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Old 09-13-2018, 07:14 AM
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Is there something wrong with my conure?

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Please help! I've bought a pineapple conure just over a week ago, she's about 1 years old . Just about 2-3 days ago she would lower her head whilst on her perch , feathers looking flat and smooth , wings close to body and slightly quivering, her tail pointing downwards with her back towards me overall it looked like she was crouching or about to jump/fly, she holds this position and starts screaming (a ear piercing screech ) for hours. Her wings are not clipped and since I only had her for a week it's best to give her more time to settle down before handling her .What I am concerned is is shes in any distress or discomfort?

Does anyone know what this means? she would do this everyday . I've tried to give her treats, spend time with her and showing her new toys but she doesn't seem interested. Any advice/info would be much appreciated! Please help!!
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Old 09-13-2018, 07:41 AM
Momma to Mochi- Cinnamon Green Cheeked Conure. Hatched 4/18/16 And the new baby, Romeo- Hahn's Macaw. Hatched 4/26/18
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

I'd start handling her slowly. It almost sounds like she lost her friends and is just scared. Dont reach in and grab, but if its a new cage, thats a stress reaction especially if she was with other feathered friends. Poking treats at her is super scary, so id just add them to the food dish if youre not handling her. Id grab a chair, open the door, and just sit. Let her come to you. More than likely she wants out and to start bonding with you, provided shes free and clear of any medical issues. It just cant be done in an enclosed cage. Mochi does the bouncy thing when hes begging for what were having for dinner, but he faces us.
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Old 09-13-2018, 07:49 AM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

yes, there's no set time in regards to handling. It sounds like she's frightened and wondering where her family have gone, slowly try to get her used to your presence with the suggested way above. Try not to react to any of her screaming for the time being as that can easily compound the issue and make it worse
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Old 09-13-2018, 08:13 AM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

Here's some reading on bonding for you.

Tips for Bonding and Building Trust

General Parrot Information - Parrot Forum - Parrot Owner's Community

Those moves might be some sexual/mating posturing, yep. In any event, most of us swear by our avian vets in the event of health concerns. I don't know where you are, but here are some links. I only have USA info...

Certified Avian Vets
If none are near you...
Avian Veterinarians
In my opinion, any of the vets listed here should be better than a regular vet.

What's her diet? That's critical for health. Too many are kept on seeds or other poor-nutrition things. They need veggies, legumes, grains... pellets are a good staple. Here's what I use.
Harrison's Bird Foods

I feed Harrison's, 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, like fruits and vegetables! 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. Pellets are out all day... fresh treats a few times a day. I also like Harrison's via mail because I never have to worry about out-of-date products.

Since you're new parront, I'll just drop a thought about avoiding teflon pans, which are lethal to birds.

I'm glad you're here. Lots to learn and share and enjoy!
My Rickeybird
34 year old Patagonian Conure
The Artist. He chews holes -uh- designs - in cloth. I sell them in my eBay art store, Galeria Pet Portraits.
The Scrapbook. 1984-?.
The Star. Cinema verite!
The Pet of the Day. Suggest one!

Last edited by GaleriaGila; 09-13-2018 at 08:15 AM.
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Old 09-13-2018, 06:30 PM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

Sounds scared....It can take months for birds....if they are really traumatized, years...
My bird didn't let me touch her for an entire month (shook when I walked near the cage but then would take food from me sometimes, so it WAS confusing.)

You need to build trust by doing quiet safe things near the cage- just getting your bird to understand that you are new, but not a threat.

TIME....LOTS AND LOTS OF's pace...maybe slower.

Also-- you should always get baseline blood-work and gram-stains done anytime you get a new bird....Certified Avian Vet (CAV)- pronto...Even though the behavior sounds fearful, you need to make sure everything is okay biologically.
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Old 09-14-2018, 05:52 AM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

Thank you for all the replies! I feel more reassured now,I guess the main thing is to be very patient with her...
She is still unfortunately doing the same thing crouching on her perch and screaming everyday......The only time she seems to quiet down is when I feed her favourite fruit(pears and grapes) or when I clean her cage (Probably scared to make any sound?). Will take her to the vets for check up if there is still no improvements in her screaming ..
Looking to add pellets as part of her main diet, for now she's only willing to eat seeds and fresh fruit...I've tried giving her fresh veg chopped into small pieces/cubes such as sweetcorn,carrot,tomatoes,lettuce, green peas,potatoes and broccoli - but she doesn't eat any of it....
I am running out of ideas on what to do. i guess the main thing I can do is give her more time to settle and try to encourage her to eat a more healthy diet!
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Old 09-14-2018, 06:01 AM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

I'm not sure we can sure the screaming is fear-based without more analysis/details.

Google how to make an A-B-C chart (antecedent, behavior, consequence)--it's part of ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) and it works for people and animals...

