What to do for fly by attacks

Leo1865

New member
Mar 20, 2017
14
0
We got a couple Cockatoos a few months ago. When we first got them they were great with both my husband and myself. About a week or so after Chevy, the female decided she hates my husband. He has not done anything to her, she would lay with him and let him scratch her head before. Now if he comes in the room, or even hears his voice she fluffs all up and starts hissing. To make matters worse, if she is out of her cage she will dive bomb him and try to bite him. She waits till he is looking away and she swoops in for the kill, so to speak. I don't have any idea what changed. If my son comes over she is perfectly fine. My son is nervous because of what she does to my husband, but she is very sweet to him. I have not seen that behavior with anyone else.

I have been trying to get him to give her treats every time he see's her thinking that might tame her down some. But he is afraid she will bite him.

I'm thinking it is a jealousy thing going on, but I don't understand what prompted it. He works a lot so he is not around her a whole lot and I don't ignore her when he is around, thinking that she won't feel like he is taking me away from her. I'm lost what to do with them.

We also have a male which she is very bonded to, but she shows very little jealousy if I pay attention to him, she just usually tries to push him out of the way. We also have an African Grey and since we got the Cockatoo's has really bonded to my husband. The Grey is our Alpha in the house, he will chase the Cockatoo's from one cage to another just to mess with them. He has even went after Chevy if she starts go after my husband. Basically protecting him.

I know if he is in the house she can not be out of her cage if I am not right there to monitor.

Any suggestions on what I can do? Do you think she will ever turn around? I know some times birds will hate one sex over another, but I don't really think that is the case since she has never shown that kind of aggression towards anyone else.

Last night I stood in the kitchen near my husband, which is basically open to our living room, where their cages are. As soon as he would look away, she would fly towards him, and I would step in between, and back to her cage. Few minutes later, same thing. This continued until I put her in her cage. I did this just to see what she does if I am not there. My husband will not go into a room if she is loose because she will jump on him and bite him.

Help please, has anyone had this problem and was able to over come it?:white1:
 
Last edited:
OP
L

Leo1865

New member
Mar 20, 2017
14
0
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #2
I forgot to mention, the Chevy and Frenchie 9 years old.
 

itzjbean

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2017
2,572
Media
4
119
Iowa, USA
Parrots
2 cockatiels
So sorry you are having issues with your too. It may be hormones. One thing to do to prevent this behavior would be a wing clip. Just for the time-being, until you can understand why she is doing this. This would give you more control over the situation so she can no longer dive-bomb with her ability to fly temporarily cut off.

Has there been any changes recently, in job, home, relationships? Birds, especially the larger species like cockatoos, react to the slightest of changes to their lives. Hopefully some too owners can chime in with their advice on this. Good luck!
 

SailBoat

Supporting Member
Jul 10, 2015
17,657
10,033
Western, Michigan
Parrots
DYH Amazon
Thank-you, for your very informative description of the actions of your Too's and Grey.

Not to be hardhearted, but viewing from a distance, its got to be fun to watch. I am sure your husband would not agree with that - but, his relationship with your Grey has improved greatly.

I have never had a Too, lots of friends with Toos and MAC's that just love placing their feathered friends on the local Amazon Snob.

I would love to provide you so advise, but most of what I would provide would be commonly relationship stuff. If the Too experts do not show, up I will provide you what little I know.

- If you have not read the two 'Sticky' Threads (highlighted in light blue) at the top of the TOO Forum please do so! Also, read through the first view pages for some insight on what you are facing.

I understand that this sounds odd, but both of you need to have a good laugh at what is happening. It nothing else, it takes the edge (bite :D) off the moment.
 

SailBoat

Supporting Member
Jul 10, 2015
17,657
10,033
Western, Michigan
Parrots
DYH Amazon
Be very careful with clipping a Too's wings. They tend to react differently than other Parrots - see Sticky at top of the Too Forum before you go this direction.


