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Old 04-15-2019, 07:17 AM
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New to Ekkies

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Hello everyone!

I adopted an ekkie yesterday and joined here the same time. Iím so glad I did! Iíve been scouring the threads and researching his diet. I made him some great chop that he LOVES! He was on a pelleted diet and his feathers arenít in the greatest condition. Iíll be calling the avian vet here in a few minutes. But anyways, I took him to the shower this morning and he was sooooo happy. He bathed and gave my boyfriend kisses (we kind of bombarded him in his shower). Well I noticed his feathers when wet have these brownish streaks through them, like theyíre just filthy. I wanted to try to get him to shower ASAP because his feathers are so greasy theyíre almost plastered to him. Will the streaks go away with the improvements to his diet and regular showers? Poor guy is so sweet, I just donít think he was given what he needed in his last home. They were really nice people just maybe a bit too busy to have a bird like him.

I know we jumped into this and I do wish I had prepared more but he was a birthday present from my boyfriend. I work from home and heís successfully spent all day out of his cage yesterday. Iíve prepared and baked pecan branches for perches and an activity gym. I will also be going out to get some balsa wood to make him adequate toys.

I have an anklet for him to attach to his band and plan on taking him outside today too. I think heíll so enjoy that.
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Last edited by Lamb; 04-16-2019 at 06:32 PM.
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Old 04-15-2019, 08:42 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

You're doing a fantastic job so far! Keep up the good work.

Things to consider... Coloring... When an Ekkie is wet, it's hard to even tell that he's green, but it returns to the beautiful brightness as soon as he dries. Sounds like he was probably pretty dirty, and hasn't bathed in some time. I wouldn't worry about the color too much just yet. Their feathers are very different from others, kind of hair like. They generally do not like when you "go against the grain" and mess them up. They're very particular about them. Regular bathing will help his feathers a lot. You will see some come around quickly, and some of the rougher ones will wait to get replaced when he molts. He's a handsome boy as he is!

Now... Anklet? If you're proposing to hook a tether of any sort to his leg band, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE DON'T DO THAT! As a practice, to my knowledge, leg chaining is banned in most countries these days. It can cause irreparable injuries if he takes off. Please spend the time to harness train, and then take him outside or wherever. If he's good with being handled, harness training won't be difficult. Just take your time.

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Old 04-15-2019, 09:39 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

Quote: Originally Posted by saxguy64 View Post
You're doing a fantastic job so far! Keep up the good work.

Things to consider... Coloring... When an Ekkie is wet, it's hard to even tell that he's green, but it returns to the beautiful brightness as soon as he dries. Sounds like he was probably pretty dirty, and hasn't bathed in some time. I wouldn't worry about the color too much just yet. Their feathers are very different from others, kind of hair like. They generally do not like when you "go against the grain" and mess them up. They're very particular about them. Regular bathing will help his feathers a lot. You will see some come around quickly, and some of the rougher ones will wait to get replaced when he molts. He's a handsome boy as he is!

Now... Anklet? If you're proposing to hook a tether of any sort to his leg band, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE DON'T DO THAT! As a practice, to my knowledge, leg chaining is banned in most countries these days. It can cause irreparable injuries if he takes off. Please spend the time to harness train, and then take him outside or wherever. If he's good with being handled, harness training won't be difficult. Just take your time.

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His previous owners said they used that on him. Had no idea it could hurt him! As Iíve seen quite a few people use systems like this. He did let me see his wings today. I didnít think they were clipped but a few of his flight feathers are butchered. Not sure if they were clipped or he chewed them. 😓

With that being said, I wouldnít feel comfortable taking him outside without something. Iíll likely wait but the poor guy was kept in a very dark room without a window uncovered. I have his cage next to a window now and he keeps saying ďwoooowĒ 😭. I think heíd love a chance to go outside.
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Old 04-15-2019, 10:17 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

YES, PLEASE DO NOT EVER ATTACH ANYTHING LIKE A LEAD/LEASH TO HIS LEGS OR FEET!!!! That's awful for parrots, you can only do that with Raptor Birds, like Hawks, Eagles, etc., because their legs are strong enough to handle it...Parrots and other non-Raptor Birds will very often dislocate their Hips, their Knees, Ankles, actually lose their feet/toes completely, and can also sustain internal-injuries in their abdomens/chests and also their necks from attaching ANY TYPE OF ROPE/LEAD/LEASH/ANKLET to their feet, legs, etc.

If you want to take him outside, you MUST either take him outside in either a cage or a carrier of some kind, OR you must order him a proper Harness and Leash that is made specifically for Parrots, and in which the Harness goes around his body just like a dog's Harness...The overall safest and most easily accepted by the parrot and used by long-time Parrot owners is the Aviator Harness, and I highly suggest that you order one for him now, and then watch the training DVD as soon as it arrives (it's also on YouTube I believe if you search for "Aviator Harness Training" and find the official training video that comes with them when you order the Aviator Harness...You cannot just put it on him and take him outside and expect it to be okay, especially with an Eclectus you just adopted from another home, as it usually takes an average of about 3 months of daily training-sessions to get the bird to accept you putting it on them and then also just wearing it without chewing on it constantly...Some birds love them and learn much more quickly, some it takes longer, but it's not optional, do not just try to put it on him when it arrives, that will end badly and you'll most likely lose any of his trust that you've already earned, you have to train him to accept it slowly over time....

