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Old 09-10-2019, 06:39 PM
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Unhappy Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Hi all,
Iím new to the community and decided to make an account because of issues Iíve been having with my eclectus parrot.
Some background info: me and my family got an eclectus parrot about two years ago after another owner had him for about a year and a half. (Heís currently about 3.5 years) For a while, everything was great. He played with toys and learned how to talk and got along nicely with everyone in the house.
However, over the past year heís gotten worse. We moved to a new house about 1 year ago and he hasnít really been the same since the move. Heís started screaming and yelling almost constantly. He also growls and bites, but has never drawn blood or broken skin. He also refuses to play with toys or amuse himself in any way, preferring instead to scream. Iíve tried almost everything to help lessen the screaming. I know that you can never get a bird to stop screaming completely: thatís just unrealistic. But the constant noise is unbearable. Iím a student and I need to do my homework at home, so the constant noise has really affected how I work. Iíve had multiple breakdowns over the screaming. He just wonít stop! Iím just so frustrated. I think the biggest issue is that nobody else in my family really bothers to help me train him and correct behavior. To be honest, I really just donít think we have the time to give him everything he needs. He gets plenty of out of cage time, but everyone in my family either works or is in school. I really donít want to rehome him, but I donít know what else to do as he doesnít respond to any training i try and give him. I know the screaming may be due to hormones but i donít know how to help him. Please help!
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:42 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Also, he has a very large macaw-sized cage filled with toys and perches and he gets pellets and fresh fruits and veggies daily. Any advice will help!
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:50 PM
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Eclectus wonít stop screaming

First, what did your Certified Avian Vet (not just an exotics vet) say when you took him in for gram stains and blood work?

If you didnít do that, do it now. This kind of thing is OFTEN as simple to fix and a $12 antibiotic to treat an chronic infection that you canít see on your own.

Second, what kind of pellets is he eating? What percentage of his food is fresh? Of that fresh how much is veggie and how much fruit?


Third, how much sunlight, direct and unfiltered (even by a window or screen) does he get a day?

Fourth, what does his daily routine look like?


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Old 09-10-2019, 07:13 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Thank you so much for reaching out!
He has a regular check up with our CAV in about 2 weeks, so we were planning on talking to our vet then.
As far as food goes, he eats zupreem natural pellets daily as well as Hariís tropimix on occasion. In the morning, he gets mostly fruits with fresh strawberries, bananas, blueberries, and sometimes kiwi. In the late afternoon, we give him fresh peppers stuffed with green beans and sugar snap peas as well as corn, chia and flax seeds, and carrots. He has access to food and water at all times of the day.
His cage sits in a corner near a large bay window, so he gets quite a lot of light daily. I like to take him out in his travel cage sometimes to sit outside with me while I garden and just relax on the porch.
As for his daily routine, he wakes up at around 8 and we take him from his smaller sleeping cage to his main cage upstairs. After that, he usually has a few hours of out of cage time from the time he gets up until around 10, when he goes to bed. He sleeps my finished basement with a nightlight on.
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Old 09-10-2019, 07:35 PM
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Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Quote: Originally Posted by Kd15 View Post
Thank you so much for reaching out!

He has a regular check up with our CAV in about 2 weeks, so we were planning on talking to our vet then.

As far as food goes, he eats zupreem natural pellets daily as well as Hariís tropimix on occasion. In the morning, he gets mostly fruits with fresh strawberries, bananas, blueberries, and sometimes kiwi. In the late afternoon, we give him fresh peppers stuffed with green beans and sugar snap peas as well as corn, chia and flax seeds, and carrots. He has access to food and water at all times of the day.

His cage sits in a corner near a large bay window, so he gets quite a lot of light daily. I like to take him out in his travel cage sometimes to sit outside with me while I garden and just relax on the porch.

As for his daily routine, he wakes up at around 8 and we take him from his smaller sleeping cage to his main cage upstairs. After that, he usually has a few hours of out of cage time from the time he gets up until around 10, when he goes to bed. He sleeps my finished basement with a nightlight on.


Ok! Be SURE to get the gram stains and blood work to look for a medical reason.

In the meantime STOP THE PELLETS!!!!
Like most commercial pellets Zupreme Natural is FORTIFIED. Thatís great for most birds but can be a death sentence for eclectus, literally. Because of the unique digestive system of eckies these artificial vitamins cannot be properly disposed of and causes a condition called Hypervitaminosis which often leads to behaviors called toe tapping and wing flipping which can lead to death by sleep deprivation, actually. So no pellets unless they are completely unfortified.


