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Complete Newbies Here

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by suprashaun, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. Jo T

    Jo T Regular Member Registered

    Hi to you all. I'm in a similar situation with my Alexandrine. He was parent-raised and hasn't been handled at all. He's probably a bit younger than yours by a few months, but I don't really know. At the moment I'm working up to him taking food from me in lots of situations, like you said I can't train him to do anything until he'll accept the reward. This is how I did it:

    I started by sitting by the cage talking to him, then dropping food into his food bowl whenever I went past him (he wouldn't move to get it when I was there).

    Then I started feeding him through the cage bars, because he feels safest in his cage, I would be sat down and he'd be higher than my body. Then I could stand up and feed him through the bars.

    Then I'd move him to different places on the same rope toy by moving the food still through the bars.

    Then I tried feeding him out of the cage by putting pieces of food around the area he explored, then finally out of the cage taking food out of my hands.

    Next step is making him move around the area to take food from my hands. He "asks" for treats now by coming as close to the edge of the play stand as he can to me and staring at me!

    He seems to follow this pattern...at first the new thing is "AAAAAAAAARRRRRGH!!!!! RUN AWAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!". Then he starts staying where he is and observing. Then finally he moves towards the thing e.g. my hand. I've found that holding food in my fingers in the same place for minutes on end doesn't help. He reacts better if I repeat the action over and over again a couple of times for a few seconds and then completely stop for a few minutes and then try again.

    As Alexandrine's are the big big big cousins of IRNs this might be helpful?

    How are you getting on so far?! Look forward to finding out.
     
    dianaT and TomsMum like this.
  2. dianaT

    dianaT Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Hi and welcome,
    Good to hear you have an Alex, several of our members do, they are beautiful birds.
    Should you need any advice re training have a look under the training threads as there's lots of info there.
    Can we have a photo of him please :biggrin:
     
  3. DizzyBlue

    DizzyBlue Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Hi and welcome from me and my gang :)
    Our KevH took on a parent reared amazon youngster and he's turned into a cracking bird, come to think of it so too has our Lou :)
     
  4. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    Afternoon all, I apologise for my extremely slow reply. Things have been very hectic the last couple of months for me. Starting a new job only to be messed around and end up back at my old job and numerous other headaches.
    I've literally only just caught up on all of these great replies from you all, and they are much appreciated. Looked a little daunting at first when reading them all, but once read, it's not that bad.
    Between first posting until reading your tips here, I thought it only polite to give you an update. Nothing much to tell really though.
    So, we've given them both names finally. One of the gobby buggers is starting to show a light grey-ish ring from the side of the beak, all the way round, so for now we are assuming male, called Pablo.
    The other vocalist, still has the faint shade of lighter green/turquoise ring, so for now natasha chose the name princess.
    Progression wise, when I (and only me) walk into the room, don't cr@p themselves and huddle in the top corner that much anymore. I sit at the end of the couch which is about a foot away from them and talk to them. Now when talking to them they tilt their heads to listen to me and majority of the time they will stand on the perch closest to me. Our corner couch is a low one, and their perches are more towards the top of the cage, giving them the advantage of height. Their feeder though only sits low in the cage about quarter of the way up, although I did think it best to have it closer to us rather than the water. So at first, if I sat down, they wouldn't go near their food. Until a few weeks ago, they seemed less bothered about me or kirsty and decided they'd happily climb down for a quick forage (obviously the whole time keeping a keen eye on us), grab something then scoot back up.
    At one point, two birds fighting over one feeder bothered me, it may not have been full on nastiness but it looked like it, so, knowing that for some reason the bottom of the cage seemed to be a "no go zone" with them, removed the feeder and placed a longer tupperware type tub on the floor of the cage giving them more space to feed. It was quite funny watching them looking all confused as to why their food was all the way down there, they looked so baffled. But after a few hours they decided to brave the unknown area (known to us as the bottom of the cage) and see what would happen to themselves, a bit like watching someone toe testing a pool.
    Now they have no problem, still squabble and steal out of each others mouths, but not half as much.
    They are a long way of accepting food from a hand, still huddle in a corner if you're closer than a foot. If at any time I am close, I always make sure to keep myself lower than their perches.
    Since feeding them from the tub instead of having to remove the old feeder to fill it, I thought would be a great opportunity to gain a tiny bit of trust, so instead of taking it out of the cage to pop food in, I grab a handful open the cage and slowly put my arm in and place food in the tub that way, making sure they can hear the food going in and clearly see what my hand is doing. They don't try committing hari kari anymore, or huddle into top corners, just keep a watchful eye from a side of the cage.
    I hope this next part is as amazing as it felt, but with all this good weather I took the opportunity to wheel them outside each day, leaving a portion of the cage shaded just inside the doorway for them. To us it seemed they loved it, and enjoyed getting vocal with a neighbours aviary birds. Did a bit of sunbathing and watching what happens in the outside world.
    The part I was amazed by, I had a new spray bottle and kept placing it near their cage every day until one day after being outside I thought I'd give it a try thinking all of this heat and sun may dry and irritate them eventually and cause plucking. First attempt at misting, successful! They where clinging to the side as usual, but Wings spread, didn't have a heart attack, just stayed still and let me carry on, the next day, kirsty did this while I was at work, same result, 3Rd attempt yesterday by me, they actually came away from the cage side and moved in a little closer and one even turned for me to do its belly.
    Sorry for the long read. But other than these small steps, that's it, apart from the hilarious chasing and arguing. Then the quiet little chattering to themselves some of which is starting to sound like words finally.
    One more thing, grapes, peanuts in the Shell and most DEFINITELY apple are their favourite foods
     
