She doesn't want to socialize or eat healthy

VDosky

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Mar 22, 2020
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Indian Ringneck (Kiwi)
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I've had my sun conure for 4 months now. She still refuses to eat anything besides seeds and apples.. I make different chop and pellets every day..

Behaviour wise - she does not like to get out of her cage at all. ( Her cage is huge, almost as big as me). She sits on her perch all day but in the mornings she plays with her toys and exercises which is good.

She will not get out of her cage unless I get her out myself and I usually place her in a different room because she'd otherwise just fly back to her cage. She tolerates me scritching her and putting her on my shoulder but she doesn't really like socializing with us if that makes sense? Like she would never initiate it herself and I'm afraid she'll never improve and I'm trying my hardest.. I don't want to force her to do anything or give her unpleasant experiences I let her go wherever she wants but she likes to hide in little areas like under the tables out of reach. I don't think it's out of fear though because she isn't scared of me. She steps up when she isnt around the cage (otherwise she simply refuses)

Basically she will tolerate it if I go and sit close to her, or pet her, or put her on my shoulder but its not something she would ever initiate and she just isn't as active as she should be. She usually sits in the same spots doing nothing for hours. (She does play with her toys and chews things up now and then) She has no health issues. What can I do? It's like she wants nothing to do with me even though I know it isn't personal it just feels discouraging :(
 

Birdgirl24

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I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
Have you tried enticing her with a treat to make her have to interact and slowly taking the treat out of the picture after she starts to learn interacting with you is a positive experience? And don't worry transitioning a bird onto a different diet takes time you gotta let them work at their own pace. On the bright side she is getting some sort of fresh food.
 
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VDosky

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Indian Ringneck (Kiwi)
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Have you tried enticing her with a treat to make her have to interact and slowly taking the treat out of the picture after she starts to learn interacting with you is a positive experience?
I still haven't really figured out what she likes. The problem is that she doesn't eat pellets or chop and I can't let her starve so I offer both and she usually eats the seeds which leaves me less options for treats.. I've tried almonds and walnuts but she doesn't seem interested. I do handfeed her as much as I can and I've tried clicker training
 

Birdgirl24

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Dec 2, 2021
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I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
I still haven't really figured out what she likes. The problem is that she doesn't eat pellets or chop and I can't let her starve so I offer both and she usually eats the seeds which leaves me less options for treats.. I've tried almonds and walnuts but she doesn't seem interested. I do handfeed her as much as I can and I've tried clicker training
have you tried pine nuts? after she eats the seeds maybe leave the chop out a bit incase she wants a snack and if she does be like its not dinner time yet your snack is over there and just show it to her again without the seeds. I'm not saying starve her im just saying trick her into it by making her think its her will not yours. It might not work but its worth a try.
 
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VDosky

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have you tried pine nuts? after she eats the seeds maybe leave the chop out a bit incase she wants a snack and if she does be like its not dinner time yet your snack is over there and just show it to her again without the seeds. I'm not saying starve her im just saying trick her into it by making her think its her will not yours. It might not work but its worth a try.
i haven't tried pine nuts but i will thank u for the suggestion!! and what i do is i know she likes apples so i chop everything as small as possible and mix it with the apple so she at least takes a taste of the food and is interested.. i'm still working on it
 

Laurasea

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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
you cam set up perches on the outside of cage and by the door up the sides and on top. Stsrt putting her seed dish right outside the door were she can reach it from inside by just leaning head out. After she gets good at that move it a little farther away so has to step out on a perch to reach it, after several days of her being great st thst. Keep moving it until yiunhsve it on top of cage sbd she has to climb up there.

Where is her cafe now, what room?

Birds that aren't taken out , allowed out regularly every day for 4 or more hours, start to get cage bound. Where its kinda like they develop phobia or shut down. Bird. relationships take time everyday.

You really want to get her engaged with life and environment.

My green cheek has safflower seeds in her seed mix, but she still thinks it's awesome if I use those for treats !!@ look and see what she eats first and use that as your treat.

