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Old 06-22-2016, 03:36 PM
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Exclamation Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Hello all!

I have been doing some heavy research over the past week and have not found very informative information around the web, hopefully someone will be able to give me some direction here. A week and a half ago I took in a 2 year old male blue crowned conure. This is not my first time having a bird, as my cockatiel passed away two years ago.
I know he is going to take a lot of work and retraining as the old owner did not give him much attention let alone teach him the basics of step-up. I've been working with him everyday in 15 minutes increments but he proceeds to bite me. Which is to be expected after-all I am not from his original flock. He will allow me to give a head scratch here and there but not for long. I can put my hand in and on the cage no problem, he just won't step-up. The previous owner would allow him to sit on her shoulder, but that is a privilege and without the trust I am reluctant to let him do that for long. Any tips to help with getting him to step-up? Also he constantly clings to the bars when inside the cage and does not use his perches, is that a conure thing? I do know it's terrible on their feet but he has no interest in the perches. Any insight that others may have would be appreciated! Thank you!
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Old 06-22-2016, 04:09 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Hi and welcome to the forum. Congratulations on your new addition to the family. You did a wonderful thing adopting him. Blue crowned Conures are Gorgeous and he will bond with you just give him time. Working with him as you are doing in 15 min sessions will help a great deal with the bonding process. You seem to be relaxed about his progress and willing to work at his pace which is great. As to the shoulder privilidges you are indeed right to hold back on that until you both trust each other a whole lot more...you are doing really well if he is already accepting a few head scratches. Might I ask what sort of perches are in his cage snd did you notice what sort of perches he was used of before you got him ? Did you try any natural branches in there. Apple tree branches are great if you can find any...there are many other branches you could use too but be careful to check out that they arent posionous as some types of tree are poisonous and the wood from their branches can kill a parrot...also be sure to clean and make the branches safe before placing them in your conures cage...whats his name? Looking forward to seeing pics soon
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Old 06-22-2016, 04:26 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Hello and welcome! Congratulations on your new addition! Thanks for taking in a bird in need of a home.
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Old 06-22-2016, 05:29 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Welcome! As for head scratches, my JoJo, whom I have had for 18 month, I can roughhouse him, almost anything-- but head scratch! Hates it! No back rubs or neck scritches. I understand that is sexual to them, and that is the approach to the female. I think JoJo may be saying, "Whoa dude, I love you too, but as a fellow brother!"
He does totally love having his beak rubbed!
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Old 06-22-2016, 05:48 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Time, and treats . After you figure out his fav, try making him stand on your fingers to get it, or have to ,at least, use your fingers to get to it.
Sitting next to the cage and reading to him, offering a treat now and then. Thanks for adopting and welcome to the nuthouse. Salty sez
" Bracccck" , his way of welcome.
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Old 06-22-2016, 09:11 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

Hello and welcome to the forum! I have two blue crowns, one of them a 30 something year old rehome from my brother's family (and a couple of homes before then) and another out of a rescue that I have no age or solid history on.

I'll quickly mention the bars thing because both of mine are currently holding onto the bars and refusing to perch for the night about 10 feet from me. We are in the process of moving and are in a hotel room for the 2nd night. They hung on the bars for most of the trip as well, only coming off to eat and drink, and stayed there all night last night. I think it is a stress thing. New surroundings and travel cages. Since both of mine reacted in identical fashion and similar to what your bird is doing it is probably how they deal with it. We will be in our new home tomorrow morning and their normal cages will be delivered around noon so I hope that they will relax with that bit of familiarity. The room they will be in will be off limits to the movers while everything else is unloaded.

I can't say too much about my 30+ year old female Tootsie. She is fully hand tame and about as "well adjusted" as she can be. Although she is a noisy one accounting for upwards of 70% of the noise among my three birds.

Now Rosco, the unknown age male who came from a rescue, could have had similar traits to what your bird has now. He does not like hands. And he would bite me fairly often. It was more of a fearful bite. He didn't do much damage but they were painful. I had to take a hands off approach with him for a while and that worked out good. He learned to accept me being close to him and working around him, but he had a limit to how much he would accept before he would bluff towards my hand then run away.

