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Old 01-02-2019, 11:15 AM
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Horrible New Year

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Yesterday marked the first time Cheddar has bitten me to the point of bleeding. I am completely saddened by this development. All yesterday he had acted territorial with tail flaring and puffing out. It even got to the point where as I was walking past he flew to me to bite my ear. I gave him his space all day long and he ended up being non combative and eventually turned his back to me as a final Piss off. My wife, however, got the lovey bird treatment and he showered her with love all throughout the day. It ended with him going to be early so he could get a much longer 12-14 hours of sleep. For background information, he is perhaps 8-10 months old and I am the one to usually give him the attention and feedings of snacks and treats throughout the day. Besides the new behavioral developments, he's gone through his first molt with flying colors and otherwise is in peak health. Besides, maybe he eats a few more fruits then he does veggies.


Today brings a new development. After taking him out and putting him on his mobile perch to watch me work around the house he has seemed to have chilled but remains more bitey and moody than usual. Being rather more aggresive over food sources than usual but is drinking and eating the same as always.

As I'm writing this he is sitting on my should preening. and accepting scritches per the norm after a lot of emotion-fueled "research", I am making the assumption that he is going through a hormonal phase and hopefully this won't last through the next couple of months and with proper handling we both will make it out of this relatively unscathed. Am I correct in my assumptions or from this information is something more nefarious afoot? perhaps he has developed a taste for human flesh. Thank you for the read and any insight you can provide.

TLR GCC has been moody and aggressive and turned to shearing my flesh what do?
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Old 01-02-2019, 11:46 AM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Oh those GCC! They run a tight ship! You walk the line or walk the plank!! My GCC bit me this morning with that needle tip, and blood ran down my hand! So I get it. I find it best to forget it and move on....my bite was due to her not getting her night time special one on one love, she also hates my phone, if it's in my hand I get bit, if Im on a phone call she flies to me and bites...I think with GCC you have to accept there will be bites from time to time, I have years with no bites... Then I screw up and get a bite...but as I've said in many posts her soul is ruled by safflower seeds ....
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Old 01-02-2019, 12:00 PM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Just some Conure-ramblings for you...

My thoughts on lighting...
Ever since the Rickeybird hit sexual maturity at about 3-4 years of age, I've had to manage his hormones! If kept on too steady a long day, and too much light, he stayed "in the mood" (aggressive, even louder than usual, pleasuring himself on my neck ) year round. If I keep him on a natural light schedule... up with dawn, down with dusk, year around... THEN he's only a little monster rooster from July to September). He has his own room, so I can do that easily.

And about the biting business ---
I loved Laura's thoughts.
Personally, I have reduced biting to almost zero over the years I've spent with the Rickeybird... and a lot of that has involved compromise. I don't do stuff that gets me bitten. Some will say I have let him get away with too much, and that's a fair criticism, but, well... I'm okay with it. I don't do stuff that makes him mad... I don't touch others when he's out; I rarely try to get him to step up onto my hand first. Hand-held perch first, then hand. In some ways, I'm disappointed/embarassed at having such a little monster for a pet, but he is what he is. I ALWAYS wear my hair down when he's on my shoulder, so all he can bite is hair. Really, I don't involve hands much... he doesn't like them. He seems to think the real ME is my head, perched on a weird moveable tree with questionable appendages.
I have had some success with using the "earthquake" technique for biting. When he bites, give your hand a swift shake... it should make him let go. The idea... every time he bites, a mysterious earthquske shakes him up. Some people feel this is mean and/or engenders lack of trust. The same can work for clothes biting... give your shoulder a shake, or jump! For me, it has helped.
But please... listen to and try all the good advice you'll get here.
Don't compromise until you know you've done your best. Then just accept and love whatever/whoever your bird turns out to be.

My Rickeybird is in some ways kind of a worse-case scenario, but we have it all worked out between the two of us. Parrots run the gamut (just like people) of temperament and mental stability/brain chemistry. Like the proverbial box of chocolates... ya never know what you're gonna get.
Parrot-owners usually wind up determining their own personal comfort level with various behaviors.