All of my burds love veggies, abd leafy greens, but served as chunks not as chop. I mix up how I offer, that day was stuffed stiff in a millet holder. You can try stuffing broccoli or cauliflower through cage bars , sometimes they find that more temptation.
20211130_104552.jpg


Thread 'Enrichment ideas, share yours' https://www.parrotforums.com/threads/enrichment-ideas-share-yours.91635/

 
Last edited:

Birdgirl24

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Dec 2, 2021
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North Dakota
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I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
i haven't tried pine nuts but i will thank u for the suggestion!! and what i do is i know she likes apples so i chop everything as small as possible and mix it with the apple so she at least takes a taste of the food and is interested.. i'm still working on it.
you cam set up perches on the outside of cage and by the door up the sides and on top. Stsrt putting her seed dish right outside the door were she can reach it from inside by just leaning head out. After she gets good at that move it a little farther away so has to step out on a perch to reach it, after several days of her being great st thst. Keep moving it until yiunhsve it on top of cage sbd she has to climb up there.

Where is her cafe now, what room?

Birds that aren't taken out , allowed out regularly every day for 4 or more hours, start to get cage bound. Where its kinda like they develop phobia or shut down. Bird. relationships take time everyday.

You really want to get her engaged with life and environment.

My green cheek has safflower seeds in her seed mix, but she still thinks it's awesome if I use those for treats !!@ look and see what she eats first and use that as your treat.

All of my burds love veggies, abd leafy greens, but served as chunks not as chop. I mix up how I offer, that day was stuffed stiff in a millet holder. You can try stuffing broccoli or cauliflower through cage bars , sometimes they find that more temptation. View attachment 32719

Thread 'Enrichment ideas, share yours' https://www.parrotforums.com/threads/enrichment-ideas-share-yours.91635/

Yeah i had cage bound budgies for awhile but ive worked through that. Now they just fly around my bedroom and hang out all day
 

Emeral

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Sep 16, 2021
197
423
Parrots
Hanhs Macaw
I've had my sun conure for 4 months now. She still refuses to eat anything besides seeds and apples.. I make different chop and pellets every day..

Behaviour wise - she does not like to get out of her cage at all. ( Her cage is huge, almost as big as me). She sits on her perch all day but in the mornings she plays with her toys and exercises which is good.

She will not get out of her cage unless I get her out myself and I usually place her in a different room because she'd otherwise just fly back to her cage. She tolerates me scritching her and putting her on my shoulder but she doesn't really like socializing with us if that makes sense? Like she would never initiate it herself and I'm afraid she'll never improve and I'm trying my hardest.. I don't want to force her to do anything or give her unpleasant experiences I let her go wherever she wants but she likes to hide in little areas like under the tables out of reach. I don't think it's out of fear though because she isn't scared of me. She steps up when she isnt around the cage (otherwise she simply refuses)

Basically she will tolerate it if I go and sit close to her, or pet her, or put her on my shoulder but its not something she would ever initiate and she just isn't as active as she should be. She usually sits in the same spots doing nothing for hours. (She does play with her toys and chews things up now and then) She has no health issues. What can I do? It's like she wants nothing to do with me even though I know it isn't personal it just feels discouraging :(

Sounds like a cage bound behavior.


Conures live in flock and are cuddly.
So I am sure she yearns to bond and socialize. She just doesn't know that you love her yet. This is sad to hear.

Was she hand raised?
When you eat does she eat too? If she doesn't, it means she still doesn't know you are her flock.
was she wing clipped? If so, her stillness might come from lack of confidence and fear of falling.

Won't you show us her photo?
When you interact, was it during the best time? Otherwise she might be sleepy and wanting her afternoon nap. (The most alert time for her is 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the evening.)

Have you try singing and whistle?
Have you scratch her head?
Does she know her name?
Please tell us more details......
 

