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Old 06-13-2013, 01:55 AM
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Unhappy My heart is breaking..

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It's been weeks, my yellow sided conure has been really temperamental and has been attacking me, biting me and trying to really pull out some skin, it's to the point I cant stop crying because my sweet natured bird just refuses to be nice.

He bites, lunges, and puffs up gets real mean. I work at a pet store with birds and I'm more scared of my conure than I am to our African grey.

I don't know what to do anymore, my fiancé tells me to sell him, but he's my baby, I can't just do that to him.
I'm in desperate need of help.

I need my Lokito back.
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:27 AM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

How old is he? It's normal for birds to test their boundaries as they go through puberty.
Please don't feel alone with this, you would be surprised at how many people come here with a very similar question and feelings of betrayal from their bird. With some paitence, as well as some training to re build your bond you will have your angel back in no time. One thing to remember is that it's never the birds fault, we must always find the fault within our self and change what we are doing to improve unwanted behavior.

Do you know about touch training? I've taught many of my friends and acquaintances to use this method with their parrots and have had fantastic results. Once you get touch training down start more advance trick training.
Try to avoid the bites in the first place, carefully read his body language and respect him when he is telling you t back away. This shows him that he doesn't have to resort to biting to get a message through. You want to back away at the first sign though, not wait until he is lunging. If we wait until they lunge it tells them we are afraid of their beak and they can control us.

Video about touch training

A video about parrot body language, if you are bored skip to 26 minutes


There is also the power pause, which I have found successful as long as you use it respectfully. This method is most useful when paired with other training methods, such as trick training(a clicker is the best bridge to me), and touch training. As well as being thoughtful towards your bird.

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Last edited by Featheredsamurai; 06-13-2013 at 02:32 AM.
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:57 AM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

I know where you are coming from and it is so frustrating/heartbreaking/mysterious...take your pick! I went through the same thing with my gcc who I love dearly, but she didn't seem to return the sentiment any longer.

The best advice I received...
  1. Read the body language and avoid the bite
  2. touch training
  3. dont take it personally...they are trying to get through to us something we arent understanding...
  4. start at the beginning and read about applied behavior analysis at behaviorworks.org (helped me analyze instead of despair)

Best advice I can give after seeing improvement...
  1. the more anxiety i felt, the more my girl felt. we were both tense...
  2. celebrate small steps in the positive. Being patient is hard. I wanted my sweet bird back, but i had to fix what i was doing (which was trial and error). It took over a month to learn and start getting the results I desired.
  3. Is your bird getting good, quality sleep?

I cried, that's okay. This forum has many wonderful people who understand and offer help/encouragement/an ear/advice. It will get better!
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Old 06-13-2013, 08:11 AM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

I understand. Merlin goes through phases of hating me and hating Andrew. Andrew ended up with all this love from my sweet little baby and I was just the crap on the bottom of his cage! He hates me, I'd be bitten, screamed at, couldn't do anything with him and spent most of my days in tears balling that my sweet baby was no longer mine and no longer sweet and I considered giving him up because I thought there was just no way of working through it and just hoped it was hormones or something.

It was and we worked through it. He still has his days, or even weeks when he just can't stand me for some reason. But we get through it and at the end of that cycle I get my sweetheart back. Everyone has offered good suggestions at how to work through it and I strongly suggest you try them.

Don't give up on your little guy yet. He just needs working with and a bit of tlc. I always say you need to be thick skinned to own a bird, both literally and metaphorically. You cannot take every nip or attack personally. Birds are SO sensitive that the slightest upset can have them in full attack mode for what might seem to you as "no reason" but there usually is one. It's about working out what's making him tick and working around it.

Good luck, keep us updated with your struggles and achievements. Most of us have been there at one point or another so chin up and keep going!
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Old 06-14-2013, 11:32 PM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

So, i looked through the videos, it makes sense and i will be putting them to use, i just bought a UVA/UVB bulb to see if that will help and i clipped his wings.. ( clipping brought me to tears ) I also am wondering, since i work at a pet store, do you think he can smell the birds on me?
Do you think that may be a source of his agression too?
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Old 06-15-2013, 01:52 AM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

This is all too familiar!!! My two have just come off their hormone devil bird spree and are once again their sweet selves. I do shorter times out of the cage but more often, and I reward every single little good behaviour - "oh you stepped up without mauling my finger, have a treat!" I also actively train them while they're out, no downtime to chill (leads to boredom and biting very quickly when they're in that mind set)

It is a horrible time of year and I know how frustrating and heartbreaking it is, but it will pass! How old is he? If he's two or under that's meant to be the worst age bracket, they are meant to calm down after their grumpy adolescence phase.
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Old 06-15-2013, 07:53 PM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

Maybe he should be taken to the vet just to make sure there isn't a physical reason for his biting and lunging. Like, maybe he's hurting somehow? Just a thought. If he is healthy otherwise then I would start again like they say.
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Old 06-15-2013, 09:21 PM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

Parrots have a very poor sense of smell, so he won't be smelling the birds from the store.
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:00 AM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

iIf you can try to get him on a playstand first. Then after hes had his fill of that . See if he will interact with you.
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Old 06-16-2013, 10:45 PM
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Re: My heart is breaking..

Ill try and post a picture of his cage, so you guys can see what's up.
His leg band says he was born 2012 so he's about a year.. It's taking a long time to track his exact hatch date.

When does breeding season typically end?
Will go bird puberty come on and off for years to come?

he lunged at my face today as I was spot cleaning his cage. Was not pleasant.

I sort of created a little play stand at the top of his cage, it's not too great but it's something.
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