Unexpected new quaker, need help


New member
Aug 18, 2020
Blue quaker parrot (Coco)

I posted this on reddit already with no replies, so im hoping someone can help me here.
a blue quaker parrot randomly perched on my shoulder when i was outside, So i've adopted it for now, while also looking around for a previous owner just in case, I live in the middle east so 1. this type of bird is not common here at all and 2. We don't really have a legal system for owning pets, so no collars or certificates etc.

I'll be visting a vet tomorrow, but so far i've gone to a pet store and the person there told me that this is still a baby parrot and needs baby formula and gave me a little jar of some oatmeal looking powder (no brand), and i got bought a small cage, Is there anything i should know? Any information is helpful, i have never owned a bird before.

Thank you in advance! ^^

Also, we don't have any form of animal rescue or animal shelters here, so that's not an option


Well-known member
Jul 11, 2018
Umbrella Cockatoo- 15? years old..I think?
WELCOME! So glad you are here- this is a really active forum and it is full of people who will help you out.
Where are you located?
Have you posted to parrot 911, facebook, twitter etc etc? They are called monk parakeets as well, in case you find someone talking about that (although quaker is probably more common).
A member is missing a blue Quaker : http://www.parrotforums.com/lost-found/86182-neptune-lost.html

You sure he's a baby? It's hard to tell from that picture, but what made the pet store say that, and what kind of a pet store was it?
Did you make sure that the vet (if at ALL POSSIBLE) is an avian vet (exotics vets are not the same-- they can be okay, but they aren't on-par with CAVS/avian vets when it comes to parrots). If you are able to drive a few hours to see one, it would be well-worth your time. If not, an exotics vet is better than nothing, but make sure they at least see a lot of birds if you have more than one option.

If you keep him because you cannot find his owner, you will not want to keep a small cage, but you will need to make sure the bar-spacing etc is safe for a bird his size. Avoid used cages because birds can spread viruses that can live on surfaces for over a year (even if they seem healthy and have no symptoms). Try looking into flight cages, but again, only once you are sure you cannot find his owner.
The small cage that you got could be used as a travel cage.
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Well-known member
Jul 11, 2018
Umbrella Cockatoo- 15? years old..I think?
Here is my copy-and paste for potential owners:
PLEASE READ FOR DETAIL-- birds are so unique and this stuff is serious with them-esp the chemicals, scented products, teflon/ptfe/pfoa/pfcs--they took canaries into coal-mines for this reason:

One really important thing when keeping a pet bird in the house is that you cannot use scented products or chemicals/fumes in your home (even things that smell nice to us(---things like smoke, perfumes, air freshener, standard cleaners, vaping, burning food, incense, cigarettes, glue, paint, window sealing kits, polishes, aerosol sprays etc can harm your bird's sensitive respiratory system (which is not the same as mammals'). Using products that heat or are heated which contain Teflon/PTFE/PFCs = very very dangerous. These products off-gas and can kill a bird in under 5 minutes. Teflon/PTFE/PFOA/PFCs are most commonly found in the kitchen (pots, pans, cookie sheets, drip trays, air fryers, popcorn poppers, baking mats, crock pots, toasters, toaster ovens, popcorn poppers, waffle irons, electric skillets etc. They can also be found in space-heaters, curling irons, blow-dryers, straighteners, heat lamps, heat guns, irons, ironing board covers etc. These fumes have killed birds through closed doors and on separate floors of a home, so you should replace your cookware with stainless steel, cast iron or ceramic. You may be thinking-- well, I have used them before and my bird is fine, but they kill very inconsistently and it depends on what you are cooking, the age of the pot/pan, the specific bird etc. There was a member who lost many of her birds from a pan she had literally used for years...then one day, her husband cooked an egg (without burning or overheating) and many of them died, while the rest showed signs of respiratory distress.

You will need an avian-safe cleaner to use within your home (both on the bird cage, but also, around the house). Again, chemical cleaners cannot be used in the home unless avian safe. F10 SC (the yellow/clear concentrate) is a great, avian-safe disinfectant. Other (less effective) options include products such as "poop-off", white vinegar + water, grapefruit seed extract + water, baking soda etc. Peroxide is also fairly safe for disinfecting places like your bathroom, but you do not want your bird to come into contact with it.

