaned out the nestbox tonight - boy those little babies sure can poop alot for their size! There is another egg darkening; we think it will hatch soon!
July 1, 1997 We haven't had another hatching, but baby #1 is getting feathers! And we have added some QuickTime movies of the babies. The lighting wasn't the greatest, but you can still tell what is going on. And better movies will be added later! (You can download QuickTime and the QuickTime Browser Plug-Ins from Apple if you don't already have it.)
3 Babies Movie (703K)
Big Baby (9 days old) Movie (888K)
July 9, 1997 Well, we didn't have any more hatchings. We figure Opal and Boo were so busy taking care of the babies that they didn't pay as much attention to the remaining eggs. But that is okay because the babies are SO cute! We have named the first one BooJoo (for Boo Junior) but we haven't yet named the other two babies.
Boo Joo is now 16 days old and has really transformed! He is just covered in down and little pin feathers. He loves to cuddle and sleep on his siblings, or on a warm person.
July 14, 1997 All the little boo-babies love to cuddle! They seek the heat of each other and squeeze themselves together, often piling on top of each other competing for who gets to be on the bottom. They also enjoy the warmth of a human hand and sometimes even fall asleep in one.
All of the boo-babies now have names. Joining BooJoo is Tapper (named because he taps his little baby beak on everything), and the youngest one, BooBoo. Tapper looks like BooJoo except not as yellow, and BooBoo looks the most like Boo so far. His little feathers are still pretty spikey, but as the begin to open up we are seeing some definite blue color!
We've got some more movies! This one: BooJoo & Tapper Cuddling Movie (741K) shows how BooJoo and Tapper loves to cuddle with each other, but have a hard time just getting comfortable. This one: BooJoo & Tapper Cuddle Competition Movie (920K) shows BooJoo and Tapper at the end of a "cuddle competition" where they compete for who gets to be on the bottom (the warmest spot). During this particular time, they fought each other for that bottom spot for at least a minutes until they just went their separate directions as if they were both saying, "Fine then, if I can't be on the bottom, I will go cuddle by myself"
July 23, 1997 This morning when we woke up to the sound of happy little budgies, we noticed that Tapper had come out of the nestbox and was perching on the low comfy rope perch looking around the inside of the cage! So the second hatched baby becomes the first one daring enough to come out into the rest of the world on his own. He has been going back in and coming out all day today while BooJoo and BooBoo watch him from inside the nestbox, peeking their little heads out every once and awhile but not coming all the way out.
August 17, 1997 All of the little budgies babies have fledged and we have moved them to their own cage. They have been exploring and playing around and they come out and play on the playgym area at least once a day. BooBoo is definitely the tamest of the bunch. He still likes to run into my hand and cuddle. And he likes getting his face and head scratched and eating seeds and finch sized pellets out of my hand. Tapper and BooJoo like to hang out together. We have a dual perch mirror swing which they love to sit on. They both sit on the same side making it look like an out-of-balance seesaw. As soon as all the babies were out of the nestbox, Opal and Boo got right back to business and as of this morning there were 9 eggs in the nestbox...