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Macaw Adventures 2023

BrianB

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Baby Bo has her vet follow-up today. I think we're finally done with her being under the weather. If all goes well, she will get her microchip and then we can get her weaned and sent home to her momma. This morning while I was getting her formula ready she was screaming at me.... because no bird understands the concept of patience. I told her she wasn't getting much because she was going to see that mean woman today and she couldn't have a full tummy. Apparently, that wasn't the right answer because she put her beak around my wrist and started bobbing on me. She wanted the whole 60 ml syringe and I only gave her 25 ml. Queue the macaw drama - when I tried to get her to step up she rolled onto her side and kicked at me. When I finally did get her onto my arm she put her head under my chin and tried to beat me to death by flapping her wings at my face. There is nothing like getting slapped repeatedly on both sides of your face at the same time. Even my mother couldn't do that and I swear that woman could slap me from the other side of the room sometimes.

In other news, the red-fronted macaws were getting busy this morning. I managed to sleep in this morning. Normally I'm up at 5:15 but somehow I managed to sleep until 7 today, and I was met with a nice cup of Cuban coffee when I got to the kitchen. I was sitting on the sofa watching the news and enjoying my coffee when the red-fronted started screaming. Not their usual scream, but their fighting dragon battle cry scream. Who knows when they will start laying? Last year they bred for several months before she started laying eggs. They have an almost 100% fertility rate so it's worth the wait to have a house full of baby red fronts. I'm on the hunt for another pair if I can find a way to squeeze them in.
 

BrianB

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Update on Bo - due to circumstances out of our control, we spent 6 hours at the vet's office. Bo is doing better and had her microchip done today. There are still a bit too many gram-negative bacteria present, but the yeast infection is gone. To avoid repeating the cycle again, we're going to treat the bacteria with some apple cider vinegar in her water. That will help kill what is left and then we can work on getting her weaned and sent home.
 

BrianB

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The male red-fronted macaw tried to kill me this morning. Not really, but he's being crazy. This morning as I'm doing the food and water I grabbed a hand towel and wiped off some yucky food where their bowls go. The male grabbed the towel and when I pulled it away from him, he came with it. One foot landed on my glasses, the other on my nose with his nails in my nostrils and he slapped me a few times with his wings before he flew off. I'm standing there with my eyes watering and some blood leaking out of my nose. His lady is screaming and he's flying around having a great time. Luckily he will step up if he's away from her so it wasn't too difficult to get him back in the cage. Every day is a new adventure with this flock.

Bo is doing really well. Eating like a pig and being silly when she's out of the cage. She's feeling much better and we're over the hurdle with the bacteria and yeast infection. I try to get her to step up and she falls over on her side so she can't. The second I move my arm away she's up on both feet flapping her wings. I can usually shove my hand under her and she will step up and let me cuddle her. I trick her with cuddles and she gets mad at me. I'll hold her close to my chest and tell her what a good girl she is and walk back to her cage while I'm doing it. Before she knows it I've got the door open and I'm putting her back on a perch. She gives me a dirty look and tries to get back on my arm.

Chewy is coming to work with me today. The time away from Poppy is good because she's still being horrible. Hopefully, we can get her past this and she will calm down. Those scarlet hormones are horrible.
 

TikiMyn

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I love reading about your adventures so much. :heart2: Sorry the male red front gave you a though time, that does sound scary.
 

BrianB

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Customers asked me how much bigger a Buffons is compared to a Military. Let's see...

Here is BooBoo standing on my arm right at my elbow.

Screen Shot 2023-02-28 at 7.26.41 PM.jpg

Here is Hamlet, a Military at the store. He's standing on my hand.

IMG_8696.jpeg
 

TikiMyn

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Wow! I wondered that myself yesterday by coincidence. Very cool to see. Both are beautiful.
 

Pat H

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Bo went for her follow-up visit today. The gram-negative bacteria is back to an acceptable level However, the 24 days of antibiotics also wiped out all the good bacteria and now she has a slight yeast infection. Luckily we caught it very early and we have a week-long course of anti-fungal medication and a general pro-biotic to get things back in balance. This little girl has put some weight back on which made the vet happy. She pretended to be shy and put up a fuss when she was being examined. As soon as the vet left the room she got over herself and tried to eat the window cover and gave me attitude when I told her no. We have a follow-up appointment next Sunday and if everything is where it should be, we'll work on getting her weaned again so she can go home to her momma. Maybe she will grow into those feet before that.

