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Old 05-14-2018, 01:22 AM
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Extreme Aggression

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This morning Sherbert was in a foul mood. It isn't unlike him to be a bit moody in the morning before I've fed him, though this morning he was far beyond his usual slightly unhappy self.

As I reached for his food bowls he made it very clear he was not happy with something, spreading his wings in the eagle fashion and, a first for him, striking at the air wildly. I've left him alone for now to let him call down and he appears to have settled OK.
I really wonder though, what happened for him to become so aggressive all of a sudden?

Up until now we had been making great progress and he had even accepted food from me occasionally, so this burst of aggression is quite unexpected.
I can think of a few causes myself but whether or not they're the reason I really don't know:


Sometimes other family members enter the room. Unfortunately not all of them knock on the door lightly to inform them the door is opening. It has spooked both Sherbert and my budgies before so I've had to keep telling them to knock.

My nephews can be quite rambunctious at times and the youngest often screeches (anywhere in the house) and has run towards Sherberts' cage before. The time he did Sherbert flipped out and went wild, so he is not allowed in the room (at least when I'm around).
I'm trying to teech them that you need to be slow with no sudden movements.

The only other thing I can think of is my Mum and older sister.
Sadly my Mum, usually in a tipsy state, comes up to my room and tries to speak to Sherbert but doesn't always take heed of his body language. She's the only one he has lunged for before because she didn't back off and leave him in peace when he clearly wanted it (I wouldnt be surprised if she goes in when I'm out, without me she doesn't really know when he's saying "back off").


I'm going to have a think about what could be the reason over today whilst out. Its very sudden and unusual for him but I just can't seem to put my finger on what got him so angry this morning.
Any ideas are very much welcome. If you have thoughts on what I could look for that I may have missed it would be of great help.
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Old 05-14-2018, 10:51 AM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

I am not familiar with cockatiels, so hopefully others more knowledgeable will join and give better advice!

Some basic considerations; what age is Sherbert and how long have you lived with him? An upturn in aggression suggests onset of puberty, periodic hormonal activity, or as you suggest, environmental influences. Not all of these characteristics will apply, but are food for thought. The first two issues are effects to be managed as best as possible. The actions and movements of other people in your home can be far more difficult, as you have limited ability to change their manners! You can somewhat but not completely influence Sherbert's well being by spending quality time and giving reassurance.
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Old 05-14-2018, 02:10 PM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Quote: Originally Posted by Scott View Post
I am not familiar with cockatiels, so hopefully others more knowledgeable will join and give better advice!

Some basic considerations; what age is Sherbert and how long have you lived with him? An upturn in aggression suggests onset of puberty, periodic hormonal activity, or as you suggest, environmental influences. Not all of these characteristics will apply, but are food for thought. The first two issues are effects to be managed as best as possible. The actions and movements of other people in your home can be far more difficult, as you have limited ability to change their manners! You can somewhat but not completely influence Sherbert's well being by spending quality time and giving reassurance.
Sherbert is roughly 10 years old, so it is probably not not the onset of hormones. I know it has been that time of year where he's looking to breed so perhaps he's gotten a bit frustrated at the lack of a female? It would be very unusual though, as he has never done this previously. I'm not aware of any hormone changes later in life but this is something will will consider and look into.
I have, in the past two months, moved his cage to a better location; quieter, less foot traffic, warm, good light. Over the past few weeks he had seemed quite happy.

This really has me stumped, hopefully someone with more knowledge can help. I hate to see him in a bad mood like this.
Thank you for the input.
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Old 05-14-2018, 02:24 PM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Maybe he didn't get a good nights sleep.

That makes me and mine REAL grouchy.

Also were you on your typical schedule and routine?

Last edited by TiredOldMan; 05-14-2018 at 02:26 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 05-14-2018, 02:37 PM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Quote: Originally Posted by TiredOldMan View Post
Maybe he didn't get a good nights sleep.

That makes me and mine REAL grouchy.

Also were you on your typical schedule and routine?

That could be a reason, yes. The night before I was running late so I got the curtains shut later than usual.
Routine was close to the usual time.

I find it slightly funny that a user with the username TiredOldMan mentions lack of sleep...
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Old 05-14-2018, 02:50 PM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Also he might be mad about being away from the action. You said you moved him to a lower traffic area.
When I had a cockatiel years ago he wanted to be in the middle of everything. If I didn't let him he would sulk or get mad.

Yes I am perpetually tired.
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Old 05-15-2018, 03:45 AM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Sometimes it's hard to figure out why birds do the things that they do... and sometimes, like humans, birds may just wake up on the wrong side of the perch!

It may help to try approaching the situation differently. This could be approaching the cage differently, changing when you feed, or something else entirely.
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Old 05-16-2018, 09:28 AM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Quote: Originally Posted by MonicaMc View Post
Sometimes it's hard to figure out why birds do the things that they do... and sometimes, like humans, birds may just wake up on the wrong side of the perch!

It may help to try approaching the situation differently. This could be approaching the cage differently, changing when you feed, or something else entirely.
That is true. What is going on in a birds' head is a mystery.
I think this time he may have just had a really bad morning. He's always been a bit grumpy in the morning but perhaps this was just a case of having a really bad temper because since then he has calmed down. He even enjoyed a good shower today and is very happily preening away.

Having his usual behaviour change like that just concerned me a little, he has never done anything like that before in all the time I've known him but it appears to be settled now. ^^
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Old 05-16-2018, 10:15 AM
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Re: Extreme Aggression

Sounds to me that 'ol "Bert was just having an off day

My little guy BB is ALWAYS a happy fella in the am. He sings/whistles his best songs then
At night,when I tell him its bed time and I'm getting his house blanky to cover him up,is when (for all I can guess/figure out) he goes into his "shtick/thing" and will open his arms real wide and shake them like the goofball that he is,and bang/YELL at his chrome pair of dice next to him ( I guess it's his nightly ritual to him) but as soon as his house is covered and the lights go off,he settles right down

Yup...it can take a lifetime,and we'd STILL not be able to figure these crazy fluffballs out!


Jim
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