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A big problem with my ringneck

DimitarIM

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Hey, I have a 4 years old male Indian Ringneck Parakeet named Murfi. I've got him 3 years ago from a lottery I won and back then I had no idea how to deal with birds. Basically I did almost everything an inexperienced person would do - I've shouted at him in the morning, didn't give him a proper diet and so on. In these years it looks like he developed a really strange behavior which I can't find anywhere else. He's extremely addicted to his reflections from the cups he eats from and he tends to scream at them. When I try to remove them he tries to bite my hand and when I finally remove them he starts to scream at me to put them back. Furthermore he isn't scared of me at all. He tries to bite my hands and face yet I managed to teach him to repeat a few sounds I make. When I put him out of his cage and try to make the sounds he loves to repeat he just jumps at me to attack me. I'm really confused whether he likes me or not and I really want us to have normal relations like everyone else. I hope someone can help me here. Thanks.
 

Kodigirl210

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You have a long road ahead of you. Murfi is not addicted to his reflection, he has bonded to the “reflected” IRN in the food bowls. When you mess with them or remove them, he believes you are taking away his bonded partner.

As for the prior treatment & the fact that he bonded to his bowls, it is very unlikely that he trusts you right now. Especially since you continue to take away his beloved and force him to interact with you.

You will need to start from the beginning. Try starting with with just treating him in the cage. Then try target training within the cage. You may also want to have the door to his cage open so he can come out if he wishes but isn’t required to. Sit by the cage and just behave calmly and quietly. Use that time to view YouTube and other resources on target training and rebuilding trust with your parrot. Hopefully he will start coming out on his own about the time you have learned enough on how to interact and train Murfi. There are most of people and different resources in AA and as you go on, continue to post questions so you can get multiple avenues of advice.

I would love to say it will be a quick fix but honestly it sounds like there was a lot of time spent breaking the relationship so please be prepared to spend an equal amount of time repairing it.

I’m not going to overpost because the first few things will probably take up to 3-months at least to accomplish.

You may also need to do something about the cups but I will leave that to more experienced members to relay.

@Lady Jane May have a lot more & better suggestions. Good luck & Welcome to AA :)
 

Kodigirl210

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I hate when autocorrect gets the best of you. There are lots of people and different resources on AA, so as you go on continue to post so you can get multiple avenues of advice.

Also be prepared. Some of the advice may be very blunt in order to get the point across. Don’t take it personally as the focus is Murfi first and you second.

Read the responses knowing that it comes from a place of caring lol. ;)
 

DimitarIM

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Thanks for the suggestions! I'll try doing what you've said and about the cups I simply misspelled bowls due to my bad english.
 

sunnysmom

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Your English is fine. We have an IRN at our local rescue here that is addicted/bonded to his reflection also. I'm going to tag one of the other rescue people to see what suggestions he has and what they've tried with the IRN here. And it's great that you want to work to better your relationship with him. :)

@BirdGuy21 ?

Also, @cassiesdad ?
 

Monica

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If you want to break him of his fascination with his reflection, then you can try figuring out a way to *partially* cover up the reflection so he sees less. During this time, increase foraging activities and training new behaviors. After a while, cover up a little more of the reflected area. Eventually, you'll want different dishes with no reflection.

Many birds do like talking in their dishes though so it's normal - at least to an extent. The question is is whether or not it's an obsessive compulsive behavior that's not good for him physically or mentally.

Agree on dropping a treat in a special treat cup any time you walk by the cage. Also work on target training through the cage bars. Once he's good at that, you can move on to through the cage door and then out and about. He sounds somewhat friendly at least so maybe you'll even be able to practice outside of the cage. Whether in or out, it's always a good behavior to train at the cage!

Teaching him to station away from the dishes may also be beneficial so that you can remove the dishes without getting bit. You may even want to consider having extra dishes around so you can do a quick swap and replace, then go and clean the dirty dishes.

Free Training Resources | Avian Avenue Parrot Forum
 

DimitarIM

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Thanks for the suggestions but what I don't really understand is his screaming at the reflections. He tends to do this everyday now and its extremely annoying.
 

Kodigirl210

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If you have butcher paper or plain paper or even use the dull side of aluminum foil kind crinkled up to line part of the bowl so the reflection does show through so clearly. And every couple days cover more and more of it until Murfi can’t see the reflection anymore.
 

Mockinbirdiva

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Can you provide a photo of your bowls? If it were me, and my bird was screaming that much at his reflection in a bowl, I would change the bowls out for ones that offer no reflection. At this age he is sexually mature and could be screaming at his reflection because he sees it as another male and he wants to drive the "other" bird away. Especially from his food source.
 

Brittany0208

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Have you tried plastic bowls?
 

DimitarIM

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Yes I did try but he still screams at me to put back the steel one.
 

Mockinbirdiva

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I use crocks like this one as well as stainless steel cups. Though none of my birds react to a slight reflection in their bowls. Your bird will adjust to a new cup in time. As far as the screaming goes you'll have to figure out what options will work best to curb that behavior. IE: Hanging fresh greens for him to forage, shreddable toys, an extra cup like the new one to place fresh vegetables in.. and one for his water. If you'd like to include a photo of your cage set up for extra suggestions from members that have a similar problem. Also, at the top right of the forum you will see a "search" bar where you can type in key words to look for posts that may contain additional ideas regarding screaming. Hope this helps.

Lixit Quick Lock Crock | Great Companions

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Fergus Mom

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Hi @DimitarIM and Murphi! I have no experience with IRN's, but I just wanted to welcome you to the forum.
:welcomesign:
 

DimitarIM

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I use crocks like this one as well as stainless steel cups. Though none of my birds react to a slight reflection in their bowls. Your bird will adjust to a new cup in time. As far as the screaming goes you'll have to figure out what options will work best to curb that behavior. IE: Hanging fresh greens for him to forage, shreddable toys, an extra cup like the new one to place fresh vegetables in.. and one for his water. If you'd like to include a photo of your cage set up for extra suggestions from members that have a similar problem. Also, at the top right of the forum you will see a "search" bar where you can type in key words to look for posts that may contain additional ideas regarding screaming. Hope this helps.

Lixit Quick Lock Crock | Great Companions

View attachment 295212
I'll check the nearest pet shop to see if they sell one. Thanks for the help.
 
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