Parrotlet overplucking

ribbonbird

New member
Feb 10, 2024
2
8
Parrots
Parrotlet
Hello, I have an 11 year old Parrotlet who began overplucking her feathers around November of 2023, and its only gotten worse since. The top reasons we saw when we looked it up were stress or malnutrition, so we put her mainly on pellets and only gave her seed every two days or so. She lived with my at my parents house for the first 9 years of her life, but she now lives with me in my other house in my room only. We brought her back to my parent's house over Christmas break to see if she would be happier and less stressed, but despite her always seeming content and talkative she continues to pluck. It started off as just one spot on her neck, but now since there's no feathers left on her chest to pluck she's moved onto her back. We have to keep her in a separate room set at 85 degrees as anything lower makes her hypothermic. I booked an appointment with the only aviary vet in our city, but they don't have an opening until April, so I was hoping someone here may have experience with this/any recommendations on what more to do. We changed her pellets to Harrison's in case she might've developed an allergy to her old pellets, she always gets 12 hours of sleep at night and I hold her at least 4-5 hours a day.
Here are some pics of her now, any advice would be greatly appreciated!
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IMG_1484 2.jpg
 

LaManuka

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Aug 29, 2018
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Queensland, Australia
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Fang ({ab}normal grey cockatiel), Valentino (budgie), Jem (cinnamon cockatiel), Lovejoy(varied lorikeet), Peach (princess parrot)
Hello, I have an 11 year old Parrotlet who began overplucking her feathers around November of 2023, and its only gotten worse since. The top reasons we saw when we looked it up were stress or malnutrition, so we put her mainly on pellets and only gave her seed every two days or so. She lived with my at my parents house for the first 9 years of her life, but she now lives with me in my other house in my room only. We brought her back to my parent's house over Christmas break to see if she would be happier and less stressed, but despite her always seeming content and talkative she continues to pluck. It started off as just one spot on her neck, but now since there's no feathers left on her chest to pluck she's moved onto her back. We have to keep her in a separate room set at 85 degrees as anything lower makes her hypothermic. I booked an appointment with the only aviary vet in our city, but they don't have an opening until April, so I was hoping someone here may have experience with this/any recommendations on what more to do. We changed her pellets to Harrison's in case she might've developed an allergy to her old pellets, she always gets 12 hours of sleep at night and I hold her at least 4-5 hours a day.
Here are some pics of her now, any advice would be greatly appreciated!
View attachment 57737View attachment 57738

Welcome to the forums @ribbonbird, but I'm very sorry for the circumstances that brought you here. I'm glad you've managed to get into a vet and hopefully they have you on a waitlist in case an earlier appointment date becomes available 🤞🤞🤞I wish I could offer you some advice but I've never had a plucker myself, so I can only imagine the heartache that seeing your little one doing this to herself must cause you. I'm hoping another of our members with more direct experience may see your thread, but in the meantime the links below may give you a few insights ...



Plucking can indeed be a very complex problem to solve, so I hope another of our membership might weigh in with some more help for you soon 🙏 Oh and please don't forget to tell us her name will you? She looks very sweet!
 
OP
R

ribbonbird

New member
Feb 10, 2024
2
8
Parrots
Parrotlet
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #3
Thank you for your kindness! Her name is Ribbon, and is such a sweetheart <3 I'm also hoping for an opening at the vet, as sleeping in 85 degrees is getting a bit difficult. I will check out the thread you sent!
 

LaManuka

Moderator
Staff member
Super Moderator
Aug 29, 2018
25,359
Media
26
Albums
1
32,640
Queensland, Australia
Parrots
Fang ({ab}normal grey cockatiel), Valentino (budgie), Jem (cinnamon cockatiel), Lovejoy(varied lorikeet), Peach (princess parrot)
Awwwwwwwwww, Ribbon is a great name!! And you're most welcome, I hope someone or something here can help both you and her 💝
 

Bird Mann

Member
Sep 27, 2023
30
48
Maple Ridge BC
Parrots
I care for and manage a bonded pair of Parrotlets.
Hello, I have an 11 year old Parrotlet who began overplucking her feathers around November of 2023, and its only gotten worse since. The top reasons we saw when we looked it up were stress or malnutrition, so we put her mainly on pellets and only gave her seed every two days or so. She lived with my at my parents house for the first 9 years of her life, but she now lives with me in my other house in my room only. We brought her back to my parent's house over Christmas break to see if she would be happier and less stressed, but despite her always seeming content and talkative she continues to pluck. It started off as just one spot on her neck, but now since there's no feathers left on her chest to pluck she's moved onto her back. We have to keep her in a separate room set at 85 degrees as anything lower makes her hypothermic. I booked an appointment with the only aviary vet in our city, but they don't have an opening until April, so I was hoping someone here may have experience with this/any recommendations on what more to do. We changed her pellets to Harrison's in case she might've developed an allergy to her old pellets, she always gets 12 hours of sleep at night and I hold her at least 4-5 hours a day.
Here are some pics of her now, any advice would be greatly appreciated!
View attachment 57737View attachment 57738
What a sweetie :) there are cage heaters and heated perches available on Amazon she might like that option. I have one I use during the cooler months and my guys just love it.
Best,
Laurie
 

kme3388

Well-known member
Sep 17, 2021
1,009
3,171
Minnesota, USA
Parrots
Eclectus Parrot: Nico (male)
Jenday Conure: Kiwi (female)
I do have a parrot that feather plucks. There are so many different reasons why that can occur. It will vary upon the parrot. I did learn fairly early on after I adopted a parrot who feather plucks that the longer they do it for the harder it is to break. It becomes more habitual at that point. Diet, sleep, environment, and things are what we can change as parrot owners. When my parrot who is a habitual plucker starts feather plucking… I go in his cage, and move all of his toys around, or give new ones. I give him the opportunity to have a bath daily. I tried a humidifier to see if my parrots skin was just dry. I start to do little things like this to see if something will help.
 
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