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Semi-Rescue Cockatiel

Discussion in 'Cockatiel Corner' started by scrape, 5/4/19.

  1. iamwhoiam

    iamwhoiam Joyriding the Neighborhood Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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    You are making some progress with Felix but the noise is a complaining noise. Callisto, my 'tiel, makes the same noise. It basically means stop and leave me alone because you are irritating me and I am getting upset. The good thing is he is not trying to bite you but you have to consider that when you reward him while he is making that noise he may start to associate the reward (something positive) with the noise and continue doing that.
    When I work with Callisto she will make the noise, then stop for a bit and I will give her some scratches and then she will start again. I usually just put her back in her cage. I don't know if she always made the noise or if, in her case, it is related to her bad foot and she doesn't want me touching it or she is afraid I am going to give her something she doesn't want or like. She was at the vet for a while after she was brought in by the person who found her and she was treated for her foot injury and whatever else may have been going on.

     
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  2. Tara81

    Tara81 Jogging around the block

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    Do you weigh your bird often? Does he eat enough throughout the day? This noise can be associated with hunger. Baby birds beg like this to tell their parents to feed them.

    Could also be begging for millet just because he loves that millet so much. What does he eat throughout the day?
     
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  3. Kodigirl210

    Kodigirl210 Rollerblading along the road

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    Watching the video I think he is agitated and angry. I believe the noise is a warning sound. He keeps watching your thumb while you have him on your hand and then when he is given the opportunity, he gets away from your hands as quickly as possible such as when he scurried quickly up your forearm.

    When he’s on the perch he’s quiet right until you bring your hand in for him to step up. Then the vocalization goes off “Watch out hand...I see you!”

    The sound intensified as you brought the treats up every single time. You can see it even more on just the treat video - I believe if you look at position and place your fist is, it basically puts it right in his face and at that point he’s afraid/angry so he gets louder to warn the “hand” not to do anything because he’s watching it.

    It also seems he’s thinking 3-things in those moments. How badly do I want the treat, can I warn the hand loudly enough so it doesn’t do anything to me and third should I do a pre-empt and bite.

    Sorry that it goes against some other people have said, but I can almost feel his angst just watching the clips. :blink:

     
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  4. Ripshod

    Ripshod Rollerblading along the road

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    I'm not totally convinced. However, have you tried training without the clicker? Maybe try without it for a few sessions?
     
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  5. zoo mom

    zoo mom Ripping up the road Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Veteran I Can't Stop Posting!

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    The agree the noise sounds angry, upset. Try different approaches with your hand. Try the thumb down next to the rest of the fingers. Or try the back of your hand or the palm of your hand fingers all together or try the back of your wrist. Try approaching with the hand lower also.
     
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  6. Kodigirl210

    Kodigirl210 Rollerblading along the road

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    You stated he was a semi-rescue so I wonder if something happened to him prior to make him afraid of hands.

    If he’s semi-tame did he get traumatized by being caught and shipped on? Unfortunately there’s tons of way that it can happen (including spontaneously) and a lot harder to fix.

    I would not keep treating him while he’s growling like that, or as was pointed out, he might begin to think that’s exactly what you want from him and exactly how you want it from him leading to more distrust of the hands.

     
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  7. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    @iamwhoiam That is what I thought, but am not sure

    @Tara81 I don't have a scale. He eats throughout the day, but I don't leave a full bowl out. He gets millet and sunflower seeds when training. Throughout they day I am currently introducing him to veggies, so I will cut up different veggies (and rarely fruits) and mix them in with his seeds. I am also introducing him to foraging. When it's time to put him up I will fill his bowl with seeds and some of his new pellets, which I am also introducing, and some big beads. He doesn't really like his pellets yet. So mostly seeds. But we're working on it.

    @Kodigirl210 Thank you for being honest. I felt like he was angsty too

    @Ripshod We actually started training without the clicker. I actually got the clicker to help this.

    @zoo mom He seems most comfortable with my forearm the most (probably because he sits on it all day)

    @Kodigirl210 He's not deathly afraid of hands as he walks around them and onto my arm. While I was typing that last sentence he nibbled my hand, around it, and under it. And walked around it. No screeching. And about being caught and shipped on to his next home? I can't say about any earlier homes, but the people we got him from used a towel. Okay, what about if he immediately steps up when I ask him to, but screeches? And should I just let him go down to my arm or also practice with thumb up?