    dianaT and TomsMum like this.
  5. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Great to hear your news And that birdies are slowly settling in. Sounds like they are enjoying their showers.

    One word of caution re peanuts in shell...peanuts aren't true nuts and grow underground and can be a source of aspergillus spores, so consider swapping to pecan, walnut, almonds or pistachios.....or if it has to be peanuts, make sure they are human grade, and that shells are intact with no signs of dampness or mould.
     
  6. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    Ah didn't know this. But they're in the parrot food I buy
     
  7. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Yes some mixes do contain them!
     
  8. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    So, this seems quite funny...
     
    shar0 and dianaT like this.
  9. dianaT

    dianaT Moderator Staff Member Moderator

  10. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    Definitely putting the swing perch on its place haha
     
  11. TomsMum

    TomsMum Administrator Staff Member Admin

    Oh that's wonderful...Charlie my Conure "sees things off" like that too! :biggrin:
     
    suprashaun likes this.
  12. Jeanette

    Jeanette Regular Member

    I'm glad things are moving in the right direction...your IRN definitely likes the swing :biggrin:...you may want to consider some thicker ropes in the cage than the ones being used as they will be better for their feet along with different perches.
     
  13. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    Yes I thought about that too. A friend is selling a cage I believe to be this one.
    As for moving in the right direction, still now, nobody is able to treat them, get them to step up or even go near them without them clinging for dear life in the far top corners of the cage :-(
    s645859034783504914_p173_i1_w640.jpeg
     
  14. dianaT

    dianaT Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    I doubt they will use the lower section of the cage but will only place themselves up high. Imo I don't know why these cages are made maybe some birds will use the lower section but I haven't come across any yet.
     
  15. suprashaun

    suprashaun Registered

    It's not so much that, it's the size of the living room, our house is stupidly small and this having an outer perch is ideal as we don’t have loads of room to have a free standing perch.
    Not that they will use it as can't get near them to tame them enough. Had them out once, took an entire day to get them back in the cage. They haven't been clipped so if you try to go near them, they just fly off.
     
  16. Jeanette

    Jeanette Regular Member

    Hi Kirsty & Shaun
    I know it has probably already been said but the bigger the cage the better and whilst IRN don't have the biggest of bodies they still require a large cage due to the length their tales can grow to. We currently have an IRN that we rehomed and due to being kept in a small cage she bit her tails feathers off so I really cannot emphasise the importance of a large cage, yes they will be more expensive but it is a long term investment having parrots and are just as costly as children but you will benefit from it in the long run a happy parrot a very happy owner! I have attached a few pics of the cage our IRN and Amazon use we have IMG-20170322-WA0012-01.jpeg
    maximised space by putting ropes on outside also. The same cage comes with just one compartment which would be ideal for 1 IRN.
     
    Stinkie and dianaT like this.
  17. Jeanette

    Jeanette Regular Member

    A wider cage would be better than height but if you can accommodate both great :aplastao: