1. Welcome to Avian Avenue! To view our forum with less advertisments please register with us.
    Memberships are free and it will just take a moment. Click here

My Bird Forgets Training Commands In Less Than An Hour

Discussion in 'The Training Court' started by Avitor, 4/30/19.

  1. Avitor

    Avitor Moving in

    Joined:
    4/21/19
    Messages:
    7
    So, I'm currently working on teaching my budgie to 'step-up.' She's understood the basic concept of it, and will step up, then get rewarded with a treat. On a day when I don't have school - weekends, for example - i'll usually wait at least an hour before starting another training session, especially if we're learning a new concept (Our training sessions usually last half and hour - shorter if she gets bored, agitated or isn't hungry anymore.)

    But after this period of time, it's like she forgets everything we've worked on. For example, if she was happily stepping up in our first session, she'll be reluctant to place more than one foot on my finger in our second, and that's only if i show her the treat in my hand. I have to re-teach the concept again. And again, and again, with new methods and each of them having the same or no result. This has been going on for about two and a half months now, and as you can imagine, it's become slightly frustrating.

    I feel this would be easier if she had a treat she was especially crazy for, like most budgies with millet, but so far, she hasn't taken to any 'treat' other than seed, which we already feed her on a daily basis.

    Any advice (other than find a new, better treat, which we are already trying to do) would be incredibly appreciated!
     
    Fuzzy, fashionfobie and Imogena like this.
  2. BlueDoraBarry

    BlueDoraBarry Walking the driveway

    Joined:
    12/20/18
    Messages:
    265
    Real Name:
    Barry
    Training sessions should last 10-20 mins max, which is probably why she gets bored and from the way you described her, isn't very excited to start training. Dora does seem to "forget" what we were working on but he quickly remembers.
     
  3. Avitor

    Avitor Moving in

    Joined:
    4/21/19
    Messages:
    7
    Okay, thank you so much! I'll make sure to shorten our sessions.
     
    Fuzzy, fashionfobie and Imogena like this.
  4. Imogena

    Imogena Sprinting down the street

    Joined:
    10/15/18
    Messages:
    493
    Location:
    Poland
    Real Name:
    Joanna
    I'm teaching Edgar in two ways. First is the training session with clicker. Edgar gets rewards (sunflower seeds, saflower seeds). I try to end those sessions before Edgar gets bored so they are short (like 10 minutes). Before I start, I observe if Edgar has right energy for the training. In his case he looks like he would do something but doesn't know what. He is moving around, quite energetic but not overexited, but cannot find anything to occupy himself with. When I see such behaviour I ask if he wants to train. Usually he does.

    Second way of training: If during the training session he learns something, I train this with him very often during his time outside of the cage. Like step up for example. He is on his stand, I would come and ask him to step up. He would. I would reward him and put him back on his stand. After some time (fiveteen minutes, half an hour) again.

    Now about rewarding. When he is learning something new, I of course reward him each time he does it correctly. During training sessions with clicker I reward him each time. During training outside training sessions I don't use clicker and I reward him randomly. Sometimes it is very handsome reward, sometimes one sunflower seed, sometimes no reward (only "thank you" from me), sometimes I praise him and tell him how smart he is (he likes it very much, little narcissist). I think this way of training is interesting for him because he never knows what kind of reward to expect.

    In the second way of training I focus on one thing (like step up). Edgar doesn't get bored because I ask only one time to step up, then live him to his own things. And then again: step up, reward (or not), and free time for him.

    For me this works (mostly), sometimes Edgar is stubborn.
     
    Fuzzy, fashionfobie and Avitor like this.
  5. tka

    tka Jogging around the block

    Joined:
    4/4/17
    Messages:
    918
    Location:
    UK
    Even 20 minutes is too long.

    Keep training sessions really short but frequent. Ask her to step up now and then every time you have her out. Try to end on a good note - end the session when she's done the requested behaviour a couple of times but before she gets bored and stops co-operating.

    Try to be consistent. Trying so many methods may just be confusing her - she has no idea what you're trying to get her to do.
     
    Fuzzy, CrazyBirdChick, hrafn and 3 others like this.
  6. Kodigirl210

    Kodigirl210 Rollerblading along the road

    Joined:
    10/13/18
    Messages:
    1,400
    Location:
    Cali
    We’ve found that our GCC’s are absolute pistachio hounds. They can take or leave millet but they will go just anywhere and do anything for a pistachio. And they are great because you can split them in half and then split the half in half or just let the birb take a nibble off the end. Might worth trying. ;)
     
    Fuzzy and Avitor like this.
  7. Avitor

    Avitor Moving in

    Joined:
    4/21/19
    Messages:
    7
    Thank you!! I'll try it out and see what she thinks :)
     
    Kodigirl210 likes this.
  8. fashionfobie

    fashionfobie Rollerblading along the road

    Joined:
    1/4/19
    Messages:
    1,117
    Location:
    Qld, Australia
    Real Name:
    Natalie
    I think training is session is almost a poor word choice. Don't get me wrong I call it that with my birds as well, though it isn't really a session. It is more like little random moments over the period of time.

    If I work on a new trick or concept I break it down into little pieces. I always want the bird to feel excited and happy about it. I don't push it for any set duration. It is more about their vibe. Sometimes they want to play with a new branch and other days the touch training is the bees knees. When it comes step-up or in and out of the cage etc those are always reward based mini training moments. :)
     
    tka and Fuzzy like this.
  9. Lady Jane

    Lady Jane Joyriding the Neighborhood Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran I Can't Stop Posting!

    Joined:
    8/25/12
    Messages:
    17,999
    Location:
    Maryland
    Real Name:
    Dianne
    My advice is to stop what you call training sessions. Incorporate the step up teaching into the routines you have, like play time and I bet she will learn faster and remember.
     
    tka, Fuzzy and JLcribber like this.
  10. Fuzzy

    Fuzzy Rollerblading along the road Celebirdy of the Month Avenue Veteran

    Joined:
    10/30/10
    Messages:
    2,334
    Location:
    Jersey, Channel Islands
    Real Name:
    Roz
    When you are shaping a new behaviour, ie. breaking it down into successive approximations towards the final behaviour (the step up in this case), you always have to start from the beginning again. You'll find as the bird becomes more familiar with what is being asked of her, you can start leaving out some of the approximations out as the step up gradually becomes slicker and quicker. Showing her the treat before the step up is a great way to kick start the behaviour, but try to begin to hide the treat as soon as you can. If the bird is just following the treat, she is not learning contingency, ie. if I step up, then I get the treat. You want the treat to appear as a consequence to (after) the step up and not the cue (before).

    As everyone has said, half an hour is way too long a session. I train a few seconds here, maybe a minute or two there. Also always end a session WAY before the bird gets bored and always end on a successful approximation. That way she will look forward to the next session.

    Are there any toys she especially loves? Reinforcement could also be access to a favourite toy. When she does step up with two feet, make sure it is highly reinforcing for her - you might want to give her a jackpot reward... treats, toy, praise - everything! (without frightening her).

    How do you get her out of the cage - do you ask for a step up then? If she isn't afraid of your hand and eager to come out, you could try offering your hand. Reinforcement would be just to come out (a natural reinforcer). It is preferable to let her choose to come out on her own, but it could be something to play around with if she is a willing participant. That's how I got Kobe to step up onto a rope perch... he's always keen to come out of his night cage each morning, so I offered a rope perch he was already familiar with. No treats were involved - reinforcement was to come out, then jump on my shoulder. He is so used to doing that that he doesn't question stepping up on the rope perch at other times of the day.
     

Users Viewing Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 0)