Birdgirl24

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Dec 2, 2021
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North Dakota
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I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
Ps

Since she doesn't speak human, we may have to understand her from her body language......


yeah i'm still working on figuring out the hole body language thing its still confusing to me yet and ive had birds for 4 years so...
 
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VDosky

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Mar 22, 2020
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29
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Indian Ringneck (Kiwi)
Macaw (Lio)
Cockatiel (Pablo)
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you cam set up perches on the outside of cage and by the door up the sides and on top. Stsrt putting her seed dish right outside the door were she can reach it from inside by just leaning head out. After she gets good at that move it a little farther away so has to step out on a perch to reach it, after several days of her being great st thst. Keep moving it until yiunhsve it on top of cage sbd she has to climb up there.

Where is her cafe now, what room?

Birds that aren't taken out , allowed out regularly every day for 4 or more hours, start to get cage bound. Where its kinda like they develop phobia or shut down. Bird. relationships take time everyday.

You really want to get her engaged with life and environment.

My green cheek has safflower seeds in her seed mix, but she still thinks it's awesome if I use those for treats !!@ look and see what she eats first and use that as your treat.

All of my burds love veggies, abd leafy greens, but served as chunks not as chop. I mix up how I offer, that day was stuffed stiff in a millet holder. You can try stuffing broccoli or cauliflower through cage bars , sometimes they find that more temptation. View attachment 32719

Thread 'Enrichment ideas, share yours' https://www.parrotforums.com/threads/enrichment-ideas-share-yours.91635/

I have her cage in the living room with us and the door is always open in case she'd want to come out. I take her out as much as I can ( over 8 hours a day, and I also have her sleep in my room as the living room is cold during the night) I talk to her every day and sing to her. The place I got her from was horrible and she was basically put in a tiny cage with clipped feathers so I already knew she'd be a challenge. She does sit outside on the side of her cage whenever we approach her with food.

She is okay with US taking her out of the cage but wouldn't voluntarily do it herself if that makes sense. She lets me pet her, take her out (when i take her out is has to be with a perch though she will not step up in the cage with hands) but outside the cage she steps up on my hand easily. I think the trust factor is there as she also sometimes preens my hands and my eyebrows and she isn't "mean" or anything, not at all.. just not a very social bird. For now I just bring her to my room with me without the cage and let her wander wherever she wants, I've set up some wooden perches in my room for her to chew on too.
 

Birdgirl24

Well-known member
Dec 2, 2021
1,514
607
North Dakota
Parrots
I have 1 budgie, He is a male both. I have been looking into getting an Eclectus Parrot tho.
I have her cage in the living room with us and the door is always open in case she'd want to come out. I take her out as much as I can ( over 8 hours a day, and I also have her sleep in my room as the living room is cold during the night) I talk to her every day and sing to her. The place I got her from was horrible and she was basically put in a tiny cage with clipped feathers so I already knew she'd be a challenge. She does sit outside on the side of her cage whenever we approach her with food.

She is okay with US taking her out of the cage but wouldn't voluntarily do it herself if that makes sense. She lets me pet her, take her out (when i take her out is has to be with a perch though she will not step up in the cage with hands) but outside the cage she steps up on my hand easily. I think the trust factor is there as she also sometimes preens my hands and my eyebrows and she isn't "mean" or anything, not at all.. just not a very social bird. For now I just bring her to my room with me without the cage and let her wander wherever she wants, I've set up some wooden perches in my room for her to chew on too.
Yeah it does sound cage bound related. You could possibly work on targeting her out.
 
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VDosky

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Mar 22, 2020
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Indian Ringneck (Kiwi)
Macaw (Lio)
Cockatiel (Pablo)
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Sounds like a cage bound behavior.


Conures live in flock and are cuddly.
So I am sure she yearns to bond and socialize. She just doesn't know that you love her yet. This is sad to hear.

Was she hand raised?
When you eat does she eat too? If she doesn't, it means she still doesn't know you are her flock.
was she wing clipped? If so, her stillness might come from lack of confidence and fear of falling.