Some foods are toxic to them--avocado, coffee (even decaf), caffeine, rhubarb, alcohol, onions/garlic/leeks/chives, mushrooms etc. Salt is also very bad for them, as is most human food. They love it, but it's not healthy. Also, mammal saliva (from humans as well) contains gram-negative bacteria which parrots do not have in their systems. Never share food or allow your bird to eat or drink after you. Some people do it, but it's not safe.

They should not just eat seed--you will want to feed lots of washed fresh vegetables. Fruit is fine in moderation, but too much can lead to obesity and behavioral issues due to sugar. I feed my bird a mix of high-quality seed (no sunflowers, no peanuts) and pellets (in addition to fruit/veg). Fruit pits are toxic, as are apple seeds. Corn cob and certain nut shells (if swallowed in big pieces) can cause blockages, so you should be very cautious if you give your bird nuts in the shell. Peanuts can harbor aspergillosis, and should be avoided altogether (even they you often see them marketed towards parrots).

It is important to make sure that your bird's toys and cage are made of safe metals. Stainless steel is safest. They can get metal poisoning from playing with or mouthing objects made of unsafe metals.

They need a set amount of sleep each night (at least 10 hours) and the largest cage you can manage with lots of different perches. You want to avoid the totally smooth/round ones as they can lead to a condition called bumblefoot. Never place a cage near drafts and never allow cool air to blow on a bird. They are sensitive to drafts and any temperature shift greater than 10 degrees can cause a shock to their system.

They need lots of safe toys and safe wood to chew. Not all wood is safe, so don't just assume you can give them any kind you want.

Avoid dowel perches, as they can lead to bumble-foot. Instead, try manzanita or dragonwood etc. Also, no sandpaper-covered perches and no mite repellents (danger).

They hide illness and so you have to watch them to make sure they are eating normally and pooping normally etc. You should try to find an avian vet (certified avian) if at all possible and take your bird AT LEAST 1 x yearly for an exam. An avian vet is NOT the same as an exotics vet who sees birds--- so if a certified avian vet is available within a few hours of where you live, you will want to set up care.

All parrots can easily confuse the relationship with their human for a sexual one. You don't want this to happen, even though it seems sweet at first. Stick to petting on the head and neck only (the rest is sexual) and do not allow your bird to play in shadowy places, like boxes or under furniture, as these spaces are similar nesting sites and are hormonal triggers. NO SNUGGLE HUTS/TENTS!

Food and water should be replaced daily--- wash the containers daily. Never leave wet food out for more than a few hours (as it can lead to bacterial growth). Never try to medicate a bird via drinking water and never add vitamins to water. Vitamins can be over-dosed easily and harm a bird. Plus, when you add things to water, it makes it impossible to know how much they have gotten and it also encourages bacterial growth. Sometimes it can prevent them from drinking adequately if they don't like the flavor of whatever it is you added.

DO NOT give your parrot grit. They do not need it. It is bad for them.

These birds have the intelligence of a 4-year-old human, but they are wild animals (not domesticated like dogs). This means that they see the world (and humans) in a very unique way and so you must learn about their behavior in order to prevent problems (screaming, plucking etc). They need lots of time out of their cage daily and a lot of interaction (at least a few hours). At the same time, you don't want to spend TOO much time with a bird of they will become overly dependent and not know what to do with themselves when you go to work etc.

Finally, baby birds are ALWAYS sweet compared to adult birds. When your bird hits puberty, expect that it will exhibit some annoying and problematic behaviors (much like a teen). A through knowledge of behavior and setting expectations at an early age will make your life easier when that time comes, but do prepare yourself and expect that things will not always be so smooth-sailing. Think about a baby human compared to a teen...

I am sure there is more...but that is a basic overview of caring for birds.

