At this point I'm just trying to survive. (Excessive screaming!)

TaiiTeaa

New member
Jan 23, 2022
2
3
Parrots
Black Headed Caique (Foster)
Hey! I hate to join a forum on a negative note but I really need help. I'm also going to start by saying we're not keeping this bird. We're fostering her for a former owner- we were planning to adopt but I've come to terms with the fact we're just not compatible. I've never met a bird that acts like her and I know I can't handle it for the rest of her life.

Marvel is a 20 year old handicapped caique (she has one bum foot that is completely unusable) who we've had for about a week and a half now. We have two more weeks to go until it's possible for us to give her back as her owner's out of state. She has an intense issue with screaming and hormones. I know what the hormonal triggers are and none are present. She's only petted on her head and neck, she gets about 13-15 hours of sleep a night, no sugar or fruit in her diet (switched her from Zupreem to Roudybush, we use nuts as treats and she gets fresh chop without fruit or sweet produce in the mornings), no toys or anything she can rub herself on, but she's still super hormonal to the point where we can't handle her as she's always pinning and squeaking. I've tried a few times and my hands are ravaged. She's not fearful, she's fluffy and confident around us, just insane. She had a full vet workup around Thanksgiving and they didn't find anything odd.

She also screams constantly. If she's awake, she's screaming, it doesn't matter if she can see us. She has half a dozen varied toys she plays with (while screaming) and always has pellets and clean water available. She can't see any windows and again, isn't displaying fear at all. I have some experience with birds and know at least that much. At this point I don't care about a long-term fix. I know it sounds awful on paper but she never displayed any of these issues with her former owner and she'll be happier once she can go back. I just need a solution to reduce the screaming and hormonal behavior for two weeks. I made a mistake taking this bird on but I don't want to leave her alone in a room. She was sweet and awesome for the first couple of days but her problems have only multiplied since.

I can't find any resources on curbing screaming in birds who scream even while you're present and according to what I can find I'm not doing anything wrong with hormones. I'm just genuinely lost, any help is appreciated!
 

zERo

Well-known member
Dec 9, 2021
300
454
Texas
Parrots
Tony-Green QP(M)
Tom-Pineapple GCC(M)
Ryuk-Cockatiel(M)
Sheer Khan-Cockatiel(F)
Romeo-Cockatiel(M)
Billy- Green budgie(M)
Hedwig- Green budgie(F)
Striga- Blue Clearwing budgie(M)
Grim- Mauve budgie(F)
Hey! I hate to join a forum on a negative note but I really need help. I'm also going to start by saying we're not keeping this bird. We're fostering her for a former owner- we were planning to adopt but I've come to terms with the fact we're just not compatible. I've never met a bird that acts like her and I know I can't handle it for the rest of her life.

Marvel is a 20 year old handicapped caique (she has one bum foot that is completely unusable) who we've had for about a week and a half now. We have two more weeks to go until it's possible for us to give her back as her owner's out of state. She has an intense issue with screaming and hormones. I know what the hormonal triggers are and none are present. She's only petted on her head and neck, she gets about 13-15 hours of sleep a night, no sugar or fruit in her diet (switched her from Zupreem to Roudybush, we use nuts as treats and she gets fresh chop without fruit or sweet produce in the mornings), no toys or anything she can rub herself on, but she's still super hormonal to the point where we can't handle her as she's always pinning and squeaking. I've tried a few times and my hands are ravaged. She's not fearful, she's fluffy and confident around us, just insane. She had a full vet workup around Thanksgiving and they didn't find anything odd.

She also screams constantly. If she's awake, she's screaming, it doesn't matter if she can see us. She has half a dozen varied toys she plays with (while screaming) and always has pellets and clean water available. She can't see any windows and again, isn't displaying fear at all. I have some experience with birds and know at least that much. At this point I don't care about a long-term fix. I know it sounds awful on paper but she never displayed any of these issues with her former owner and she'll be happier once she can go back. I just need a solution to reduce the screaming and hormonal behavior for two weeks. I made a mistake taking this bird on but I don't want to leave her alone in a room. She was sweet and awesome for the first couple of days but her problems have only multiplied since.

I can't find any resources on curbing screaming in birds who scream even while you're present and according to what I can find I'm not doing anything wrong with hormones. I'm just genuinely lost, any help is appreciated!
What does her setup look like? Could you post a pic? She could be really nervous, I don't own a caique so I don't know how their temperaments are. Is it one sound over and over? Or a bunch of different sounds? Does she get any mushy food to eat? You could try avian tea with raspberry leaves in it, in usually helps tone down hormones especially in female birds.
 

foxgloveparrot

Supporting Member
Parrot of the Month 🏆
Aug 30, 2021
5,153
Media
2
4,928
Indiana, USA
Parrots
Jasper (yellow-naped amazon) Lilla (senegal 💔) Ziggy, Kai, and Seiji (budgies) Cricket (parrotlet)
A few reasons a bird would scream (and remember all birds make noise and it’s not always something you can fix):
-stress
-hormones
-diet
-setup
-boredom
And more…like zERo said what’s her setup, how many sounds, etc?
 
