These two chirpy little things are my pet budgies (if you can see them through the blur) They’re about 14 months old, from different clutches and we got them mid 2013. I work every day with hand taming and getting them to respond to commands. My biggest tip here is to clip their wings and use food rewards for reinforcing good behaviours, like coming back to you and answering when called (great for when such a tiny bird is lost somewhere behind a couch or cupboard). Wing clipping has its upsides and downsides but I find they fly out a lot less doors and windows and build trust with owners faster that way.
Budgies are cheeky, inquisitive, chatty and make great first birds for parrot lovers. They don’t bite all that badly, come in amazing colours and absolutely love company- plus they’re quite the talkers! My mum had a budgie named Pip for a long time when I was little- he’d hide under your hair behind your ear and whisper “kick your arse, kick your arse” as threateningly as he could at you. Pip had a penchant for washing machines. Twice mum had to pull him out of the wash cycle. Surprisingly he lived both times. We think he liked being dried off with the hair dryer and totally spoiled, given how readily he dove back in a few weeks later.
On that note: always supervise parrots when they’re out of the cage! Give a bird a choice of seeds or electrical cord and the idiots will hoe down on all the insulated copper wiring they can eat. Or, in the case of my rather large Corella, Sydney, they’ll destroy your mountain bike. Yep. Back when he was about a year old he got out of his cage while I was at work. I came home to find shredded tyres and inner tubing pulled out, all the cushion from the seat chewed off, the handle grips missing, a fair attempt made at my brake cables and one very proud parrot perched atop the fridge, hitting the busted bike bell against the wall absolutely fascinated by the sound.
Budgies need a good size cage, fresh seed, water and veggies daily. At night they need to sleep in a dark, quiet room, and during the day they will need some flying time and toys to play with to stop boredom or destructive behaviours. I have seen, sadly, what lazy parrot owners often end up with: pluckers. Give a bird no love and it does its own equivalent of bashing its head against a jail cell wall- it pulls out its feathers, tears at its skin and can end up eviscerating itself. Be careful and be kind, always, to your pet parrot. They are very long lived.