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I have a crimson bellied conure named Eddie - he’s 6 months old and I’ve been really concerned about his feathers. I’ve had green cheek conures before (a turquoise and a cinnamon) but he’s my first CBC and it’s only on him that I’ve noticed these black marks on his wings, and the end of his tail feathers are really frayed and haggard? I’ve only had him for about 2 months. I got him from a pet store/vet service which he had only been in for a couple of days before I got him, I don’t know the breeder. He did have a veterinary check up and blood test before I took him home and as far as I’m aware everything was good but his tail feathers were already like this when I bought him and it hasn’t gone away. If it helps here is some info about him;

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Nutrition; His diet consists of a cocketiel seed mix (trill), pellet crumble (passwell), and a rotating range of vegetables and fruits that I change every day (3:1 ratio of veggies to fruit, most often he has peas, corn, capsicum, and leafy greens and then an apple or grapes. He also has a mineral block (Polly Manu’s Mineral Block Natural) and I rotate different treats of seed sticks, millet sprays, calcium-iodine bells and cuttlebones (he doesn’t go through them very fast so they last a while). And every week or so he usually has some whole wheat pasta or oats, a boiled egg and semolina mixture. The only thing that really is missing from his diet is nuts (I’m allergic). He eats really well and I don’t have much trouble with having him try new foods or eat a variety (although he hates carrot).

About him;
He weighs about 55-60g and is 6 months old, he was banded by the breeder (it’s an open band and it’s quite loose and doesn’t seem to bother him so I haven’t had it removed yet). His wings have been clipped. He’s just started getting speckles of red feathers on his chest and under his wings are almost completely red.

His environment;
His cage is 82L x 52W x 154H (cm) and the bars are about a little over a cm apart from each other? he has a range of toys and I rearrange his perches and rotate toys every 1-2 weeks. He also has a 600mL dish to bath in or I’ll bring him into the shower because he LOVES water, he usually has a bath once a day. I cover his cage up at night around 10pm and uncover him briefly to change his food and water at 6am but leave the lights off until 8. He’s out of the cage almost all the time except during the night - He’s really chill and just sits on my shoulder while I clean or study and go about my day he just really loves being on my shoulder while I do stuff. If I’m not home he is either with the rest of my family out of the cage (my parents and siblings), in his cage next to the other birds (lovebirds, budgies, conures), and I always leave the radio, music or a movie/tv show on for him. He’s also by a window that looks over a conservation park so he likes watching the birds and other animals fly around outside and getting the fresh air / sitting in the afternoon sun. Sometimes I will move his cage outside for more sun and fresh air if it’s not too hot and as long as I’m outside with him (I live in Australia).

I thought it might have been his cage was overcrowded and pushing against his tail feathers so I took a bunch of stuff out and that seems to have had no effect. I don’t know what kind of conditions the breeder had him in or if he was around other birds. He doesn’t seem to overpreen or pick at himself although he does stretch his wings/legs a lot? I know the feathers can be a lot more delicate when they’re young- will these resolve with a good molt?

I wasn’t sure if the marks might be stress bars or feather bronzing (he does really like to lay on his back and wrestle toys with his feet). And I really don’t know regarding his tail feathers. Anyone had this with their birdies? Are either of these anything to worry about? Is something wrong? Is there something I should be doing different?

Any help or advice is very very appreciated :)

*sorry if I went overboard with info I just love this little guy and I worry about him a lot


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Looks like the body feathers are a mix of stress bars and bronzing, and the tail is likely him too small of a cage before you got him. All will improve as he starts to molt out the bad/damaged feathers. They don't need a lot of seed in the diet - my conure got them only as a treat - but otherwise your diet seems really good for feather growth.