Is my eclectus too dependent on her formula?

kris29

New member
Jan 30, 2021
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I know it’s normal for birds to screech but my four month old eclectus won’t stop. Every time she sees me she won’t stop screaming, she’s not like this with any other member of my household just me. It’s probably cause I’m the only one that handles her but even if I let her out of the cage, offer her new toys and give her lots of attention there’s no stopping her loud screams!

I don’t know if it’s because she’s still in the process of weaning? She’s on one feed a day which I give at night. After she’s been fed her formula, I spend some time to bond with her but she would continue screaming and she never settles down until she’s placed back in her cage. Every morning I offer her fresh fruits and veggies but she barely touches them. Whenever she sees me near her cage she’ll drop her veggies and start yelling at me as if to say she wants her formula instead?

Because she’s still in the process of weaning it’s still very difficult to train her cs she has no interest in treats. Does anyone know how I can minimise the screaming or is this behaviour normal for a young eclectus?
 

Laurasea

Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
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I've always read Wednesday by abundance. If they want a feeding give it to them. Promote confidence, and willingness to explore new foods.

We have Couple if others with babies, give thrm tune to find your thread and respond.
 

Saash

New member
Jan 13, 2021
78
6
Durban, South Africa
Parrots
Eclectus
Hi Kris

I am weaning an eclectus female - she is 9 weeks now.
Is what you are experiencing maybe a flock-call, and not a feeding frenzy?

Mine does the same with my daughter, she doesn't feed the baby at all and spends only a small amount of time together, but at the sight of my daughter everything goes out of mind and there starts this loud screaming, with head being tossed back all the time. Its rather odd - but its not a food thing. She likes to whistle to the baby, and that really gets her hyped up!

When I feed the baby, she is quiet, or chirps softly, she doesn't scream at me for food unless she is really starving.

How long have you had the baby on one feed? I am curious because mine went from 3 feeds a day, to one feed a day almost over-night, and much of the time she even refuses the one feed. She likes to take her solids from my fingers though (rather than fish them out the bowl herself). I offer formula in the morning and at night for now, but she will take one or two spoons, then wait for me to offer her something more 'interesting' with my fingers.

Tonight she gobbled up about 4-5 table spoon of mixed rehydrated lentils and split peas, which I mixed with sweetcorn and cooked butternut (out my fingers - not interested in it any other way its offered). What are you feeding the baby between formula?
 
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kris29

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Jan 30, 2021
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Hi Kris

I am weaning an eclectus female - she is 9 weeks now.
Is what you are experiencing maybe a flock-call, and not a feeding frenzy?

Mine does the same with my daughter, she doesn't feed the baby at all and spends only a small amount of time together, but at the sight of my daughter everything goes out of mind and there starts this loud screaming, with head being tossed back all the time. Its rather odd - but its not a food thing. She likes to whistle to the baby, and that really gets her hyped up!

When I feed the baby, she is quiet, or chirps softly, she doesn't scream at me for food unless she is really starving.

How long have you had the baby on one feed? I am curious because mine went from 3 feeds a day, to one feed a day almost over-night, and much of the time she even refuses the one feed. She likes to take her solids from my fingers though (rather than fish them out the bowl herself). I offer formula in the morning and at night for now, but she will take one or two spoons, then wait for me to offer her something more 'interesting' with my fingers.

Tonight she gobbled up about 4-5 table spoon of mixed rehydrated lentils and split peas, which I mixed with sweetcorn and cooked butternut (out my fingers - not interested in it any other way its offered). What are you feeding the baby between formula?
Hi!

I don’t think it’s a flock call- even when I’m giving her attention her screaming won’t stop.
When I hand feed her she is constantly screaming. I feed her on a spoon and every time I scoop up some formula she’d scream as if to tell me to hurry up and feed her some more. She’s been on one feed a day since I got her about a month ago.

I wasn’t very familiar with weaning birds so on the first day I got her I fed her in the morning, evening and night. When I informed the breeder, they told me not to hand feed her so much and the ekkie should learn to be more independent by finding the food on her own. However when she first came into my home she didn’t move off her perch or eat a thing for the first two days and the only interaction she’d let me have with her is if I feed her formula. So I cut it down to one feed a day. In the mornings I feed her vegetables like carrot, kale, corn on the cob, spinach, celery etc. but she barely touches it and when does chew on something she’d let it fall from her mouth and will scream in between bites. I don’t know whether I should feed her more formula throughout the day? considering she’s four months I assumed she’d only be on one feed but with the screaming I really don’t know how to deal with this behaviour.
 

Saash

New member
Jan 13, 2021
78
6
Durban, South Africa
Parrots
Eclectus
Hi Kris

Ok - if she isn't really eating on her own, she's starving, and that's probably why she's screaming at you.

Sorry- it got long :red::30:

You need to watch the poop. It should be quite big on eclectus, like at least a tablespoon, with lots of solids, and not lots of water. If she's mostly getting formula its more watery with lots of solid, and more the colour of formula, if she's eating her food it will be darker with less water. If the poop in the day is dry, small, dark, or lacks solids - she's not eating!

She was fully feathered when you got her - go read my post on 'weaning pickles' on the breeder page. You possibly got her at 8 or 9 weeks? 'Looks' like she's eating on her own.

My baby is 9 weeks now, I'm gonna put an update soon on my weaning page, but if I were re-homing her right now I am sure the new owner would be lost on feeding her. If she is VERY hungry she will eat her formula. Formula is no longer her favorite food!

Nibbling something and chucking it out is NOT eating. Neither is shredding. Eating is when food goes in the beak and vanishes.

Shes young, its hard to know what the breeder fed her on. Where I am the hand raiser of the eclectuses is weaning her birds onto a sunflower rich seed diet, 'store bought bulk parrot food'. Our local avian vet - we have ONE - sees all the eclectuses, all the people's birds are not well and are having a hell of a time getting their birds to eat anything that isn't sunflower seeds. And sunflower seeds are no good for an eclectus.

I leave my baby a bowl of new foods 3 times a day, huge varieties, most of the time she nibbles them, shredding them, or throws them around her cage. If I want food inside her body I put it there with my own hands. I spent 3 weeks allowing her to 'explore' things I would expect her to eat. Its important discovery at this age.exploring, is not eating.

Sounds like your bird is exploring your food. Roll it around, shred it, squish it, peel it, spit it out. Shes not confident its food. In the wild, the baby will follow the dad around, and watch him eat things, usually waiting for dad to feed it to the baby, before the baby will start trying to eat the same things. This is how they learn what's good and whats not.

Let her see it disappear down your throat, then deposit the same thing into her beak, she might gobble up truckloads then. Weigh her daily until she is steadily gaining. She should get to around 450g or so. Mine is a solomon, so shes a bit smaller. She was 415 when she started weaning and has lost 60g now, and trust me its not cos I am not trying to feed her. Weaning is the hard part of raising a baby bird.

Mine has JUST started swallowing things whole - she doesn't even chew her corn, peas, carrots etc. They go in the beak and vanish, but I put them there with my fingers. In a bowl, she will shred for an hour and toss things around. Mine prefers her food warm and a little cooked. Last night I made her mash butternut and mixed it with cooked lentils and split peas and she loved it. Ate until her crop was solid. 2 hours later she gulped down some cooked mixed berries with veggies. My daughter got concerned I was over-feeding her her crop was so full. A hungry birds crop is flat or hollow and you can feel the keel bone easily. Also a good way to tell if she is actually feeding herself.

If she's not eating, feed her by hand, but it doesn't have to be formula 3 times a day, you can hand feed other foods.
 

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