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cokeclassic 04-14-2012 09:40 PM

Conure Plucking?!

I took my 10 month old conure to the vet yesterday because his feathers were turning black. The vet said that this was normal, and that he's been plucking his wings off but that's not a big deal, just give him a little more attention. She said that his blood feathers were coming out so it was okay if he plucked them out.

Today, when I let him out of the cage in the evening, he was like this:

imgur: the simple image sharer

He's plucked it out it seems, and as you can see his feathers are all black. Does he have some sort of serious plucking disorder or something that I should have checked at a different vet?

cokeclassic 04-14-2012 09:42 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
He just pulled it off by the way, he looks like he has for the last two weeks now so I don't know if he's been doing this a lot. Is he molting? How can I help him?

thebirdnerd 04-14-2012 10:09 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
What diet are you feeding him? If he gets a lot of seeds and nuts the oils in them can be causing the dark feathers. Also, have you actually witnessed him plucking or just found the feathers on the bottom of the cage?.. Some feathers will fall out when the bird preens as well...One last thought..I would be concerned if your vet doesn't seem worried if you bird is plucking...Often it is a symptom that something else might be wrong with the bird...I would consider finding another vet...Hope this helps and good luck.

Roxy_9_2011 04-14-2012 10:44 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
For my GCC it's molting season...I don't know if it's the same time of year for all GCCs. But at first I was worried Roxy was plucking too cause a wing feather, and 2 tail feathers were on the floor of her cage (but only 1 feather per day, not all at the same time). My reputable breeder told me it's just the season to molt. So maybe it is for your conure too? Sorry I don't have a definitive answer! And I too would consider to look around for other vets just in case.

Pedro 04-14-2012 11:15 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!

Originally Posted by cokeclassic (Post 141426)
He just pulled it off by the way, he looks like he has for the last two weeks now so I don't know if he's been doing this a lot. Is he molting? How can I help him?

I am sure it is safe to say he is molting which your Vet has confirmed by mentioning blood feathers coming in. The feathers that are coming loose are the old feathers. Because they are ready to come out it appears your bird is plucking. Actually they just fall out as your bird preens.

The black on the feathers, my guess because they are just appearing would be bronzing caused by rubbing the color from the feathers either by handling or your bird rubbing up against something in his cage.

If your bird is in fact molting & I suggest it is all you need do is make sure he is on a well balanced diet & give him lots of showers.

Bobioden 04-14-2012 11:37 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
Green Cheeks are not normally pluckers. Are you sure he is not going through his first molt? How big is the cage he is living in?

As mentioned by thebirdnerd, diet is a major thing. If he is on seed, try to get him weaned to a pellet diet as soon as possible. Give him lots of fresh and frozen fruits and veggies.

cokeclassic 04-15-2012 12:43 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
He's on a pellet diet, but I feed him seeds as treats.

His wings (the blue ones) started coming out for the first time last month and they're still growing out so I guess he is still molting for the first time.

His cage is 18 x 18 x 30, but I have a big one that I use in the summer.

How can I help him? I only shower him once every few days but he usually takes a bath in his own water bowl.

cdog 04-15-2012 12:59 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
That cage is too small for a gcc.

Pedro 04-15-2012 04:10 PM

Re: Conure Plucking?!
The cage isn't to bad a size for 1 bird especially when they have ample time out for exercise. I think it's an OK size if it's 18 highX18wideX30long. I have a GCC in quarantine in that size cage.

You can't help with their molt. It just comes natural & your bird knows what to do. You don't even have to bother with the showers if he is using his water bowl daily.
You could add a variety of fruit & veg to the diet.

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