Parrot Forum Header Left  
Go Back   Parrot Forum - Parrot Owner's Community > Species Specific > Cockatoos

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-26-2020, 06:59 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Albino Cockatiel (Ghost) Crimson Bellied Conure (Echo) Yellow Sided Green Cheek Conure (Ari) Pied Kakariki(Inca and Maya) Galah(Opal)
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Australia
Thanks: 134
Thanked 461 Times in 230 Posts
Talven is on a distinguished road
Help with understanding Galah

So I'm having issues with building a bond with Opal.

First stage is to get her to relax when I'm nearby and then move away. Rinse and repeat until I can get close to the cage. That seems pretty straightforward but that is a lie!

I have no way of telling how close is too close as Opal never seems to stop climbing, flapping or jumping around in her cage long enough for me to see signs of her being nervous let alone afraid. She seems to be more active than my Kakariki and they are ADHD birds who never stop. Even eating is dramatic with them.

Don't get me wrong I love that she is active but it leaves me at a loss as how to gauge how close is to close. At the moment I'm trying to stay at the "dirty look" range but that changes from moment to moment.

Any advice on how to distinguish between active play and Aaaahhh! Your too close to me! would be very much appreciated at this point as I am rather confused.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Talven For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 06-26-2020, 07:02 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Umbrella Cockatoo- 13 years old
Join Date: Jul 2018
Thanks: 5,471
Thanked 10,193 Times in 4,119 Posts
noodles123 will become famous soon enough
Re: Help with understanding Galah

I don't have a Galah...I have a U2...SO that is my disclaimer...

Have you opened the door to allow her out? A caged "too" is going to struggle (they have A LOT of energy and they need a lot of stimulation)...so if I were you, I would make things as safe as possible and try letting her out and then supervising from afar--mine was out from day 1 (granted, every bird is different) and while she did make me feel like a prisoner in my own home, I never had to chase her...I waited and at bed time she put herself to bed...
I would not towel, chase or push things--- I WOULD open the door and let your bird come in and out if you can do it safely.

It is also VERY VERY VERY early in the game...I mean, heck---many take months to bond...we are talking, what? A few days?

They move super slowly in some cases (trust-wise)--and they have very unique body language that you can really only learn from experience (so it's hard to say what you have going on here)...A lot of "excited" and "mad" looking behaviors can overlap (in terms of how they look)...soo....it is tricky, but you don't want a cage-bound bird either..

Last edited by noodles123; 06-26-2020 at 07:14 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to noodles123 For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 06-26-2020, 07:54 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Albino Cockatiel (Ghost) Crimson Bellied Conure (Echo) Yellow Sided Green Cheek Conure (Ari) Pied Kakariki(Inca and Maya) Galah(Opal)
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Australia
Thanks: 134
Thanked 461 Times in 230 Posts
Talven is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

I certainly don't expect to build any sort of bond any time soon but at the moment I don't even know where to begin.

The general rule of thumb seems to be get close enough to your bird that it shows signs of being wary/nervous of your presence. Not close enough that they move away but close enough that they are wary of you. Wait until they relax and move away.

I can't find the distance Opal is wary or scared as she is simply too active. I can't work out the body language either. There are no obvious signs of clamping feathers, fleeing or anything to suggest fear. Without being able to gauge this how can I attempt to form a bond?

As much as I would love to let her loose around the house, until I have some control it's not feasible. Cathedral ceilings with cork tiling on them are parrot heaven. Pretty sure my landlord would not be thrilled to have them chewed. Hard enough keeping the handleable birds away.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Talven For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 06-26-2020, 07:55 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Umbrella Cockatoo- 13 years old
Join Date: Jul 2018
Thanks: 5,471
Thanked 10,193 Times in 4,119 Posts
noodles123 will become famous soon enough
Re: Help with understanding Galah

1. Can you consult whoever you got her from or ask them to come take a look at the behavior? Cockatoos can be hard to read when you don't know the individual bird...