A=This is a way to keep track of what is happening right before a behavior (Antecedent)---this would include time, activity, people around the bird etc... whatever you are doing etc IMMEDIATELY before the behavior
B=The behavior itself (screaming)
C=The result (Consequence)- what you and everyone else does IMMEDIATELY after the scream--THIS DOES NOT HAVE TO BE A CONSEQUENCE like we traditionally tend to think of; it is ANY result that occurs immediately following the behavior)--Do you look at the bird, do you walk over to it, is the bird moved from on location to another, do you cover the cage, do you sing a song, do you walk away, make eye contact, do you say "no", do other people enter or leave the room, do you bring it a snack, does a dog bark, do babies cry.....?

Most behavior is linked to meeting one of 4 functions. All behavior has a function.
The 4 main functions of behavior are:
a. attention, b.escape from a situation, individual or demand, c. to get tangible items or treats, d. to meet a sensory need such as scratching an itch or eating when really hungry.

These don't always appear in such a linear fashion in real-life, and a behavior can serve a 2-part function, such as Escape to Attention, but for now, just focus on the basics.

Based on the results of your ABC chart, you will look at the consequence section and try to categorize responses according to the 4 functions above--following the scream, do you :

1.provide anything tangible (toys, favorite treat, etc)? you or any other people/animals provide any sort of attention (including eye-contact/proximity/verbal/physical)? demands on the bird get removed or do people go away (escape)?
4.does some sensory /physical need get met or attended to (feeding when ACTUALLY hungry, providing water, dimming the lights, hormone swings etc etc)?

After you determine what category most of the consequences fall in, then that is likely that that consequence's category (attention, escape, tangible or sensory) is linked to the function of your bird's behavior (because the screaming has increased over time). The more a behavior occurs following a response, the more you can assume that the response is linked to the function (reason) for the behavior.

Reinforcement occurs when any of the 4 functions are met by a response to that behavior (people and animals only do the bare minimum to get their needs met). If a behavior is happening all of the time, it is being reinforced.

When you figure out what is reinforcing your bird's screaming, then you can find a SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE MEANS OF MEETING THOSE SAME NEEDS WITHOUT SCREAMING. You have to teach a replacement behavior that allows the bird to meet the same needs in a less obnoxious way.

Additionally, once you know the function of the screaming, you will want to remove any reinforcement following those screams....
SO for example: if a bird screams and a person is certain that it is attention-seeking, then anytime that bird screams, the person should leave the room and cut-off ALL attention. The bird wants attention, so it will have to be taught an alternative to screaming (talking, ringing a bell, doing a dance etc etc). When the preferred behavior occurs, then the person pours on the attention....They will IGNORE behaviors that are undesired IF linked to attention.

Last edited by noodles123; 09-14-2018 at 06:38 AM.
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Old 09-14-2018, 09:29 AM
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Re: Is there something wrong with my conure?

Is there any way you can take a video of her doing this and post a link to it so we can see exactly what it is that she's doing? That would be helpful...

I know you've only had her for a week, but where did you get her from? You said she's a year old, so I'm assuming she had a home/owner prior to you bringing her home. I'm just wondering how much of her history you are actually aware of, because for all you know she has been doing this for a long time prior to you bringing her home...Also, you have no idea whether or not there has been a health/medical issue for a long time and the prior owner or breeder was just ignoring it because they were trying to sell her/unload the problems onto someone else...I'm sorry to say that the way that I did, but this is how you have to think when dealing with re-homed birds unfortunately...You never know what their "real" history is, regardless of what the prior owners or the breeder has told you...

****I would highly suggest that you find either a Certified Avian Vet or an Avian Specialist Vet and get her there ASAP...You should always take any new bird you bring home to a CAV for an overall "wellness-exam" within the first couple of weeks of owning them anyway, and in your bird's situation it's just another reason to do so ASAP.

She may just be really freaked-out about going to a new home with a new owner, but honestly, to me her reaction as you are describing it sounds quite extreme and not something that you normally see with a Green Cheek in a new home, unless the bird has been abused, or the bird was just completely neglected and is not at all used to being around people, going outside, or seeing anything but the same room it's been sitting in behind a shut door and the cage door it's entire life. If you had said she was an Umbrella or Moluccan Cockatoo that you just brought home i'd tell you this is almost normal, or at least not surprising, but with a Green Cheek it just seems very extreme, even if she's a wild, parent-raised Green Cheek that has never been handled...

I'd be interested in hearing any of her history that you know regarding where you got her, how many owners she has had, did she come with a Hatch-Certificate documenting her age or a DNA-Certificate confirming she's a female, was she around any other animals like cats or dogs, any other birds, were there any small kids who may have been tormenting her, was she paid much attention to at all, etc. But honestly, the possibility that she's sick or in pain/discomfort is great enough that I would absolutely push-up her regular Wellness-Exam and get her to a CAV by Monday if at all possible. And make sure it's a Certified Avian Vet or an Avian Specialist and not an "Exotic's Vet" who sees all types of animals, as in this situation you absolutely need an Avian Vet who knows what to look for and what tests to run...
"Dance Like Nobody's Watching".
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