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To clip a new baby rose breasted cockatoo or not?

Tinabell

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Christina Spence
I’m getting a baby Rose Breasted Cockatoo . The breeder says he will fledge before I get him. He recommended a very light clip , I’m not sure what my thoughts are on that ? Since he or she will be so little and new to me and my home, will it want to fly away in my house? Is it a better idea to lightly clip , train, then let them grow out again? I don’t know what to do? I also have young children who sometimes forget to close doors.

My windows all of have shutters which I keep open in the day and close at night. I just keep the shutters down, but put them in the horizontal position to let light in. I’m not worried about my bird flying into glass as all windows have blinds down , but tilted open in case anyone has that concern. I want to clicker train once he or she gets used to me and it’s new home. Just trying to figure out if I should clip or not? Or lightly clip and then let them grow out later , or not clip at all!
 

JLcribber

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Zara

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iamwhoiam

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Since he is being shipped then it's something to consider just in case he somehow gets out of the carrier. If it's a 2 piece carrier the breeder should zip tie the top and bottom parts and should also zip tie the door. If he wasn't being shipped then there should be no clipping.
 

JLcribber

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I also have young children who sometimes forget to close doors.
This is all about environment. It always is. You’re going to get a large parrot. You’re going to need to adapt to your house and Provide a safe and secure place for this bird to live or something bad will happen. The second most important step is to teach your children.

Again this is not about bending or shaping the bird. It’s about providing what they need.
 

Tinabell

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Oh yes, I understand how Important it is to close doors and teach my children. I have twin 3 year olds and twin 9 year olds. They are gentle with animals even my little twin girls. I’m just afraid maybe once they might run outside and forget to close the door. I don’ t know if its much safer lightly clip or not. I will disconnect the ceiling fans. I have no problem with that. I’m just afraid he or she might try to fly away in my house since it’s so new and how do I catch it if I haven’t had time to train it yet? My entire downstairs is open with no closed doors except the bathroom. It will have the whole lower level to fly. I’m always downstairs so I can’t just let it fly or out in a closed single room.
 

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I’m just afraid maybe once they might run outside and forget to close the door. I don’ t know if its much safer lightly clip or not.
Even with a light clip, it won´t make a difference. You could still lose the bird so best to maybe install some sort of child lock?

I have twin 3 year olds
Maybe add a lock to the cage too, my 2.5 year old nephew loves to watch my birds fly... so he tries to open the doors to let them out.

how do I catch it if I haven’t had time to train it yet?
For the first few hours leave the bird in his/her cage. One hour alone to look around, then you go over and sit there and talk to the bird. Maybe offer up some treats. Once the bird is comfortable with you sitting by the cage, and will accept the treats, open the cage. You shouldn´t have an issue geting the bird back in the cage because sooner or later s/he will become hungry, or tired.

When I brought an adult ¨untame¨ lovebird into my home, I had her out of the cage on day one. She´s been here a couple of years and has been out of the cage daily. Only on one day would she not go back in her cage.
I find young birds are more open to trust a new person.
 
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CStone

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Clipping isn't any safer. A lightly clipped bird can still fly, but has less control and is more prone to accidents.

IMO, start with the bird in the cage and give him treats and let him see you as the person all good things come from. Chasing him around if he flies off will only scare him. Just remember he'll go back in when he's hungry or thirsty, then give him a treat for going in. Create trust and don't break it.
 

JLcribber

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Oh yes, I understand how Important it is to close doors and teach my children. I have twin 3 year olds and twin 9 year olds. They are gentle with animals even my little twin girls. I’m just afraid maybe once they might run outside and forget to close the door. I don’ t know if its much safer lightly clip or not. I will disconnect the ceiling fans. I have no problem with that. I’m just afraid he or she might try to fly away in my house since it’s so new and how do I catch it if I haven’t had time to train it yet? My entire downstairs is open with no closed doors except the bathroom. It will have the whole lower level to fly. I’m always downstairs so I can’t just let it fly or out in a closed single room.
By creating a safe zone and using barriers (barriers can be anything from beaded curtains, curtains, mesh panels, room dividers, mosquito netting, mesh). When the bird is not being 100% supervised, this is where is. Whether that is a bird safe room or an indoor aviary or just a barriered section of room.

I tell you this in all honesty. You don't know this yet but you will come to realize. This bird is going to be every bit as challenging and effort as all your kids put together. It's a cockatoo, not a budgie or some other small parrot. This bird will not live in a cage (and thrive) and you cannot watch them every waking moment. I repeat. It's going to come down to the "environment" you provide to have some harmony and compromise for everyone (but especially the bird) over the long term because this is a very long term. Your kids are going to grow up and move out. This bird is not and its a 40+ year journey. I'm saying this to save you the time, effort and more importantly the mistakes/regret.
 

