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Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

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Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby flappybird » Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:53 pm

Hey all,

I discovered yesterday that Luna's flight feathers are finally grown out. She got spooked in my yard and flew across the entirety of it and I think the only reason I didn't have a hard time recovering her is because she crash-landed in a hedge and that arrested her flight.

I don't think Luna's ever been flighted in her 10 years, and the only time's I've seen her flutter/fly is when she gets spooked. I want to keep her flighted, but I am super super worried that she's going to seriously injure or kill herself. It's obvious she does not know how to land, and so everytime she's been in the air shes crash landed on something, and miraculously not gotten hurt as of yet.

She's not trained, and I'm trying to start clicker training from the very beginning again because I realize I'm not going to get anywhere with her unless she understands some sort of system. The farthest we've gotten with the harness is just eating a seed through the head hole.

I really don't want to clip her again but I'm not sure how to proceed. I don't want to do any "flapping" exercises because they make her take off immediately and possibly crash into something. She also hasn't tried flying anywhere on her own either.

How do I get her to figure it out in order to avoid clipping her wings for safety?
flappybird
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby Pajarita » Thu Dec 03, 2015 11:42 am

You can exercise her and allow her to learn how to land gracefully in a safe environment. Flying is instinctual for birds but they require practice to get good at it - especially landing. So, what you can do is forget about flying her outside for now (although you can continue getting her used to the harness), put a folded quilt or two on the floor at about the distance she is able to fly now and with her perching on your hand, make a motion with it so as to impulse her in that direction. This will allow her to exercise and strengthen her wings as well as practice landing (they need to learn how to move the tail so they don't crash) without getting hurt. If you do this several times a day, you'll be surprised how soon she will become good at it.
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby flappybird » Thu Dec 03, 2015 12:51 pm

What do I do if my house is too small for that? The issue is, she can now get lift, and she's not used to flying, and it's usually just a response to a scary thing (such as me trying to launch her) so she won't go towards the ground, she'll just go until she hits something. The last time I tried to launch her (in an enclosed yard at my aunt's house over thanksgiving), she went in really different directions than I intended to, as well, which is even scarier if I try to do that inside the house. I'm trying to think of a bigger place I could go but can't think of one..
flappybird
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby Wolf » Thu Dec 03, 2015 2:32 pm

Try hanging some sheets so that instead of running into a wall or other hard surface she will run into a sheet which will reduce any impact to a safer level. Also try to launch her from as close to ground level as you can manage, thus encouraging her to land more quickly.
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby Pajarita » Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:07 pm

Yes, a material hanging down is a good idea but I would not use sheets but something with a more open weave so she can hang on to it.

You can also open doors or stand in a corridor or in such a way that the length of the potential flight involves more than one room (like, for example, standing at the very end of, say, your bedroom and pointing her towards the open door so she can fly into the living room or corridor or whatever).
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby flappybird » Mon Dec 07, 2015 6:45 pm

Good idea.. I'll let you guys know when I am able to try it out. I'm worried that she's just going to fly askew and run into a corner instead of through a doorway :( My house really is small and a bit cramped.
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby liz » Tue Dec 08, 2015 6:44 am

I used an expansion rod and put sheer curtains in the doorways that matched my home colors. I did work until Myrtle learned to hit the curtain and twist to get in the other room.

Humans learning to walk fall quite often. She is smart and will learn fast.

I exersize Rambo by hold him with and up and down motion while he is facing the sofa. The up and down he will flap then take off and land on a soft sofa.
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby flappybird » Fri Dec 11, 2015 12:02 am

liz wrote:
I exersize Rambo by hold him with and up and down motion while he is facing the sofa. The up and down he will flap then take off and land on a soft sofa.


So I actually started doing something like this the past two days. In the morning Luna has decided that all she wants to do is perch on Michael's shoulder while he's still in bed, regardless of whatever I'm doing. (She has decided the past two weeks that he is suddenly her absolute favorite). So I've been trying to hold her in front of the bed, and dropping my hand suddenly to get her to fly off. It works most of the time, and we do it a couple times for good measure. Yesterday she landed really gracefully for the first time.

I have high hopes. :)
don't know how long it will take her to figure out that she can fly on her own.. wondering how much time we have left before we have to supervise her a lot more closely.
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby Wolf » Fri Dec 11, 2015 9:45 am

Birds actually learn flying skills very quickly, in their natural environment they have to figure it out fast due to predators. But as far as how long she begins to fly about on her own or how often may have a lot to do with how much space that she has that she can fly in.
Luna is almost exactly between the size of my Kiki Senegal and Kookooloo CAG and my house is not all that large so flying space is somewhat limited especially when you consider how fast a parrot actually flies. Kiki is very good with flying about in the house, while Kookooloo seems to think that it is a bit confining for flight so most of the time she walks and only uses her wings as a power assist when climbing on things.
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Gender: This parrot forum member is male
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Re: Luna doesn't know how to fly / will get injured

Postby flappybird » Fri Dec 11, 2015 9:17 pm

Makes sense. I also think it's weird that Luna doesn't really venture anywhere past her cage area on her own. She can climb down perfectly well and walk over to where we are if I don't get her or if she wants to go see something, but she never ever does. She's so easy, I never have to worry about her getting in somewhere and chewing something up (because she doesn't do that either). The most she'll do is MAYBE climb down from her cage if I'm seated at the small table/desk right next to it and eating something, she'll come investigate, but it will take her a while. Maybe our place is still too new to her, who knows, she might do a total 180 down the road. I'm just surprised she's so reserved, all other parrots I've met are always all over the place.
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