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Clicker training with Kylo!

Faolan

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I just 'charged' the clicker with him for 10 minutes a few days ago, and now every night we've been practicing click = treat and then having him touch a chopstick with his beak, told him "touch" then click=treat again.
Our sessions are only as long as he seems interested, varying 10-12 minutes.
I've been using bites of millet and bits of grape as treats.
20170610_180756.jpg
(Picture of him or this will look boring!)
Since he seems to have target training down, what trick should I try with him next?
and is it necessary to still charge the clicker (click=treat 5 times for nothing other than to remind him)

Something really easy preferably..wondering if waving hi is a good choice?
 

Faolan

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And would I be able to teach him it's okay/safe to have his wings touched, opened, ect so I can prepare him for harness training later?
I'm not sure how to do that, but it'd be handy to have him okay with those areas being touched.
 

ode.to.parrots

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Yay!!!! Training is so fun! It's such a great way to not only interact with your bird in a way that is besides cuddling, it also allows to you better communicate with your bird! :)

The first thing I taught Indy after he learned how to target was how to spin. Basically, offer the chop stick behind him so that he has to turn around to touch it. Click, offer a treat. When you offer the treat, offer it directly in front of you so that he has to turn back around in order to get the treat. As he does this, he may even form a complete circle - for that, you want to offer him a jackpot reward! (My my tiels, that means a hunk of cashew! Haha). Depending on your bird, you may have to break this down into smaller approximations, but Indy picked up on this concept pretty quickly. He had the gist of the idea after one less than 10 min session and then really got it in our next 10 min session. He now uses spinning to beg whenever I have a treat he wants or something. I also taught him to wave a while ago, and now he waves when he wants my attention. He has recently started waving whenever he wants to either be picked up or a head scratch. It's a great communication tool because whenever I see him waving or spinning, even without my prompting, I know he wants something, and I just have to figure out what. This is SO much better than what Buckbeak does... Buckbeak often fweeps loudly when he wants something (usually my fiance's attention), but we are still working with him on that.

I realize my description is a little vague, and then I kinda rambled... :facepalm: Here's a video clip to show how to teach him spin instead.
This youtuber is not a professional animal trainer, but she still has a very good training philosophy focused entirely on positive reinforcement, so I'm a big fan. :) She uses her fingers in this video clip, but I used the chop stick in the same way to teach Indy the same thing.

As for harness training, I recommend looking to Barbara Hendenreich. I just recently watched her webinar on living with flighted parrots, and it was VERY in depth! In includes everything from good candidates for flight training to recall training to "tricks" that make it easier to live with your parrot (including stuff such as stationing, drop - safety stuff like that) and a bit of harness training.
You could also check out her webinar Stress Free Veterinarian Care video - I personally have not watched this one yet, but I think it goes into how to get your bird comfortable with you handling him, although I am not entirely sure... Even if it doesn't help as much with harness training, I would imagine I would be a GREAT video to watch as part of your training program. (It's the next one on my list to watch. :) )

I hope this helps! You're off to a great start. :laughing12:

Edit: I forgot the link to the webinars! Parrot Digital Media | Online Parrot Media
 
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Faolan

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It is fun! I'll have to see if Kylo feels ready to try out the Spin trick tonight.
He adores grapes so he has a high motivation for them :D

I want to have him harness trained whenever possible because I'm worried since he's 9 months old, that he'll be more set in not wanting his wings touched when he turns one
It's really just the wing touching that's an obstacle for him. I'm pretty sure he'll be able to get the head loop training down,
just scared I'll make a mistake and mess up harness training for good with him due to the wings.
 

ode.to.parrots

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One of the nice things about the flight training webinar is that it actually shows a clip of a tomega when Barbara accidentaly pushed a little too far harness training an amazon parrot. He was struggling with the wings too, and he had a moment when he freaks a bit, but because all of his experiences with harness training had been positive, he comes right back eager to try again for more trips.

