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pet shop senegal weird head shake?

Tanyun

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Tanya
in my local pet shop, there is a senegal that got a weird head shake everytime i touch him on the head, is there something wrong with him?

the pet shop workers say that he is a biter, that he will ask for pets then move fast and bite you without warning..

i think that this so called "fast movement" is the head shake.

i'v been visiting this senegal a lot, offering him my finger every single time and he never bit me.. he is such a sweetheart and to me it really feels like he is desperate for love. (he is a hand raised parrot btw).

and everytime i will come to visit and give him pets the workers will say "careful he bites".

he's been in the pet shop for like forever, other parrots that were with him are sold but he always there, always in the filty cage, and it just breaks my heart...

anyway, i'm thinking about buying him (or her), and was curious about the head shake.

video of the parrot:

http://instagr.am/p/CYt2cJ5BYE9/
thank you :)
 
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MnGuy

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Aw, what a sweet bird! It looks like he's being kept in very poor conditions!

I had a Meyer's (same genus as Senegals, i.e. cousins) and I don't think that head shaking is an issue. It looks like he wants you to pet his head and since he's not used to it, he feels a little irritated and shakes his head to get away from your finger.

I would only worry if he was shaking it constantly and out of the blue. My Meyer's would shake her head like that once in a while out of irritation.

Good luck and keep us posted on what you do!
 

MnGuy

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That's so great! Pois are such great birds and very loyal and affectionate with their person.

I'm not a scientist or an expert, but that looks like what's called "stereotypic behavior" you see in animals affected mentally, emotionally and physically by captivity like zoo animals pacing their enclosures, captive elephants swinging their heads back and forth, etc.

If no one was interacting with him at the pet store and he didn't have any toys or foraging opportunities, he could have developed the behavior as a coping mechanism.

I'd load his cage with different types of toys and start giving him foraging toys. Again, I am not an expert by any means, but I would try not to reinforce it. That means don't go up to him and talk to him or scratch him on the head while he's doing that or right after he finishes doing it. You don't want to "train" him to do that even more as a way to get your attention.

But he looks so receptive to your scratches and looks very happy overall! Keep us posted. Do you have a picture of his full cage?
 

Tanyun

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Tanya
thanks for all the info @MnGuy !

i attached a pic of the cage i got him, i have more natural/foraging toys on the way, and more natural perches and boing swings and such.

he had tons of sunflower seeds as a diet in the pet shop, i'm gonna convert him to harrison & top's.

and i don't think he was getting much attention in the store or at all, the workers were not very fond of him because he was aggresive towards them so they said. (i still don't see why, he is on alert yes but far from aggresive)

the dimention of the cage are:
81X58X172cm
 

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MnGuy

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That's a great size and a great start! Keep us updated.
 

Shannan

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Congratulations. I haven't met a Senegal that I didn't like. Sweet birds.
 

Pat H

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He wants to come out!!! Though I would continue to be aware of his possible biting issues [sometimes bowing head to let you pet him-- then bite]... the fact that when he bowed his head again-- he presented the small section of his cheek to allow you to rub him there. WONDERFUL!
I'm so glad you brought him home--- I've had my Ricky since I pulled him at 3wks... now he's about 33yr.

Senegal's are very observant-- they will see the intruder before you will. And have the tendency to do the 'flight' to escape.
They are very food motivated-- remember the old TV advertisement-- Life cereal: "let Mickey eat it" --- [showing my age]. So keep the treats they work for small and frequent.
Good trick birds.
Might try to 'fake you out' -- I had one that when I would open her cage-- she looked like she was terrorizing my finger-- [like a dog shaking their chew toy]... but she never touched me-- To the uneducated, looked like she was going to eat me alive... but never bit.

Guess you have to be willing to experiment-- after all, you'll heal up!
 

Pat H

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thanks for all the info @MnGuy !

i attached a pic of the cage i got him, i have more natural/foraging toys on the way, and more natural perches and boing swings and such.

he had tons of sunflower seeds as a diet in the pet shop, i'm gonna convert him to harrison & top's.

and i don't think he was getting much attention in the store or at all, the workers were not very fond of him because he was aggresive towards them so they said. (i still don't see why, he is on alert yes but far from aggresive)

the dimention of the cage are:
81X58X172cm
Q-- that white thing in the Right corner-- is that a millet holder? He will chew up [and possibly ingest] the plastic. I would remove that.
He's living in a PALACE!!! LUCKY BIRD! I might try adding some natural wood perches, or a rope perch. The different marketplaces have such a variety for sale..
HEY!!-- What did you name him?
 

Elysian

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Congratulations! I am so glad you brought him home!

I love my Senegal SO MUCH even though he *does* bite. I never intended to get one, but adopting him was the best impulse of my life.
 

Bird_lover6

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Oh, great! Another sennie owner! How old is he?

I was just wondering if your senegal is a bit on the large side. My senegal would be very jealous of that cage, but I think the bar spacing would be too big for her, but she's very much on the small side.
 

Fuzzy

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I can’t see the videos but congrats for bringing him home!!!! :happydance: I am so happy for him… and you of course!

Being labelled “a biter” tells you more about how the pet shop staff handled him! I’m so happy he’s been given a chance to show you what he’s really like.:)
 
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