Biting Lilac Crowned Amazon

Tory

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I need help. My 12 year old Lilac Crowned Amazon who in the past few weeks has become a monster. He is molting, hormonal and aggressively biting me. He has bitten me eight times in less than a week. Now I am terrified of him. He has never displayed this behavior before. Sometimes he will fly off of his play tray and land on my back and bite wherever he can get a good bite, usually my ears. All of his bites draw blood. I spoke to a woman in my area who is a bird aficionado and she said the first thing I need to do is keep in his cage until I can get him to the Vet. She said he needs his wings clipped so that he cannot fly and the vet should give him a shot for his hormonal issue. Have any of you dealt with this problem? My fear is he will become mean if he gets his wings clipped and take it out on me.
Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks guys
 

SailBoat

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Lilac Crowned Amazons are the sweethearts of the Amazon Family! No sure who titled her as a Bird Aficionado or if you did not hear her correctly, but that is not were I would recommend as a starting point.

Try reading the Understanding Amazon Body Language Thread at the top of the Amazon Forum!

The wonderful thing about Amazons is that they allow us to Start Over Again. I am going to guess that things have changed in your home and that your Sweetheart is displaying displeasure with those changes.

If you are in North America, this is not the beginning of their Natural Hormonal Season! Yes, this is when they enter a molt and it could be a heavy molt this year. Tons of pin feathers can cause them to be sensitive to being handled.

Are you certain you have a Male? DNA proven?
How long have you had this Amazon?
 

Laurasea

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I completely disagree with the lady that told you go keep caged and get a wing clip!!!
No!

This too shall pass. If this is mostly a higher hormone peak + molt...for sure a miserable time. Yes they can launch from cage to protect territory, and fly to you to bite. This is a hardwired behavior given to them by nature , to help them overcome fear of large predators abd protect mate and young. There are a few steps to help modify this, and some human acceptance and best avoidance, till they come off that high.

First move the cage , even a few feet can help. Do a little re arrange of cage interior. Provide an alternative frustration device. I have tied a clump of Yucca chips, a mini bundle of shredee paper strip, a ball, and something they can bang. Its on the top of the cage by the door. ( I also have one inside the cage by the door , ) They grab it bang it, bite it, use it to display how tough they are. It evolved by accident, but so effective! That initiall burst of drama when they are let of the cage now gets turned on it. After they display, vent, get their brains back under control. I can get them and move them away from the cage to a neutral location, or have them fly to play stand, and they are nearly their normal lovely selves.

Increase time out of the cage and away from the cage. Increase activity, and mental stimulating. Get them foraging, do some interactive foraging with them. Watch bird tricks YouTube they have some really great foraging teachings videos. Its a great way to interact hands off. A board bird spends more time turning to hormonal behavior. Aldo burn up that excess energy.

Lower fatty foods, and sugary foods, and no warm or soft foods. Though they need a bump in protein for molt. I serve boild egg with some shell, an inch strip of boiled chicken, a few nuts. Feathers are 25% of body mass I think, abd nearly all protein. Yiu will find they are really craving protein during a molt. A bump in protein helps molt finish quicker too. And increase in home humidity helps, as provided shallow dish daily for baths if they chose. I use a casserole or sturdy serving dish with no more than 2 inches of water. Its available, and they can choose when to use. This also provides satisfaction in self choice. Sometimes I float plastic toys in the dish , they love it. More enrichment. For foraging you can float a veggies, or a bottle cap with a seed it 2 in it.

When they are in the "mood" or on top of the cage. Go slower , talk them down , give them a chance to do some macho displays before you go over. This has helped me and mine during a couple of hormones peaks. Keep some humor in your heart . I've watched this big display screaming, beating up toy. Thrn told them that w a really impressive! Now silly bird come over and give momma a kiss ( or a treat , do what safe and smart for you abd your bird)

More time out of the cage, not caged is the key. More time working on your bond, more time being g active, and mentally stimulating them. Moving and re arrange their territory all helps. Using your human brain to avoid, and knowing this surge will pass, some empathy for their hardwired behavior abd frustration
 

Scott

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Welcome to you and your Amazon, excellent advice and questions above!!

Many of us become accustomed to hormonal flows and relatively short-term alterations of personality. If this bout is extraordinarily severe, might consider a vet well-check to validate health. Some folks advocate wing-clipping for "attitude adjustment" but must be very carefully considered. I did so exactly once by vet recommendation in narrow circumstance with excellent effect.

