olivuhh

New member
Aug 10, 2021
1
3
Hi, I’m new to the forum. I recently adopted a 4 year old male blue naped amazon. We have reason to believe he has been passed around many families and was abused. He has a large scab on the top of his head and the previous owners kept him in a tiny dog cage and only fed him sunflower seeds. We’ve had him since July 14th and he has been living in my room. Whenever he’s with me he’s very sweet, he gets on my shoulder, he comes with me everywhere I go. He loves getting his head scratched by me and he is overall very affectionate with me. However, whenever I put him with my mom in her room for more than 5 minutes, he becomes extremely aggressive towards me. His tail fans, his eyes pin and he flies at me and bites me very hard. He will bite my mom sometimes, but he doesn’t fly at her just to attack. After I get him back alone with me in my room, he starts to behave normally again after a few hours or after sleeping. Shortly after I bring him back to my room, he will still fly at me and attack me if I stand up. I don’t understand why he behaves this way, I would think if he didn’t like my mom he would be flying and attacking her, not me. If you have any idea as to why he is behaving like this or if you know of any solutions please let me know. Thank you.
 

JohnH

Member
Dec 23, 2016
150
21
NY
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Sulphur crested cockatoo
I saw a video of wild parrots that showed them biting/attacking their mate in order to scare them off their perch whenever a potential threat was approaching. It seemed aggressive but that was their way of communicating. Could be your parrot is exhibiting a similar behavior. What seems like an attack on you might be his way of warning you. Love hurts.
 

Kentuckienne

Supporting Vendor
Oct 9, 2016
2,521
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Middle of nowhere (kentuckianna)
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Roommates include Gus, Blue and gold macaw rescue and Coco, secondhand amazon
Hi, I’m new to the forum. I recently adopted a 4 year old male blue naped amazon. We have reason to believe he has been passed around many families and was abused. He has a large scab on the top of his head and the previous owners kept him in a tiny dog cage and only fed him sunflower seeds. We’ve had him since July 14th and he has been living in my room. Whenever he’s with me he’s very sweet, he gets on my shoulder, he comes with me everywhere I go. He loves getting his head scratched by me and he is overall very affectionate with me. However, whenever I put him with my mom in her room for more than 5 minutes, he becomes extremely aggressive towards me. His tail fans, his eyes pin and he flies at me and bites me very hard. He will bite my mom sometimes, but he doesn’t fly at her just to attack. After I get him back alone with me in my room, he starts to behave normally again after a few hours or after sleeping. Shortly after I bring him back to my room, he will still fly at me and attack me if I stand up. I don’t understand why he behaves this way, I would think if he didn’t like my mom he would be flying and attacking her, not me. If you have any idea as to why he is behaving like this or if you know of any solutions please let me know. Thank you.
Also, birds don’t know who that are “supposed” to like. Your mom may remind your bird of a previous human they were bonded to. They can fall in love with a new person in a heartbeat and the old one is chopped liver. Your bird may prefer your mom, and see you as a rival, then when you go back to your room alone it’s love the one you’re with for them. When we first got Gus, he was attached to me. Let me scratch his head, pick him up, cuddle him, and the true human couldn’t touch him. As happy as it made me, I had to back off, ignore him, not scratch him, not give him treats, until he was fully bonded to the other person. For a while I could still pick him up and scratch him for hours but finally that ended. Now I can only pick him up if he wants a ride to the stand to poop. He doesn’t like to poop near his cage. And if I give him a treat, he takes it then tries to bite me to keep me from taking it back. You might need to be sure your bird only spends time with you and don’t let them bond with your mom…
 

wrench13

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Nov 22, 2015
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THat behavior is pretty common in parrots. I tend to think the first poster has the meat of it. Your parrot has bonded to you, and the bites are his way of saying "Hey, this other thing is dangerous and scarey, move your butt out of here!!" . Called displacement biting. Amazons in particular do best when they are in the middle of all the action in a house, like the living room or where ever most of the people are. THats also good for socializing them to the other family members. Consider relocating his cage to that place.

There is an exercise called Pass the Potato thats good for socializing parrots. The family sits in a circle and calmly passes the parrot around, hold it for a minute or so.

Also if you mom seems to be the scary thing, you might consider her to be the giver of the parrots very favorite treat, and only her. Even thru the bars. Every time she passes the cage , she can give a little bit of the treat and say Hi ?????, how are you. The way to an amazons heart is thru their belly! That's so true.
 

chris-md

Well-known member
Feb 6, 2010
4,064
548
Maryland - USA
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Parker - male Eclectus

Aphrodite - red throated conure (RIP)
As noted above, this is common behavior called displacement biting. If you can’t attack the intruder, attack the mate to get them to safety.

