GCC 1 year old nippy during training

erin243

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May 9, 2020
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Kyro the Sun Conure
Korra the Cinnamon Turquoise Green Cheek
Wasabi the Parakeet
Hi everyone! I’ve noticed that my GCC gets all fluffed up and quite nippy during a formal training session. I do some clicker training with her she knows tricks like wave, spin around and she knows how to touch the end of a stick and follow it. Most of the time she sees the clicker and gets all riled up. How can I help her calm down during this? She gets all fluffy and does this little strut and will nip my fingers. I’m not quite sure why. I can’t tell if she’s just over excited about training or what
 

wrench13

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Nov 22, 2015
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You dont HAVe to use clicker. A verbal Good Bird! will work too. She may not like the sound of the clicker. Also, she may be bored with the current tricks, think about adding new ones, to keep her engaged with learning.
 

Gemster

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Aug 4, 2019
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This could be due to over-excitement. The strutting looks like something Gemma used to do when she really wanted a treat.
You can practise giving your bird one treat when she’s calm and resting (not thinking about the food). First few times you do this, she’s going to expect another treat so it’s important to leave as soon as you place the reward in front of her or give it by hand.
Because clickers are secondary reinforcers, it’s normal for birds to look for a treat when they hear a click. When you do click, be sure that you are completely still so that movement does not mean treats are coming too.
If you have a box clicker, it can be too loud therefore needing some tac placed on the clicker to muffle the sound a bit.

I would avoid doing any proper training sessions for a week or so as you work on calm behaviours. The more she becomes riled up when training, the more likely it will happen in the future.
You can eventually work up to training longer although sessions should not last more than 1-2 minutes. 5 minutes would be max. if you are working on duration behaviours.
 
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