There are various behavior modification protocols but not as likely to succeed with raging hormones. Have a look at Bite Pressure Training: https://www.parrotforums.com/threads/bite-pressure-training.63988/
 

wrench13

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Yep Hormones can peak some years.
Common ways to mitigate ( but not eliminate) the worst are
12 hrs of good solid uninterrupted sleep
No nesting materials, like shredded paper, cloth or other
No dark hidey holes allowed!
Reduced or no sugars, like fruit, or corn or others
No touching anywhere but head
Lots of stuff to destroy and vent frustrations on
More activity, what ever that might be

LOTS of patience!!
 
OP
Tory

Tory

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Lilac Crowned Amazons are the sweethearts of the Amazon Family! No sure who titled her as a Bird Aficionado or if you did not hear her correctly, but that is not were I would recommend as a starting point.

Try reading the Understanding Amazon Body Language Thread at the top of the Amazon Forum!

The wonderful thing about Amazons is that they allow us to Start Over Again. I am going to guess that things have changed in your home and that your Sweetheart is displaying displeasure with those changes.

If you are in North America, this is not the beginning of their Natural Hormonal Season! Yes, this is when they enter a molt and it could be a heavy molt this year. Tons of pin feathers can cause them to be sensitive to being handled.

Are you certain you have a Male? DNA proven?
How long have you had this Amazon?

CA85C3B4-121E-43E9-8F11-CA8817E61F24.jpeg
0C667811-E511-4472-9B50-03CFAD934F4C.jpeg

Lilac Crowned Amazons are the sweethearts of the Amazon Family! No sure who titled her as a Bird Aficionado or if you did not hear her correctly, but that is not were I would recommend as a starting point.

Try reading the Understanding Amazon Body Language Thread at the top of the Amazon Forum!

The wonderful thing about Amazons is that they allow us to Start Over Again. I am going to guess that things have changed in your home and that your Sweetheart is displaying displeasure with those changes.

If you are in North America, this is not the beginning of their Natural Hormonal Season! Yes, this is when they enter a molt and it could be a heavy molt this year. Tons of pin feathers can cause them to be sensitive to being handled.

Are you certain you have a Male? DNA proven?
How long have you had this Amazon?
I am not certain Jade is a male. I didn’t really care because he was so sweet and beautiful. I have had him since he was 6 months. He is now 12 years old and he has never behaved like this ever.

I started out with a Nanday Conure who was also 6 months old when I got him. That was back in 1996. I got Jade in 2009. In the beginning Jade and my Conure Spanky were in separate rooms until about 2013. We moved to a Condo and there was extra room which we made the bird room. It was perfect and Jade and Spanky got along very well and kept each other company while we were I work. I live with my youngest son and have since 2008 when my husband past away.
I retired in 2017 and so I was home more often and was able to give Jade and Spanky more out of the cage time.
In August 2018 I found out I had colon cancer and I had to have 5 1/2 weeks of chemo and radiation, during which time I couldn’t spent as much time with them due to my situation. My son is not a bird person but he put up with them and Jade my Amazon really loves him. I had surgery in December 2018 to remove the cancer and had a temporary Ileostomy. I was in the hospital for 14 days after my surgery because of complications. In May of 2019 I had surgery to remove the Ileostomy bag and was in the hospital for three days. In August of that year my sweet Nanday Spanky got very sick and had to be put down. Ever since I lost him I have kept Jade with me all day for the most part on his play tray.
I was afraid he would be lonely and miss his buddy Spanky.
Ever since I got Jade he has been a sweetheart. It’s just in the last month or so that he has behaved this way. He has bit me in the past a couple of times and drew blood but it was never like this.
Back in 2010 almost a year after I got him he flew out our front door at dusk one night and was gone for 5 days. I was beside myself and spent every moment I could walking the perimeter of our apartment complex and even nearby neighborhoods. We live in a very heavy wooded area.
I called a friend of mine where I purchased my parrots food and told her what had happened and asked her if she got any calls from a person who found a parrot that looked like Jade to please call me. That was on a Friday evening. The next day she called me and told me one of her employees took a call from a lady her told her a parrot came flying out of the woods behind her home while she was gardening and frightened her and she threw her hands up in the air and scared him and he flew into a small tree on the side of her house. She had a cat carrier and tried to coax him into to it but it just scared him and made him fly again. My friend had her number so I called and went over to her home and showed her a picture, she said it was him. I spent the whole day walking through the woods calling his name. To make a long story short I put an ad on Craigslist and the following Monday I received a call from a man that said he had Jade.
He was in the subdivision about 1/2 a mile from the lady’s home. The home owner had a roofer on his roof making some repairs and Jade flew onto to the roofers shoulder and he climbed down the ladder with Jade on his shoulder and the home owner took him in. It was a true miracle. When I told my friend at the Bird Shoppe she said 99% of the time when a pet bird flys way you don’t get them back. That is the story of Jade!
 

wrench13

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Boy those wounds look familiar. Jim's Amazon, Amy,, nails me like that almost every time we visit. Jade is likely just acting out due to the loss of his friend, and your absence for awhile. Give him time.
 
