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General Health Care Remember to use common sense and consult with an avian veterinarian.

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Old 02-07-2010, 05:05 AM
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beak, scratching

Hi,

My parrot, for some reason scratches his beak a lot . I've only bought him yesterday so im not sure if its something to worry about or not... bit his beak now has some lines indicating his scratching on the cage bars...

Would aprreciate any advice.

thanks
Samad
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Old 02-07-2010, 05:40 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Hi Samad
So exiting having a new bird, the learning phase never ever stops.

I'm reading a book called The African Grey Parrot handbook.
Very interesting article about bird's beaks.

Birds don't have fingers and they I don't have teeth.
How do they pick things up? How do they eat?
They use their beaks.
Beaks are tough and strong. They can dig holes and crack nuts and cut meat.
Beaks are sensitive, like human fingertips. They can feel when they touch a worm underground, or even when a worm wiggles in the dirt nearby.
Beaks come in all shapes and sizes, but every bird has a beak. They use their beaks to crack open the shell of the egg when they're hatching. They use their beaks to build their nests, to clean their feathers, and to carry food to their babies.
But mostly, birds use their beaks to eat. You can even tell what kind of food a bird eats by looking at its beak.
Remember we are all here to assist, helping one another.
Read through many of our interesting post, sure you will find useful tips and advise.
Take care
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Old 02-07-2010, 06:30 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Hi, welcome to the forum - you've come to the right place! Antionette is spot on and there are many articles giving relevant facts on beaks. I would recommend that you take your bird to the vet for a check up. Its nothing serious and the vet will do a thorough check to see if everything is ok. They will check the beak, wings, nails and general health. Your mind will then be put to ease. Good luck, keep us posted. Does your parrot have toys to place with that he/she can chew?
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Old 02-07-2010, 10:05 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Congrats. on new bird and enjoy. The beaks are scratched for different reasons. Sometimes after eating to clean it off. Other reasons may be to scratch it or just excitement. Nothing to worry about. You can lightly scratch the beak as a bonding process.
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Old 02-07-2010, 10:20 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

My first big bird was a B&G. His name is Papagayo. When he was young, he had a beautiful, black, shiny beak. Then he began rubbing it on his perches. I did take him to the vet and she said that was normal, although their beak wasn't as pretty anymore. They do rub their beaks to clean them, sharpen them and since they have a lot of nerves in their beaks, may just be rubbing because it feels good. I know some of my birds love to have their beaks rubbed. Anyway, that's my two cents.
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Old 02-07-2010, 10:44 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Yup, very normal.

A vet (or an experienced bird groomer) can sand/polish the beak to keep it pretty. This is more common with juvenile birds - their beaks grow and get pretty ragged.

A well groomed beak is mainly just an aesthetic issue, however buffing out any rough patches or jagged edges will prevent it from getting caught on cloth or rope which could chip off a bigger piece.

When Auggie was between 1 + 2 years old he went into the vet every couple of months for a beak grooming. They'd sand it down, 'trim' some parts, and put on a bit of mineral oil. He came back prettier and happier. After a couple years old his beak stayed in much better condition longer. He has not been in for 'beak-service' for at least 2 years, maybe more - and it's still in good condition.

So, overall, I doubt it's anything to worry about. But a trip to the vet could put your mind at ease and get his beak cleaned up - he might like it. Auggie never really enjoyed the process, but it wasn't too bad - but he did enjoy the results.
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Old 02-07-2010, 11:14 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Riley rubs his beak on the cage bars quite alot. He either likes the sound it makes or feels good because he laughs while he is doing it.
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Old 02-08-2010, 05:07 AM
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Re: beak, scratching

Thanks for all the replies. I suppose it isnt anything serious... i thought perhaps its itchy or has a cold.. I really feel like scratching my nose when ive got a cold

anyway, thanks for all your help
Samad
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Old 02-08-2010, 04:01 PM
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Re: beak, scratching

I can't find it now...but my husband read something to me about when your parrot rubs his beak on you he's marking you as his. Kind of like a cat. I don't know how true this is and I can't seem to find this now, but I thought it was kind of cool.
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