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Old 12-11-2016, 01:57 PM
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Exclamation Won't Stop SCREAMING!

Recently my conure will not stop screaming. It is currently at the worst it has ever been and it has been this way for days. A few weeks before this it was getting bad, but now it is worse and I need help.

He wakes up around 7 everyday and after I uncovered him, fed him, and turned on a light so he could see he would let me sleep until 10 and he would then start up a fuss to get out. Now he immediately starts screaming at 7am, as loud as he can, and will not stop until I let him out. Sometimes I even have to cover him back up so he will not wake up my neighbor. When he does get out, which is most of the time except for maybe 3-4 hours a day, he is still screaming. I can't distract him for more than a few minutes with his toys before he starts screaming again. I've turned off the TV, turned on the TV, closed the blinds so he can't see the birds flying around outside, none of it is helping. Every time I leave his sight he screeches nonstop until I return.

I've tired switching from birdy bread to more fresh fruits and veggies and mixing his seed with pellets (the pellets were normally just in the birdy bread) and it is not making a change. I even try dropping whatever I am doing when he starts to give him 1-on-1 attention and it only works half of the time. He gets plenty of attention from me and I've began carrying him everywhere with me and he still screams for no reason.

I need some help. I am losing my mind with the screaming and I am trying so hard to make it stop so my neighbor doesn't take issue. Help me please!
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:06 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

I wonder if your bird has hit sexual maturity... that can amp up the noise and possessiveness, etc. How old is your bird?

I worry this may be the new normal... conures are famously loud. You can always try ignoring the screams and "catching the bird being good (quiet") before you reward/return. Others will have more advice. My Patagonian screams in the morning and at dusk, and frequently in between except for his afternoon nap...

As for food... I feed Harrison's Pellets, supplemented by fresh healthy treats. My first, and later, my current avian vet recommended it. My bird loves the pellets now, but to get him converted, my avian vet suggested putting pellets out all day, and putting seeds (his old diet) out for two 15-minute periods a day. That would sustain him but leave him hungry enough to try new stuff. I presume the same technique could be used to get him to eat other healthy stuff. My guy was eating pellets in a couple of days, and now I can feed a good variety of other stuff, knowing he has the pellets as a basic.

Sorry your having such a rough time. Hang in there.

I have bribed neighbors to put up with noise by baking for them, delivering flowers, asking them if I could pick up something for them when I went shopping...
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:14 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

I really hope this isn't the new normal. He is turning 3 in January and I've been worried of how he will act when he's an adult. He has always screamed and thrown a fit when he was unhappy and is super talkative, but his isn't being loud just to be loud. This is something that I just can't believe. I can't imagine that he would find joy screaming as loud as possible literally all day. I've been looking for a companion for him, but it is harder to do than I imagined.
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:18 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

Suns usually mature somewhere around 2...
I'm so sorry. I hope we can help you find a solution.
Others will be along with more ideas.
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Old 12-11-2016, 02:32 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

Ah, the beloved ear ringing of an Aratinga conure! The best way to stop a bird from screaming is to fill its mouth with something instead. I always have to giggle to myself when the vets at my clinic shove a popsicle stick in Shiko's mouth while they trim his nails to stop him from screaming. He ends up shredding the thing up in frustration and stops screaming immediately.

I highly recommend looking into some fun treat foraging activities for your sun conure. Gal is right - chances are your beautiful bird has hit sexual maturity and is singing some morning serenades to let everyone know he's single and ready to mingle. Or that he's extremely sexually frustrated and needs an outlet. Foraging is a great way to do that. It challenges them and it always keeps their beaks busy, and busy beaks make for quiet beaks. Try and find a high value reward (pine nuts tend to be a winner) and create as many unique foraging opportunities as you can in the morning. Prepare them the night before or on the weekend, and when you uncover him in the morning give him the chance to get busy. The more unique and different it is every time, the more likely he is to be enticed.