Good luck!
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Old 01-02-2019, 12:16 PM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Thanks for the responses I'm going to try and keep him on a natural light cycle and hope that reduces the bites. as for the tight ship, I'm going to try and recognize his warning sighs a bit better because obviously, I've got a long way to go because that lovely little bird got me again in the same exact spot.. my cuticle on my pointer finger will never be the same. Thanks for the advice
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Old 01-02-2019, 12:34 PM
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Re: Horrible New Year

I don't have a conure, I have a bitey parrotlet. You could certainly be dealing with hormones. Beyond that, I have found that a couple of things that cause Bumble to lash out

First, if she's molting, she gets a little crazy, so I always try to be aware of that and, as much as she'll let me, help her with the pinnies or her head by skritching them away.

Second, "it's never the fault of the parrot; it's always the fault of the human." Like Laura and Gail have recounted, birds have rules for us. When we break them, they often bite. For example, Bumble doesn't allow me to wear the color turquoise (I keep trying and I just got reminded again yesterday!). If I find her being unusually carnivorous, I examine the environment. Am I wearing turquoise? Am I wearing something new? Have I changed my hair? New glasses? Did I rearrange the furniture? Is it the ugly Christmas sweater she hates? Am I crinkling a lot of bags? Is the bathroom door open? And so on, until I narrow down what she's reacting to. And my understanding is that the reason they bite us in these situations is that they're trying to warn us of danger, and the squawking hasn't worked so they need to move on to a more forceful approach. So if I can alleviate the "danger" (by closing the bathroom door), I do. If not, well, so far I haven't found an "if not."

There are also some really good threads on bite pressure training that might help. Bumble usually gives me a gentle warning first.

Good luck!
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Old 01-02-2019, 01:10 PM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Oh yes the GCC quickly realizes the spots that hurt the most!!! Cuticle bites are Ta-dah favorite, my bite today was right next to my thumbnail! I have multiple birds so I get to witness their squabbles, it's quick punching sparing with the beak or they bite each other feet for maximum effect, then they are done and snuggle preening each other. So I take my que from them, it's just not a big deal ..us humans live a pretty soft life, lol , maybe the pain makes you feel more alive? My Quaker rarely bite and if they do it's just a little pinch, I much prefer their bites. If Neptune is with me and he sees Ta-dah about to bite he shuves her so she won't! And if Ta-dah is with me and Neptune looks like he might bite she says no no no! I guess they are the only ones who can punish me, no other burds are allowed to!
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Old 01-02-2019, 07:41 PM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Your stories of the terror of turquoise, The Bathroom Bandit and Ta-Dah the stranged biter have given me hope. I'm sure I'll eventually narrow down the reason. I have a sneaking suspicion it has to do with my zip-up jackets and now that I know some as simple as color can set of a bird the world is my ocean. That or I can just get a Neptune to protect me from my bully.
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Old 01-03-2019, 05:27 AM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Quote: Originally Posted by GaleriaGila View Post
Just some Conure-ramblings for you...

My thoughts on lighting...
Ever since the Rickeybird hit sexual maturity at about 3-4 years of age, I've had to manage his hormones! If kept on too steady a long day, and too much light, he stayed "in the mood" (aggressive, even louder than usual, pleasuring himself on my neck ) year round. If I keep him on a natural light schedule... up with dawn, down with dusk, year around... THEN he's only a little monster rooster from July to September). He has his own room, so I can do that easily.
Can I just ask a question about this? Here where I am in UK it gets dark at about 4pm and light after 8am. Would you keep to those hours for sleep? I assumed it to be simply too long. Sorry if this is too much off topic!
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Old 01-03-2019, 05:34 AM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Syd has been - and probably still will be a biter at times. I have worked out that as long as I behave myself and stick to what he's taught me I'll be relatively safe. Apart from that as long as I avoid ALL scary situations, and actually leave him alone when he's, what I would call grumpy, then I can escape any blood letting. He definitely understands the word 'no', although it produces a temporary hesitation rather than a complete stop. He will eye me head cocked, as if to know if I really mean it, then carry on as if he hadn't heard me. In those situations I take care and remove him with his spare perch rather than let him show me who is boss.
Mostly now we rub along pretty well, but as I have mentioned elsewhere he has trained me well!
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Old 01-03-2019, 07:08 AM
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Re: Horrible New Year

Maybe the new year doesn't feel so horrible now?
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Last edited by Laurasea; 01-03-2019 at 09:10 AM.
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