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Advice About Getting an African Grey

Ali

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BUT.. Ofcourse there is the Pionus family.. if you truely want a great experience with a first timeparrot, then get a Pionus..

Sorry, i had to post that.. im sort of a Pionus advocate :D
Jan. Stick to being an Apple consultant :rofl:

I have never met a pionus but they sound like lovely birds. I wonder were I can meet one:thinking:
 

clarousel

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Singapore
I know nothing about African Greys but am starting to appreciate their character and beauty! I never knew they had red tails until i saw a video of one flying and it's really pretty.

Hope everything works out well for 2021! It all sounds very exciting :)
 

sunnysmom

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this is all true, but especially this part, even though i "thought" i new it, in reality its actually a lot more than you think, the routine, routine and more routine.

the endless worry, not always, but going out for the day ? who feeds him, be back for his 7/8pm bedtime or you could have a stroppy little kid on your hands, have a lay in one day, nope not happening, feel sick and want to rest, nope he doesn't understand this, holidays also are difficult.

ive been working for home since March and had to go back to work last monday, its now Thursday 10 days later and he's only just started to talk to me again, the first 3/4 days when i came home he just turned his back on me, wouldn't take a treat, he was properly sulking that id left im, no idea what he be like if i went on holiday for a week or two and he's not even truly bonded to me as he's not really handleable.

So all these little life changes, all very minor but as a whole its quite a consideration, now im lucky holiday wise as i haven't been away in 4/5 years.

All these little things are the bits your don't realise or fully understand, now i am a little neurotic about him so this may not be your experience but its a constant thought, if im out im checking my watch to make sure i can be home for his supper or bedtime ( id dont always make it but still think about it)

Certainly not trying to put you off, just a little bit to think about.
I understand how you feel. One of the best things I did was find a pet sitter. I don't know how easy that is or not in the UK. It took me quite awhile to find one here that I was comfortable with but it made life easier. And my bird loved her. I would even have her just come over in the afternoon for an hour or so once or twice a week while I was at work. I had her spend a lot of time with him before I actually went away. And she would send me pictures of my bird when she was there so I knew he was okay. And the nice thing about actually hiring someone was I felt like I could tell her what to do without feeling guilty. With a friend I would be like, well, he goes to bed around 7:30, so if you could be there by 6:30, that would be great. With an actual sitter- i would just say be there by 6:30. Something to think about maybe for you. It's a lot of pressure when you're the only one taking care of a parrot.
 

jh81

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I know nothing about African Greys but am starting to appreciate their character and beauty! I never knew they had red tails until i saw a video of one flying and it's really pretty.

Hope everything works out well for 2021! It all sounds very exciting :)
Pionuses have rd tails too! Its Wunderbar!
 

Snowghost

Rollerblading along the road
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Virginia
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Terri
I agree a bird is a lot of work and worry. Paco is my first Grey, I've Love Birds, Parakeets, Cockatiels and my bird before him was an Amazon. I didn't worry about them very much they are pretty adaptable creatures. As for Paco I did stress. He is so intelligent and he was so fearful. He had been neglected and was almost plucked bald.

He does adjust very well. I wasn't working when I got him so I was home 24/7 which helped a lot. I moved slowly, and told him everything I was doing. He has now learned when its time to go night night and when I have to leave for work.

I work in retail which is a flexible schedule. (I didn't know this at the time of hire) I stressed over the different hours, one day 11 am to 6, the next 1-pm to 9 pm. He did very well. I think what really helped was even know the hours were odd, I kept the same routine every morning and evening.

He gets up at 7 am every morning sometimes earlier, I have black out curtains to keep the sunlight out. He he chirps I say night night and lay down for an hour. I was sick one day and I got up at 7 gave him fresh water and his food and laid back down. The curtain was open. I stressed about it but when I would check on him he preened, ate a little and he too, tucked his head in his feathers and took a nap. When I got up it was our normal morning routine.

I can't say all greys are like this but he seems to roll with the punches.

I went out of town 3 months after I got him. I didn't leave him with anyone, he went with me. Getting him into another cage was an experience but we did it. We drove three hours and he was a champ the whole time, absorbing in all of the sites and sounds. At our destination he was talking and chirping. Of course his time outside of the cage was limited but he can't fly, he doesn't know how too.

I wouldn't trade him for the world.
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
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40
Any bird is best with an experienced owner! But experience isnt something that you can buy, you have to learn :)

the fact that you are here, asking questions, shows me you will do just fine with a rescue bird :)
And we are here to help you!
Thank u so much, it is reassuring to know that there is support.
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
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I am a big believer in getting the bird you want from the get go as long as you know what you're getting into and have a support system. I also volunteer at a rescue so am a bit biased but there are SO many really good birds out there in need of good homes. (You're not in Canada are you? Because we have a member here who has to rehome her Grey.) I think often people think "rescue" birds are "problem" birds. And sometimes they do have issues. But often it is more like- the owner died, the kid whose bird it was left for college, a family member has allergies, they got a new dog and now don't want the bird, a bird is actually work- so they don't want him anymore, etc. I have never come across a bird who was rehomed because it was the bird's fault. Always the owner's.... Okay, off my rescue soap box now. :)
lol...Thanks. No I am not in Canada, I am in the U.S., yes there is the perception that rescues are problem birds. I'm learning so much
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
Joined
6/24/20
Messages
40
BUT.. Ofcourse there is the Pionus family.. if you truely want a great experience with a first timeparrot, then get a Pionus..