It’s a particular issue with birds who are diehard one-person birds. Many experienced parrot owners know to be on the lookout for this, as it can be a notable issue for children and guests.
 

Kokoriko

New member
May 22, 2017
9
17
I understand how frustrating this is. I am no expert and can only talk from my own experience. There is something he is trying to tell you and you are not noticing. This takes time to understand and that leads to more exaggeration (like the flying attacks, which may be a skill developed by the parrot to address a situation from a previous owner).
Now what to do????
1) show your dislike when he flies at you by leaving the room? Usually done for screaming (but for which type of screaming?;))))
2) look him in the eye and tell him off? I believe mine does sort of understand this but then again by luck I could just have trained him to stop what I don't want on this type of reaction
3) not allowing it to happen by being on your toes? (good luck with that one)
4) Start clicker training as to get him to understand that a click means he did something good (hasn't worked for me so far but I continue to persist)
5) Ask you mom to come in the room and enter only so much as not to upset him and then click to signal a positive thing. Then gradually to repeat until he is comfortable with her (saw that in a training video)
6) as mentioned place him in the living room and let your mom only feed him his favorite treat maybe the best advise so far!!! he will connect your mom to his favourite treat but will the attacks stop? who knows?
7) start flight training to control the flying to be towards your required destination (dont know if this will help you, but I see it help my parrot's confidence, knowing where to fly and when...at least I think this is what is happening.
It is difficult with adoptions... especially with developed issues... the following article has helped me understand a few things... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stereotypy_(non-human)
Hope you find a solution... let us know what worked for you.
 

Kokoriko

New member
May 22, 2017
9
17
Also, birds don’t know who that are “supposed” to like. Your mom may remind your bird of a previous human they were bonded to. They can fall in love with a new person in a heartbeat and the old one is chopped liver. Your bird may prefer your mom, and see you as a rival, then when you go back to your room alone it’s love the one you’re with for them. When we first got Gus, he was attached to me. Let me scratch his head, pick him up, cuddle him, and the true human couldn’t touch him. As happy as it made me, I had to back off, ignore him, not scratch him, not give him treats, until he was fully bonded to the other person. For a while I could still pick him up and scratch him for hours but finally that ended. Now I can only pick him up if he wants a ride to the stand to poop. He doesn’t like to poop near his cage. And if I give him a treat, he takes it then tries to bite me to keep me from taking it back. You might need to be sure your bird only spends time with you and don’t let them bond with your mom…
Really? your effort to get him to bond to the other person was so effective that he prefers the other and doesn't want to be handled by you any more... now that is a fair warning for me... I'm trying to get my parrot to bond with my kids... the frustration will never end...
 

Kentuckienne

Supporting Vendor
Oct 9, 2016
2,521
518
Middle of nowhere (kentuckianna)
Parrots
Roommates include Gus, Blue and gold macaw rescue and Coco, secondhand amazon
Really? your effort to get him to bond to the other person was so effective that he prefers the other and doesn't want to be handled by you any more... now that is a fair warning for me... I'm trying to get my parrot to bond with my kids... the frustration will never end...
Yes, that’s it exactly. Some parrots will connect with multiple people, and some are one-person-birds. In fact I suspect that’s the most common situation. Parrots live in pairs in the wild and don’t tolerate interlopers. Most of them, anyway. There are a few species that live in close large social groups. Gus is bonded to the better half, but also demands that I give him a ride to the living room when he wants to go. As soon as I set him on his perch, he turns and lunges at me. If I give him a tasty nut, he begs for it, takes it nicely, then lunges at me with it in his beak to make sure I don’t try to take it back.

if his preferred human is gone for over a week, he starts to look at me a little differently. He wants to sit next to me. He will almost let me scratch his head. If it were just me, he would make the switch. So I don’t take it personally. This is how it has to be, he needs to be bonded to the human who has responsibility for him. Maybe if we’d had him as a chick, it would be different, but he was a rescue bird with special needs and this how it is for now.
 

Littleredbeak

Well-known member
May 27, 2020
421
283
I can't offer any advice but would love to see photos! BLUE nape Amazon's seem to be on the rare side. Congrats on your new bird and it itching he'll be a wonderful addition to your family. Above offered great advice. My sister copies my behavior (tone and body language) coupled with a yummy treat has been amable to make friends with my Amazon.
 

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