View attachment 423125
Looks like a cross between Jimmy Durante and a punk rocker! :roflmao:
 

BrianB

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BooBoo may be leaving us soon. I've been looking for a lady friend for him and I haven't had much luck. I found one female that was available, but she wasn't fertile. With so few of them left in the world, it would be best if he was able to breed and help continue the species. A breeder who has a fertile female contacted me about the possibility of putting the two of them together. We spoke at length about their history and it sounds like a good fit. If all goes well, BooBoo will go to their facility and be paired with a nice female Buffons.
 

BrianB

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My job at the bird store is never a dull moment. We have a blue & gold that's been boarding with us for a long time. He's a sweet boy, to some of us, but he's full of attitude and sass with everyone else and other birds. He managed to get off of his tree and tried to have some attitude with a hyacinth. The blue & gold got bit on the face as a result. Luckily it didn't penetrate and it's just on one side, but it could have been so much worse. We wrapped him up and cleaned it off then put some antibiotic cream on it. It's not even deep enough for stitches and once we were done cleaning him he sat on my leg and rolled his head back and forth while I scratched his neck. It took just a second for both birds to jump down and go after each other when someone had their back turned.
 

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April

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Aww poor sweetie. So sorry to hear that happened but glad he's OK.
 

TikiMyn

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Glad the damage isn’t worse!! They can be so quick. Was it easy to break up the fight? I witnessed an annoyed Greenwing yesterday, wow I cannot imagine what a force a truely pissed large macaw would be be:wideyed:
 

Icey

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Oh no! How tragic. The poor baby. Thank god it wasn't worse.
I hope he's going to be okay. That looks bad. :(
 

BrianB

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He will be ok. He's scratched his own face and it looked far worse than this did, but it was self-inflicted and not because he got sassy with a hyacinth. Someone had already broken them up by the time we got back there. The hyacinth really loves the guy who works back there and he easily stepped up for him when asked. That's the same hyacinth that gave me a pinch when he wanted his favorite human and I didn't hand him over fast enough. The blue & gold is a silly boy on his own. He will step up just fine, but once he gets on the floor all bets are off. He won't step up for anything, but it's all part of a game he plays. What I've resorted to doing is picking him up like a chicken. I grab him right around the middle of the body and lift him up. He starts to laugh and say HI! while waving his feet.

As for breaking up fights between big birds - at home, I keep a small throw pillow handy. If they start to snap at each other I toss it in their direction. It's not big enough to hurt if it hits one of them, but enough to interrupt the behavior. Usually seeing something flying toward them is enough to send them scattering in different directions. At the store we keep them separate on hanging trees, but sometimes it takes just a second for one of them to get down and start something. When I was cleaning I kept a hand towel in my back pocket. Waving it at an aggressive bird will distract them and keep them from biting you.

A few weeks ago as we were about to lock up and leave there was this horrible screaming in the back boarding room. The owner went back there and found Sandy on top of another bird's cage carrying on. She stays in a different room and doesn't go back there with the boarders. When we went to put her back in her cage we discovered it was locked. The only thing we can figure out is that when I was doing a walk-through I pointed out that she needed more food in one of her dishes and someone left the side door open when they took the dish to refill it. She slipped out and got down on the floor when no one was looking and the person who put it back didn't notice that she was gone. She doesn't fly so she waddled her old bones across the store and climbed up onto the cage and started carrying on. If she had gone somewhere else we might not have noticed she was gone because the cage check had already been done. I don't want to imagine what kind of bad things could have happened. At the very least, she would have set one of the motion sensors off and the alarm would have sounded, but she could have climbed up the hyacinth cage and that might have been deadly.

I get a chuckle every time someone comes in and says they would love to get paid to play with birds. It's nothing as they imagine. We really do run it like a daycare where we have to keep watch over children to make sure they stay safe and happy.
 

Icey

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I love reading about all your birds.
You should write a journal of all the antics and behaviours. :)
 

TikiMyn

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Oh my god, that B&G sounds like such a doll!
Thank you for the elaborate explanation, really enjoyed reading it.
I can totally imagine it is like running a day care. Most my birds are about as big as a large Mac’s feet haha but still it feels like I have a home full of kids lately as we are having some new issues:roflmao:
 

Dartman

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Been bit by every bird I've had except Dobby and Momazon assured me he can bite. I think he's just a gentle soul that doesn't want to bite unless there's no other option. He did pinch my thumb nail really hard when I knew he was really wound and reached for him anyway. I turned my thumb around so he'd get the nail just in case.
Pippen, the tiniest bird here, bit his foot finally because he kept landing on top of his cage. The screaming was awful as he flew away then started whimpering and licking his foot. Luckily she barely grazed it and his feelings and foot were hurt. Kept telling him she'll bite your feet.
We have a piece plexiglass up there now just in case.
 
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