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Hello ... m new and inexperianced

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Re: Hello ... m new and inexperianced

Postby Wolf » Fri Feb 03, 2017 8:36 am

Thanks, Liz, I can normally use all the help that I can get. Your post has caused me to do some more thinking about my replies to this member, so I think that I will try to share my thoughts again on this matter. Again thanks for the nudge.

I often fall short in those replies that concern cockatoos, but it is only because I do not have any of them so I have no actual personal experience to draw upon with them so I have to rely on things that I have read about them posted by other people that do have them as well as on general parrot behavioral information. I do much better when it comes to Greys as I do have one of them to draw upon.

Bird woman seems to have the most personal experience with cockatoos of any of the other members so I find that I listen very closely to what she has to share about them. I think that cockatoos will still very often bond with other cockatoos even after they have bonded with a human. I do not know if they will bond with other species of parrots, that are not cockatoos once they have their human or not so that might be a good question for bird woman, as it does relate directly to the original question posed here.

I do know that with Greys that there is a very good chance that once they have bonded with a human that they will not either bond with any other bird regardless of its species or even actually accept them. You just never know with a Grey, they are very peculiar birds and are very picky about who they accept or will bond with.

That is about the best that I can do as far as answering the question as it pertains to these two species, but I thought that I might elaborate upon it in a more general fashion.

Cages are a funny thing when it comes to birds and despite what anyone else may think, it seems to me that a cage is a cage regardless of its size or weather it has bars or walls such as a bird room or even the run of an entire house, it is still a cage. the reason for my making this point is that all of our birds live in a cage of sorts and the real differences are in the construction of the cage and in its size. Many people disagree with me that the size of the cage is really important, but this is simply because they do not see that the entire room or house is still just a cage as far as the bird is concerned. For those of us that only have a small number of birds that live in standard cages only when we are not with them or only to sleep a bird can do ok in some of the smaller cages. How small id very dependent on how much time that it must spend in the cage with the smaller the cage size the longer the bird needs to be let out into the room.

What I am trying to get at is that large cages such as aviaries work well when you have similar birds that will accept each other well enough that they will not attack each other provided they can get away from each other. Rooms are even better because you can often house birds that may not bond with each other in the same room as long as they are not aggressive to each other and have the room to get away from each other. These larger options for housing birds together also works best if all of the birds are fully flighted.

An example of what I am saying is this; I have a Senegal, a Grey and an amazon that do very well together in my living room although they are not friends. They have enough room to have their own space without bothering each other and they can fly to get away from each other. but if they were to be placed in a smaller area then there would be problems as they could not get out of each others way which would lead to them fighting for their own space.

More and better information concerning this could be had from both Bird woman and Pajarita as they have the space to use the bird room and/ or the aviary types of habitats and can give you more of the particulars of the flock dynamics involved.

I hope that this gives us all something to keep in mind and consider when it comes to how we house our birds.
Gender: This parrot forum member is male
Posts: 8679
Location: Lansing, NC
Number of Birds Owned: 6
Types of Birds Owned: Senegal
African Grey (CAG)
Yellow Naped Amazon
2Celestial Parrotlet
Flight: Yes

Re: Hello ... m new and inexperianced

Postby Pajarita » Fri Feb 03, 2017 12:17 pm

Weeeell, I think that how birds regard their cages is a subject that is more a case-by-case basis than something that can be supported by generalization. This is because I don't think that, with the exception of quakers which live in nests all year round, parrots regard their cages as 'my own personal, safe place'. They are possessive of it and will bite other bird's toes if they happen to land on it but I think this is more a secondary effect of sexual hormones than an actual mind set of theirs (I certainly don't see it in the birds that live in the birdroom cage-free outside breeding season). Parrots don't have 'homes' in the wild so the 'this is my space' cannot possibly be hard-wired into their psychological make-up, but they do protect and defend their nests because it's necessary for survival, so, adding this to the sad fact that most pet parrots out there produce sexual hormones all year round, the result is a whole lot of parrots that would protect and defend its cage/nest all the time. I don't stick my hand in their cage to make them step up and I don't recommend anybody doing this mostly because I think that whether they come out or not should be their choice, and that when people stick their hand in there and ask them to step up is a bit of a push when it should be a completely free choice. I am big on free choice for them as much as possible to the point that when I get a bird that is used to not coming out unless somebody asks them to step up from inside the cage, I make it a point NOT to do this and to wait until the bird decides to do it on its own -even if it takes months as it did for Sunny (who, by the way, is doing wonderfully in that regard!). But I also tell people not to do it because, to be 100% honest, I don't trust everybody to follow a super strict solar schedule and seasonal change in diet so I always assume the bird will be producing sexual hormones or for a longer period than it should so better safe than sorry and all that.