2. Can you let her out in a different room with lower ceilings ? Not taking her out, but allowing her to come out if she wants. You can't just keep her in there until you trust her......You likely have a very anxious bird right now who will not show true colors until she has some more freedom OR the same time, what you are seeing could just be excitement to get out---much like a puppy jumping and wining at the door...
You can't (in my opinion) build trust with a caged cockatoo...at least, not the kind you are hoping for. You will only get to know her by seeing how she acts outside the cage and that will never happen if you don't let her out..Unless you have a massive aviary--which, you don't.

Cockatoos in general NEED space and activity...you cage them too long and they get crazy...at least, based on my observations over the years.

Mine doesn't even like to fly, honestly...even though she can...Now, a galah likely would be more prone to flying, but still probably not as much as a smaller bird...I mean, yeah-- it is a risk, but that is the whole thing...You aren't going to be able to move past this if you can't get her comfortable and she sounds like she is feeling pent up...only way to tell is to test it..you have to see how she is when she isn't locked up or you will just continue to see this repetitive, crazy behavior (because she is captive and knows it--IMO).

Mine KNEW how to step up and wouldn't for 3 months...so this whole idea of waiting to have control could end up sabotaging your efforts...you aren't going to get it with your bird locked up and that means your bird will be locked up indefinitely..you are going to have to take a leap of faith at some point soon and be patient with her...

Again, my U2 wouldn't allow me to touch her for many months, but she was out (and unclipped) every single day and that is how we eventually bonded...you can't see their true colors in a small cage because they just want out most of the time..It was scary to let go of the control like that, but it is the only way we could have ever made it work. If I had kept her locked up, we never would have bonded because she would have turned inward and ended up with all sorts of issues....I know U2s are very different, but still, IN MY OPINION you are never going to read this bird if you don't let her out to see what she is actually trying to say with her body language..


3. Make it as safe as you can and then let her out- you aren't going to build trust if she is locked up because you won't be able to read the signals and if you can't read the signals, you can't move forward...and as controversial as clipping is, if your alternative is to wait to bond before letting her out for fear of your ceilings etc..that's an issue...and it will be an issue (1. because it's not doing your bond any favors and 2. because your ceilings aren't going anywhere).....cockatoos are stubborn as heck, so even one that trusts you isn't necessarily the most trustworthy could still chew...although, I imagine this one's presumptive fear/unfamiliarity with your home would likely make her LESS prone to go chewing on random things at this point, but still....I just wish I could emphasize the importance of activity and socialization for these birds--ESPECIALLY if they had a flock before or weren't locked up all the time...You will never learn to read your cockatoo while she is locked up---I would bet a chunk of money on that statement....now, once you know her, you will be able to read her better through the cage, but that will only be because, at that point, she hasn't been locked in the cage for days etc...but if you just keep her in there, I don't imagine you will see much progress...and you could end up with some added aggression in the long-run .

I don't want to put your bird in an unsafe situation, but I fear that leaving her caged will be worse in the long-run...so take it for what it's worth I guess.

Last edited by noodles123; 06-27-2020 at 01:12 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to noodles123 For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 06-27-2020, 12:28 PM
Scott's Avatar
Super Moderator
Parrots:
Goffins: Gabby, Abby, Squeaky, Peanut, Popcorn / Citron: Alice / Eclectus: Angel /Timneh Grey: ET / Blue Fronted Amazon: Gonzo / RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: San Diego, California USA, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Thanks: 97,469
Thanked 49,311 Times in 16,952 Posts
Scott is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

I have no experience with Galahs but understand they have quite different personalities from white cockatoos.

One of our "gold standard" sticky threads may be of benefit - both original post and subsequent dialog: Tips for Bonding and Building Trust
__________________
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 06-27-2020, 01:08 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Umbrella Cockatoo- 13 years old
Join Date: Jul 2018
Thanks: 5,471
Thanked 10,193 Times in 4,119 Posts
noodles123 will become famous soon enough
Re: Help with understanding Galah

Quote: Originally Posted by Scott View Post
I have no experience with Galahs but understand they have quite different personalities from white cockatoos.