Won't you show us her photo?
When you interact, was it during the best time? Otherwise she might be sleepy and wanting her afternoon nap. (The most alert time for her is 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the evening.)

Have you try singing and whistle?
Have you scratch her head?
Does she know her name?
Please tell us more details......
I have her cage in the living room with us and the door is always open in case she'd want to come out. I take her out as much as I can ( over 8 hours a day, and I also have her sleep in my room as the living room is cold during the night) I talk to her every day and sing to her. The place I got her from was horrible and she was basically put in a tiny cage with clipped feathers so I already knew she'd be a challenge. She does sit outside on the side of her cage whenever we approach her with food.

She is okay with US taking her out of the cage but wouldn't voluntarily do it herself if that makes sense. She lets me pet her, take her out (when i take her out is has to be with a perch though she will not step up in the cage with hands) but outside the cage she steps up on my hand easily. I think the trust factor is there as she also sometimes preens my hands and my eyebrows and she isn't "mean" or anything, not at all.. just not a very social bird. For now I just bring her to my room with me without the cage and let her wander wherever she wants, I've set up some wooden perches in my room for her to chew on too.

I think you’ve also commented on my first post I made about her a few months ago! She has some flight feathers clipped but can still fly very well and flies from room to room. She hasn’t molted yet since I got her for me to let her grow her wings.
ED2A156E-DDB5-4CF6-9348-144268D49559.jpeg
 

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Stitchthestitch

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Albie - Pineapple Green Cheek Conure - Hatch date 14 Dec 2019 - Gotcha date - 4 March 2020
Silly question, but, does she know her chop is "safe" to eat?

Birds are flock eaters. They learn what's safe to eat but watching and learning from their flock members, and in this case, you. Have you tried making up a bird safe plate and sharing with her? This works brilliantly for Albie and me when I want Albie to try something new or unfamiliar. Also try chopping her chop up in different sizes. Albie has to be able to hold his food, anything he can't hold wont get touched. And try serving thing cooked or frozen. Albie loves cooked carrot and garden peas, frozen grapes and cold mashed potatoes.
 
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VDosky

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Silly question, but, does she know her chop is "safe" to eat?

Birds are flock eaters. They learn what's safe to eat but watching and learning from their flock members, and in this case, you. Have you tried making up a bird safe plate and sharing with her? This works brilliantly for Albie and me when I want Albie to try something new or unfamiliar. Also try chopping her chop up in different sizes. Albie has to be able to hold his food, anything he can't hold wont get touched. And try serving thing cooked or frozen. Albie loves cooked carrot and garden peas, frozen grapes and cold mashed potatoes.
Not a silly question at all! Before I serve it to her I always demonstrate eating it so she knows it is edible lol. I had to play with her toys myself and chew on them first before she knew they were toys 😂. I also put some seeds and nuts in the mix so she digs them out and gets a taste of them as she eats.

I haven't tried the different sizes things, I usually put everything in a blender with apples because I know she likes applies so she wouldn't be able to distinguish between what is in it. But i'll definitely try tomorrow.
 

Stitchthestitch

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Feb 9, 2020
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Albie - Pineapple Green Cheek Conure - Hatch date 14 Dec 2019 - Gotcha date - 4 March 2020
Not a silly question at all! Before I serve it to her I always demonstrate eating it so she knows it is edible lol. I had to play with her toys myself and chew on them first before she knew they were toys 😂. I also put some seeds and nuts in the mix so she digs them out and gets a taste of them as she eats.

I haven't tried the different sizes things, I usually put everything in a blender with apples because I know she likes applies so she wouldn't be able to distinguish between what is in it. But i'll definitely try tomorrow.
It's trial and error and once you think you've cracked it, they suddenly decide "yeah I don't like that now"

It was just a few ideas to help as these work with albie and may work with your precious little one 🥰
 

Laurasea

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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
look at that gorgeous cage! Lovely thar its a huge paradise !!
Get more perches in there, and on outside and top!

