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Old 12-08-2018, 04:06 PM
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Sun conure molting help

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So I have a sun conure, and this winter she seems to be struggling with all of her little pin feathers on her head. They have been there for a long time. I heard that certain lighting can help with molting and feather quality. Any tips on this?
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Old 12-08-2018, 04:37 PM
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Re: Sun conure molting help

Those pesky head pin feathers are a bit tough to reach . I give mine more frequent showers when they have lots of pins. Once they are fully grown out I try to help by gentle rubbing those pins to break them open. When birds are in a flock, they help each other out with the hard-to-reach spots. Baby and Tango live together and I never have helped with pin feathers on those two - they take care of each other’s feathers. My other three need a bit of assistance as they don’t particularly care for other birds and don’t have a “bird friend” to help them.
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:28 AM
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Re: Sun conure molting help

Yep, the best thing you can do is to give her a shower to break-up the pin feathers on her head, as she can't do it herself...or if she lets you, you can do it for her by gently rolling them between your fingers to break-up the sheaths around them...But showering will help to break them up, hydrate them and then stop the itching...If she's really bothered by them, then you can try buying a bottle of Ecotrition Molt-Ease at any Petco, it comes in a nice-size spray bottle for around $12 if I remember correctly, and it's nothing but artificial Purcellin-Oil, which is basically what they excrete from their Preen-Glands and rub all over themselves when they preen, and then also natural Aloe-Vera...Just spray one, single spray on her head, that's all it takes, and it stops their itching almost immediately and it also helps to break-down the dry, keratin sheaths around the new feathers...

Lights aren't going to help at all to break-up pin feathers, and more often than not you end-up buying an artificial UVB light that is actually more dangerous than anything.
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:32 AM
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Re: Sun conure molting help

If your bird is tame enough, you could try to help him/her with them (pinch the white part of the sheath lightly---the pink part still contains blood and needs to remain intact). I know they are tiny and hard to reach, but my cockatoo will let me help her with the teeny-tiny ones by her eyes, so it is probably doable as long as the bird is willing to stay still...much easier on bigger feathers, so I can see why it is a struggle for sure. I always do the spots my bird can't reach, but she likes it.

Last edited by noodles123; 12-09-2018 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 12-09-2018, 09:45 AM
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Re: Sun conure molting help

Quote: Originally Posted by noodles123 View Post
If your bird is tame enough, you could try to help him/her with them (pinch the white part of the sheath lightly---the pink part still contains blood and needs to remain intact). I know they are tiny and hard to reach, but my cockatoo will let me help her with the teeny-tiny ones by her eyes, so it is probably doable as long as the bird is willing to stay still...much easier on bigger feathers, so I can see why it is a struggle for sure. I always do the spots my bird can't reach, but she likes it.
I do my Senegal's and my Green Cheek's, they are the only two that will let me, but even on the Senegal it's a struggle because they're so small that if you pull just a tiny bit too hard, it hurts them...A Sun Conure is a bit smaller than a Senegal but larger than a Green Cheek, so it's doable if he'll let you do it....Just trying to gently roll them between your two fingers without pulling on them at all and without pushing them in the "wrong" direction that is painful for them can pretty-much instantly stop your bird's itching and discomfort, just keep doing them for as long as she'll let you and as long as you keep getting the little pieces of keratin sheath falling all over the place...

***Big advantage to having multiple birds that get along with each other!!! It's amazing how quickly they can take care of each other's pin-feathers!
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Old 12-09-2018, 06:22 PM
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Re: Sun conure molting help

Thanks for all the tips! She takes frequent showers with me. She sure does love her head scritches. Maybe this will be a good way to convince my husband to let me get a second bird....
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