****That being said, these are your ONLY OPTIONS for taking him outside, either in a cage/carrier or on an appropriate Parrot Harness/Leash...NOTHING ON HIS ANKLES/FEET/KNEES/LEGS!!!!! You WILL HURT HIM BADLY if you use that Anklet thing...And another thing, you cannot just clip his wings and take him outside without being inside a cage/carrier or wearing a Harness/Leash either, because Parrots with clipped-wings get lost every single day, hundreds of them, because people think they cannot fly away outside because they can't fly inside...NOT TRUE! They can easily fly for 10 miles with the wind/breeze/air-currents (the same exact principle as one of those Glider Planes with no engine)...So please don't EVER take him outside without being in a cage/carrier, or after you properly train him to accept wearing an Aviator Harness and Leash...

Sorry to ruin that for you, but trust me, it's better he stay inside all the time until you properly train him to wear the Aviator Harness or you put him in a cage/carrier than it is to either lose him forever or cause him a horrible Orthopedic injury with that Anklet/Lead attached to his ankle/leg/hip or whatever, and then he needs to have a serious Orthopedic surgery done where they have to put screws, pins, and plates inside of his leg/foot/hip and that costs you thousands of dollars to have done...There's nothing wrong with taking him outside in a cage as long as you're outside with him the whole time, and as long as he isn't put under the direct sunlight all the time and can get into some shade if need be. They tend to like just being outside in a cage, although some pet/captive parrots really don't like being outside at all, even on an Aviator Harness, in a cage, etc., as some are very nervous/anxious/scared of Raptor/predator birds flying overhead (Parrots are "Prey Animals", so they do retain the instincts to always protect themselves)...

It is very nice to train them on the Aviator-Harness though, all 4 of my guys go with me all over the place, we take turns and I rotate all 4 of the through, and we go on hikes/walks, mountain biking, shopping, etc. But I did have to train all 4 of them to wear/accept the Aviator Harness, and it took a while for each of the to accept it...But it's worth the wait, once they do accept it, it's a lot of fun and it's good for the bird...But it's not worth putting a Leash/Lead on his ankle or leg anywhere, because you're pretty much guaranteed to injure him pretty quickly if he is startled by something outside and he takes-off...I've seen Parrots at the Rescue I work at who are missing a leg because their prior owners used an ankle or hip Leash/Lead on them like you want to, and their owners couldn't afford the $4,000-$5,000 Orthopedic repair, so they chose to simply amputate their entire leg from the hip-joint down for about $600...So just don't do it, please don't, you'll be sorry eventually if you do...
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Old 04-15-2019, 10:25 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

Aww, that poor little guy! Given the previous living conditions, it's likely he's barbered just from being bored, lonely, or generally stressed. The upside is that he didn't pluck them, which is a hard habit to break once they start.

Definitely don't take him outside without being harnessed. Even clipped birds can still fly enough to get away. Tucker has several broken/missing flight and tail feathers as well, but is now flying around the house like a pro. His were mostly from falls in his cage while hanging from toys. He'll replace them one of these days.

Don't worry about having to change everything all at once. He's only 6, so hopefully you have many years to develop your relationship with him, and figure out what he likes. You're off to a great start, and you have the right mindset to be a wonderful parront. Thank you for asking questions, and being willing to learn. Always keep learning, and listen to him. They're exceptional at telling us what they need- if we know how to listen.

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Old 04-15-2019, 10:42 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

Thank you! I know enough not to let him out without something. Was very hesitant about the ankle thing so I’m glad I received great advice. I’m ordering him a harness now. I saw a few on Etsy. He has an appointment tomorrow so hopefully everything is okay health wise. His feathers look 1000% better after his bath! So I’m glad about that.
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Old 04-15-2019, 11:17 AM
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Re: New to Ekkies

Hi there! Glad you're excited about going outside with him as he probably is

Legs chains are considered the norm in Asia (which might be why his previous owners thought it was ok), but they are illegal in most progressive countries for a reason, as the others mentioned.

Since Cairo is an Asian-born and bred bird, his previous family had put an S-hook on him. I personally witnessed him spooking off with the leg chain on and the reaction that came after. Luckily he didn't break his leg, but he did attack his leg (not the S-hook) for a good 15 minutes after. And I don't mean beaking his leg - I mean biting his leg quite hard. I decided that when he was with us, we'd remove it and harness train him.

While harness training took a little bit of time, he loves his harness!! But that does take time. I just created a video on how Cairo and I did it - will put it in a separate thread. Just a note: Aviator harnesses are somewhat considered the gold standard of harnesses, but you'll eventually learn what works for your little guy.

Since harness training will take a while, maybe try bringing him out in a bird carrier if he isn't scared of them? Even just putting him near a sunny window will no doubt do him some good

I'm so happy to hear he's looking well after his shower!! It sounds like he's in your thoughtful, devoted hands. Hope to hear good news from the vet *fingers crossed
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Old 04-15-2019, 02:17 PM
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Re: New to Ekkies

Lol. First thing I did when we brought him home was move all of my furniture around so he had a bright window to look out of. Where he is is bright most of the day so it’s an improvement in itself but him being in the dark for so long... I’m anxious to let him outside. May have to start my greenhouse/aviary a lot sooner than expected.
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