Its a slow process to help burds get over cage bound and neglect and improper care. Poor kiddo!
Pamela Clark Parrots behavior lady, might have some articles on this i will look and link

 
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VDosky

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look at that gorgeous cage! Lovely thar its a huge paradise !!
Get more perches in there, and on outside and top!

Its a slow process to help burds get over cage bound and neglect and improper care. Poor kiddo!
Pamela Clark Parrots behavior lady, might have some articles on this i will look and link

I’ll look for some wood soon and get some new perches in there, thank you for the suggestion! I just need to figure out how to properly put them on the outside of the cage. I had more perches in there but poop would fall onto her toys so I have to figure out how to design everything in a way where that doesn’t happen. I did have a cage bound bird before but the difference between the two is that the sun isn’t “”mean”” or anything but just needs time to open up hopefully… honestly when I saw her in a bad position in the store I felt so bad and immediately went for the biggest cage I could find because I knew it’d take time for her to be comfortable enough to come out so at least she could have a big space for herself until then, thank you ❤️
 

Emeral

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Sep 16, 2021
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Hanhs Macaw
I think the issue is the wing clipping which reduce confidence.

Rescued a small parakeet from cat, he was unharmed, undernourished and afraid of people. Our family have him in a cage to let him get used to us. After about 3 months, healthier Miky eat millet from our hands and hop around a foot at most. He can not fly, just glide. We suspect he had never flew before in his life. Probably, was clipped or confined in a cage, may be? During the first 3 months with us, we found.......

1)He was a bird that hardly move and did not fly. He sat still on the widest and most paralleled to the ground perch.
2)His every walk was slow and unsure.
3) Instead of flapping his wings to help with balancing, he bend over to used his beak.

His wings were not clipped. So our family figured that he might had never knew flying due to small cage captivity. Poor fellow kept very still most of the time, afraid of falling. After he got used to standing and eating on our hand, he climb out to explore. Just climbing using legs and beak. So we put items for him to climb and walk from his cage to sit outside. This process took another 3 months.

We thought he will just hop around, occasionally glide, and we expected nothing of him. Often find him on the ground, had to be really careful and had to put him back to his cage by hand.
But he got faster, jump longer distances, and get more acrobatic. Then, to our surprise, he flew like a normal bird. Out from his cage and even out to another room. Well, this self-taught flight process probably took longer than 6 months (on top of the previous 3+3) for him. He really surprised us in a nice way.

Since she preens your hands and eyebrows and is never aggressive. I think she trust you completely. This seems wonderful. She is very lucky to have you and she knows.

Bird's confidence in mobility, and the long term effects of wing clipping on bird's psychologically, is discussed more in this link....


This two cockatiels flying at full speed, viewed in slow motion, the first one reminds me of how Miky flew. He was not in control of his left and right flight path, unsure of his landing position.
From this article, Miky was clearly standing still due to fear of falling and lack of confidence in balancing issue.

With this mobility issue in mind, Steep slope branch may reduce wing clipped bird's movement in cage. Hence, I see things in these steps....

1) keeping branches in her cage at a minimum slanting slope.
2) keep many branches at close distance so she can walk from one to another easily. Perhaps adding a stairclimbing leson to build mobility confidence.
3) once she gain more control of her mobility, hopefully she will begin to flap her wings more. And branches distance as well as slop steepness in her cage may be increased.
4) one day she may fly to perch on your shoulder

Hope this helps
 

kme3388

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Sep 17, 2021
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Minnesota, USA
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Jenday Conure, Eclectus parrot
I'm sorry to hear about your sun conure. May I ask her age? My conure loves snuggling but is significantly more independent when compared to my other parrot. I also had a lot of issues trying to get my conure to eat pellets. I did finally come across zupreem nut flavored pellets. Its the only pellets I can get my conure to eat. She likes the little ball ones that are meant for smaller parrots. She eats those up just like she did her sunflower seeds that are now used as treats. It really is hard to use seeds as a reward/treat when they are fed as a meal. It took me a really long time to get my conure to change her diet.
 

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