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To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Discuss indoor freeflight and managing freeflighted birds around the house. How to live with a flighted parrot.

To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby JaydeParrot » Sun Apr 28, 2013 9:04 am

Hi there, first post so soz if this is a little messed up.

Cain :D :senegal: :D , Hide :o :senegal: :shock: .

Background:

I bought two bonded six year old Senegals 8 months ago from a dodgy situation- Basically they were kept in a dimly lit shed and only recieved interaction from humans when they were being roughly grabbed and moved to a different cage. As a result, when I took them home they were terrified of human company and would shriek, fly to the other side of their cage and shake if someone came near them or even into the room.

While working with them I realised that they seemed to have opposite personaities, the female (Cain) was very calm and sweet, whereas the male (Hide) just couldn't calm down and would either try and escape through any means possible or bite.

The female (Cain) is now calm to the point that I can train with her alone for 1 hour a day, she does step up, walks over to me from across a table when I say her name and lets me stroke the feathers backwards on her head.

Now here's the problem...

The male will work only work with me if Cain's there too (if she steps up, he steps up), the only problem is, if he get scared and flies off, she mimics, gets scared too, flies off and then it can take a while for me to calm them both down again.

I always take them out of their usual room to train or they'll just fly back to their cage and refuse to leave the top of it. Cain is fine with stepping up onto a rope and being taken to another room, whereas Hide refuses to step up and either clings onto the top of his cage or flies away.

Another problem:

While Cain is graceful, Hide flies like a literal stone, he's flown into the door 'many' times, last week he looped the room and then flew head first into a hardwood cupboard (not kidding I was convinced he should of bashed his skull in, doing that). He let me pick him up with a rope, climbed onto my arm and started biting my t'shirt, making angry noises and trying to walk up to my shoulder, I had to use the rope to stop him- I didn't want that beak near my face.

Today, I walked in to see him climbing up the cupboard, I said 'Oh so that's how you're getting up there' (open cage policy). He basically freaked out, and flew on top of a different cupboard, I tried to get him to step up but he refused the rope. I stood back and watched to see how he'd get back to his cage, he jumped off, flew perfectly to his cage and then landed awkwardly, half jamming his left leg and wing between the cage and the wall, I worried but waited where I was, thinking he would right himself, he attempted to climb back into his cage, sort of slipped and landed heavily on the cage floor. I quickly went over to see if he was alright, he climbed back up the inside of the cage and sat quietly with Cain- I put a few extra peanuts into the cage and left.

Main question:

The question is, I want to get him clipped so he doesn't basically attempt suicide everytime I try to tame him, everyone I know says it's a shame to clip his wings, but I'm worried that he'll kill himself before he manages to calm down enough to accept human contact... What does everyone here think?
JaydeParrot
Poicephalus
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Types of Birds Owned: 2 Senegal Parrots.
Flight: Yes

Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby Cockatielsongs » Sun Apr 28, 2013 9:40 am

Honestly, I think you shouldn't clip. If Hide is already biting I promise you it will increase if his wings are clipped. Maybe you should go a bit slower. Start with getting him use to you. You've probably heard it before but start with sitting by the cage and do quiet stuff like reading, eating etc etc talk to him softly and quietly. Let him observe you in his comfort zone, Show him you wont hurt him. Once he is calm with you in his presence try offer a treat through the bars of the cage.if he freaks lower your hand and continue talking to him or something, you could give a treat to Cain to show Hide 'look my hand did not hurt her, dont be scared' start like that until he accepts treats from your hand calmly.

Then you can begin target training. You should take the cage into a small empty distraction free room. You should start target training with Cain and let Hide watch from the cage. When you feel that Hide is ready take him out and try target train him. If he freaks out dont approach him or back off and give him space to calm down. Dont push him to do anything. In your case its important to train in an empty room so he cant really crash into things.

Dont clip his wings, it will make him more terrified because he lost his ability to fly. Plus he will nite more I guarantee it. All birds instinct is to flee not attack, if he cant escape, bite it is and a hard bite it is.

