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List of important training topics

Atomiklan

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Howdy all!

Looking to see if everyone here can help me expand this list of important training topics for a new bird. This will be for a new baby bird. I am not suggesting these are all for consumption immediately, but as the bird grows. As a result, I am also curious if anyone has recommendations on a loose order of training topics by importance. For example, step up training seems to usually be one of the early skills taught by a breeder. Other tricks and training topics obviously come later.

Please help me add/modify this list and reorganize it. I put this list on a remote link so I can continue to edit it as people make suggestions here in the forums.

http://host.atomiklan.com/training/index.html
 

schnitzle

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I've seen target training stressed as an important thing to teach early on. Then it could be used to assist with things like towel training, crate training and training them to get on a scale?
 

theocnoob

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I've read all your threads at this point. You're ready, man. Do you have the money? Do you know of a breeder for the species you want? Have you visited any potential new feathered children? If you answered yes to the first question, and you can afford the bird, a big cage, toys, nutritious food, and vet visits (good idea to take the baby to a vet to get a clean bill of health), get the bird. You can do this.

Just go for it man. At a certain point you have to learn as you go and you can only learn so much without having the actual bird in your home.

There is such a thing as over-preparing :)
 

ode.to.parrots

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Looks like you have a pretty solid list. :)

I was going to say recall, but you have that already on there!
 

WendyN

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Train yourself to recognize your bird's moods and body postures and consequences to follow.
For example, when you have him step up...to know when he is breaking to test the surface or getting ready to bite you.
 

WendyN

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Also provide ample foraging stations for your bird...feeder cups with shredding materials, toys, pellets and and occasional treat.

Help your bird to be able to play by itself.

If you want to take your bird outdoors, start getting it accustomed to wearing a harness.
 

Laurie

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Targeting and clicker training (or teaching another bridging stimulus). These are elements that are frequently used as techniques in teaching more complex behaviors.

If you really want to know where to start it is in training yourself. I highly recommend everything buy Barbara Heidenriech. Just buy it all and use it LOL!

Start with Understanding Parrot Body Language and Parrot Behavior and Training. Get the Basic Parrot Training Workshop one too. Those are all essential. They teach you technique and understanding of your bird so that you can communicate with them and train them to do other things.

Start with training yourself and you'll find training your bird much easier.
 

Atomiklan

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I've read all your threads at this point. You're ready, man.
Yeah, research wise, I do feel like I am starting to plateau. I am still learning new stuff generally every day, but the learning curve is definitely logarithmic at this point.

Do you have the money?
Money is not a huge object, but I am getting very close to needing a new car, so right now I am funneling a lot of funds that direction. New car is a necessity so thats taking priority right now. This is ok though as I may be prepared research wise, but I'm still not ready commitment wise yet. My next BIG step on this journey is to have a new friends Eckie come live with me for a little while. I really feel at the conclusion of this experience I will know for sure what I want to do and will know the time that's ready. Have not gotten back in touch with new friend yet though, so I don't yet know when/if it's going to happen.

Do you know of a breeder for the species you want?
Post bird fair, I have a few local breeders that I need to contact again, but I need to wait a few weeks to contact them as we discussed at the fair (New eggs). Not getting one yet though. Another big milestone along this journey will be to meet a BHC in person. I still have yet to meet one. I want to at least visit and interact with one before I just jump in and buy one.

Have you visited any potential new feathered children?
See answer above. Only have one (possibly two) species in mind. BHC or female Eckie. I'm currently probably about 80% BHC, 18% Eckie, 2% Unknown.

Just go for it man. At a certain point you have to learn as you go and you can only learn so much without having the actual bird in your home.
Once I get past the two milestones mentioned above, I would seriously start to consider myself as ready. Not before though.

Thanks again for all the attention to this topic.

Hope to see some other replies to original question above.

Thanks,
Andrew
 

Atomiklan

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Thanks everyone! I have updated and resorted the list according to your suggestions. Please keep adding more where you see holes.

I highly recommend everything buy Barbara Heidenriech.
Thanks, I will take a look at these.

Start with Understanding Parrot Body Language and Parrot Behavior and Training.
Is body language fairly consistent across species?
 

schnitzle

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This list is going to be so helpful for me! I need reminders of what to work on in order to re-focus from time to time.
 