We were on a very slow but good course when Tootsie finally decided that she would accept his presence and they became buddies. Of course, with a pair bonding that brought in a whole new level because now he started to defend his partner from the intruder (me). Though not something that I would recommend anyone one do, I gave it some thought and decided to take a more heavy handed approach with him. Otherwise I was going to bleed a lot when I tried to touch Tootsie. And his aggression towards me caused friction between them because she tried to reprimand him for lunging at me and that led to a few altercations. So when he acted out towards me, I quickly would cover him and his head and "dominate" him. That is not a tactic I would recommend in your case. Nor anyone else, really. But I felt it was what he needed. And it worked. Though he will still get puffy headed when I interact with Tootsie, we have established between us that I'm allowed to touch her and he won't bite.

After that, our relationship started to really take off. Gradually, he started to grudgingly step up and over time accept me touching him. Now, he is at a point where he will step up in most places and will allow me to manipulate him. Cup him in my hand and flip him on his back and examine him. Comes with some growling but he won't bite. He also willingly comes to me of his own accord and lands on the lid of my laptop and asks "What ya doin?" And he will do touch training with my finger if I point it straight at him. But if I hold it level and ask him to step up, zoom. He is gone.

It takes a lot of patience and time to win their trust. Blue crowns are quite intelligent and emotional birds. The rehome experience your bird just went through was probably pretty traumatic to him but over time he will adjust. To get him to perch, have you tried placing a treat on a perch where he will have to go and get it? Maybe put a trail of small treats across a perch so that he will eat, go a little further to get the next and so on. Hopefully he will soon start to perch.

Wish you the best of luck with him. Keep with the slow patience and you both will see the reward for the effort.
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Old 07-08-2016, 03:48 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

I took in a Blue Crown a couple of years ago.

I just forced the issue on step up, using a glove for the first little while. I wasn't rude, but said step up in a firm voice and reached in. Once the bird is out of the cage (and away from it in another room) you will have a different bird. Then you can take off the glove. By the 2nd week, I was holding the glove for the bird to see and reaching in barehanded. By the third week I never used the glove again. Mine had its wings clipped by a previous owner. (I know there are lots of opinions about that) I think it helps during the training period.

Mine will still threaten to nip me from time to time. It's a automatic response sometimes. Try moving your hand slower. It gives them more time to think. If you don't want to use a glove to get the bird out of the cage try a small hand perch, then transfer to your hand. Once again, walk away from the cage to another room.

Mine doesn't like being petted. I will do it for a second anyway. I handle wings and tail to keep her used to it.

I agree, a shoulder is a privilege which comes with being able to step up on command every time. But for my bird, its the only place she is happy and its the only place she ever wants to be. That being the case, she is an awesome shoulder bird. We have bonded quite a bit by having her ride around on my should while I do house work. I also bought a pirate costume so she could hang out with me on Halloween.

Mine also talks up a storm. The previous owner worked a lot on speech. They are quite capable at talking.

Use spray millet as a treat when training step up/step down. Once they taste it, it is all they can think about. These birds can be very food motivated. Find out what the bird cannot do without and use that.

Get a good sized cage with lots of toys with various textures.

Message me if you have any questions.
CD

Last edited by ChrisDooley; 07-08-2016 at 03:56 PM.
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Old 07-08-2016, 04:09 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

I adopted my Sidney (blue crown conure) a year ago. He will not step up on my hand from the cage so I use a perch and he will step right up on that. He does not particularly like hands. He's gotten better and I can get him on my hand if I am not near his cage. But it's not his favorite thing to do but he gets better and better about it.

He also does not like to be touched. He loves giving kisses and can be affectionate and loves hanging on my shoulder. But on his own terms which is fine with me! Hope all is going well. Give us an update when you can!
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Old 07-09-2016, 10:04 PM
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Re: Help with rehomed Blue crowned conure

I do not recommend forcing a parrot to step up.

I do not recommend using gloves.

If you want a parrot to step up willingly, then you need to work *WITH* the bird, not against them. If you're getting bit, this is the bird's way of trying to say "I'm not comfortable with this situation, please back off". Now, the bird has probably told you in body language to back off, but you 'refused' to, which lead to the bite.


The only bite that can't be rewarded is the bite that never occurs.


This doesn't mean *not* to handle the bird, it means to learn how to read your bird's body language, back off before the bite occurs, and try to learn how to communicate with your bird in order to work with and train them.



This is where positive reinforcement training comes in. What is your bird's favorite treat? Use their favorite treats in order to teach them the behaviors you want.
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