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Old 08-17-2019, 05:13 AM
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Nippy caique

My 5 month young caique (Gemma) has started to nip. When she is on my hand or held on her back she starts to bite, not in the sense of telling me she is uncomfortable but of something to do. I try ignore it but she is starting to put more and more pressure to the point of blood.
Could it be because she is young?
Will she come past this stage and stop?
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Old 08-17-2019, 01:42 PM
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Re: Nippy caique

Well, I'll ramble a bit...

There is a lot of expertise here, and I'm sure you'll get good ongoing advice. The important thing is that you've stared an interaction, and you're willing to work.

As for me and my darling monster... I promised you a ramble!

As time goes by, you'll find that you can determine just how much you'll put up with. By all means, do try all the great advice you'll get here (like all the above), but I would say that it's okay to compromise a bit in the long run. Your bird is so so so new... most folks think it takes months for a bird to settle in, so this really is a good time to learn and practice the good stuff. You were right about that, and very right to reach out!

Personally, I have reduced biting to almost zero over the years I've spent with the Rickeybird... and a lot of that has involved compromise. I don't do stuff that gets me bitten. Some will say I have let him get away with too much, and that's a fair criticism, but, well... I'm okay with it. I don't do stuff that makes him mad... I don't touch others when he's out; I rarely try to get him to step up onto my hand first. Hand-held perch first, then hand. In some ways, I'm disappointed/embarassed at having such a little monster for a pet, but he is what he is. I ALWAYS wear my hair down when he's on my shoulder, so all he can bite is hair. Really, I don't involve hands much... he doesn't like them. He seems to think the real ME is my head, perched on a weird moveable tree with questionable appendages.

Since he's fully flighted, the ONLY way I get him into the cage is to toss a chile pepper in and he flaps in after it. So food reward is a necessity for me. Time-out doesn't exist in the Rb's kingdom.

I have had some success with using the "earthquake" technique for biting. When he bites, give your hand a swift shake... it should make him let go. The idea... every time he bites, a mysterious earthquake shakes him up. Some people feel this is mean and/or engenders lack of trust. The same can work for clothes biting... give your shoulder a shake, or jump! For me, it has helped.
But please... listen to and try all the good advice you'll get here.
Don't compromise until you know you've done your best. Then just accept and love whatever/whoever your bird turns out to be.

My Rickeybird is in some ways kind of a worse-case scenario, but we have it all worked out between the two of us. Parrots run the gamut (just like people) of temperament and mental stability/brain chemistry. Like the proverbial box of chocolates... ya never know what you're gonna get.
Parrot-owners usually wind up determining their own personal comfort level with various behaviors.

Good luck, and good for you for reaching out. I'm glad you're here!
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