    Thanks for responding everybody!:) I really appreciate the help.
     
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  8. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    Also, when he steps down when I ask him to but screeches while doing it?
     
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  9. Kodigirl210

    Kodigirl210 Rollerblading along the road

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    Towels are never a good thing when the birb is already frightened and upset. Letting them go naturally into the cage may take longer but it saves their sanity.

    I can only speculate but I feel thus - he was punished for not stepping up or stepping up correctly, quickly or whatever arbitrary condition the prior owner decided and/or only for treats. Hence the insane amount of growls he puts out. This would fit why he screams the entire time he’s on your hands whether getting on, sitting or getting off.

    Some NHI’s believe that our fids are stupid animals who can be forced to do something and should not be rewarded for doing what’s demanded of them but punished for Not doing it or not doing it right.

    I have a feeling it will take a while for him to build the trust and relationship to where he can move past his memories into the here and now.

    I would actually suggest removing your hands from the equation and seeing if that works.

    Try a couple different things like target training so using a stick rather than hands or using a T stick to have him step up on and step down from.

    The only thing I haven’t quite reconciled is how to treat him without the hands.

    I would say if you use the T stick then have 2 cleared areas. Both where you can put a little bit of treat so when he gets on the stick you can praise him and move him to the treat spot. Either let him eat from the stick or have him step off. Then have him get on again and just go between the perch and the 2-treat areas.

    Target training I’m a little stumped as to how to do the treats without showing hands. I’m wondering you put gloves on would he be more or less suspicious.

    Anyway I’m sure more practiced minds than mine can help you work out the treat logistics.

    Were he mine that would be what I attempted first. :)
     
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  10. Tara81

    Tara81 Jogging around the block

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    Does he make these noises if he has millet spray (stick of millet) given to him in his cage or dish or clipped on his play area?

    I’m really surprised he is doing this out of fear. If he is. Poor thing I hope he wasn’t traumatized by hands in the past. Im glad he now has a loving owner to take care of him. Good luck to you both :) hope he gets over his fear in time. Maybe slower exposure of hands, maybe only give him a treat if he doesn’t growl while moving towards your hand. Starting hand training slower. Longer piece of millet held by something else in ur hand? Hmm
     
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  11. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    I will try a stick. I can try handing him a bowl with a treat? Or maybe a tossing a treat in a stationary bowl?

    @Tara81 Depends. Not really. He can't be that traumatized because he walks around my hand and acts fairly chill about it when food isn't involved and if I'm still. Thanks, I think he will eventually get over it, he's just got to catch on:) He's come so far already.
     
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  12. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    I tried using a stick. He stepped up onto it fine, but walked down to my arm.o_O
     
  13. Monica

    Monica Biking along the boulevard Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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    To me, I would say that he's a very tame cockatiel, but that he may need some guidance (i.e. training) and learning to trust.

    Do you know how old he is?


    Something to consider... the only bite that can't be rewarded is the bite that never occurs. By "allowing" a bird to bite, you are reinforcing their need to bite. This includes ignoring a bite. Birds bite for a reason. Figure out the reason and avoid or redirect before the bite occurs. If you do get bit, remove the bird from you and then think how you can avoid that in the future.

    Birdtricks still have a lot to learn, IMO. I do not recommend them. There are some better sources out there! :)

    Free Training Resources | Avian Avenue Parrot Forum

    Can you go to a grocery store and purchase a kitchen/gram scale? There's plenty of digital ones available!
     
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  14. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    @Monica I agree, he just needs a bit of tough TLC. I don't know his age, but he is fully grown. And I think any bites from are from having too long training sessions and him getting frustrated he's not getting treats. I have since shortened the sessions, and am trying to teach him he gets rewarded when he's quiet/patient. He has not caught on yet, but I guess all birds go at their own pace.:)
     
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  15. finchly

    finchly Biking along the boulevard Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran I Can't Stop Posting!

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    If. Hands are the issue, I have had to work around hands with Skittles. What I did was teach him to fly to a certain perch - it’s a branch fastened on the outside of his cage. i put the millet there, tapped it, and said perch. He learned that fairly quickly. Then while he was on that perch, I would put a piece of millet somewhere - my elbow, my shoulder, my head. And tap it and say “treat!”
    I know this is not exactly target training, but it worked with Skittles, who is a parrotlet and would BITE or fly away if my hand was too close.
    Now he eats from my hand, both when I hold it in my fingers and when it’s presented on a flat palm. His favorite though is to take to the top of my head and eat there.