OP
Tory

Tory

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Welcome to you and your Amazon, excellent advice and questions above!!

Many of us become accustomed to hormonal flows and relatively short-term alterations of personality. If this bout is extraordinarily severe, might consider a vet well-check to validate health. Some folks advocate wing-clipping for "attitude adjustment" but must be very carefully considered. I did so exactly once by vet recommendation in narrow circumstance with excellent effect.

There are various behavior modification protocols but not as likely to succeed with raging hormones. Have a look at Bite Pressure Training: https://www.parrotforums.com/threads/bite-pressure-training.63988/
Thanks for the information. I have made an appointment with my vet but unfortunately he is on vacation until September 20th. I did have his feathers clipped a long time ago. He was depressed for almost a week. I don’t like the idea of having his wings clipped but I trust my vet to do the right thing. He has been flying onto my back and biting whatever he can get a hold of which is usually my ears. In the last few days he had bitten my ears 3 times drawing blood. The lady that told me to put him in his cage said for my safety to do so and get an appointment with my vet ASAP. She didn’t mean that I should put him in his cage to punish him, she was concerned for my safety. He was in his cage all day today and I spent a good amount of time giving him attention. He seemed fine. It’s my fault that he is used to being out of his cage for the majority of the day. I got him in the habit because I had to put my Nanday Conure down about a year ago. They were together in the same room and after I had to put my Conure Spanky down I was worried that Jade would miss him so I started putting on his play tray in the morning and he pretty much stayed there all day until bedtime. He also picked up a bad habit from my Conure (screeching) when I left the room. I’m not sure I can beak that habit because he and Spanky we’re together for so long. I know Lilac’s are the most quiet of all the Amazons because I was given one many years ago who was a rescue parrot. He was 30 years old when I got him and the lady I got him from told me he had been traumatized when he was young. He was a very sweet parrot but he had a stroke about 3 years after I got him.
 
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Tory

Tory

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Boy those wounds look familiar. Jim's Amazon, Amy,, nails me like that almost every time we visit. Jade is likely just acting out due to the loss of his friend, and your absence for awhile. Give him time.
Thank you for your kind words. I do believe he misses his buddy Spanky but he is molting and if he is not hormonal then I don’t know what could be the problem. I have seen picture on YouTube of parrot owners who were disfigured because of a bite from their parrot. Jade is my baby and I will do whatever it takes to get him through this period. I love him with all my heart. I have an appointment with my vet but he is on vacation until September 20th. Jade is not sick. I know parrots hide their illness but I also know my bird and I know he is not sick. He is a very active and playful parrot.
 

Scott

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Lovely narrative of Jade's history and your perseverance with serious illness. Very sad to know Spanky passed away, devastating effect on Jade. Recovery following five days outside nothing short of miraculous!! Seems you are destined to forge tight bond with Jade, overcoming his harshest aggressions.
 
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Tory

Tory

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Lovely narrative of Jade's history and your perseverance with serious illness. Very sad to know Spanky passed away, devastating effect on Jade. Recovery following five days outside nothing short of miraculous!! Seems you are destined to forge tight bond with Jade, overcoming his harshest aggressions.
Thank you. I have to work through this and get my happy precious Jade back to his normal self. He is very special to me. I’ve never experienced this type of behavior before with him so it is quiet upsetting but we will work through it together. ❤️
 

Laurasea

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Those are some nasty bites. You have my full sympathy. Ouch!!

How are things? Any improvements? Did you move the cage? It can help.
 
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Tory

Tory

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Those are some nasty bites. You have my full sympathy. Ouch!!

How are things? Any improvements? Did you move the cage? It can help.
I am taking him to The Bird Shoppe today to let Anne the owner take a look at him. He has been in his cage since this past Wednesday evening. He has been fine in there not complaining at all. He is eating and playing with his toys in there and his cage is on wheels so I can take him to any room with me. My Vet unfortunately is on vacation he is Jewish and this is a Holiday period and won’t be back until September 20th.
Anne said she can clip his nails and trim his beak which might calm him down. I will let everyone know how he is doing later this evening. Thanks for thinking of us. God Bless.
 
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Tory

Tory

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Boy those wounds look familiar. Jim's Amazon, Amy,, nails me like that almost every time we visit. Jade is likely just acting out due to the loss of his friend, and your absence for awhile. Give him time.
Thank you. I love Jade very much he is the same as a family member. I am going to do whatever it takes to help him return to his normal sweet self.
 

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