Mother of Caiques


New member
Apr 21, 2015
Connecticut USA
2 young female black headed caiques
So I am mother of 2 caiques. Pearl is 8m and Jackie is 6m. I acquired Pearl first then wanted a male (companion) for her but alas the breeders guess that Jack was a male proved false...hence Jackie. They are the sweetest little beings. I am good with all types of animals but joined the forum for some help. Jackie is losing her little feathers (bristles) around her cere and in front of eye ring. I brought her to to vet ($117) for a eval, he is an avian vet and was a bit surprised by her appearance...asked me if Pearl was plucking at her (no) He said it looked like she is rubbing it off and there is no new growths coming in...just like a receding hairline...(and it appears to be spreading back more today) ... so he thought it might be a sinus infection so he flushed out her sinuses ( poor dear) but based on how good the saline came out both sides of nostrils separately determined there was no blockage... gave her a shot of vitamen a and d ( again poor dear) for good measure. She is a bit of a picky eater ( though it may be that Pearl is such a chow hound that she seems picky)
but is on Harrisons and Zupreem fruits veggies eggwhites all many more good things...she acts fine...She was a crazied bird at first( Ive only had her for 2 months) screaming wildish but now so cuddly and clucks to me and is a talker already says hi pretty girl, what ya doing... bedtime. whistles softly a real dolly. So any help out there anyone seen this (because I think the vet may be stumped too) Id sure appreciate it. Pearl is the type A caique very outgoing eats anything I put before her no fear...Jackie is more timid. The have UVB lamb but as soon as it hit 6o I had them both sitting with me in the sun several times a week for 1/2 hour to an hour at a time. They get one bath a week sometimes two...winter is just over so I dont want to have them catch a cold and will let them bath much more when it warms up. They both came from Florida. I purchased them there Pearl from a pet shop...Jackie from a breeder, and drove them back up to CT. They get 10 to 12 hours of sleep, they have a large cage and a divided cage ( I separated them at first ) but most of the day they live on my large kitchen island with a climbing rope and branches and toys toys toys...they have open I cant figure out what could be bugging again any help from any parrot owner with any thoughts would be so fine to hear... so thank you in advance for your time and thoughts...Linda ( sorry for the long story but I thought I address everything I thought you may ask about...)
Hi! Did the vet say anything about the possibility of mites? It's odd that only one of your caiques would have them, but it could still be possible. Does Jackie ever rub her face on objects excessively? Since she's young she could just be playing a little rougher than is best. I can't think of anything else, though, sorry :) Do you have a picture?
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Hi Julianna, Thank you for your reply, I asked the vet about mites...he said no she didnt have them...She doesnt rub her face except when grabbing my shirt and rubbing her head a bit not enough to do this. I will upload pic tomorrow.. im worried for her :(
Yes, a pic would definitely be helpful. I don't have experience with what you are describing, but there are certainly members on this forum who do.

Did the vet run a blood test?

It could be any number of things, ranging from a skin condition to allergies to something off in her diet. (Not to say that you aren't giving her a healthy selection, but there is always the possibility of a dietary sensitivity.) Are your caiques housed in the same cage? One could also be plucking the other.

Only other possibility that I can think of in terms of inexplicable feather loss on a bird's head is what happened with April's (Kiwibird) mother's bird, who for reasons unknown lost all of the feathers on his head. If she sees this, perhaps she can weigh in on whether what's happening with your bird resembles the early stages of what happened with that amazon.
I am sorry to hear about what's happening to Jackie:(. It's always hard when even the vet is unsure what's going on. What kind of tests has your vet run so far? There are SO many things to rule out as a potential cause (including the potential your other bird is plucking her). And though avian medicine has made great advances in recent years, there are still some mysteries out there. As with any creatures, there is the possibility for very rare (unidentified/recognized) genetic issues too that no vet can diagnose because there isn't a test or criteria to diagnose it with.

As Stephen (Anansi) mentioned, my mom has an amazon who went through something similar as a young bird. He was a healthy, happy, active bird who started going bald on just his head within a few years of reaching sexual maturity. He is in perfect feather on the rest of his body from the neck down. It has never impacted his quality of life, he has a lifelong "mate", is active, friendly, healthy appetite and has been bald on his head for over 30 years. He is now well into his 40's, and has been to many vets over the years, none of which have ever seen anything like poor Barney. He's been tested for everything under the sun, and up until recently having some age-related issues, has been in perfect health all these years he's been bald. One thing for certain, it's not contagious and highly unlikely to be environmental, as the female DYH and cockatoo who live with him (who eat and are exposed to everything he is and would have picked up any contagious diseases too) have never had anything similar. One vet hypothesized he may have something like male pattern baldness another thought perhaps he was inbred or had some unidentified genetic defect or disease. No one has ever had a solid answer, but despite looking more like a buzzard than a parrot, he's an absolute sweetheart who's totally unique and has had a long and mostly healthy life so far:D

Does this sounds/look like what might be happening to your Jackie?



(He is perfectly feathered except that little bald head!)
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I took some pictures but don't know how to upload to this thread. Have them on my iPad... Any suggestions. Thx
You can upload them to Photobucket (photobucket accounts have an email address you can directly email a pic to in order to post) then hit the little picture image and copy/paste the direct link. I do it on my iPhone that way sometimes.
You can do it one of two ways. Either upload the image from your computer to your forum album, or upload it to a website such as YouTube or Photobucket. Once that's done, copy the pic's web address (check to see if there is a tab specifically for sharing or posting to forum boards. If so, use that instead of the address in the page window) and then go to the thread where you want to post it. In your posting window, click on the image icon (2nd tab from the right with the image of mountains on it) and then paste the image address into the field. Done!

*Note: In order to post a video, follow the above instructions... except you must click the link icon instead of the image icon.
Sorry, Puck. I didn't realize you'd already posted the instructions.
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Thanks to all for your help im still in the process of trying to get pic in this thread hopefully in a hour or so...

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