As for his fresh food, cut the corn out completely and minimize fruit. Yes, eckies need fruit, but for the moment limit that to two or three berries a day or the equivalent. That is a LOT of sugar. A LOT. Some birds handle that just fine, others do not. Try eliminating corn and drastically reducing fruit for 60 days. Keep an eye on his weight just in case but he should be fine.

Sunlight through windows dies virtually nothing for the parrot immune system.

How much of his daily out of the cage time is active training to keep his mind busy?


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Last edited by SilverSage; 09-10-2019 at 07:40 PM.
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:32 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Hi Kd15, I am so glad you joined and are asking questions. Sometimes its the simple things that can affect parrot behaviour. Everything Silversage is telling you is 100% good advice, aand we have huge Ekkie population on here ,folks who might be able to give you other insights into Ekkie behaviour.

Remember it is never the fault of the parrot; it is always the fault of the human. Once you wrap your head around that idea, you can better understand what your baby needs. Here is good luck to you and your ekkie, and please keep us posted on the vet visit.

If you can handle your parrot, getting a harness on him, and taking him out in the good sunshine is a good bond building activity and will refresh his vitamin needs naturally.
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:22 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Greetings! Fabulous advice above.

I think 90% of your problem here comes down to 1 word, and Dani (silver Sage) really hit it: diet.

If what you describe for his diet is pretty consistent, your boy is getting WAY to much sugar.

I’ll spare you the novel, but essentially eclectus can be induced to hormonal behaviors, and a small fraction of males get aggressive when hormonal (most just masturbate and regurgitate). EXCESSIVE SUGAR IN THE DIET IS ONE TRIGGER FOR HORMONES.

The eclectus diet is NOT fruit and veg, like you often hear. It’s vegetables and grains (perhaps easy on gluten grains like oats, and more concentrated on gluten free grains like quinoa, chia, flax, to name a few. Gluten is...controversial and confused in current Ekkie care, some say it’s bad, some say it isn’t, we don’t know the answer).

In any given meal, you really only want no more than one fruit, MAYBE two.

So fix the diet, and you’ll get most of the way.

But behvaioral training is important as well. Remember that you coming running when he screams is a reward. When he screams, stay away from him and wait it out. Come running when he either 1) gets quiet, or 2) makes a more pleasing sound, like speaking or whistling. Keep treats close by to reinforce the positive sounds.

Do trick training sessions as well. Teach him to turn around or wave, train recall flight (flying to you on command). Engage his mind.

And forage. Foraging is amazing way to get the mind busy and help expend his energy.

Between the diet, not reacting to the screaming, and mental stimulation, I expect you’ll see a difference in just a few weeks.

And yes, absolutely do the bloodwork and gram stain (these will be pricey. Varies by region but ours is over $400), they are critical.

Good luck!
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:24 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Quote: Originally Posted by chris-md View Post
Greetings! Fabulous advice above.

I think 90% of your problem here comes down to 1 word, and Dani (silver Sage) really hit it: diet.

If what you describe for his diet is pretty consistent, your boy is getting WAY to much sugar.

Iíll spare you the novel, but essentially eclectus can be induced to hormonal behaviors, and a small fraction of males get aggressive when hormonal (most just masturbate and regurgitate). EXCESSIVE SUGAR IN THE DIET IS ONE TRIGGER FOR HORMONES.

The eclectus diet is NOT fruit and veg, like you often hear. Itís vegetables and grains (perhaps easy on gluten grains like oats, and more concentrated on gluten free grains like quinoa, chia, flax, to name a few. Gluten is...controversial and confused in current Ekkie care, some say itís bad, some say it isnít, we donít know the answer).

In any given meal, you really only want no more than one fruit, MAYBE two.

So fix the diet, and youíll get most of the way.

But behvaioral training is important as well. Remember that you coming running when he screams is a reward. When he screams, stay away from him and wait it out. Come running when he either 1) gets quiet, or 2) makes a more pleasing sound, like speaking or whistling. Keep treats close by to reinforce the positive sounds.

Do trick training sessions as well. Teach him to turn around or wave, train recall flight (flying to you on command). Engage his mind.

And forage. Foraging is amazing way to get the mind busy and help expend his energy.

Between the diet, not reacting to the screaming, and mental stimulation, I expect youíll see a difference in just a few weeks.

And yes, absolutely do the bloodwork and gram stain (these will be pricey. Varies by region but ours is over $400), they are critical.

Good luck!


Wow on the price! Those sound like Hawaii prices!

My sister gets blood panels and grams stains together for under $100! Hopefully the OPís vet is more on the lower end!


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Old 09-10-2019, 11:04 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

Must be living in the DC metropolitan area. Very speedy around here!
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Old 09-10-2019, 11:05 PM
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Re: Eclectus wonít stop screaming

I believe that! Too bad itís not more uniform, since itís so important.


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