Tinabell

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My children will be gone to school 6 hours a day. I’m a stay at home Mom so when they are gone I want to have it out to be with me or on a perch. I don’t believe in keeping it caged all day at all.
I have child locks on all the doors to outside except the sliding glass door. I can put one of those up too. That’s a good idea.
 

Tinabell

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Being a rose breasted cockatoo I read it’s not as much a Velcro bird as a White Cockatoo. I have tons of toys already and am making a big 4” tall manzanita tree stand on wheels to bring around downstairs too.i wont let it roam or get free when I’m not watching it. That’s why I asked about clipping lightly initially as I don’t want it to fly away before I bond with it and train it. I’m really leaning towards leaving it unclipped.
I appreciate the comments and advice of everyone so far who has added their input. I’m not bringing it home until mid July so I have a bit of time to do more research.
 
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Laurie

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Since he is being shipped then it's something to consider just in case he somehow gets out of the carrier. If it's a 2 piece carrier the breeder should zip tie the top and bottom parts and should also zip tie the door. If he wasn't being shipped then there should be no clipping.
Safety is of course very important but I find that people often mistake safety for convenience. In all cases where a clipped bird is considered safer you can accomplish safety by applying more effort and ingenuity. This is definitely the case with shipping. in that I personally do not see this as a reason to clip. Clipping a young just weaned bird is the most common yet worst time to clip a bird (earlier would be worse actually but they are still learning flight skills so they absolutely should not be clipped). I don't clip at all period. If you buy one of my babies I will not clip them for you and I try to educate people not to have it done later either.

Anyways, my point is that my babies get shipped all the time and are fully flighted.

The two part carriers are required to be bolted together with steel bolts and nuts so they are much more secure than they used to be when bolting was not required. The airlines also requires that the doors be zip tied shut but some of them want releasable zip ties on the doors so you have the regular latches plus the zip ties. "I write flying birds" on the carrier to give them another heads up. They should not need to open the carrier. There should be a water dish on the door or they could place fruit in the carrier through the bars if needed. Generally, there is enough food and moist food in the carrier for the trip.

There is always, always a way to avoid clipping wings. Birds are born to fly and young birds absolutely love to fly, even if it is just to burn off energy.
 

Tinabell

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I know, that’s how I’m feeling too. I love knowing my bird can fly and be more of whom he or she is suppose to be. I’m used to making my surroundings safe with my children. Having a bird only means more of that for the birds sake and I’m all about that.
 

Tinabell

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Fantastic article. I can’t imagine not keeping my bird flighted after reading this article.thank you so much for passing it on. I skimmed all the articles earlier, but now I actually have time to read carefully. His breeder says he lets the babies fly. I sure hope so as the window for some things like learning to not crash into glass is over by 8-10 weeks and I won’t get Bisou until at least 12+ weeks.
 

Ripshod

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A light clip isn't going to make any significant difference to your 'toos ability to escape. I know it' s a different bird but I have a budgie that lost 6 of it's outermost primary flights on a single wing but could still maintain level flight over quite a distance.
If your 'lightly' clipped 'too gets out he may not be able to fly 5km away, but he could still manage 3. That's still a huge search area.
 

Gazimon

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I advise you also call the breeder and stress to them that you do NOT want the bird clipped.

When I got Rainbow, the breeder said that he had already partial-clipped the fledglings because they were flying too high. I thought by partial he meant 3 or 4 flight feathers, where they could still fly decently but with more effort and therefore less stamina. I was so wrong. Rainbow arrived with ALMOST ALL primaries clipped except for the first two. She dropped LIKE A ROCK when she hopped out from the cage to explore the room. Then she looked at me so stunned and confused and lost, it was heartbreaking. She took an instant dislike, hatred rather, to me. She did attempt to fly several more times and plopped on the floor. I was so afraid that she would shatter her keel bone or suffer related impact injuries that I had no choice but to confine her to cage for a longer while. She became so jealous and angry when the other birds were allowed out of cage time.

I did not clip her, but the sudden trauma coupled with the new house was clear to her. I was enemy number 1. She bites me to this day, and its the kind of bite that wants to puncture small chunks of my skin and flesh out. ; u ;
 

Tinabell

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I will let him know today, he said he doesn’t do much so they don’t fall. That’s too much I realize even now. After all the research you all sent me I have decided to let him stay free flighted. I’m making a trip to Home Depot to get some protection for my cords on my entertainment system.
 

Begone

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I just heard back after leaving a text. He said he would not clip. All safe
Really great news. And you do have a long time for securing your home.
Make house rules that everyone has to follow. I'm always using my safety door and curtain and everyone that enter my home must do that too.
If you always do it accident can't happen. You don't need to think if they are out or not and you are in a hurry. This you must learn every family member.
So not, "if you see that he or she is out of the cage", it's ALWAYS do it this way from now on. That will work!
 

Tinabell

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That makes sense! I’m curious what is a safety door and where do you use a curtain?
 
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