One of our "gold standard" sticky threads may be of benefit - both original post and subsequent dialog: Tips for Bonding and Building Trust
I just struggle with this idea of caging until trust is built-- I have met Galahs and hung out- just never owned one..Can't see them being so different that they would bond through a cage without issue---I feel like the only way to learn their body language is to observe them outside of the cage...
I know that white Toos are TOTALLY different, BUT, it has been my experience that all toos act strange when caged and so leaving them in there indefinitely will not help anyone's cause if the goal is bonding--I mean, if they are caged, you have no standard for comparison (and every creature is going to act a bit odd in a cage).

Last edited by noodles123; 06-27-2020 at 01:14 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to noodles123 For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 06-27-2020, 03:10 PM
fiddlejen's Avatar
Supporting Member
Parrots:
Sunny Conure Monkeybird (hatch 9-2018); & pair-o-keets: Mr. Bossypants Jefferson (green stripey watchbudgie) & Miss Calliope the Housekeeping Albino Acrobat (both appx 11/2018)
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: New England
Thanks: 504
Thanked 897 Times in 344 Posts
fiddlejen is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

Quote: Originally Posted by Talven View Post

I can't find the distance Opal is wary or scared as she is simply too active. I can't work out the body language either. There are no obvious signs of clamping feathers, fleeing or anything to suggest fear. Without being able to gauge this how can I attempt to form a bond?
A suggestion from my own experience - with budgies - so likely non-helpful & for all I know Might be poor advice for a 'Too - but -

I have had minimal success training my budgies, partly because I stopped trying Much after I brought Sunny home. But the little success I've had, occurred when working with them slightly After their bedtime.

I work second-shift. I would come home to birdies who had gone to sleep around sundown, & who then awoke for my return home. I would be moving around, eating, watching tv etc., and they would relaxedly (or alertly) watching me . (They would go back to sleep for their second time when I went to bed.) If I tried to work with the budgies in any way in the daytime it was very impossible. But in the evening, fairly soon after coming home when they were still drowsy, they were much more willing cooperative. Sometimes they would step up - Some Times they would even willingly remain on my hand or even my arm or shoulder for some length of time before flying away.

At that point, the gains made at night, would -slightly- improve their daytime interaction as well. Certainly more so than any difference my daytime attempts made.

Anyway. This is only since you mention difficulty in discerning "Play" from "Fear."** Perhaps if you try approaching her when she's sleepy-but-awake, perhaps you Might might get a clearer read on her response to you?

**((Well actually first of all - maybe she's Not afraid? Does she just seems to keep having fun regardless of your proximity? ?? NO change to her behavior? IF IF she's actually not fearful of you, maybe you can just move to the next step? My Sun Conure was Never afraid of me. Not-All birds start out fearful. ?? ))
__________________
_
_



They are not really pets. They are small People with wings and Opinions. They pay no rent, expect you to feed them, & like to destroy stuff.

Last edited by fiddlejen; 06-27-2020 at 03:14 PM.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to fiddlejen For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 06-27-2020, 06:22 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Albino Cockatiel (Ghost) Crimson Bellied Conure (Echo) Yellow Sided Green Cheek Conure (Ari) Pied Kakariki(Inca and Maya) Galah(Opal)
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Australia
Thanks: 134
Thanked 461 Times in 230 Posts
Talven is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

Quote: Originally Posted by fiddlejen View Post
((Well actually first of all - maybe she's Not afraid? Does she just seems to keep having fun regardless of your proximity? ?? NO change to her behavior? IF IF she's actually not fearful of you, maybe you can just move to the next step? My Sun Conure was Never afraid of me. Not-All birds start out fearful. ?? [/i]))
This is not far off the mark actually. She gets wary if I am about 12 - 18 inches from her otherwise she completely ignores me. She was kept indoors after she was fledged and returned to the aviary after she didn't sell. So she is used to human presence. So much so yesterday when I had to put my arm in her cage to change something for safety's sake she jumped on my arm and ran up it to get out of the way rather than the branch that was less than an inch from my arm.

