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Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

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Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

Postby ShaShaSha777 » Sun Aug 19, 2018 4:35 pm

Hello everyone, I'm new here to TheParrotForum but I was brought here after our bird :senegal:
Lennigirl just bit my sister hard on the arm; my sister Heidi is at her wits end with her. Lennigirl has been nippy lately, it is spring and my sister Heidi has suspected that it's Spring Fever that's making Lennigirl more ornery, being unable to mate and all. She's making sure not to stroke her back and dissuade Lennigirls mood when her wings lower and she's looking ready to mate. (Would like tips on the best way of doing that.) But for the past three months there have been several cases of Lennigirl lunging at Heidi and drawing blood. Every time our bird does this, Heidi puts her in her cage and covers her, anything to let Lennigirl know she's not supposed to bite. However Heidi knows Lennigirl gets even more mad whens she's not getting attention and doesn't want to give her too many naps for then she's awake at night. So I'm on here looking for advice on how to help Heidi avoid getting bit as well as find solace for her sake, as I've heard Sengals can be difficult when it comes to biting and she's not the only owner with scars.

A few things I should mention. Lennigirl is Female, roughly 14 years old (We are the first and only owners.) Her wings are clipped and she often flies to the floor and likes to sit on the floor all content like (not sure why.). We put her to bed around 5:30 to six, before the sun sets and during the day we sometimes bring her cage outside and sit with her. To get her to stop screaming we put her on the Bathroom sink with the water running. Lennigirl gets attention from my Sister Heidi as well as our mother; now I should say that when Lennigirl is on our mothers shoulder and she pets her, Lennigirl gets very poofy and her eyes start pinning. Not sure if this is triggering her desires to mate. Heidi often feeds her fresh fruit and lets her sit on her shoulder or sit next to her. She's pretty good at reading her signals and thinks that Lennigirl is mostly screaming for attention where as our mother interjects that it's because her cage hasn't been cleaned. (It's done daily if not every other day.) So that's about it, she screams alot, nothing short of headstrong and above all can be a very sweet bird...just trying at times.

I appreciate anyone taing the time to read this, any help would be great. We love Lennigirl and want to do our best at reading her mood and reacting acordingly. Thanks. :)
ShaShaSha777
Parakeet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 3
Number of Birds Owned: 1
Types of Birds Owned: Senegal
Flight: No

Re: Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

Postby GreenWing » Sun Aug 19, 2018 5:59 pm

Welcome to the forum! Senegals are wonderful birds. My first parrot was a sennie and I miss her so much.

The thing about Sennies is that their bites are painful. My Grey rarely nips, and when she does she usually doesn't break the skin, but in my experience the bite of a Sennie is the worst. That said, I think they're the sweetest birds. They're more emotional than other bird species, I would say, and yes are feisty. They're also very loyal. They can be temperamental and jealous. African Greys tend to have other issues altogether, they're the Einsteins of the parrot world and with that kind of abstract intelligence comes neuroticism and eccentricities. Anyway...

First thing I noticed with your story, is that this sennie needs to be exposed to twilight. They need to see the sun set. It has everything to do with the natural clock, so to speak. Second, make sure the bird is not rewarded for squealing. I know this is hard to do but you have to just tune it out as much as you can. Screaming is one thing but parrots are noisy at times, they're tropical birds after all.
I do advise to make sure the bird has a balanced diet and to ask make sure the bird has adequate toys to play with. I know this sennie is clipped but non clipped birds are healthier and will live longer lives. Not clipping the wings can completely change the bird's psychological state. Try playing music, I've found that parrots love music and can relax them.

That's all I've got for now. I'll wait for others to add their two cents.
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GreenWing
African Grey
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 1071
Location: Portlandia, United States
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Re: Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

Postby ShaShaSha777 » Sun Aug 19, 2018 8:36 pm

Thank you so much :D Heidi's thankful for the advice, it's a relief to know Senegals just so happen to be the Diva's of the Bird World. She's as tempremental as she is endearing.