Sorry, i had to post that.. im sort of a Pionus advocate :D
...I've heard that also...oh Lord, my head is going to explode!! lol
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
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6/24/20
Messages
40
Here is Astro stretching out a grand wing as we speak.

View attachment 348746

Astro is unfortunately a baby rescue. You get a lot of experience as you go through with everything. A rescue is hard, a baby is harder, especially if not weaned properly so even if you were to get a baby, look for:

-never having been clipped
-abundance weaned, preferably raised by parent birds
-having completed the first 8 months or so in the same place, without being rehomed.
OH ASTRO IS SO BEAUTIFUL!! I cuddled with a baby CAG the other day and at first he just shook as I held him, he was so afraid. I just scritched his head held him close and talked softly to him for a long time when he finally relaxed he gave a big stretch!! I was told that him stretching was a sign that he was comfortable with me...so satisfying. Yes, am aware of the not clipping, the weaning, and the parent raised preference. I am finding it difficult finding a someone that allows parent raising. One aviary I am considering told me they allow the babies to stay with the parents for 3 weeks then they pull them. What do you think about that? I will post a couple of pics with me and the baby CAG
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
Joined
6/24/20
Messages
40
this is all true, but especially this part, even though i "thought" i new it, in reality its actually a lot more than you think, the routine, routine and more routine.

the endless worry, not always, but going out for the day ? who feeds him, be back for his 7/8pm bedtime or you could have a stroppy little kid on your hands, have a lay in one day, nope not happening, feel sick and want to rest, nope he doesn't understand this, holidays also are difficult.

ive been working for home since March and had to go back to work last monday, its now Thursday 10 days later and he's only just started to talk to me again, the first 3/4 days when i came home he just turned his back on me, wouldn't take a treat, he was properly sulking that id left im, no idea what he be like if i went on holiday for a week or two and he's not even truly bonded to me as he's not really handleable.

So all these little life changes, all very minor but as a whole its quite a consideration, now im lucky holiday wise as i haven't been away in 4/5 years.

All these little things are the bits your don't realise or fully understand, now i am a little neurotic about him so this may not be your experience but its a constant thought, if im out im checking my watch to make sure i can be home for his supper or bedtime ( id dont always make it but still think about it)

Certainly not trying to put you off, just a little bit to think about.
Thanks for your insight. I actually am aware of this viewpoint. My thoughts are that I am having a child, that's the way I look at it. A child that never gets to be an adult in the way that we humans are. I am a homebody, even without Covid, my kid is grown and I have cut my work down to 2 days a week, so I'm feeling like this is a good time in my life to do this. I so appreciate the real world experiences though, lol, keep em coming!
 

Lajarox

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Messages
40
Thanks for your insight. I actually am aware of this viewpoint. My thoughts are that I am having a child, that's the way I look at it. A child that never gets to be an adult in the way that we humans are. I am a homebody, even without Covid, my kid is grown and I have cut my work down to 2 days a week, so I'm feeling like this is a good time in my life to do this. I so appreciate the real world experiences though, lol, keep em coming!
...I will never work full-time again due to a foot injury that affects my work, I'm in pharmacy, but doesn't really affect other day to day functioning.
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
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Messages
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I took Edgar when he was 6 month old. No previous experience with birds. Nothing. I was reading a lot and asking questions here before I made final decision to get him. It took me half a year to get ready, but now I don't regret a thing. I put a lot of time and a lot of effort in Edgar and now I'm doing the same with Akira. It is very satisfying to train and teach the bird and see the results.
Not everytning was and is great. As always and as with everything there are ups and downs. But I would never want to go back in time and change my decision both about Edgar and Akira. I would do the same even though sometimes I really have enough.
And most probably you will feel the same from time to time. You will feel exhausted, frustrated, scared (when Akira had her accident I was really nervous - now it is almost ok), tired and so on. But those feelings pass and again you look at your bird and think: I wouldn't want it any other way.
I don't have opinion whether it is better to take a rescue or a baby. In my case there was only one way because in Poland we don't have rescues for birds. Baby was my only option. Whan I know for sure is that training from the very beginnig is very important. Edgar is now two years old (hormonal and so on) and training really helps. This and Akira.
Thanks for sharing, it especially helps hearing that you had no experience with birds b4 Edgar. I am looking forward to the training, and hopefully establishing a strong bind. I think of it as having a baby and all that that involves. I KNOW what that is like as far as good and bad days. How do you find the hormonal phase? Any aggression issues? I think hearing about the whole hormonal thing has been the most surprising part to me.
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
Joined
6/24/20
Messages
40
I agree a bird is a lot of work and worry. Paco is my first Grey, I've Love Birds, Parakeets, Cockatiels and my bird before him was an Amazon. I didn't worry about them very much they are pretty adaptable creatures. As for Paco I did stress. He is so intelligent and he was so fearful. He had been neglected and was almost plucked bald.