So sorry you are having issues with your too. It may be hormones. One thing to do to prevent this behavior would be a wing clip. Just for the time-being, until you can understand why she is doing this. This would give you more control over the situation so she can no longer dive-bomb with her ability to fly temporarily cut off.

Has there been any changes recently, in job, home, relationships? Birds, especially the larger species like cockatoos, react to the slightest of changes to their lives. Hopefully some too owners can chime in with their advice on this. Good luck!
 

Birdman666

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2013
9,904
258
San Antonio, TX
Parrots
Presently have six Greenwing Macaw (17 yo), Red Fronted Macaw (12 yo), Red Lored Amazon (17 y.o.), Lilac Crowned Amazon (about 43 y.o.) and a Congo African Grey (11 y.o.)
Panama Amazon (1 Y.O.)
I'd clip.

You can't have dive bombing birds who bite. It's not safe, or fair, to the people in the house. He has to learn some manners.

Back to basics. Clipped. Step up. No biting. That is not yours. You don't decide that bird. We're in charge, NOT YOU! Do you need to go time out?!

We had a foster that was chasing people around the room. Pulled the couch cushion off the couch, so it was huge compared to him and he couldn't latch onto it. backed his little butt right straight into a corner, and made him sit there for awhile. You start it. It finishes like this... Still a fun game to you bird?! Was that a no?!

You want off the floor, you want cuddles and treats? THEN STEP UP NICE AND BEHAVE!!!

If they go after another bird in the wild, the other bird doesn't just sit there and take it... THEY DRIVE THEM COMPLETELY OFF THE PERCH, AND POSSIBLY EVEN DRIVE THEM AWAY FROM THE PROTECTION OF THE FLOCK TO EMPHASIZE THE POINT.... AND THEY NEVER DO IT AGAIN!!!

Same survival instinct.

Just sayin'...

I'm old school. It isn't abuse. It's teaching. You don't hit. You don't hurt, you put them on the floor and make them back off being aggressive... with you, or with each other. Aggressive birds get an immediate attitude adjustment.

Once adjusted, it never happened. All is forgiven. End the lesson on a positive note.
 
Last edited:

GaleriaGila

Well-known member
Parrot of the Month 🏆
May 14, 2016
15,059
8,779
Cleveland area
Parrots
The Rickeybird, 38-year-old Patagonian Conure
Great advice above.
My Patagonian pre-dated my husband and has always seen my ol' man as his rival. He doesn't attack unless I touch my husband or vice versa. Same with just about anybody else or any other pet. I'm ashamed to say that we all just cave in and indulge him. He's flighted and fearless and gets his way.
 

Birdman666

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2013
9,904
258
San Antonio, TX
Parrots
Presently have six Greenwing Macaw (17 yo), Red Fronted Macaw (12 yo), Red Lored Amazon (17 y.o.), Lilac Crowned Amazon (about 43 y.o.) and a Congo African Grey (11 y.o.)
Panama Amazon (1 Y.O.)
It's probably going to be controversial. But that's the way I've always done it. And I was the one rehabbing "the biters."

Grown a$$ man running from his own greenwing... I didn't run. Bird got the Couch cushion instead. Stepped right up for me. Let me scratch his head. Then turned and tried to rip his owners face off... WHY?! BECAUSE HE KNEW HE COULD GET AWAY WITH ANYTHING IF HE WAS A BRAT AND A BULLY...

And he knew I wouldn't let him get away with anything, so he stopped.

Dominance?! Or discipline?!

I've gone round and round with some folks on this. Barbara and I seem to greatly disagree on this one.

Her way works too... on some birds.

And I have a different approach for pluckers. Pluckers are trickier...
 

RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,233
190
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
I'm sure there can be different reasons for this, hormones, jealousy, etc. but in my experience it was a clear act of defiance and disrespect.