As to size of cage, I think it does matter. I agree that, when it comes down to it, a house is as much an enclosure as a cage might be but size of enclosure makes a difference to humans, to domesticated animals and to the undomesticated ones in the zoos so why wouldn't it make a different to our pet parrots? It would be like saying that putting a dog in a crate is the same as allowing it to roam in the entire house, that a horse in a stall day after day will feel the same if it was in a large corral or that a lion in a cage is as comfortable as in a largish enclosure... Furthermore, I think that a parrot that lives cage-free in a home is bound to be happier than a parrot kept in cage even if the parrot comes out for hours and hours every day. And I will add that I think that a parrot that lives cage-free in a house (with impeccable husbandry, of course!) can be almost as happy as a parrot in the wild. And still another notch up: if it lived in a small flock, it would be even happier than the ones in the wild! Why? Because, for what we know about parrots, the actual size of the 'territory' doesn't seem to matter to them as long as it is a territory. Parrots, with the exception of two species (the orangebelly and the swift) don't migrate (mind you, I am not talking irruptions!). They are classified as 'sedentary' because they remain in the same territory all year round throughout their entire lives but the size of their territories is determined by the proximity (or lack of) of the sources for food, water and nests spots. If a flock has everything they need within a small territory, they will happily stay there and not fly a single extra foot in any direction. If we extrapolate this information to pet parrots, it seems to me that a parrot that has a mate, food, water and a good nesting spot within a home, it would be as happy as it could be and not miss for a single second the miles and miles of territory it would need in the wild.
Norwegian Blue
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 12836
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: Hello ... m new and inexperianced

Postby Bird woman » Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:14 pm

The great housing debate , what works for me. With 4 different species of too's a couple of greys a couple of macaws and a token Quaker and pretty much unlimited space they can move about in with only a few areas off limits. What I have found and observed over many years is different species will in fact make friends and protect one an other or gang up on a bigger bird if in there chosen area. Unlikely frenimies is kind of how it is around here and a bond or friendship can form over years or months . My big queen bee mollucan is besties with Nigel the terrible now , but she will beat his butt if she could catch him. They have claimed the laundry room and no one is allowed. When Riki yells Nigel the faithful comes a running , they do a little kissing then she runs him out . Nigel is very quick and full flighted and seems to have made a game out of using Riki's head for a spring board flying back and forth over her head just barley out of her reach. Then there's sensitive Lilly bell my other mollucan that has the guest bathroom that now is allowing buddy the bare-eye to come in and play. This just started and I knew something was going on because Lilly was getting up on buddy's cage a lot and hanging out. Never before has buddy allowed anyone on his cage. My little sweet LSC loomie is besties with max the Quaker and they share a bedroom and choose to spend time with one an other and share cages. Most of these birds have laid claim to certain spots and once in a while there's a squabble but mostly it seems to be an invisible no trespassing sign hung. They all know there cages and don't venture into each others unless invited. These relationships still have me puzzled , I know it's let's get frisky season but Jeeeeeze :roll: the macaws go where ever and just push there way around until getting double tagged teamed by Nigel and Riki then they move on. The greys could care less and would much rather spend time under lights in the big window. Then there's Alyha the goffin , her mission in life is to seek and destroy anything that lives breathes or eats in this house even if the intruder is 3 doors over. If she hears it she's going to kill it human or bird and will search the house for a victim. She's so small it's almost cute but we're working on this behavior which is not appropriate as it will get her hurt when 240 grams is attacking 1250 grams , what's wrong with that picture . :shock: Birds that are left to huge areas are less likely to get into it but still do but I have found that when the human is out of the mix things don't get near as ugly. I have cameras set up where I spy on them :lol: poor baby's This is what I have observed over years but it is ooooh soooo ever changing. BW
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Bird woman
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 861
Location: Southern , Oregon
Number of Birds Owned: 10
Types of Birds Owned: 2 mollucans, 2 LSC'S, 2 macaws, 1 bare-eye, 1 grey, 1 goffin and max the quaker
Flight: Yes


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