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Old 11-06-2018, 11:36 AM
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flying and conflictions

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So, i have been taking Lincoln to work with me for the past week and it's been going great. However, the store owners stored a bit of the furniture and what have you in one of our back rooms as they were in the process of trying to find a house, they found one recently and were moving all the stuff out today. I had Lincoln on my shoulder and as they were passing with some of the stuff, he got spooked and took of. Now he FLEW he went a good distance and maintained altitude which I didn't think he was capable of considering how poor of condition his flight feathers are in.

I'm very conflicted. One one side I'm glad to see him fly and being a bird but on the other side I worry if this will affect me being able to take him to work. I'm afraid he might take off, land on another birds cage, and get his feet nipped at, or something like that. Ideally I don't want to get him clipped because I strongly believe birds should be allowed to fly. On the other hand I don't want to stop bringing him to work. It's a large part of his socialization at this point, and he LOVES it. He loves coming here and hanging out. I'd hate to have to go back to leaving at home for the few hours I'm here. (I work part time and my shifts are never more than 4-6 hours so I'm still home most the time)

do you guys have any advice or suggestions??

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Last edited by Owlet; 11-06-2018 at 11:50 AM.
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Old 11-06-2018, 12:17 PM
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Re: flying and conflictions

Wow, that's a tough one. It is amazing how well they are able to fly, even when they are plucked, clipped, injured, etc. Flying to a bird is like walking for us, so if you think about it from that perspective, people are able to walk to some extent even with serious injuries, partial amputations, etc. It's just an innate ability...And if Lincoln was actually able to get altitude as opposed to just flying forward, then that means that he could very easily catch a breeze and take-off and up, and gone...

I would be very weary of letting him outside while he's free, simply because you know he's able to get altitude and take-off. It usually is a sudden noise or a person suddenly walking by them, something like this that suddenly startles them that causes them to just automatically take-off without even thinking about it. That's how Mark lost Maggie, who was an expert-trained Free-Flight bird. If I remember correctly Mark was flying her in the same place that he flew her every day for months to years with no issues, and when Maggie was coming-in to land back on Mark, someone nearby knocked a ladder over, which spooked Maggie, and instead of landing she took-off and never even looked back...So that's what you have to worry about, well that and the wind. As we all know very well, birds who have just been clipped often take-off and fly for miles and miles just on the wind.

I wouldn't want to stop bringing Lincoln into work with you either. I'm assuming that Lincoln has never worn a harness, correct? That would be a first option, buy an Aviator Harness and see how Lincoln takes to it, but as we all know this can go very well, or it can take months and months to get them to even accept putting the Harness over their heads. So that probably isn't going to be a short-term option, but something to think about.

Couldn't you bring Lincoln to work inside of a carrier? That would completely solve the issue of having to bring him to and from work. That's probably the easiest and quickest solution to that particular part of the problem, getting him a carrier, if you don't already have one for him, and that way there is no worry about him taking-off outside and losing him...

As far as keeping him off of the other bird's cages so he doesn't get his feet bitten, which does happen often, I speak from experience on this one (Kane does not appreciate Bowie landing on his cage top AT ALL), that's a whole other problem, and the solution is going to be based on how the shop is set-up, and what areas you are able to keep Lincoln in. I don't know where you typically have him while you're working, whether he's out in the shop on a stand, or in a room in the back, etc. I don't think this is nearly as large an issue as the transporting him back and forth from work outside is, because usually when birds land on a cage and they get their feet bitten, they typically learn very quickly to not land there ever again. And this might not be something that Lincoln ever does in the first place, if he hasn't done it so-far then he probably isn't going to start, and the nice think about him being able to fly is that if he does land on another bird's cage, he will be able to fly off of it very quickly. I think this issue is just going to be a matter of whether Lincoln starts to test-out his flight abilities inside in the first place, and what your options are for keeping him in the store. It may just be a matter of locating him in/on a cage or stand of his own in a part of the store that is not a danger to him. I think you'll be able to figure this issue out without a problem...It's the taking him outside while he's free to fly-off that is the huge and scary problem...

I think the carrier option is probably going to be the best solution for transporting him back and forth as of right now; you can always buy him an Aviator Harness and start training him to wear it now, and when he's finally accepted and wearing the Harness then you can start taking him outside with it on. That way you don't have to stop taking him to work right now, and you'll have an even better option in the future for taking him with you.

***If you don't already have a carrier for Lincoln, you don't need to buy a really expensive one right this minute, like a Pak-O-Bird that costs a couple hundred dollars, unless you want to. If you can afford to buy a Pak-O-Bird then that's probably the best options, as it allows them to see outside all around them (always try to find a used one on Craigslist, eBay, Amazon, etc. first, there are quite a few pre-owned ones out there for sale)...However, you can easily modify a plastic dog carrier for him and they work great. I have done a couple of them where I added a perch inside the carriers and then also clamped a stainless-steel bowl onto the inside of the door for long trips, but this isn't really necessary for short trips. You don't even really need to add a perch if you don't want to, but if you want to it's very easy. Since you're just going to have him inside it from the time you walk out of your home, go to your car, for the car ride, and then the walk from the car to the door of your work, you can easily just put a blanket inside the carrier for him, and when it's very cold out you just cover the entire carrier with another blanket while you're walking to and from the car.

He'll be fine, it's much better for him to continue to go to work with you inside of a safe, latched carrier if he loves it so much, rather than to sit at home alone.
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Old 11-06-2018, 12:31 PM
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Re: flying and conflictions

I actually already have a pak-o-bird and I transport him in that, but i also bring his T-stand and set that up in the front of the shop. Right now the shop is set up in 2 halves essentially, the front half has all the toys and other parrot supplies as well as a few stands for our more social birds to hang out on and then the "main floor" which has all the other cages and what not. We also have a couple side rooms (breeders and boarding) but those are generally behind closed doors as they're employee only rooms (unless you're picking up your bird from boarding)

As for harnesses, I have tried 2 different types of harnesses and they are a lot cause with Lincoln. he is too touch phobic for them and honestly I don't have much hope of ever being able to train him to wear one.
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Old 11-08-2018, 11:00 AM
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Re: flying and conflictions

Its GREAT that Lincoln can fly, but if ther is a chanch he could hurt him self in the shop OR go sailing right out the front door, I would clip him for now. Believe me, I;\'ve had a dearly loved parrot fly away, I dont think there a worse feeling in the world - maybe loosing a child is worse.
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