Is my conure sick or female?

VickyW

New member
Feb 16, 2021
8
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Parrots
Max - black capped conure
Walter - green cheeked conure
I know, quite the title.

Unfortunately, due to COVID, it has been nearly impossible to make a vet appointment for my birds, as places around me are really scaling back and heightening requirements to make said appointment. So I thought I'd check here first for any insights before I try to call up a vet.

I've grown up with only male birds, and none of them conures. Max, my black-capped, just turned 1 in January, and I was informed both of my birds are male. I've tried to do as much homebrew research as possible to keep an eye on signs for my birds' health, but this just baffles me.

Starting last week, Max was in the bird hut in the cage, and he started moving strangely. Raising his head and lowering it repeatedly, as if reaching out and pulling in, while lying flat on the bottom of the hut, and he spent a couple hours in there. I had to fly cross country, so my mother looked after my birds, and she said they never strayed far from the cage and that Walter was even behaving a bit more aggressively to anyone coming near the cage. Max, meanwhile, has been a little less energetic and really doesn't want to leave the cage at all. I caught him repeating the head motions last night when I got home.

I've tried to do more research, such as ages of maturity for the birds, nesting behaviors, and the like. I took the hut out of the cage immediately before I left the birds with my mother, because if Max is indeed female, I don't want to encourage anything. But I can't find anything super specific on female conures, whether about hormonal influxes or illnesses, and any identifiers.

Does this sound like a health concern? If it seems questionable to you all too, then I absolutely will book an appointment. But if it sounds hormonal and I'm overreacting, is there any advice? Is this just a phase at this point, and taking out the hut should have helped? Or is there anything more I can do for my bird?

Any advice would be most appreciated!
 

Laurasea

Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
9,876
1,536
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
the only way to sex burds is a DNA test, yiu can find online, print, bare clip tge tip of a nail to get a drop of blood put on paper follow directions and mail it off. I use flour on gauze and hold on nail till bleeding stops. But yiu just want to barely clip it enough to bleeding nit go way back on nail! One drop is all you need.

Yiu should have a digital kitchen gram scale abd ve in the habit of weighing your burds weekly, daily when you are worried, or after you have bern to vet and are giving medication to your burd. Most sick birds will loose weight, but not all. 3% weight-loss seek vet care, and of course seek vet care if anything seems off or wrong . The wright checks are just an added layer to help catch sick birds. Take weight lost divide by normal weight x100 =% lost.

My sick bird was 114 grams lost 4 grsms so 4÷114x 100 =3.5% weight-loss.
 
OP
VickyW

VickyW

New member
Feb 16, 2021
8
0
Parrots
Max - black capped conure
Walter - green cheeked conure
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #3
Those are great ideas! I'll start weighing them today and keep checks. Do you have any recommendations for places that I can do the DNA test online? A lot of kits are coming up, are there any you'd prefer?
 

Laurasea

Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
9,876
1,536
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
I used this one
https://www.animalgenetics.us/
I have boys and girls, I haven't had issues " yet"
I had 2 girls pair bond, one laid eggs once then never again. Others have mixed sexes. So i don't recommend re homing if yiu hsve opposite sexs.. even single ladies can lay eggs.

You didn't talk diet. I hope you offer veggies, leafy greens abd just a few fruits. I use berries for my fruits.
 
Last edited:
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VickyW

VickyW

New member
Feb 16, 2021
8
0
Parrots
Max - black capped conure
Walter - green cheeked conure
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #5
Thanks, I'll look into that! Yeah, if it turns out my birds are opposite sexes after all, I'll work with a vet to ensure I do what's best for them. I certainly don't wish to rehome them!

And yes, they have a very diverse diet. They get all kinds of greens, beans/lentils, sweet potatoes, whole grain pasta, hardboiled eggs, apples, berries, you name it! They primarily get pellets, and some seeds for treats, but I try to make sure they get a solid range of healthy foods too.
 

SailBoat

Supporting Member
Jul 10, 2015
15,024
1,785
Western, Michigan
Parrots
DYH Amazon
As a FYI, if you have a 'hut', I would recommend that you remove it as the threads can be a problem if they chew on it. In addition, it can be received as a nest and that could lead to hormonal problems.
 
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VickyW

VickyW

New member
Feb 16, 2021
8
0
Parrots
Max - black capped conure
Walter - green cheeked conure
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  • Thread starter
  • #7
Yes, I removed it as soon as I saw Max's behavior change! I don't have plans to put it back in.
 

SailBoat

Supporting Member
Jul 10, 2015
15,024
1,785
Western, Michigan
Parrots
DYH Amazon
Yes, I removed it as soon as I saw Max's behavior change! I don't have plans to put it back in.

Unless, you, are truly ready to step-in and raise chicks (no easy undertaking), I would be careful about putting the hut back. Take a look at the Breeders subforum for a real eye-opener.
 

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