Help GCC has turned mean!

Sandibth

New member
Sep 14, 2018
17
0
Parrots
Pineapple GCC
I’ve had sassy since she was 4 months old. She will be 3 in March. She has always favored me and we have together time everyday where she rides around on my shoulder, snuggles in my hand for head scritches and cooing. Over past month she has changed!!!! She screams nonstop when I leave the room but if I get close to her she aggressively bites me....head down, neck feathers up attacks me??? What’s going on?!?!
 

noodles123

Well-known member
Jul 11, 2018
8,141
359
Parrots
Umbrella Cockatoo- 15? years old..I think?
GCCs mature sexually between 1-2 years (some say they don't usually breed until 3, but that seems very late to me). If you have ruled out medical issues and have taken your bird to the vet to verify that the change is not medical, then I would lean towards some other possibilities like hormones, sleep (which relates to hormones, behavior and immune health) and possibly diet. These things are all closely interwoven/overlapping, although one may be the primary (it's hard to say, which is why all must be addressed)
**It is always good to get a certified avian vet's opinion when there is a sudden behavior change**




Also- how often is your bird out of the cage, and does your bird know how to play with the toys it has? You often have to teach them if they have toys and ignore them, or try new toys with different thicknesses, materials etc (only after making sure they are comfortable with them, before putting them in the cage)

You (any anyone else) should only ever pet on the head and neck and should not cuddle them-if you do, it's very sexual and stimulates them, but also makes them view you as a mate and as a mate who is not following through, you can sexually frustrate your parrot and increase anxious behaviors, like screaming, plucking, biting etc...because you actually can alter their hormone production this way too. Yes- they like to cuddle, but you have to be the one to draw the line and they will be happier for it in the long run (babies/immature birds will not respond immediately/in a sexual way to these types of touches etc, but the problem is, it sets an expectation and still frames the relationship, so suddenly, at puberty, what seemed innocent no longer is, but then they really want it, because it's hard-wired into them to pair off and mate when conditions are favorable )..even if this behavior isn't just hormones, what I am telling you about head and neck petting only, minimizing access to shadowy/ dark spaces etc applies to all parrots.

They MUST have at least 10 hours of quiet sleep each night on a routine, as this helps regulate mood, hormones and immune health. It's super important that they have a sleep schedule.

If you have been allowing your bird access to snuggle huts, don't. Snuggle huts are extremely dangerous for other reasons as well, but definitely contribute to hormones in the vast majority of users...same with tents, coconuts, under tables, in bedding/blankets, piles of paper, shadowy spaces etc. They should have no access to shadowy spaces as these spaces are preferred by them due to nesting tendencies and the presence of such spaces amplifies their hormonal response/triggers them and can also make them more territorial/cage aggressive.


You need to make sure you teach independence by doing things gradually, but one thing is to NEVER come back into the room while they are screaming. If a bird screams for attention, don't give it a single reaction-- not a verbal reply, not eye contact, not proximity. To prevent screaming, there are some other tricks and I will post a link to a thread- read over this, but especially the counting technique that I discuss in my 2nd reply: http://www.parrotforums.com/cockatiels/88181-cockatiel-screaming-if-he-s-not-out-his-cage.html


When you leave (BEFORE THE SCREAMING STARTS), do you tell him what you are doing? Key words can be huge in helping them gauge time and anticipate things. Whenever I go to the bathroom, I say going to the bathroom" --if while I'm in there, she makes a cute sound, like talking or something, I will talk back, but never respond to attention screaming once it starts. As another form of practice, you can start stepping away for just under the amount of time you think it will take before the screaming starts, saying "be right back" and then BEFORE the screaming starts, return and say, "thanks for being quiet" (praise, treat, whatever your bird is most motivated by).


Diet should be pellets, some seeds (no sunflowers), chop etc (more veg than fruit).


When it comes to the attacks- please tell me what you are doing immediately before and what you (and anyone else, including other animals in the room) do when the attacks occur, and right after as well (including any talking, moving, eye contact, walking away, people/animals coming into the room etc)
 
Last edited:
OP
Sandibth

Sandibth

New member
Sep 14, 2018
17
0
Parrots
Pineapple GCC
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #4
She’s in general more nippy than usual but the aggressive biting frenzy is much worse if I’m near her cage. She has toys and puzzles that she plays with regularly and no changes in her diet or environment. Sometimes sleeping 10 hours is an issue because i keep her in cage while I’m working so I feel bad making her go to bed.
 

clark_conure

Supporting Member
Jul 14, 2017
2,642
Media
21
118
Minnesota
Parrots
Cinnamon Green Cheeked Conure CLARK (F) and a Quaker crossover SCUTI (F) and 4 budgies
It could be she is picking up on you feel bad. The tone in your voice like "I'm sorry I have to do this" could be she's just mad to be put away when she knows you're in the house....

Sometimes when I get home from work clark is happy to see me, then steps on my hand and then bites (not to hard, but enough to know she mad) as a "WHY DID YOU LEAVE!! BAD HUMAN!!!" ....kind of thing but then after the punishment, she is naturally sweet.

are you reaching into the cage?

My conure insists in the royal concierge treatment to pick her up in her cage, (she thinks we are married) but other birds do not want. You should wait for bird to come out of the cage before letting it hop on.

My question would be once she's on you for 5 minutes is she all calm collected ready to play or just hang out and is everything just happening right at the cage or all the time?
 
Last edited:

Laurasea

Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
10,322
2,801
USA
Parrots
Neptune blue quaker (MIA), Ta-dah GCC female, Penny quaker female, Pikachu quaker female!!, Phoebe quaker female, 3 parakeets males, Burt The Burd GCC female RIP
Hi,
You have posted over the years having issues with bites. I have a GCC and we negotiate constantly to avoid bites. So I do understand.

Sometimes they can develop a fear of hands for reasons you may be aware of, or for reasons of their own. And you have to earn back trust. Hand feeding little seeds a bazillion times a day can help, I've heard aim fir 50 times a day...seems like a lot, but I feed a tidbit probably 20 times a day.

Really pay attention to body language. And realize their I'm going to bite you can go back 10 seconds late to pet me. Don't get worked up about it.

Target training is great. Bird tricks on you tube has lots of great video on training.

My GCC would bute me if I touch her cage or out hands inside. So I let her come out on her own.

How much time does she spends out of the cage? Does she have her own places and perches away from the cage to hang out?;

Sometimes yiu have to start over. Pretend yiu just git her, and work on making friends
 

Most Reactions

Latest posts

Top