I had a Slender Billed Too who would fly around then "bounce" her feet off my head like a little platform and take off again. Now, my naughty Ruppell's Parrot who is always getting into trouble doesn't like to be told what he can't do, so to 'punish' me, he lands on my head hard (thank goodness my hair is thick). Sometimes he does it violently and tangles with the top of my head. If I was bald there would be blood lol. He knows that means he has to go in his cage, but to him apparently it's worth it.
 

itzjbean

Well-known member
Jan 27, 2017
2,572
Media
4
119
Iowa, USA
Parrots
2 cockatiels
I'm sure there can be different reasons for this, hormones, jealousy, etc. but in my experience it was a clear act of defiance and disrespect.

I had a Slender Billed Too who would fly around then "bounce" her feet off my head like a little platform and take off again. Now, my naughty Ruppell's Parrot who is always getting into trouble doesn't like to be told what he can't do, so to 'punish' me, he lands on my head hard (thank goodness my hair is thick). Sometimes he does it violently and tangles with the top of my head. If I was bald there would be blood lol. He knows that means he has to go in his cage, but to him apparently it's worth it.

Have you considered a clip for your parrot? That would drive me nuts..
 

Scott

Supporting Member
Aug 21, 2010
32,673
9,792
San Diego, California USA, Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Parrots
Goffins: Gabby, Abby, Squeaky, Peanut, Popcorn / Citron: Alice / Eclectus: Angel /Timneh Grey: ET / Blue Fronted Amazon: Gonzo /

RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
We got a couple Cockatoos a few months ago. When we first got them they were great with both my husband and myself. About a week or so after Chevy, the female decided she hates my husband. He has not done anything to her, she would lay with him and let him scratch her head before. Now if he comes in the room, or even hears his voice she fluffs all up and starts hissing. To make matters worse, if she is out of her cage she will dive bomb him and try to bite him. She waits till he is looking away and she swoops in for the kill, so to speak. I don't have any idea what changed. If my son comes over she is perfectly fine. My son is nervous because of what she does to my husband, but she is very sweet to him. I have not seen that behavior with anyone else.

I have been trying to get him to give her treats every time he see's her thinking that might tame her down some. But he is afraid she will bite him.

I'm thinking it is a jealousy thing going on, but I don't understand what prompted it. He works a lot so he is not around her a whole lot and I don't ignore her when he is around, thinking that she won't feel like he is taking me away from her. I'm lost what to do with them.

We also have a male which she is very bonded to, but she shows very little jealousy if I pay attention to him, she just usually tries to push him out of the way. We also have an African Grey and since we got the Cockatoo's has really bonded to my husband. The Grey is our Alpha in the house, he will chase the Cockatoo's from one cage to another just to mess with them. He has even went after Chevy if she starts go after my husband. Basically protecting him.

I know if he is in the house she can not be out of her cage if I am not right there to monitor.

Any suggestions on what I can do? Do you think she will ever turn around? I know some times birds will hate one sex over another, but I don't really think that is the case since she has never shown that kind of aggression towards anyone else.

Last night I stood in the kitchen near my husband, which is basically open to our living room, where their cages are. As soon as he would look away, she would fly towards him, and I would step in between, and back to her cage. Few minutes later, same thing. This continued until I put her in her cage. I did this just to see what she does if I am not there. My husband will not go into a room if she is loose because she will jump on him and bite him.

Help please, has anyone had this problem and was able to over come it?:white1:

What species of cockatoo are Chevy and Frenchie? While all of the white toos have similar characteristics, some are unique.

Your situation seems typical, a honeymoon followed by those active little minds dividing and conquering. I suspect your husband did nothing "wrong" but fell into the female's naughty list of pecking order. Dive bombing is unnerving and ought not be tolerated. I have a wild-caught male Goffin who does that once every few weeks and is swiftly netted and given a time-out in cage. Seems to work satisfactorily as he does not bite, just scrapes his talons across my head, but don't wish for him to escalate. So, you might try an immediate time-out for a few minutes - anything longer won't be perceived as punishment. Lots of other great advice given so far, but personally I'd leave the wing-clipping for very last.
 

