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Looking for some advice/encouragement on my new p'let

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
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2/13/23
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Alena
I'm a pretty experienced parrotlet owner, but it has been a while since I've had a new bird. My new parrotlet is 9 months old. She was hand raised and very well cared for - spacious cage, fed veggies every morning, variety of toys, but she was not handled. The only time she was brought out was to have her wings clipped and they had to chase her around her cage and grab her. I. brought her home about a week ago and have left her undisturbed besides to feed and change water so she can get used to my room. Now I am starting to sit closer to her and feed her millet, but progress is very different than with other parrotlets I've had. She doesn't play with toys, even when I am out of the room. Her fear greatly outweighs her curiosity. The one interesting thing is that she doesn't bite, even the few times I have had to manhandle her to bring her home and put her into her new cage. She almost has the temperament of a sick lethargic bird, but she came with a full clean panel from our local vet, and she is eating fine. She just sits on her highest perch and puffs up and stares at me. The most success we've had so far is her taking a few steps towards my hand for a bite of millet.
I know new birds are sort of a trust the process type thing and I'm probably on the right track, but I'm also worried that because she is a little bit older she won't 'tame' fully. All my p'lets have been 3-5 months. If anyone has any advice or success stories with taming a similar parrotlet, or could give me a timeline/reassure me, I would appreciate it!
 

Tyrion

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:congrats5: and :welcomesign:
 

Pixiebeak

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Keetie!

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She is so beautiful! I would love to adopt a parrotlet in the future. I only have had budgies, but there is a wonderful online forum that is fully dedicated to parrotlets. Talk Parrotlets is a wealth of knowledge for the new or not so new parrotlet owner. Congratulations on this new feathered baby! Best Regards!:mykid:
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
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Alena
She is so beautiful! I would love to adopt a parrotlet in the future. I only have had budgies, but there is a wonderful online forum that is fully dedicated to parrotlets. Talk Parrotlets is a wealth of knowledge for the new or not so new parrotlet owner. Congratulations on this new feathered baby! Best Regards!:mykid:
Thank you! We had a good session today, she inched down with millet bribes to sit on the open door of her cage and eat. I even put my free hand in front of the millet to have her reach over it and she did! Still very wary but it felt good to have some progress.
 

Pixiebeak

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We love to see a pic!!
 

MintyLove

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Callie
Congratulations! So great that she was rehomed to a caring and responsible person. Based on her history, it sounds like you will have to earn her trust over time. If the only experience she had with handling was the unpleasant/likely traumatizing experience of being grabbed and having her wings clipped, it makes sense that she is more fearful than curious. It will take time to build a more positive and pleasant association with handling/people. You can also try to feed her primary food by hand as well. All your daily efforts will pay off in the long run and be sure to keep acknowledging the little wins along the way. She will get there!! :)
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
2/13/23
Messages
16
Real Name
Alena
Congratulations! So great that she was rehomed to a caring and responsible person. Based on her history, it sounds like you will have to earn her trust over time. If the only experience she had with handling was the unpleasant/likely traumatizing experience of being grabbed and having her wings clipped, it makes sense that she is more fearful than curious. It will take time to build a more positive and pleasant association with handling/people. You can also try to feed her primary food by hand as well. All your daily efforts will pay off in the long run and be sure to keep acknowledging the little wins along the way. She will get there!! :)
Thank you! I'm feeling a little more encouraged because she stepped up today for millet! I feel bad because the store asked that I bring her back to weigh her now that it has been 1 week so I feel like all the progress I've done is going to be erased when they grab her to weigh her:(
 

sunnysmom

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Thank you! I'm feeling a little more encouraged because she stepped up today for millet! I feel bad because the store asked that I bring her back to weigh her now that it has been 1 week so I feel like all the progress I've done is going to be erased when they grab her to weigh her:(
Do you have to? I mean was there a concern about her weight? I believe in weighing birds too but I don't think it's necessary to weigh a bird every week unless there's concern that the bird isn't eating enough or is/was sick.

I think you're doing very well with your new bird. I fostered a parrotlet for a while. They're adorable birds. I think every bird is different and you just have to try to follow that bird's lead. Sometimes birds are friendly from the get go- others more skittish. I help with a rescue and I always tell adopters to give the bird at least a month to really settle in. Keep spending time with her. Hand feeding treats, etc. I even sit and read to my new birds. It sounds kind of silly but it gets them used to your voice and presence without scary eye contact and expecting them to do anything.
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
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Alena
Do you have to? I mean was there a concern about her weight? I believe in weighing birds too but I don't think it's necessary to weigh a bird every week unless there's concern that the bird isn't eating enough or is/was sick.

I think you're doing very well with your new bird. I fostered a parrotlet for a while. They're adorable birds. I think every bird is different and you just have to try to follow that bird's lead. Sometimes birds are friendly from the get go- others more skittish. I help with a rescue and I always tell adopters to give the bird at least a month to really settle in. Keep spending time with her. Hand feeding treats, etc. I even sit and read to my new birds. It sounds kind of silly but it gets them used to your voice and presence without scary eye contact and expecting them to do anything.
It's their policy after they give you a bird for you to come back just the first week so they can weigh them and make sure they're eating. I like the policy, it shows they care about their birds, but it's inconvinient because I know she is eating just fine (I see her eat and hand feed her throughout the day) and it will cause her stress.
 

MintyLove

Moving in
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Callie
Although it sounds like a mandatory policy, they mighttt be flexible? You could try to talk to them about your progress and concerns and suggest other options like showing a video of her eating. If they don't budge, just remember she is resilient and while you may take a few steps back following this visit, you can get back to progressing forward again (especially since you only have to take her in for the weighing 1x). You could also take some treats for this visit in an effort to make it less stressful.
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
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Alena
I called the store and they reccomended using a towel to grab her instead of my hands so she associated it more with the towel, I did that and then when I got back she still took millet out of my hand and didn't seem too spooked! I'm overall glad I went because it was nice to have her health validated and I picked her up a toy :)
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
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Alena
Update - she DOES bite...harder than any parrotlet I've ever handled! She's like a little pitbull. I try to respect her body language to avoid getting bit in the first place, but during step up training she will reach and I think she's going to use her beak to balance and step onto my hand and instead she bites and holds down as hard as she can. My whole hand is covered in beak punctures. I'm hoping this is just a phase lol. At least I know she's got some spirit in her.
 

brdprncess

Sitting on the front steps
Joined
2/13/23
Messages
16
Real Name
Alena
Things are going well! She is stepping up pretty reliably and sits on my shoulder for snuggles. Still spooks easily but we have made progress! Not biting nearly as hard now that she gets I respect her.
 
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