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Old 04-29-2020, 08:04 AM
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New Behavior

Hello to all

Its been a bit since I did an update on Squiggy, and he (we still haven't had dna test yet) has been doing very well up until a couple days ago.

He has taken to nibbling on hands and arms. Not just playful little nips, but slightly painful little pinches/bites. Its not just with me, but my wife and daughter as well. At first he starts out like he is doing a preening type thing, but then the little nips start. As I brought him out to get his morning food into his fresh bowl, it started again, and each time I handled him so far. When he starts, I tell him "No Biting" in a stern voice, not loud, and if he continues I move him to his perch, but each time he gets put there he gives what I think is a little grunt of disappointment. As I ignore him, he giving me soft chirps, like "Please come back". When I do go back to get him, it starts again. It got so bad yesterday with our daughter, he was leaving red marks on her arm, after that she didn't even want to try playing with him again.

I know with all that is going on in the world with Covid, that we should be more understanding of what is going on, but my wife and I are considered "essential workers" and continue working, maintaing a set schedule with Squiggy and trying to find time for ourselves and our family too. our weekends are just as hectic, as we have to find time for what couldn't be done during the week.

Could this be because he is feeling a little neglected? which I doubt, because he gets out of cage time as soon as my wife gets home, which includes treats, playtime and eating his dinner with us. Then I am home about 3 hours after her, and he always happy to see me then too.

Is this just him doing aggressive preening or am I missing something? He is only 4 months old, so I am not thinking of it being hormonal, or am I wrong?

Sorry for the long-winded post and thanks in advance for any advice.
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Old 04-29-2020, 09:38 AM
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Re: New Behavior

Could be feeling neglected, but even so, you don't want to accidentally encourage this behavior. You could try the "shunning method" for dealing with the bites--- let me see if I can find the thread that talks about it. EllenD's posts on this threat are about a conure, but much of what she says is good behavioral advice in general. Green cheek biting constantly

Last edited by noodles123; 04-29-2020 at 09:40 AM.
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Old 04-30-2020, 02:00 PM
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Re: New Behavior

Thanks for the reply and link provided. It was very informative, lots of good insight.



The more I read, the more it looks like it may be a hormonal thing over anything else that was pointed out. I realize now, that even at 4 months old, with the way a lot of owners have pointed out about how hormonal their birds have been already, that this may be the case. He must be an early bloomer, maybe not fully mature, but still feeling the effects of the season.



I noted that my wife and daughter always seem to be giving him kisses and pets over the back and on the wings, and I guess I am no better. When he wants cuddles and scritches from me, usually it ends up with me having my fingers and thumb in the in the shape of a "C", with him cuddled up to the palm of my hand. Also, even when trying to give kisses on the head, he tries to get into my mouth, while doing what i call the "baby-bird begging" like he is expecting food.


We are now avoiding doing any of the "trigger" stuff, and I told my daughter and wife, it doesn't mean you love him any less, just to be aware of how you show it.


I will update soon with our progress.



Thanks again.
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Old 04-30-2020, 02:05 PM
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Re: New Behavior

Good good! Yes- no stroking on back, head and neck only..no mouth to break contact...avoid warm mushy food during really hormonal phases, no nesting spaces or shadowy huts/boxes etc (ever). I think it was all covered in the link, but glad it helped. Even if he isn't sexually mature yet, hormones do start to kick in...and even if this doesn't solve your problem, you will still want to avoid this stuff indefinitely (as it will become a problem eventually, even if this current behavior isn't the result of hormones).[/B]

Try to keep an open mind- like I said, if it's not hormones, still follow the advice above....but consider behavioral approaches as well (ABA for parrots works well and you will have to train anyway, so may as well check it out).

Last edited by noodles123; 04-30-2020 at 02:08 PM.
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