RavensGryf

Supporting Member
Jan 19, 2014
14,233
190
College Station, Texas
Parrots
Red Bellied Parrot /
Ruppell's Parrot /
Bronze Winged Pionus /
English Budgie
I'm sure there can be different reasons for this, hormones, jealousy, etc. but in my experience it was a clear act of defiance and disrespect.

I had a Slender Billed Too who would fly around then "bounce" her feet off my head like a little platform and take off again. Now, my naughty Ruppell's Parrot who is always getting into trouble doesn't like to be told what he can't do, so to 'punish' me, he lands on my head hard (thank goodness my hair is thick). Sometimes he does it violently and tangles with the top of my head. If I was bald there would be blood lol. He knows that means he has to go in his cage, but to him apparently it's worth it.

Have you considered a clip for your parrot? That would drive me nuts..

Griffin is a "different" case from your normal pet companion parrot. First, I'll say that he doesn't do this all the time, but it was still worth mentioning.
Anyway, I spent about a year and a half(?) with consistent training "bringing him back" from the wild as much as possible, after he literally went 100% phobic as if he was literally just off the plains of Africa and didn't recognize me or humans anymore. Part of the desensitizing was to let his wings grow out so he could fly, so he could gain a sense of confidence and 'escape' when he felt like a predator (me, his lovely owner and supposed companion) was getting too close. I taught him how to go in his cage and other things with voice commands since I couldn't get near him. We've come a long way, but as for more details, I wanted to write a story for our Amazing Journey's section here, but I haven't gotten around to it yet ;). Also not to derail this thread but to answer Jackie here :).

In most "normal" cases though, I think clipping at least temporarily might be a good answer for birds who like dominating the human head for various negative reasons. Or even a light enough clip that it would slow them down, but not completely ground them.
 

Birdman666

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2013
9,904
258
San Antonio, TX
Parrots
Presently have six Greenwing Macaw (17 yo), Red Fronted Macaw (12 yo), Red Lored Amazon (17 y.o.), Lilac Crowned Amazon (about 43 y.o.) and a Congo African Grey (11 y.o.)
Panama Amazon (1 Y.O.)
Mark what is your approach for pluckers??

THAT is not one size fits all. That varies depending on the trigger for the plucking. An insecure bird that is being a bully... needs to get the insecurity worked on... and THAT STOPS the bullying...

Fear based chasing YOU DO THE OPPOSITE. You don't run. You stop. You sit down on the floor and set a boundary. I am not going to chase you. But you are not going to chase me. Food treat. Try and get them to calmly step up and sit on your lap... Usually holding up and presenting the palm of your hand as kind of a universal stop sign in the bird's face... (with nothing to latch onto. Closed bent fist if they are lunge biters....)

YOU DON'T WANT TO STRESS A PLUCKER... BUT YOU ALSO DON'T LET THEM RUN THE HOUSEHOLD, AND ATTACK PEOPLE, JUST BECAUSE THEY HAVE SOME PSYCHOLOGICAL ISSUES.
 

Birdman666

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2013
9,904
258
San Antonio, TX
Parrots
Presently have six Greenwing Macaw (17 yo), Red Fronted Macaw (12 yo), Red Lored Amazon (17 y.o.), Lilac Crowned Amazon (about 43 y.o.) and a Congo African Grey (11 y.o.)
Panama Amazon (1 Y.O.)
My little lilac crowned amazon is the WORST at the chase me game... because she will come charging after you... like the fiercest creature who ever lived, and once she gets to you, she has absolutely no idea what to do.

I WILL DEFEND MY TERRITORY TO THE DEATH... or not. Okay. Actually, I don't really bite anyone.