I recommend you go ahead and order a harness. While you wait for it, watch Barbara's flight webinar. She does recommend harness training before your bird has fully fledged, if possible. So you could do harness training before recall training. I would maybe just wait to bring him outside in the harness until after you've done some flight training.
 

Faolan

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I have a aviator harness for him (in green)
Sadly he is clipped, I've been waiting for his flights to grow in but no pin feathers have shown yet. I certainly want to train him with recall and flying down, just for safety

Current area the birds live in is too close to doors that open to outside for me to keep him flighted though.

I'll try watching the webinars, it'd be awesome to have him in harness so he can go outside and explore!
 

Faolan

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We ended up with time for just a 8 min session, so I tried Wave with him
So far he has figured out to lift his foot but I'm not fast enough to click before his claw tips touch. Tomorrow we'll work on it some more and see if he can learn to do it on hand cue, then a voice cue.

I love these little sessions, he has so much fun and gets excited when I bring out his training stand!
 

Faolan

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Getting better! We had a 10 min session and he is lifting his foot when I give the cue. Just need him to lift it a little higher, then move to a vocal cue!
 

finchly

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@Faolan didn't your aviator harness come with a DVD ? If so - on there is a great (but lengthy) explanation of what all you do to train them to accept the harness. the guy uses a young macaw to do it. Basically 3 things: teach them to let you rub their head as if you are sliding the harness over it, lift the wing, and then lift the wing/get them slightly off balance because that will happen when you're really putting it on. Oh, before all that acclimate your bird to the harness, show it to him, touch it, maybe wear it yourself.

How are you guys teaching them to wave??? When I try that with Rio he just steps up. :confused:
 

Faolan

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I can't link it at the moment but try Flock Talk's video on teaching to wave
Basically you offer your finger like you want him to step-up, but when he lifts his foot to get on you click before he can touch the finger.

Now if I hold my finger in step-up position by his leg and wiggle it he seems to understand and lifts his foot. Then I click=treat
 

Faolan

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And I forgot it had a DVD! I'll take a look when I have a chance.
So far I hang it in front of his cage, bring it with me for cuddle time (he does investigate the harness by nibbling on it) and offer it for him to touch sometimes.
 

finchly

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It is a long DVD. Like an hour, but well worth it (or at least I thought so).
Thanks - I will keep trying to teach him to wave. Its funny, at first he didn't step up and I was all about that, now he does it so easily and I want something else. :wacky:
 

Faolan

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Until I find where I put the DVD, do you guys think I can convince Kylo to let me touch his wings by touching one then click=treat?
 

finchly

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I think so. Try it!

I just had Rio in his harness and took him outdoors for the 2nd time. First about the harness: I haven't really done enough training with it but he lets me manhandle him so I just put it on, without incident. Except he was so good the first time, then I'd put it on backwards! (With the leash ending up on his back instead of his belly)) He was not as happy the second time.

And about using it: He has this little noise he makes when something looks scary -- he did a lot of that lol. I find that I am really panicky when I take him out. Even though the harness is on I'm afraid I will lose him.
 

Faolan

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Kylo would bite if I manhandled him into wearing it, and hold a grudge for days :rolleyes:

Is it a "grrrr....rrrr" sound? I find that Kylo makes it when he's scared or unsure. He's been out in his pakobird a lot and always wants out of it so I'm hoping he'll be more excited than scared.

I'll try touching his wings in today's session while the harness is nearby and see how it goes :)
 

finchly

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Yes - a grr while rolling the tongue would sound like it. He did it a lot when he saw geckos. :D

Rio doesn't hold a grudge, and I really didn't handle him too roughly. He can't stand still on the perch or we could do this better. I guess I could clicker train for a longer stand still.
 

Faolan

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How old was Rio when he first wore it? Kylo is about 9 months old now
 

Faolan

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Hm..everytime I touched a wing I was very quickly met with a hard nip. I can't click before he nips, he's fast! :cautious:
 

Faolan

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Does anyone have tips on getting a bird to accept/get used to wings being touched and handled? (For pulling through the harness)
I'm pretty stuck o_O
 
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