Conure picking feathers

sidney24

New member
Sep 27, 2021
2
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Yellow sided green cheek conure
Hi , I am in look for some advise for my green cheek conure. She started picking her wing feathers and I see them growing back. Now she picked out ALL her tail feathers. As well I have noticed under both her wings she is balding. I took her to the avian dr and they did feces test and came back normal with no parasites or infection they did those test because her feces were coming out in between watery and solid. I strictly only feed her pellets and fruit. I have her sleep 8-10 hours. I am always home unless i got out for errands so she is always with me. Any advise will help thank you.
 

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LaManuka

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Welcome to the forums, sidney24, and your sweet little conure, although I am very sorry for the worrying circumstances. Don't forget to tell us her name btw, will you? :)

Was the vet that you took her to a certified avian specialist? I only ask because it just feels like the fecal test alone does not seem to be sufficient testing to try to pinpoint what may be causing this destructive behaviour - unless they ran blood tests etc that were not mentioned. Many avian vets will offer you more in terms of ongoing management of a situation like this too. Just in case they were not, or you might like to seek a second opinion, the link below may help you to find an alternative...


Plucking can be caused by anything from boredom, stress, sexual frustration, dietary deficiency, parasites, neurological issues right through to having been weaned incorrectly as a baby or even taken from it's parents too early. These last two possibilities can have psychological effects that only manifest themselves later in behaviours like plucking, biting and screaming. One of our esteemed former moderators began a thread which describes some of the issues and resources to attempt to help mitigate or end plucking:


I have never had a plucker so I can only imagine how devastating it is to witness a beloved bird driven to do this to herself for whatever reason. I did, however, once have a Quaker whom i suspected was beginning to show plucking behaviours and immediately took him to my vet. It turned out that he was just storing pellets in the feathers on his back (bizarre!), but my vet clinic had a whole armory of treatment and management strategies that they would have brought to bear if my Quaker had turned out to have been plucking. Unfortunately I don't know what they were because it turned out he wasn't plucking, but it just leads me to think that perhaps your vet should have had a few more ideas to support you with this. Perhaps it is time to seek a second opinion.

I hope some other members will be able to give you some adviced based on their own experiences. Thank you for joining, sidney, I'm so glad you found us, and I hope that you can find some relief for your little one very soon.
 

Laurasea

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How old is your bird?
Fruit is high in sugar, as are zoo prem if that the pellet you feed.

I think some pellets but especially zoo preem are missing a few things...I had 2 birds that came to me on strict zoo prerm pellets only diet, both were under weight ( slightly ) with slight dull feathers. When I added back some seeds, some boiled eggs, lots if Veggies and a few other pellet brands they gained wright with lustrous feathers.
Veggies are much better to feed with fruit only once a week.
My preference, and from my research, some seeds are needed in diet. In ornithology thread I linked a scientific research article on this.

I don't know the answers, as health issues can still be at play and undetected at this point. Its rare for GCC to turn to plucking from behavioral issues, tho it dies happen.

Are there other people and pets in the home?
 
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sidney24

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Sep 27, 2021
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1
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Yellow sided green cheek conure
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How old is your bird?
Fruit is high in sugar, as are zoo prem if that the pellet you feed.

I think some pellets but especially zoo preem are missing a few things...I had 2 birds that came to me on strict zoo prerm pellets only diet, both were under weight ( slightly ) with slight dull feathers. When I added back some seeds, some boiled eggs, lots if Veggies and a few other pellet brands they gained wright with lustrous feathers.
Veggies are much better to feed with fruit only once a week.
My preference, and from my research, some seeds are needed in diet. In ornithology thread I linked a scientific research article on this.

I don't know the answers, as health issues can still be at play and undetected at this point. Its rare for GCC to turn to plucking from behavioral issues, tho it dies happen.

Are there other people and pets in the home?
Thank you so much this advise is really going to help my bird. I just checked the bag and it is in fact ZuPreem. She was also considered under weight in her Avian Dr visit. I will immediately try finding something else for her. What pellets do you recommend? And no other pets in my household only me and my spouse.
 

Zoruace

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Thank you so much this advise is really going to help my bird. I just checked the bag and it is in fact ZuPreem. She was also considered under weight in her Avian Dr visit. I will immediately try finding something else for her. What pellets do you recommend? And no other pets in my household only me and my spouse.
roundybush or harrsions for me
 

Skarila

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✻Pascal the Emma's (Venezuelan) Conure

Previous owned:
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✻RIP - 28 YO Zeleni the mischievous IRN
✻RIP -Sunny the budgie
Thank you so much this advise is really going to help my bird. I just checked the bag and it is in fact ZuPreem. She was also considered under weight in her Avian Dr visit. I will immediately try finding something else for her. What pellets do you recommend? And no other pets in my household only me and my spouse.
Harrison's is a great way to go, but Roudybush maintanance is also good, and it's considerably cheaper than Harrison's. My conure is eating both (thought Harrison's is more like a treat for him now, I gotta use up the Roudybush bag I have :D)

Harrison's has 2 types - one is the High Potency and the Adult Lifetime. The High Potency is mostly reccomended when freshly switching to the pellet for 3-6 months, then it should be switched to the adult lifetime. You can check for more details on their website, they have some excellent suggestions and explanations when to feed what.

Also I am terribly sorry to hear that your beloved GCC is plucking! I hope you find out some answers as to "why" quite soon.
 

Laurasea

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Oven baked bites are liked by mine, i still offer zupreem, mazuri , Tops, I offer a bunch if types, myself I also feed seed mix, tons of veggies , leafy greens, boiled egg, sprouts, legume, quinoa, cooked oatmeal ect. Myself I'm just not a fan of strick pellet only diets.
But hearing yours us also under weight on zupreem, makes like tge 5th parrot I've heard with that link..it must be lacking fats ...I do still feed it but as mentioned they get lots if other stuff too
 

Skarila

Supporting Member
Parrot of the Month 🏆
Apr 19, 2021
759
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✻Csillam the rescued budgie
✻Pascal the Emma's (Venezuelan) Conure

Previous owned:
✻Archibald the cockatiel (fostered 6 months)
✻RIP - 28 YO Zeleni the mischievous IRN
✻RIP -Sunny the budgie
Oven baked bites are liked by mine, i still offer zupreem, mazuri , Tops, I offer a bunch if types, myself I also feed seed mix, tons of veggies , leafy greens, boiled egg, sprouts, legume, quinoa, cooked oatmeal ect. Myself I'm just not a fan of strick pellet only diets.
But hearing yours us also under weight on zupreem, makes like tge 5th parrot I've heard with that link..it must be lacking fats ...I do still feed it but as mentioned they get lots if other stuff too
Not even the pellet manufacturers them self say that bird should be on a pellet diet only ^^; I'd be quite shocked to see such diets!
 

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