He does adjust very well. I wasn't working when I got him so I was home 24/7 which helped a lot. I moved slowly, and told him everything I was doing. He has now learned when its time to go night night and when I have to leave for work.

I work in retail which is a flexible schedule. (I didn't know this at the time of hire) I stressed over the different hours, one day 11 am to 6, the next 1-pm to 9 pm. He did very well. I think what really helped was even know the hours were odd, I kept the same routine every morning and evening.

He gets up at 7 am every morning sometimes earlier, I have black out curtains to keep the sunlight out. He he chirps I say night night and lay down for an hour. I was sick one day and I got up at 7 gave him fresh water and his food and laid back down. The curtain was open. I stressed about it but when I would check on him he preened, ate a little and he too, tucked his head in his feathers and took a nap. When I got up it was our normal morning routine.

I can't say all greys are like this but he seems to roll with the punches.

I went out of town 3 months after I got him. I didn't leave him with anyone, he went with me. Getting him into another cage was an experience but we did it. We drove three hours and he was a champ the whole time, absorbing in all of the sites and sounds. At our destination he was talking and chirping. Of course his time outside of the cage was limited but he can't fly, he doesn't know how too.

I wouldn't trade him for the world.
I have thought about the whole vacationing issue and how they are so portable, that they can just come with. We normally take vacations that involve renting a house, so I figure that is doable. I look forward to exposing him to life just as I would a small child. Do you still have your other birds or is he an only? How was your experience with an Amazon?
 

Lajarox

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40
lol...Thanks. No I am not in Canada, I am in the U.S., yes there is the perception that rescues are problem birds. I'm learning so much
I am definitely getting the CAG...now I have to decide rescue or baby.
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
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6/24/20
Messages
40
Here is Astro stretching out a grand wing as we speak.

View attachment 348746

Astro is unfortunately a baby rescue. You get a lot of experience as you go through with everything. A rescue is hard, a baby is harder, especially if not weaned properly so even if you were to get a baby, look for:

-never having been clipped
-abundance weaned, preferably raised by parent birds
-having completed the first 8 months or so in the same place, without being rehomed.
Here we are...i just LOVED hanging out with this cutie
 

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Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
Joined
6/24/20
Messages
40
I know nothing about African Greys but am starting to appreciate their character and beauty! I never knew they had red tails until i saw a video of one flying and it's really pretty.

Hope everything works out well for 2021! It all sounds very exciting :)
Thank u!! I am excited!
 

Lajarox

Meeting neighbors
Joined
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Messages
40
@Monaco @Lajarox
Thanks Monaco

I’m on my phone and will post more when on the laptop But yes complete first time bird owner, by all means have a look through my posts, I’ve asked plenty of questions and some updates, Bert Or any CAG was never really on our radar, we was thinking smaller, but he came to us needing a temp home until he could be fostered out.

COVID made it very difficult to find him a home so he stayed a lot longer than usual which also gave us time to get to him know.

I’ll leave it there for now, have a look at some of my posts, it’s not been all roses and sweetness but it’s been an easy ride compared to some.

just remember a baby doesn’t guarantee a good bird, it does (Almost) guarantee a easy and fun/cuddly first year.
Hey, I went to your profile and didn't see any of your posts...what am I doing wrong?
 

Imogena

Jogging around the block
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Poland
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Joanna
How do you find the hormonal phase? Any aggression issues? I think hearing about the whole hormonal thing has been the most surprising part to me.
Edgar is aggresive during his hormonal phase but not as much as he could (I've read some stories that the owner couldn't even move without being attacked). Edgar bites, sometimes the bite is out of nowhere sometimes Edgar gives a warning. I read his body language carefully and try to avoid being bitten. For example when I want him to step up I put my hand much further than before so I have time to escape the bite. Then I wait for Edgar to lift his leg. When he does, I know it is safe to give him my hand to step up. Generally I'm now very carefull around him. There is no shoulder for him beause he might bite my ear. From the very beginning I was teaching him that my face is off limits so now he doesn't touch or attack my face (except of ears when on my shoulder - hence no shoulder time).
Sometimes Edgar flies to me to bite so I have now quite good reflex to dodge him.
I train with him. We do all the tricks he knows (those useful and those we do only for fun), and the training session redirects his energy. The thing is now he is much less focused so the session lasts much shorter.
Edgar is not so very bad during his hormonal phase. He is more excited now because he nas Akira (who is to young to be his mate). During previous hormones he was a little calmer, but also very excited, nervous and sometimes aggresive.
 

dollfish

Sprinting down the street
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592
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Istanbul
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Zeynep Dollfish
Here we are...i just LOVED hanging out with this cutie
What a baby! They do become a lot less affectionate as they grow, keep in mind. But this doesn't mean that your relationship weakens, it gets stronger and you find other ways of communicating with each other as they grow out of their baby ways. :smileflower:
 
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