Here is an excerpt from another post (which you may want to reference when shopping/ calling about Teflon:
The most insidious is the Teflon/ptfe/pfoa/pfcs because you have to call the company to verify that anything that heats or is intended to be heated does not contain these substances ("PTFE free" doesn't mean PFC free and so there are a lot of marketing gimmicks out there to make people buy what seems like healthier cook-ware, even though it still contains a version of the same chemicals). Also-- these chemicals can be woven into fabric, mixed into metal during the moulding process, applied as a powder, applied as a clear-coat, or mixed with a colored coating. You cannot assume that you will be able to identify them visually, so, when you call, you must provide all abbreviations and full names + spellings of each chemical compound (and then they usually give you "the run around" for a week or so IF they ever answer your questions at all---because sometimes it's a "trade secret"). It's all very sketchy and DuPont (manufacturer of Teflon) claims that off-gassing only occurs at really high temperatures, but there have been numerous documented/scientific and anecdotal reports of birds passing away at temperatures in the 300 F range (and again, it kills through closed doors and on different floors).
FYI- Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE)
Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA)
A perfluorinated compound (PFC)
Teflon (a common brand-name of non-stick cookware containing these chemicals)

10- 12 hours nightly for sleep, so if you get up at 6 and make a bunch of noise, you will wake the bird up (even if they are still covered). If they wake up at 6, bed should be between 6-8. You want to keep it around the same time if possible (because that's how it is in nature).

Food- For adults/weaned birds, I leave a high quality mix of pellets and some seed in my bird's cage (no peanuts, no sunflowers, avoid fillers like corn etc)..Fruit/veg daily (more veg than fruit if at all possible--and not too much fruit). Citrus and fruits high in vitamin C should be given in extreme moderation because they can cause "Iron Storage Disease" (for a cockatoo, 1 small tangerine slice 1-2 times a week was okay, according to my vet). She gets something interesting/ cooked (no salt or sugar or unsafe spaces-- like a grain) 2x daily as well but she is picky as heck, so you have to watch it because some birds will fill up on one thing and not get proper nutrients or they will eat too much and become obese.

OH-- something I didn't mention in my last post-- stainless steel is really one of the only safe metals for them. Research the heck out of your cage and make sure that if it uses a powder-coating it is truly non-toxic. Birds can get metal poisoning from playing with sketchy toys (many made in China do not adhere to best practices) and just mouthing things like money, bolts, locks etc can cause toxic impacts...A man I know allowed his bird to play with un-used toothbrushes and (unbeknownst to him) there were small copper bits that held the bristles in place-- this nearly killed his bird even though the bird didn't actually swallow the pieces.
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Well-known member
Jul 11, 2018
Umbrella Cockatoo- 15? years old..I think?
If he is a baby-- hand-feeding can be quite complicated and detail-oriented. You need to know his weight and have a feeding schedule etc if he is a baby. You also need to have a bird-safe means of cleaning the syringes (not standard chemicals). You definitely need a sterile candy thermometer for heating the formula.
You can buy baby parrot formula online.

I know that with hand-feeding, temperature (soooo important- to the exact degree), sterilization of all equipment (lab style sterile-- in terms of touching other items etc etc) are all very very important.
Here are some sites and a link to the forum that cover hand-feeding

https://hari.ca/hari/research-facil...cine-pediatrics-housing-feeding-baby-parrots/ <-- some possible issues with hand-feeding are discussed at the end

https://theparrotuniversity.com/arthandfeeding2 <- this link really emphasizes the importance of temperature and cross contamination etc

http://www.parrotforums.com/breeding-raising-parrots/74363-so-you-bought-unweaned-baby.html <-- I know you didn't buy him (lots of people do, but the information overlaps some). The language in the post is strong because many people CHOOSE to buy unweaned babies, thinking it will cause them to have a better bond. The language is passionate, but not directed at you.
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Well-known member
Aug 2, 2018
Full house
Hi, that does look like a baby, they owner will probably only be a few houses away. This bird couldn’t have gotten very far from his home., thank yiu for helping him . His owner is going to be very close, sbd if they are like most of us they are sick and broken hearted at the loss of their baby...

Food Ned’s to be correct temperature, get a thermometer , to hit will burn them from the inside, to cold can sit and rot inside of them. I think they links Noodles geve yiu talk temps. Also he is close to weaning, do offer lightly cooked and chopped veggies, raw veggies, leafy greens, a Lille cooked pasta mixed with vegetable. Never use a bed only fresh, or frozen ( thawed or cooked before use) a little scrambled eggs, yiu want to offer list of different foods for him to try. Even when he starts trying the food, yiu have to keep up the hand feeding, only dropping a feeding if he refuses it fir 3 days or so, usually the last feedings to drop are the morning and night one....

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