I think I'll stand here and look at your feet... maybe you'll get bored and go away.

So, did I at least scare you a little bit?!

No?

So, in the wild, I would like, totally be losing my nest right about now, wouldn't I?!

Pretty much. Good thing she's an indoor bird...
 
Last edited:
OP
L

Leo1865

New member
Mar 20, 2017
14
0
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #16
So sorry you are having issues with your too. It may be hormones. One thing to do to prevent this behavior would be a wing clip. Just for the time-being, until you can understand why she is doing this. This would give you more control over the situation so she can no longer dive-bomb with her ability to fly temporarily cut off.

Has there been any changes recently, in job, home, relationships? Birds, especially the larger species like cockatoos, react to the slightest of changes to their lives. Hopefully some too owners can chime in with their advice on this. Good luck!

Chevy is an Umbrella Cockatoo. This started just shortly after we got them. Charlie, TAG, came first then a couple weeks later we got Frenchie and Chevy Everything was great for the first few days, then Chevy started PMSing, that's what I call it. If she hears his voice she fluffs up and hisses. It's just strange how she changed so much so fast. We have not had any problems with anyone else. I just seems to be my husband.

I have really been pushing him to talk to her more, give her treats and it seems to be getting better. He walked up to her tonight and gave her a grape and she took it without hissing.

Clipping wings, I have been back and forth on this. I prefer them not to be clipped, but if this behavior continues we may not have any other choice.
 
OP
L

Leo1865

New member
Mar 20, 2017
14
0
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #17
Thank-you, for your very informative description of the actions of your Too's and Grey.

Not to be hardhearted, but viewing from a distance, its got to be fun to watch. I am sure your husband would not agree with that - but, his relationship with your Grey has improved greatly.

I have never had a Too, lots of friends with Toos and MAC's that just love placing their feathered friends on the local Amazon Snob.

I would love to provide you so advise, but most of what I would provide would be commonly relationship stuff. If the Too experts do not show, up I will provide you what little I know.

- If you have not read the two 'Sticky' Threads (highlighted in light blue) at the top of the TOO Forum please do so! Also, read through the first view pages for some insight on what you are facing.

I understand that this sounds odd, but both of you need to have a good laugh at what is happening. It nothing else, it takes the edge (bite :D) off the moment.

You can laugh, it is actually very funny. Now if she starts to fly I will yell "In coming" and my husband raises his hands up and she will just turn around and go back.
 
OP
L

Leo1865

New member
Mar 20, 2017
14
0
  • Thread Starter
  • Thread starter
  • #18
We got a couple Cockatoos a few months ago. When we first got them they were great with both my husband and myself. About a week or so after Chevy, the female decided she hates my husband. He has not done anything to her, she would lay with him and let him scratch her head before. Now if he comes in the room, or even hears his voice she fluffs all up and starts hissing. To make matters worse, if she is out of her cage she will dive bomb him and try to bite him. She waits till he is looking away and she swoops in for the kill, so to speak. I don't have any idea what changed. If my son comes over she is perfectly fine. My son is nervous because of what she does to my husband, but she is very sweet to him. I have not seen that behavior with anyone else.

I have been trying to get him to give her treats every time he see's her thinking that might tame her down some. But he is afraid she will bite him.

I'm thinking it is a jealousy thing going on, but I don't understand what prompted it. He works a lot so he is not around her a whole lot and I don't ignore her when he is around, thinking that she won't feel like he is taking me away from her. I'm lost what to do with them.

We also have a male which she is very bonded to, but she shows very little jealousy if I pay attention to him, she just usually tries to push him out of the way. We also have an African Grey and since we got the Cockatoo's has really bonded to my husband. The Grey is our Alpha in the house, he will chase the Cockatoo's from one cage to another just to mess with them. He has even went after Chevy if she starts go after my husband. Basically protecting him.

I know if he is in the house she can not be out of her cage if I am not right there to monitor.