One idea is this - If you have time, a personal favourite of mine is doing flippy cup bird style. I bought the mini red solo cups that are meant for shots and I put them upside down on a blanket. Under some of the cups are readily available treats, some are filled with tissue paper with nothing, some have treats wrapped in cupcake holders underneath, etc. Get creative. When your bird realizes that flipping the cup over and searching through it gives it a reward, they tend to be ridiculously excited to go through it. The best part is you can have 20+ cups upside down and just keep the game going. Sometimes they get a lot of treats, sometimes they only get one. The random reinforcement keeps them very well engaged.
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Old 12-11-2016, 03:04 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

Dino!
I think that Solo cup idea is great!
I believe that is a foraging activity that even the (not the sharpest knife in the drawer) Rickeybird could figure out!!!!!
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Old 12-11-2016, 05:45 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

It's apparently in the air, as my almost 1-year old make Quaker has started horrible, nonstop screaming, shrieking, running up and down his T-stand nonstop, and for about 2 hours a day he sits on his stand and has a conversation with himself where I can pick out certain words and phrases like "I love you" and "you're my baby", but it's very weird because he does it at a really low mumble to himself (which I'm thankful for since it follows the screaming). I wasn't sure what was going on at first, until yesterday morning when I was walking around feeding everyone and I caught him humping his food dish. That pretty much cleared up the mystery, as did his little episode this morning where he thought that instead of humping his food dish, it would be much more fun to hump Bowie, the male green cheek conure that is about 6 months old...the look of terror on Bowie's face made me both laugh and feel badly, his eyes were popping out of his head as the big, fat, blue bird jumped on his back and started making a new noise that I've never heard before...after rescuing Bowie (many sunflower seeds on a separate stand in a different room) then the Quaker decided to fly over to the new baby Senegal's cage...now Kane is barely 4 months old, also male, and is twice the size of the Quaker...as Kane sat on top of his cage eating a banana chip he kept staring at the Quaker, but he didn't make a peep, just kept eating and staring, as if to say "I saw what you just did to the other one, and I don't suggest you try it again"...finally I couldn't take anymore Quaker hormones so I grabbed him and gave him his weekly bath early, and his preening kept him busy for a few hours. Now he's eaten his dinner and would usually go to bed, but he seems to be wanting to test Kane again. You'd think the baby, male Senegal that has a beak that you're head will fit in would be the last thing you would try to sexually abuse, but not Lita...this time Kane just flew over onto my shoulder, he couldn't be bothered dealing with it again. So now we're running across the kitchen floor at warp speed screaming again...

Does anyone have a female Quaker parrot I could borrow for an hour or two?

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Old 12-11-2016, 08:44 PM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

This is funny, cause Skittles has been more vocal lately too. When he gets to be too noisy, I just put him in his cage and put the cover on for a few minutes.

There must be something going around.

I remember when Skittles hit maturity. What a nightmare those years were!

I'll just say this, screaming constantly is NOT normal nor should it be accepted as normal. Ordinarily, conures don't scream just for the heck of it. There is usually a reason- trick is finding that reason and addressing it. That seems to work best. You just don't want to encourage screaming by running to your conure when they scream, giving him/her treats etc. That just reinforces the screaming.

BUT, if your conure is screaming because they can't get access to their food (or its empty), or they are reacting to a potential threat- those should be addressed.

I should also note, I live in an apartment in public housing- sun conures are NOT apartment birds- but I've made it work. That being said- there are only two other tenants on this floor. One of them is my best friend- the other is a notorious complainer. She doesn't complain much about Skittles- but this neighbor has a reputation for being a nuisance so I don't worry about her. Truth be told, housing cannot stand her so even if she did decide to pitch a fit about Skittles- as long as it was during the day, housing won't do anything. They even told me so. They told me not to worry about that neighbor, if Skittles wants to screech in the daytime, let him screech. My landlord loves me, I'm a very good tenant and that REALLY helps when you have an aratinga conure. lol. That nuisance neighbor will complain if someone in the parking lot doesn't park their car perfectly, or if housing sends out reminder fliers to all tenants during the year. (she'll call them and tell them to stop 'harassing' her).
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:13 AM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

So if Rico is screaming because he is sexually frustrated this will continue all year until he gets a companion to hump? Or does it not last that long out of every year? Because finding a friend is hard and I'm trying, but who knows when I will find one.
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Old 12-12-2016, 11:56 AM
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Re: Won't Stop SCREAMING!

Quote: Originally Posted by MissLarissa View Post
So if Rico is screaming because he is sexually frustrated this will continue all year until he gets a companion to hump? Or does it not last that long out of every year? Because finding a friend is hard and I'm trying, but who knows when I will find one.
No please do not go down this route, your problems will be x 2!

Keep Rico very busy with loads of things to do, foraging toys, chewing toys, preening toys. We have a lot of posts on here re how to make yourself. Rico may be a bit more possessive of things especially if you have a happy hut and his cage. This will potentially last some of the year for a few years. Perhaps engage in some training if he is receptive to it, teach him some tricks, doesn't need to be complex just to keep him busy. Oh and keep his days short if possible.
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