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Old 02-17-2012, 07:57 PM
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New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

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Hello everyone! I am new here. My name is Fletcher and I am the lucky 'Mommy' to a wonderful baby Sun Conure, named Ziggy.

A little about Ziggy- Ziggy was hatched August 5, 2011. I work at a pet store and Ziggy was sent to us November 13, 2011. It was literally love at first sight. Ziggy was absolutely the most wonderful baby bird I had ever met. He immediately wanted to be held and cuddled. He loved going down our shirts and sitting there for hours. He learned to say "step up" within the first 2 weeks of being there and learned to actually step up within hours of his first day with us. He is a very smart baby!

On December 17, 2011 I bought Ziggy and brought him home. Ziggy is such an angel. He says several things- "step up", "baby bird", "whatcha doin?", "good bird", and he makes kissy noises. He loves to lay on his back for hours and kick me in the face. He still loves to go down shirts and snuggle. He is such a funny little guy!

Within the last few weeks, I have started having some problems with Ziggy. I know it is something I am doing and I want to address it and fix it before it becomes a huge problem.

My first problem with Ziggy is biting. At first he was just doing the baby nibbles, which wasn't an issue. Now he is starting to bite when he doesn't get his way or when he has to do something he doesn't want to do. This has also led to him just biting for no reason. And he is not baby biting anymore. This is the hard, bruising type bites. I have tried ignoring it and just letting him bite but that doesn't seem to work. I have also tried to get his attention on something else, which also doesn't work. I am not sure what else do to.

My second problem with Ziggy is he wants to be with me 24/7. I bought Ziggy because I could not stand to think about him going to some random person who may not care for him. He is such a special little guy. I knew I had the means and time to give him a wonderful home. I am worried I am over doing it, if that's even possible? I am a college student and I also work part time at the pet store. When I am not in school or at work, Ziggy is out. This could add up to 5-7 hours out of his cage per day! When Ziggy is out, he will not play with his toys or eat his favorite snacks. He wants to sit on my chin/head/shoulder and bite me over and over. He wants to kick me in the face or bite at my nose or eyes. I am starting to dread coming home because I know I am going to have to deal with this behavior for hours and I do not want to feel that way about him. I cannot get him to play on his own. He will grab his snack and climb up me to eat it, then climb back down to get another snack. The process goes on over and over and over. I feel guilty if I am at home and he is locked up so he stays out. When he is in his cage, he is fine, and plays for hours. Is it possible I am overdoing the attention thing? I want to enjoy playing with him and be excited to see him. I am not feeling that way here lately though.

Sorry this is so long. I hope someone can help me with my issues with him. I am sure it is something I am doing. I want to fix it. Thank you in advance.

Ziggy!
New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.-408135_193455997417362_100002588893324_355563_1535376286_n.jpg
New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.-419646_213696392059989_100002588893324_402131_1003917137_n.jpg
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Old 02-17-2012, 08:08 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

just saying hi and your baby Ziggy is very cute
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Old 02-17-2012, 08:14 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

It's not you. Ziggy is being a normal baby conure for his age!

He is testing boundaries. For the biting, this is what I did with my Nanday. I would tell her, "Don't!" and immediately put her on her play gym, and ignore her for a couple of minutes. I did have to clip her wings so she couldn't just fly back to me. Then I would pick her back up. If she was nice, she got to be with me. If she wasn't, back on the play gym she went to be ignored.

He is always going to want to be with you though. I taught mine to say, "Hey hey" for a contact call instead of screech for me. Why hey hey? I just heard her say "Hey" one day so I knew it was easy for her to say. She is almost 12 now and still contact calls me whenever she can't see me. So we call "hey hey" back and forth. They just want to know where their flock is, and that you are ok. I do spend as much time as I can in the bird room. I eat in here, my computer is in here and so is my best TV.

You might want to get a play gym on wheels that you can take to other rooms with you so the bird can be with you as much as possible. I have a couple of those so they can come with me if I need to clean or something that is going to take awhile.

Oh, and there's nothing wrong with Ziggy spending some of that time in his cage where he will learn to entertain himself with toys!
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Old 02-17-2012, 08:57 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

I think your over doing it a bit. You have spoiled him in the beginning & you haven't taught him to be independent. This behavior is a learned behavior & i am afraid your the one that has taught your baby to be so naughty. All is not lost though, you have to now teach him how to be a good bird. so i will give you some links to read through. If you can understand why your bird is biting you, it will be easier for you to fix things.

CPS 1999 - Managing Parrot Behavior: Behaviour Problems and the Future of Companion Parrots by Liz Wilson
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Old 02-17-2012, 11:46 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

Ah a fellow pet store worker who got sucked in by the feathered cuteness It is hard to resist them. I already brought one home and am trying to bring another. Roxy is right. He is just trying to test his boundaries. Just be consistent with his training and things will work out
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:35 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

Thank you all so much for the advice. I apologize for taking so long to reply back. We have been without Internet for awhile. Ziggy is getting better with his biting. We are learning to play independently, as suggested. He plays by himself for an hour or so, then we play together for awhile. He is out most of the day. I do agree that he needs to learn to play in his cage- which he does wonderfully as long as I am in the room. He loves toys and loves to shred them. If I am not in the room, he sits and talks to himself. I have debated on getting him a buddy. I worry he is lonely when I am gone since he will not play. He has the tv on and a huge fish tank to watch, but I still worry.

Any suggestions on a second bird or whether that is a bad idea? I would like to get a rescue this time if I get him a buddy.
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:41 PM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

Oh, and thank you all for the kind words about my Ziggy.. I am quite smitten over this little guy

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Old 04-25-2012, 12:58 AM
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Re: New here.. In search of advice about my Sun.

I would suggest that you wait on getting a "buddy" bird. Most birds will allow another bird to some extent but really there is no telling whether they will get along or not. Often times birds will become jealous when another flock member is introduced. It sounds like he has a lot of time out and a great deal of interaction with you. Do you think you could handle that amount of time for another bird as well? A second bird is twice the work, twice the mess, and twice the responsibility. Your little guy could also become very hormonal if another bird is introduced. There could be a few positives with adding another bird, but unless it is something you feel is desperately needed I would wait.
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