Heres a link to a website that has more detailed information on taming, target training and clip or not clip etc etc
www.myparrothelp.weebly.com

All the best! Just be patient and committed and you'll get there! :thumbsup:
Bandit - Rose Breasted Cockatoo
Cockatielsongs
Conure
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby Pajarita » Sun Apr 28, 2013 11:40 am

I agree 100% with Cockatiels song. If he flies badly now, he will fall like a rock to the ground when you clip him and end up hurting or killing himself. Be patient, it's too early for him to grant you his complete trust. I have a male sennie that was kept in a cage for 11 years and it took me three years to gain his full trust. Parrots don't live on the same time frames we do, they have their own and they need to reach conclusions on their own, too, without us forcing them to accept us. If I were you, I would forget about formal training sessions for now (you risk 'flooding' them) and just work on getting them to trust me and like me. Once they do this, training is easy and without strife.
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Flight: Yes

Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby Cockatielsongs » Sun Apr 28, 2013 11:55 am

Thats amazing! I really admire people like you who remain patient and dedicated for YEARS! Really goes to show how much people actually love their birds. The longest I've had was two weeks before Bandit calmed down with me around. People like you show what "commitment" really is.
:thumbsup:
Bandit - Rose Breasted Cockatoo
Cockatielsongs
Conure
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Number of Birds Owned: 1
Types of Birds Owned: Rose Breasted Cockatoo
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Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby marie83 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:47 am

Agree with the other posters, there is no rush. I too have taken years to tame a bird, My current 'tiel Harlie is by far the longest at 6 years but she was severerly abused, its been much the case of 1 step forward and several back over that that time but each time we took a step forward she would take 1 step less backwards. Even now she is not fully tame but the steps backwards have more or less stopped.

Take it slow, you will get there I promise. Any improvement is good improvement.
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marie83
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Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby Pajarita » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:26 pm

Cockatielsongs wrote:Thats amazing! I really admire people like you who remain patient and dedicated for YEARS! Really goes to show how much people actually love their birds. The longest I've had was two weeks before Bandit calmed down with me around. People like you show what "commitment" really is.
:thumbsup:


Thank you, my dear, it's very kind of you but, in truth, I don't even do anything to make them accept me. If they were hand-fed and are aggressive because they have not been treated right, they come around on their own. I give them freedom from a cage, the company of other parrots, good food, good light, a solar schedule and the ability to fly and just wait them out by been VERY careful around them (I watch their body language and learn where my limits are -note that I say 'my' limits and not theirs) and not retaliating when they bite me and, eventually, they realize I pose no threat to them and the start by accepting me and, later, when they approach me (I never ask them for anything), I reply with love (it also helps that they see the other birds interacting with me). But I also have birds that will NEVER accept me (wild-caughts that were used as breeders for too many years and which defend their mates and nests with aggression) and that's OK, too. Right now (breeding season) I consider myself lucky when I don't get attacked -LOL- Mind you, I don't breed them, but I do allow (and encourage) them to find a mate and go through the motions -only I switch the eggs for plastic ones.
Pajarita
Norwegian Blue
 
Gender: This parrot forum member is female
Posts: 15244
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: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby marie83 » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:44 pm

Pajarita wrote:
Cockatielsongs wrote: Right now (breeding season) I consider myself lucky when I don't get attacked -LOL- Mind you, I don't breed them, but I do allow (and encourage) them to find a mate and go through the motions -only I switch the eggs for plastic ones.


That is very responsible, drives me bonkers when people breed for the fun of it/because they think they should/to profit etc. Yet at the same time you aren't repressing their natural instincts completely.
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marie83
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Gender: This parrot forum member is female
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Location: Midlands, UK
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Types of Birds Owned: Yellow sided Green Cheek Conure
Pineapple Green Cheek Conure
Flight: Yes

Re: To clip or not to clip- That is the question... (Senegal).

Postby Shelby » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:25 am

I second what eveyone else has said. If you clip, Hide will bite even more because now he can't get away when he feels frightened.

You should start to fligh train him instead. He reason he flies so badly is probably because he never learned in his other home! Please check out Michael's Taming article. I really like it because it talks about how to start with a bird that is not hand tame from inside their cage where they are comfortable and you can't get bitten.

Then you can use the target training skills from the taming article to teach flight recall. http://trainedparrot.com/recall
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Shelby
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