Quaker behaviour

dianaT

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Interesting - we all learn from each other and that is what is great about our forum.
 

Michael Reynolds

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There are other things to consider like where the cage is placed, with the Monk parrot its cage should be in the least used area of a room or in an alcove or recess if possible. its not good placing the cage in a position that people go past all the time, if I could stop my other birds from going to a monk parrots cage and find a place that it could fill that its there own I will love to have some, this is impossible as my flock are too nosy when it comes to other birds being brought in.
 

Roz

Regular Member
Absolutely agree that having externally accessible food bowls is best. This is great antecedent arrangement!… ie. you don’t have to put your hand in the cage. Many birds don’t like you putting your hands in the cage, which is why many modern cages are built with this facility.

Plus larger cages are usually better so that the bird has the space to get away from you and each other if necessary… thereby helping to reduce “aggressive” and/or “fearful” responses. Cage placement is certainly important. I don't think many birds would like to have human traffic passing them all the time. Having the cage against the wall or two walls gives more security, a place to retreat if wished. And if you can't provide a wall, a plain neutral coloured sheet over the back of the cage also works. Although this could encourage nesty behaviour...

By all means provide nesting materials or nest box, etc. and be aware the flip side can result in an increase in aggressive behaviour in some birds. So try it, but monitor it. As with any changes you make to behaviour, monitor the results. If something isn’t working, rethink, try something else.

All I am saying is by using observable behaviour rather than using labels, you are more likely to be able to understand and therefore deal with a problem behaviour.

Behaviour is a study of one – every bird is an individual. There will be species specific behaviours that are useful to know, but even these are workable. For example the dawn and dusk chorus is a natural behaviour. Yet a well known behaviour expert changed her Blue-fronted Amazon’s “dawn chorus” to singing songs/nursery rhymes. The bird chooses to sing the songs instead of screaming because there is LOADS more reinforcement for the singing. An animal always chooses to do the behaviour that gains most reinforcement – it is called the Premack Principle.

If you can identify the antecedent(s) and the consequence to a behaviour (and EVERY behaviour has them – some are maybe harder to spot but they are there), you have knowledge you can use to change that behaviour.
 

Michael Reynolds

Regular Member
Do not supply a nest box, Quakers are nest builders having a bird build its natural environment is not just for babies they use them all the year around its a place of safety against predators and they normally build nests in a community with other monk parrots,
 

Roz

Regular Member
Do not supply a nest box, Quakers are nest builders having a bird build its natural environment is not just for babies they use them all the year around its a place of safety against predators and they normally build nests in a community with other monk parrots,
I was talking about parrots in general, not Quakers. You can Google the amazing nests Quakers build. Here's Sparky building his nest:

 
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Billy P

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Hi, the cage has feeding and water bowls that I can access without putting my hands in the cage also the tray at the bottom slides out so again that's better. I swapped out some of his toys yesterday and put some new ones in. He still ne er went in his cage yesterday so this morning when I changed his food and water I rigged up a rope on his door and when he went in to eat I pulled the rope and closed the door.. Got ya!! 😂 😂 Otherwise as soon as anyone moves he flies out before you can get near enough to close the door.
He's been exploring the new toys which is more than he ever did to his old ones.
I put some lolly stick/ coffee stirrers and some foot toys in a bowl but he's ignored them so far but to be fair he's only been in the cage 30 minutes and is eating now.
He screamed yesterday as I entered the room in the morning but then stopped, he was very noisy but no screaming.
Now he's in the cage for the first time in more than a week and he seems to be using his chew toys should I keep him in for a couple of days before I let him out again?
I'll take a picture of his cage and post it
 

Michael Reynolds

Regular Member
its a good cage and I like the idea of using string to close the door, I would only leave him in there the one day and tomorrow let him have a fly about but be ready with the string to close the door when he goes in. what we want is for your bird to have its cage as its zone of safety and not your room
 

Michael Reynolds

Regular Member
it may pay to have a flat shelf about a foot from the top of the cage placed along the back of the cage, I would love to show you my friends setup for these birds in his large outside aviary.
 
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Roz

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As Michael said, that’s a great cage! I would agree with keeping him in a few days so that he gets used to the cage and calls it home. If he’s going stir crazy then let him out sooner, but remember you have to get him back in again. Any aversive paired with going in will make it harder to get him back in in the future.

I would notice how fast he comes down for the food bowl as that can be reinforcement for going in (indeed, it already is). When he’s pretty much immediately checking out the newly slotted in food bowl I would say that’s a good indication re letting him out. Then I would begin by letting him out an hour or so before breakfast when he’s hungriest and shutting the door when he goes in.

Experiment with being closer to the cage so that you can shut the door without moving too much. The rope idea is brilliant. But you don’t want to trick him about going in, so wait until he has a mouthful of food before slowly closing the door (with the rope if need be). This way he begins to pair the closing door with something good ie the food. Also leave the door open sometimes to show him going in doesn’t always result in a closed door. He’ll become more comfortable about going in and out.

That’s brilliant he’s using his new chew toys. Maybe he was bored of the old ones. You can also use this info as reinforcement. Change up his toys often which could be added incentive for going in. Have a box for his toys so that you can keep rotating them in. He’ll think he’s getting a new toy each day!
 

Billy P

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Hi Roz,
He will check out his food bowl as soon as I put it in it doesn't take him long to start eating it. I had the cage door open all the time so he could come and go as he pleased but he would only go on to eat. Trouble with the cage door is that it shuts the wrong way so that even if it's just ajar enough for him to get in he can fly straight out as soon as he sees movement as he doesn't have to fly past me if you see what i mean. If the chair was on the left side of the cage instead of the right it would be relatively easy because he'd have to fly into or towards me to get out lol.. Apart from re arranging the whole room which isn't an option there's not much I can do. Let's hope he starts e joying his cage after a while and I can concentrate trying other things rather than getting him in his cage <
 
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Billy P

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Quick update
Don't want to tempt fate but the screaming has stopped.
He's playing with his toys and I watched him pull the coffee stirrers out of the bowl yesterday and start throwing them on the bottom of the cage along with some foot toys lol. I will sort that shelfout for the back of his cage tomorrow. Now if I move he doesn't scream he just runs along the perch to the other side of the cage then comes right back to where he normally sits so improvements there I think.
I mentioned before that the place I got him from gave me food they had been feeding him on.. All sunflower seeds and monkey nuts with some dried fruit.. I tried him with pellets but he was actually scared at the sight of them. Yesterday I made some chop with what I had, brocoli cauliflower cabbage lettuce red pepper brown rice, mixed just a few seeds in so he could see them and a tiny bit of apple, much to my suprise he ate it.. He seems a much happier bird than he was a few days ago.. So fingers crossed we are going in the right direction
 
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