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List of safe foods for Green Winged Macaw

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List of safe foods for Green Winged Macaw

Postby TEECHIN » Sat Dec 01, 2018 11:54 pm

Hello! We have a 20 year old Macaw that was my parents bird. She has recently started plucking... :( She has been vetted and is currently on gabapentin and metacam twice a day for inflammation due to a wing injury, but medically she is healthy. We are trying everything to get her to stop picking... I thought we had a good understanding of how to care for her, but I am starting to doubt myself. So, I want to go back and "start fresh" to make sure I am not forgetting anything that might be helpful (we have done what the vet has offered, and we saw a little improvement but she is still plucking... :( She is my husband's bird and he can handle her at any time... She does NOT like me (the vet said I am the other women??? and Cali is jealous?) She will jump at me even if I walk in the room. The vet said I need to handle her more, but after taking a VERY NASTY bite earlier this year requiring a trip to the er and stitches, I am a little scared to....
So, with that being said:
Does anyone have a list of foods a macaw can eat?
Does anyone have a list of homemade toys we can make?
Does anyone have any foraging ideas? (we have a wheel and it worked for a few months but she now pulls it off the side of the cage :) She also has a twisting/hanging toy but hasn't really figured it out all the way... plus other hanging toys in her cage.
She has music/radio playing while we are not home. We have a natural light that is next to her cage and is on for 2 hours a day.
Any and all suggestions, ideas or help would be greatly appreciated. :)
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 1
Number of Birds Owned: 1
Types of Birds Owned: Green Winged Macaw
Flight: No

Re: List of safe foods for Green Winged Macaw

Postby Pajarita » Sun Dec 02, 2018 10:49 am

Hi, Bobbi and Cali, welcome to the forum! I will try to answer your question to the best of my ability but we actually need more information than what you have given us to try to pinpoint the reason of her unhappiness so I will ask some questions first and we will take it from there.
Has she been DNAd a female or do you know because she lays eggs? If so, how often?
What is her current diet? [Not what you offer but what she actually eats]
What is her current light schedule?
What, exactly, is this 'natural light' that you have next to her cage? Where is it placed and how far away from her cage? And, at what time are they on for two hours?
Clipped or not clipped? If not clipped, how often does she fly?
Daily routines? Like baths, games, out-of-cage and one-on-one time, etc...
What kind of wing injury are we talking about?
Do you know why she is getting two different pain killers together or did the vet prescribe the gabapentin for the plucking?

I am so sorry she doesn't like you and, although not really very common with macaws, it is entirely possible that she has mate-bonded with your husband [does she masturbate on your husband hand, arm or on a perch? - does she regurgitate for him or tries to eat from his mouth?] and regards you as her competition. This is a very common problem with parrots but it's not really the usual with macaws because they are considered low hormone birds [late bloomers and only one clutch a year]. But the wrong diet, light schedule and improper petting can make any low bird hormonal - which is, in a nutshell, the reason why she reacts that way to you and why we need you to answer the questions I posed above. Let me explain, parrots are mostly monogamous so they are all, basically, a one-person bird. Then you have the fact that the large species bond very deeply to their human so, whoever becomes 'the chosen one' will be greatly favored over anybody else BUT they are only aggressive to other people when they are overly hormonal because even 'regular' hormonal birds [meaning a healthy parrot during its breeding season] will not really attack unless they protecting or defending their mate, nest, babies. Most of my birds have mates or companions of their own but, although some of them prefer me, my husband can handle them without a problem because, although he is not the chosen one, he is flock member in good standing.

As to a list of foods that are OK for macaws... well, that would be a VERY long list :lol: so I am just going to tell you what NOT to feed her: nothing that contains any type of stimulant [like coffee, tea, chocolate, etc], no animal protein whatsoever [meat, eggs, milk, cheese, etc], nothing that is high in iron [human cereals, spinach, apricots] and little of things that are not too high but which still have too much iron for them [like beans, lentils and pod veggies]. I also do not feed anything that is too high in oxalic acid [collard greens, parsley, etc] or is made with white flour, sugar, salt, baking powder with aluminum, onions or soy. My birds get no human food whatsoever because compared to their diet, my husband and I eat crap. :lol:

I don't use foraging toys so I can't help you with that. I've never found toys to be particularly important to birds... Mine do have some in their cages but they hardly ever actually do anything with them - mostly because they spend such little time in their cages, especially during the winter when the days are so short. They would much rather chew my books on the shelves, the paintings frames and the furniture :lol: What I do give them are boxes and rolled up magazines or catalogs to chew and those they put to good use - especially during breeding season!
Norwegian Blue
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 14644
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

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