Atomiklan

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Yeah, hopefully it will help a few people out. Hopefully more people respond with suggestions too. Thanks
 

Tim

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Every step of training is greatly improved with target training. That would be my #1. My babies both were trained to step up by the breeders.
 

Tiel Feathers

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Training to take meds from a syringe and training to let you clip nails are helpful.

I hope it doesn't take you this long to pick out your new car!:lol:
 

Atomiklan

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Every step of training is greatly improved with target training. That would be my #1. My babies both were trained to step up by the breeders.
In a lot of ways, clicker training is my number 1 on the list. I agree, step up is established by the breeder (assuming you have a good breeder who knows what they're doing and actually cares about the birds). I included the entertainment topic as number two only because this is just a general topic which is really more of a default to bird ownership. So in reality, target/clicker training is indeed number 1.
 

Atomiklan

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Training to take meds from a syringe and training to let you clip nails are helpful.
Hmm good point. I had not considered medication. I guess I assumed if the need arose, I would take my vets recommendations. As for the nails, I originally grouped that in with towel training, but I think that can go one step further. Pretend nail and beak trims while in towel. I'm not suggesting stressing the bird out, but once they are comfortable with the towel, then work on say playing with the feet and beak a bit and build up to it. I'll add those to the list. Good suggestions
 

Laurie

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Thanks everyone! I have updated and resorted the list according to your suggestions. Please keep adding more where you see holes.



Thanks, I will take a look at these.



Is body language fairly consistent across species?
There are variations but this will help you know what to pay attention too. Birds communicate in very subtle ways. If you listen to them when their subtle communication you will get along much better than if you miss those cues and only get the more in your face communication.

Ideally you will get what they mean when they "whisper" so they do not escalate to "yelling". For instance, a bird leaning away or simply standing there not responding to your request to step up is him whispering that he doesn't want to step up. If you ignore the "whisper" he will escalate maybe to moving away, pushing your hand away with a beak and finally to "yelling" (biting you). You will respond to the bite. Then you have taught you bird that you just do get what he means unless he bites and next time he may just skip straight to biting. It is a slippery slope and it doesn't take much to fall to the bottom.

Birds communicate with their eyes, physical body posture, feather posture, vocally and in many other ways. For instance, many have been asking if a fluffed up bird is sick. If you are familiar with your bird's (and birds in general) feather postures you can tell the difference. After awhile you may pick up on some of it but it will be better to take the short cut of learning what to look for so that you can pick up on things more quickly from day one.
 
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Atomiklan

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Body language is definitely an area that requires more research on my part, but I also recognize will require actual experience with not just "a" bird, but "my" bird which is obviously not an option just yet. It does sound like, with experience, you can tell the difference between "angry fluffed" and "look at how cute I am" fluffed. Only comes with experience though. This will be a challenge for me at the start.
 

Atomiklan

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I am considering adding shower training too on the list. Only reason I am hesitant to add this to the list is it seems like something he would adjust to fairly quickly and not need much training. Thoughts here?

While on the topic, and as justification, I would prefer and have been highly recommended to avoid a "bath bowl" in the cage. Don't want to get water everywhere or for him to get sick drinking the bath water. Will probably keep bath time confined to bowls in the kitchen over the tile, in the sink, or just bring him in the shower every day, every other day, once a week etc. Not sure just yet on recommended frequency. Guess it depends on bird. If he loves taking a shower every day and I have the time to dry him off then I guess why not right? Thoughts?
 

theocnoob

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Hmm good point. I had not considered medication. I guess I assumed if the need arose, I would take my vets recommendations. As for the nails, I originally grouped that in with towel training, but I think that can go one step further. Pretend nail and beak trims while in towel. I'm not suggesting stressing the bird out, but once they are comfortable with the towel, then work on say playing with the feet and beak a bit and build up to it. I'll add those to the list. Good suggestions
I have recently been reminded of this since George has been on meds. All you have to do is feed the bird baby parrot mash from a syringe (the kind you use to give a baby medication) once in awhile to keep him/her accustomed to sucking on a syringe. George refused to take the baytril by itself so what I do is suck up baby parrot food into the syringe and then suck the baytril in and I give it to him carefully so he spills nothing and gets the full dose of baytril (his medication).

My breeder suggested that I offer him the baby food once in awhile and I've been doing it for ten years. It's important. Had I not kept this up I might not have had a way to administer this medication.
 
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