    Hope this helps, or at least leads to more ideas for you.
     
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  16. finchly

    finchly Biking along the boulevard Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran I Can't Stop Posting!

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    Oh! I finally got to hear the videos (usually I'm trying not to bother hubby so can't listen).

    I have a tiel who makes that same sound, he is my rescue boy. Anytime you're reaching in his cage, reaching near him, sometimes just talking to him ---- he makes the noise. I call it a whine but there's probably a better name. He crash-lands a lot due a broken/not fixed wing. "Do you want me to help you Clint?" Waaaaaah waaaaaaah waaaaaah Here's some food Clint waaaaaaah waaaaaah waaaaaah. Let me change your water waaaaaaaaaaaah.

    I think that's it, exactly.
     
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  17. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    Another example of training. He isn't catching on, how can I help him? He doesn't seem to understand what to do to get treats. Do we just need more practice? I've been also trying to teach him to wave using capturing (to build confidence) but he isn't picking up on that either. I figured I should just give up on the wave. I'm sorry if I'm asking stupid questions or anything, I just want the best for him. I haven't been using my thumb up, just letting him go down my arm in hopes he will be more relaxed.
    Also, is this the right forum to post these questions? I could be in the wrong place and just not know it.
     
  18. finchly

    finchly Biking along the boulevard Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran I Can't Stop Posting!

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    Yep totally the right place.

    And no question is stupid. Your bird is puzzling us! Something has happened to him that has traumatized him. Move s-l-o-w-l-y around him.

    Will he just hang out with you, if you have no expectations ? When you're training, you talk to him right? And have you tried offering a treat from a spoon or other container?

    Also, about the biting. I could be wrong, but I always give mine some sort of feedback. So if he goes to bite I say "ah-ah" but in the same tone I usually use, not yelling or angry. Does that make sense?

    Poor baby. I was just in the bird room listening to the same thing. :D Mine had fallen or flown to a shelf under a cage, and sat there fussing. I offered him the step up stick and he whined the whole time, finally stepped on it, and as I lifted he flew off again but managed to catch a cage so he could climb up.... to sit and scream. LOL
     
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  19. Tiel Feathers

    Tiel Feathers Cruising the avenue Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award

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    It looks and sounds to me that he is making that noise because he wants the food. It’s almost like an adult version of the baby hungry/comfort noise. Maybe he never grew out of it? His body language doesn’t look fearful or agitated. I think that you should get a scale and weigh him weekly. I also think you should leave dry food in his cage all day. A mix of seeds, pellets and fresh foods would be a good diet. Some birds just lead with their beak before they step up, so that part is okay. The biting sounds like it might be done out of frustration. It seems like your making some progress, and he seems very tame to me. He’s awfully cute!:heart:
     
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  20. scrape

    scrape Meeting neighbors

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    Yes, he hangs out while I'm sitting. Usually on my arm or leg or stomach.:) Mostly my arm. I do talk lol, I just wanted to be quiet in the video so you could hear him and all. I will try a bowl.
    I understand, I can start saying a simple 'no'. I had just read you shouldn't punish your bird and that ignoring was the usually the safest option.
    Lol, birds are such characters. Just a few days ago, Felix found a cut piece of towel paper roll and was running around with it on his head! It was so cute! It would've made a hilarious picture if I hadn't been worried about him panicking! (I quickly removed it and he was fine)



    @Tiel Feathers Sorry, but I don't think it's a good idea to just leave food 24/7. I can give him more if you think he needs more, but I don't believe giving them free access to food all the time is beneficial. Especially since he hasn't been on a pellet fresh food diet. Just seeds. Thanks, I am very proud of him. He's actually started to eat lettuce now:D! And I love your profile pic!
     
  21. Tiel Feathers

    Tiel Feathers Cruising the avenue Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award

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    Thanks, that’s my little Sunset. She’s such a sweetheart! What I do is give them about two teaspoons of dry food (seeds and pellets) every morning, and some sprouts, greens, nutruberries, avicakes as treats throughout the day. I plan the dry food so it almost runs out around 4:30. At about 5:30 I give them sprouts and veggies, which they gobble. My birds don’t have food at night in their cages, but many people on here feel that to have food available all day, even at night, is advisable. Cockatiels rarely overeat. That’s great that he tried some lettuce!
     

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