Any suggestions on what I can do? Do you think she will ever turn around? I know some times birds will hate one sex over another, but I don't really think that is the case since she has never shown that kind of aggression towards anyone else.

Last night I stood in the kitchen near my husband, which is basically open to our living room, where their cages are. As soon as he would look away, she would fly towards him, and I would step in between, and back to her cage. Few minutes later, same thing. This continued until I put her in her cage. I did this just to see what she does if I am not there. My husband will not go into a room if she is loose because she will jump on him and bite him.

Help please, has anyone had this problem and was able to over come it?:white1:

What species of cockatoo are Chevy and Frenchie? While all of the white toos have similar characteristics, some are unique.

Your situation seems typical, a honeymoon followed by those active little minds dividing and conquering. I suspect your husband did nothing "wrong" but fell into the female's naughty list of pecking order. Dive bombing is unnerving and ought not be tolerated. I have a wild-caught male Goffin who does that once every few weeks and is swiftly netted and given a time-out in cage. Seems to work satisfactorily as he does not bite, just scrapes his talons across my head, but don't wish for him to escalate. So, you might try an immediate time-out for a few minutes - anything longer won't be perceived as punishment. Lots of other great advice given so far, but personally I'd leave the wing-clipping for very last.

She is an Umbrella Cockatoo. If she does something like that, naught stuff, I usually give her stern talking to, telling her to be nice, that's not appropriate behavior, I don't yell just a very firm tone. She will usually bow her head down as to say I'm sorry. I will ask her if she is going to be nice, and she will start shaking her head up and down. The funny part is our TAG now tells her to "Be nice" If she continues, she goes in her cage. Just like when she starts screaming, I first try to ignore her but if she continues, I do the same thing. Her screaming is really only at night and that's when I put her to bed. I found that by covering her cage keeps her quiet.

I cross my fingers, I think we are starting to make head way, she isn't hissing and fluffing up as much. Actually, just thinking about it, she hasn't few at him for a couple days now. Knock on wood it will stay that way.
 

plumsmum2005

New member
Nov 18, 2015
5,330
94
England, UK
Parrots
Lou, Ruby, and Sonu.
Fly free Plum, my gorgeous boy.
Sounds like the honeymoon truly over with. I go with Mark, Birdman666 advice as too's like to exert dominance after the honeymoon if you let them. Have had this with both my RB2 and the youngster that comes to stay several times a year. Both are over this now. Also second Scott's comment of clip as very last resort IMO.

Too's try to be in charge and if allowed to be so do not do a very good job of it, opens the gates to more problems. Make sure that they have plenty to do/chew as a busy bird is a happy bird. Wild parrots reared by their parents in the wild are constantly corrected for bad behaviour, not allowed to get away with it.
 
Last edited:

Taprock

Member
Oct 22, 2015
279
2
Northern l.p. Michigan
Parrots
Buzz - CAG,
Ziggy - Nanday/Sun Conure,
Jasper - Goffin
Loki - Starling
Gloria - Foster CAG
When my son's CAG came to live with us he hated my husband. He drew blood a few times and loved to attack his feet, he came to us already clipped. Birdman told us to towel and give him a timeout. We did along with the warning "Do you want Mr. Towell?" After a very short time the warning was all that was needed to stop him in his tracks. Then my husband started asking if he wanted a nut and would let him pick a raw nut from the container, mainly because he wouldn't put his hand near Buzz from past experiences. Now a year and a half later my husband will see Buzz ask if he wants a nut and then Buzz follows him all the way to the kitchen to pick out a nut. I wouldn't say they are friends but they have reached an understanding... or rather I say Buzz trained hubby to feed him treats.

That said I know all birds aren't alike, We have a Goffin who hates/is scared of everyone and we have no idea how far or even if we will make any progress with him. Good luck the advice above is great.
 

Most Reactions

Latest posts

Top