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Is stormy plucking or preening or molting? Help!

jeffcats33

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Hi friends -

I am new to the forum and have a 20 year old cockatiel with me. He loves to whistle and play, but recently I have noticed that when he showers, he ends up releasing some old dust off his feathers. I am worried he is also picking and pulling out hairs. Not sure if its molting or not. I know...ive had him 20 years...but I want your guys opinions. I posted some pics so you guys can see what I am talking about. His feathers are thin around his neck.

When he takes a shower, he also gets reallllyyyyyy sleepy. I get worried, should I not be showering him and spraying him with mist? Like he just wants to sit and sleep and not move. But then he also wants to go hide under a dark spot (like he is hormonal). Is that normal??
 

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sunnysmom

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Welcome to the forum. I love seeing senior tiels. :) (I currently have a 20 year old one too and am fostering a 30 year old one.) Did he lose all of those feathers at one time? Do you see any patches or bald spots on him? If no, I'm going to say molting, as plucking usually come from one spot. As for feathers being thin around his neck, are they spots where he can pluck? Or just overall thinning? It could just be aging. My birds also usually are sleepy after a bath. I think it's normal. Just make sure your house is warm enough when he gets a bath and isn't in a draft. And make sure that the bath is early enough in the day that he's completely dry for bedtime. How often do you bathe him?

And I like Senior Nutriberries for my tiels. It has supplements in it aimed at helping older birds. That might be something to think about adding to his diet.

@enigma731 ?
 

enigma731

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It's a bit hard to tell but those all look like powder down feathers to me, and it's normal for them to lose those when preening. It's also normal for them to be relaxed and sleepy after a bath.
 

jeffcats33

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I used to not shower him much since he hated it, but I figured it was better for him since he was getting really dusty. Now we try for about once a week but I hate seeing him fight and get tired.

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll check that out for his diet!
 

sunnysmom

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I used to not shower him much since he hated it, but I figured it was better for him since he was getting really dusty. Now we try for about once a week but I hate seeing him fight and get tired.

Thanks for the suggestion, I'll check that out for his diet!
Although it's good for them to have baths, if he doesn't like it, you don't need to do it that often. I always try to make bath time fun, and if the bird doesn't like it, I stop. Have you tried different times of day? For instance, my first tiel only liked baths after 11:30 a.m. Any earlier, and he wanted no part of it.
 

Fuzzy

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Do you have a pic of his chest when he is dry? Difficult to see, but looks like he has some snipped feathers on the upper part of his wings. His wings also look like they have been clipped unusually. Have you thought of letting them grow out? Spraying/misting will help keep his feathers in good condition.
 
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