I was using the tips for bonding and building trust thread as my basis for how to handle Opal as it worked for the IRN and Princess parrot that we helped. She was just a lot further along than I anticipated for an aviary bird.

From what I have been able to learn about Galahs building trust through the cage will work quite well. They are very social birds with a tight flock bond so Opal will want to make the bond herself unlike the IRN or the Princess. Once some level of trust has been built of course.

She seems quite relaxed if I have my hand on the cage with my fingers through the bars so I think I will try hand and arm in cage and see where we are at. I feel it is early to be trying this but as she just doesn't seem all that bothered by me I think it may be worth a try. I can always go back to keeping hands outside if it is too much too soon.
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Talven For This Useful Post:
Scott  (06-27-2020)
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 06-29-2020, 06:59 PM
Senior Member
Parrots:
Albino Cockatiel (Ghost) Crimson Bellied Conure (Echo) Yellow Sided Green Cheek Conure (Ari) Pied Kakariki(Inca and Maya) Galah(Opal)
Join Date: May 2019
Location: Australia
Thanks: 134
Thanked 461 Times in 230 Posts
Talven is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

Well first attempt at hands in cage was a no go. I would sit on the floor with the cage door open talking to Opal and she would go about her usual routine after doing that once or twice. She even started to eat with me there. Then I made the mistake of moving my hand. Took of to the highest point she could get in seconds.

A couple of days later and I can rest my hand on the same perch she is on so long as it is about 6in/15cm away and she will happily sit grinding her beak. Totally relaxed to all appearances.

This is massive progress in such a short time.

I'm still having trouble gauging her mood though. She can be sitting on the perch grinding her beak totally relaxed with my hand a short distance away but if I deviate just a tiny bit from her safe zone and she's off. No indication of discomfort or fear she just legs it.

I've worked out the body language if I'm too close and have scared her I just can't seem to get the indicators for her being wary. She seems to go from Yep this is fine I can relax to Nope. Not happening I'm outta here.

Maybe there are some subtle signs that I am missing. Would love to hear from others with 'toos for the subtle hints their birds display. Maybe there is something they have in common that will help?
Reply With Quote
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Talven For This Useful Post:
noodles123 (06-30-2020), Scott  (06-30-2020)
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 06-30-2020, 11:14 AM
Scott's Avatar
Super Moderator
Parrots:
Goffins: Gabby, Abby, Squeaky, Peanut, Popcorn / Citron: Alice / Eclectus: Angel /Timneh Grey: ET / Blue Fronted Amazon: Gonzo / RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: San Diego, California USA, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Thanks: 97,469
Thanked 49,311 Times in 16,952 Posts
Scott is on a distinguished road
Re: Help with understanding Galah

Rejoice, you are making measurable progress. Often a game of two steps forward, one step backward. Avoiding emotional display in the aftermath of slight setback is key, though a hard nip/bite can be rebuffed with a sharp "NO."

Cockatoo body language is far less distinct compared with amazons, no discernible "eye pinning" and minimal "tail fanning." I believe galahs have rising crests though they cover a range of emotions.
__________________
Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Scott For This Useful Post:
Talven (06-30-2020)
Reply

Lower Navigation
Go Back   Parrot Forum - Parrot Owner's Community > Species Specific > Cockatoos

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
A little help in understanding them SunnieOllie Lovebirds 4 12-25-2017 10:04 PM
Understanding, really understanding Tsali Questions and Answers 24 08-01-2016 03:39 AM
Better understanding my GGC Slash Conures 6 01-22-2016 10:52 PM
Kuhli galah can split with Eastern galah? epapagaloi Cockatoos 6 10-22-2014 11:55 AM
So understanding !!! antoinette Off Topic 13 11-06-2013 12:50 PM



Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.