Heidi took Lennigirl off the seed diet a while back and put her on Zupreem undyed pellets as well as supply her cage with fresh fruit and veggies. A good diet does seem to help calm her. I never knew that about being clipped until know but I guess if there instinct is to fly away to safety, not being able to do that can be stressful. Right now we're living in cramped quarters and have to share one room so that's why Heidi's clipping her wings. She only does it once every two to three months and leaves the farther most primary feather so she can still navigate during flight. She does it to keep her from flying out the door she's next to, (We've had two emergency cases in the past where she flew away from us; but Lennigirls less skidish then she once was.) Being in one room is also why where constantly trying to find solutions to her screaming but Heidi agrees, putting her on the bathroom sink while does calm her, only makes her more demanding for it. It's also the only bathroom in a room with three other women so competition is high... Also yeah, I guess it's also in her nature to scream too, good thing I have a stash of earplugs next to my bed. :P

Anyways, thanks for replying and advice; it's good to know and we'll try putting her to bed around twilight. Heidi was also wondering what are the most effective ways to discipline your bird when they bite. Thanks again,
ShaShaSha777
Parakeet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 3
Number of Birds Owned: 1
Types of Birds Owned: Senegal
Flight: No

Re: Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

Postby Pajarita » Mon Aug 20, 2018 10:15 am

Hi, ShaSha, Heidy and Lennygirl! Welcome to the forum and thank you so much for worrying about little Lennygirl and trying to help her.

Now, please allow me to correct two misconceptions. Female senegals are the sweetest things and very quiet birds [I've had three and they were all like this] so when a sennie hen is biting and screaming, she is telling you she is unhappy. Usually, the 'unhappiness' is more a physical than an emotional problem and it's caused by hormones. If you don't keep a bird to a strict solar schedule with full exposure to dawn and dusk [as Greenwing mentioned in her posting] and free-feed protein food [as when you keep a bowl of seeds or pellets in her cage all the time] the bird will produce sexual hormones non-stop [something that NEVER happens in nature] and become physically uncomfortable [all the way up to having chronic pain from overgrown gonads]. They also become sexually frustrated and very emotionally unstable. I think that this is the main problem with Lennygirl so the first thing I would suggest is that you change her light schedule and diet immediately because, this time of the year, the breeding season for sennies is over and done with so her problem is most definitely not 'spring fever'.

The other recommendation I have is to stop clipping her. This is extremely unhealthy for them [their respiratory system becomes atrophied because nature never figured we would ground them] and terribly stressful [you have taken away the only way she has of getting away from danger or anything she doesn't like and that's very upsetting for a prey animal]. You mentioned her trying to get away through open doors so I would suggest that, when her wings are back, you use those net curtain things that have magnets that close them in front of the doors so she cannot fly away [like this one:https://www.amazon.com/Magnetic-Screen-Door-Mesh-Curtain/dp/B00W47H6AO/ref=sr_1_2_sspa?ie=UTF8&qid=1534777845&sr=8-2-spons&keywords=doorway+mosquito+curtain&psc=1] .

Third is stop covering her cage during the day. This is not only not helping at all but actually making things worse because there is not supposed to be darkness in the middle of the day so you are messing up even more her already messed-up endocrine system [birds endocrine system is governed by light -research circadian and circannual cycles, avian photoperiodism, avian endocrine system and avian reproductive system]. You can put her in the cage if she bites but for only a max of 5 minutes [by the clock, mind you] although I don't understand why this is being done because, with a clipped bird, all you have to do is put it away from you, it doesn't have to go back into its cage as a flightless bird cannot reach you to bite you again. This is not really teaching her anything but that humans are arbitrary and cruel because parrots do not understand the concept of discipline, obedience or punishment [it's because of the social structure Nature evolved to live under] and when you try to use the same methods that work with, say, a dog, they all backfire and end up making things worse because, in the bird's mind, none of it makes any sense and they blame you for doing it. What I am trying to say is that you cannot teach a parrot not to do something by using discipline or punishment, you need to figure out what is making it do the 'wrong' thing and eliminate it or circumvent it so the parrot no longer does it. With parrots, you have to get up pretty early in the morning and outsmart them because they are not going to 'learn' not to do something that comes naturally to them...

To make a long story short, what she is doing -screaming and biting- are not bad behaviors on her part, they are symptoms of something not quite right going on with the bird and she is trying to tell you so you can change it.
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 13493
Location: NE New Jersey
Number of Birds Owned: 30
Types of Birds Owned: Toos, grays, zons, canaries, finches, cardinals, senegals, jardine, redbelly, sun conure, button quail, GCC, PFC, lovebirds
Flight: Yes

Re: Biting Sengal Parrot; Female and Feisty

Postby ShaShaSha777 » Mon Aug 20, 2018 9:44 pm

Thank you for the advice Pajarita.
ShaShaSha777
Parakeet
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 3
Number of Birds Owned: 1
Types of Birds Owned: Senegal
Flight: No


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