OP
T

TaiiTeaa

New member
Jan 23, 2022
2
3
Parrots
Black Headed Caique (Foster)
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #4
She does get chop in the morning which is blended up but it's always cold, I'm careful not to let her have any warm mushy foods. It's the same sound over and over, for hours on end. She will take a break every now and then but not for long.
I just improved her diet from a sugary zupreem to a sugar-free Roudybush, she could be stressed?? but honestly she doesn't seem like it, it seems like a hormonal thing. They may have been triggered by her move to our house from her old owner's as her old owner said she hasn't been hormonal lately.
She makes a lot of other noises, lots of talking, squeaking, more normal tolerable squawks, but the past 36 ish hours she's only screamed. This scream is much much louder and higher pitched than any other vocalization she makes.
She has a variety of natural wood perches, one rope perch, and one platform perch
She has two wood block toys, some bells, and a few cardboard toys with cardboard strips woven through the bars (She loves chewing cardboard, doesn't much care for wood so I've been replacing most of her wooden toys with cardboard)
And a happy hut, which we're working on removing (she spent the last 5-6 years with one so we're slowly transitioning it out instead of pulling it cold turkey, as she doesn't chew it and it's not putting her in immediate danger, we're trying to keep stress low)
I'll try the tea, thanks for the suggestion. Again, I do suspect it's mostly if not entirely hormonal.
 

Laurasea

Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
12,389
7,259
USA
Parrots
Full house
new home and burds can act out its a big change. They miss their previous home.

Also birds who haven't been given a lot of attention and now are can at first become over excited and hormonal, usually calms down after a few weeks.

But it's a little more rare to become hormonal after a move, as that kind of stress normally knocks them out of it except as sbove

Weigh and make sure hasnt lost weight due to diet change.

I purposely took on a round the clock all day light hours screaming quaker. Whew! It was rough going....took about 2 months to rehabilitate.
I had to prevent the first morning screaming from getting started. I got her out got her foraging , then encouraged a bath by splashing in a bowl. That would lead to preening and a shirt nap. Before she could get going again I'd do short target training, then keep moving her to different perches areas in my home. Then a foraging toy with popcorn or a treat stick or millet spray. All day id say hi give treat when quiet many times a day. Anytime a screaming session was getting started I try to interrupt and re direct her. She definitely did not care if I ignored screaming, because at this point it was a self fulfilling activity. I had to prevent or interrupt, gradually the amount of time not screaming got longer and longer . Until it was no longer her go to activity.

Also Anytime caged she would be screaming. So I worked hard to recondition that. I planned short cage time for when she normally napped , and placed a high value time consuming treat. Like a big hunk of apple. I git her back out and praised before screaming started again. I was able to gradually make a routine and stretch that time of not screaming in the Cage to about 2 hours . To thus day I out done kind if treat in cage before asking her to go back.

There are also people who pattern to soft music. You play soft music as they are about to go to sleep st night. You keep doing this as a routine. Then you try to play the soft music any time they are quiet. Once a pattern is made, you play the music as they start to scream and the hope is they will calm down as they associate that with quiet time.
 

zERo

Well-known member
Dec 9, 2021
300
454
Texas
Parrots
Tony-Green QP(M)
Tom-Pineapple GCC(M)
Ryuk-Cockatiel(M)
Sheer Khan-Cockatiel(F)
Romeo-Cockatiel(M)
Billy- Green budgie(M)
Hedwig- Green budgie(F)
Striga- Blue Clearwing budgie(M)
Grim- Mauve budgie(F)
She does get chop in the morning which is blended up but it's always cold, I'm careful not to let her have any warm mushy foods. It's the same sound over and over, for hours on end. She will take a break every now and then but not for long.
I just improved her diet from a sugary zupreem to a sugar-free Roudybush, she could be stressed?? but honestly she doesn't seem like it, it seems like a hormonal thing. They may have been triggered by her move to our house from her old owner's as her old owner said she hasn't been hormonal lately.
She makes a lot of other noises, lots of talking, squeaking, more normal tolerable squawks, but the past 36 ish hours she's only screamed. This scream is much much louder and higher pitched than any other vocalization she makes.
She has a variety of natural wood perches, one rope perch, and one platform perch
She has two wood block toys, some bells, and a few cardboard toys with cardboard strips woven through the bars (She loves chewing cardboard, doesn't much care for wood so I've been replacing most of her wooden toys with cardboard)
And a happy hut, which we're working on removing (she spent the last 5-6 years with one so we're slowly transitioning it out instead of pulling it cold turkey, as she doesn't chew it and it's not putting her in immediate danger, we're trying to keep stress low)
I'll try the tea, thanks for the suggestion. Again, I do suspect it's mostly if not entirely hormonal.
Oh! I forgot Roudybush pellets cause more intense hormones in some birds, when I first adopted my Quaker that's what he was fed, he was so bad, I almost regretted adopting him, after teaching him to forage, play, and eat chop, that all helped, but what really changed him was switched off of Roudybush to TOPs pellets. Roudybush has a soy as one of the main ingredients, which is a lot of protein. Excess protein causes intense hormones. If it is the same call, it must be a contact call. Have you tried foraging toys? Something to keep her really busy? I'm just trying to hit all the bases.
 

Ellemarie

New member
Feb 11, 2022
1
1
Parrots
Cockatiel
Same ^
my bird cannot eat Roudybush. Hormonal and screaming almost overnight. I was trying it because it was cheaper. But I switched back to Top’s, screaming stopped just as quick
 

Most Reactions

Latest posts

Top