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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 11-07-2015, 02:53 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

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Stephen, that's a great reply!


So.... you've listed....
  1. Avoidance
  2. Politely saying "No"
  3. Body posture
  4. Eye pinning
  5. Pacing
  6. Fanned tail
  7. Looking for an escape route
  8. Lunging
  9. Expanded Feathers
  10. Screams
  11. Open mouth
  12. Growling or hissing



Some other possibilities include over-stimulation. If a bird is too excited, that excitement can quickly turn to aggression, and thus bites! Or maybe a bird has been out and about from their cage for too long and needs to rest. When they can't get rest, they get grumpy. When they are grumpy, they might bite.


So it also helps to know when to let the bird calm down and give them some space or allow them to go back to their cage to settle down and get some much needed rest.




Betrisher, I think it can be worse with second hand birds that have learned to bite "out of the blue" because people never took the time to "listen" to their birds, so the birds feel the need to bite at the slightest provocation, and with no warnings. Makes things tougher!
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  #12 (permalink)  
Old 11-07-2015, 02:55 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Since Stephen did an excellent job listing various ways to tell if or when a parrot is about to bite, I'll proceed to my next question!



What do you do if a bird bites you?



The first step.... the bird is currently latched onto your flesh and possibly chewing on your flesh and even making you bleed. What do you do?
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 11-07-2015, 03:15 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Quote: Originally Posted by MonicaMc View Post
.....



The first step.... the bird is currently latched onto your flesh and possibly chewing on your flesh and even making you bleed. What do you do?
Gently remove and promptly get the suture kit?

In my case IF I get bit (and it's really not often at all, if anything it's a pinch, nothing more) it's because of overstimulation. Well, wait, there's my Sam, who's appendages must have dropped, so he's become a tad bit.... cranky and unpredictable at times. Yes, I used 'unpredictable' for a reason, especially because it appears he gets a wild hair up his bum for absolutely no reason and will fly into my face if I only make eye contact.

So I can't really comment on having anyone 'latched' on because that hasn't happened (yet). (Finds wood to knock on it now )
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Old 11-07-2015, 03:38 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Quote: Originally Posted by JerseyWendy View Post
Gently remove and promptly get the suture kit?
LOL! That's about right!


You remove the bird from your body. You haven't ignored the bird for biting (here! have some flesh! and just chomp away! it's ok! I can take the pain! ), nor have you punished the bird for biting. (bird bites, then yells out "BAD BIRD!" followed by a maniacle bird laugh... )



What's the second step?
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Old 11-07-2015, 06:48 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

I would put the bird in the cage as calmly and quietly as possible and then leave its vicinity for a good while. On my return, I would engage with the bird and reward for good behaviour (eg. stepping up promptly). Always make opportunities for good behaviour and rewards, just to keep things positive.

Having said that, though, it can be hard to keep one's equanimity when one has a furious beak-grinding bird attached to one's arm or, worse, ear. Sometimes reflex just takes over, y'know?
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Old 11-07-2015, 10:38 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Quote: Originally Posted by Betrisher View Post
Having said that, though, it can be hard to keep one's equanimity when one has a furious beak-grinding bird attached to one's arm or, worse, ear. Sometimes reflex just takes over, y'know?
Hah! Try the flap of skin between your nostrils! Then friggin wiffey comes home and say, "You tried to do what? Not even I can do that!"
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Old 11-07-2015, 10:58 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Myflock, I think we see a lot of conure threads because they are sold all over the place in pet stores so many people own them.

I also think because they are tiny and people let them get away with a lot more. Kinda like small dogs.

I do the same as Betrisha and put Foo, not necessarily in, but on her cage top, so we can both calm down a bit. If she turns around and flys to me right away to do it again, then it's cage time. But we haven't had a really bad situation like that in years. (not counting the Teddy Bear incident)

Most of the time I get bit it's my fault though. Lately she has taken to doing a lot more flying and keeps landing on my head. Zeki, the starling does this like every 5 minutes and I just swat him off like his a moth bugging me. However, this is not the reaction to give the conure. If I know who it is on my head and it's Foo she gets a finger to step up on and then I can put her in the place I want her. If I shoo her off I get bit and she is completely offended.
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Old 11-08-2015, 04:51 AM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

Quote: Originally Posted by MonicaMc View Post
...You remove the bird from your body. You haven't ignored the bird for biting [I](here! have some flesh! and just chomp away! it's ok! I can take the pain! )...
Thank you! The myth that you just ignore the bite and give no reaction just kills me. It's true that we shouldn't give a big, animated reaction, as that could become a reward of sorts in and of itself, but allowing yourself to become a chew toy is both unnecessary and largely ineffective.


Quote: Originally Posted by MonicaMc
What's the second step?
Like Trish, after removing the chomping carnivore's beak from my flesh and saying "No" in a firm, even voice, my next step would be to put him/her in the cage on timeout.

Birds are very perceptive about body language, so I would move in such a way that my displeasure was clearly communicated. A more brisk, direct pace than usual on the way to the cage, with facial expression completely closed off and stern. No eye contact. (I found the body language to be important not only for the communication aspect, but also to differentiate this kind of trip to the cage from other times when it's not a timeout. Birds are good at making associations. They work it out.)

Once the bird is in the cage, I'd either turn my back or leave the room entirely for several minutes. Then, again like Trish, I'd return and reward him or her for stepping up nicely.

I've found that being consistent with this method is highly effective. Neither of my birds draws blood from me, or even so much as nips. Nor did Bixby or Suzie before them. (Maya will still bite my wife on occasion, though, so that's still a work in progress.)
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  #19 (permalink)  
Old 11-08-2015, 01:43 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

There's been some great responses! Loving it!


Ok, so we have removed the bird from our body and perhaps even put them back on their cage. We may have even had to go and sooth our pain with some band-aids and neosporin.




We're still missing a step, though!!!! The step before we go and interact with the bird again! Can anyone think of what it might be?
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  #20 (permalink)  
Old 11-08-2015, 04:13 PM
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Re: BRAINSTORMING: Biting Parrots

If the reason isn't already readily apparent, reviewing the interaction to see why the bite occurred.
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