Rasta – Green Naped Lorikeet

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Rasta at exactly 16 weeks old

I purchased Rasta from the same breeder I purchased Marlee from. I found her on Kijiji, we spent months talking and she sent me weekly pictures of their progress. I ended up taking both birds from her… definitely a challenge. I swear I must be crazy. I think they seem louder than they are because there is two of them. They are like night and day though. 

Name: Rasta

Type of Parrot: Green naped Lorikeet

Sex: Male

Birth Date: June 30th, 2016

Wings Status: Fully Flighted

Favorite food: Nectar

Noise Level:  medium

Training progress: Rasta is learning target training

Tricks: He knows how to step up

Talking ability:  Unknown

Favorite toys: Rasta loves this leather toy.

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Rasta’s favorite toy

Fears:  He doesn’t like my hand to go above his head

Diet: Quiko nectar, fruits and I’m trying to get him to accept veggies

Treats: Quiko nectar – thinking of trying maple syrup as a treat – still researching

cage Size: It’s a huge cage but I need to separate them

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Marlee and Rasta’s living quarters

Last Vet visit: I haven’t taken him to the vet yet.

Next Steps: Getting him potty trained

Parenting Parrots!

She Stole my Lemonade!!!

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083Okay so… I’m all about sharing… REALLY I am! Just not when it comes to my drinks or my food!

Once I went to a restaurant with an old high school friend and we both ordered our drinks with our meals. Yes, he was paying HOWEVER just because you’re paying doesn’t mean I HAVE to share my stuff, does it??! He asked for a sip of my drink and I straight up said NO. Nicely of course. However man still went and took my drink and drank it. I WAS SO PISSED!!! Well, I’m sure you all know – that was the LAST time dude and I went out anywhere. I’m not mad about it anymore and now it seems like it was pretty petty but I really don’t like sharing my drinks!

Now imagine me being in the comfortable of my own home, chilling and relaxing with a cup of lemonade. I was happy, on my little rainbow cloud, enjoying my drink when my little conure decided, “Oh hell no, this lady ain’t about to drink lemonade in front of me and not offer me any!” Can you believe little ms. Nyx jumped off my shoulder right on my cup and DIPPED her face in my lemonade?!?!~?! NOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

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How could she do this to me!?!? I always make sure she has everything she wants or needs! I feel so betrayed! It was my lemonade… MINE!! She didn’t even ask!!

SHE STOLE MY LEMONADE!!! and it was so grimy because she did it right in front of my face!! She didn’t try to wait until I was done to get it or you know… slowly try to get closer without me realizing. NOPE! She just jumped right in and took over!

Thankfully it was organic but that’s not the point! I DON’T WANT TO SHARE MY DRINKS!!!! This is a prime example of why I say a parrot is like a toddler. When my daughter sees me with a drink, she will want some too! So now what I’m learning is not only do I have to share with my kids (although I just buy them their own but GOD forbid they finish theirs before I finish mine or else I’m sharing :()  but I have to share with my parrots too!?!? For a person that doesn’t like to share their food or drinks this is a hard concept for me to swallow!!!!

Someone please remind me that sharing is caring…. 😦 Can I not have anything to myself anymore??? I guess not!!! Talk about living with parrots!! I’m going to nickname her lemonade thief lol

Parenting Parrots!

 

He Came on it!!

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Internet Pic

I read a lot. I watch a lot of Youtube videos. I surf the internet often. However sometimes when looking for solutions, it seems as if there are no answers.

This was me once I brought the Indian Ringneck home. Beautiful, is the only word I can use to describe his grey coloring but that’s where the pleasure ended. The thrashing around his cage every time we walked by or the struggle to try and remove him even though it’s been weeks was extremely discouraging. I googled every thing I could think of but nothing was hitting my problem on the nail so I sat down and talked to myself. Literally.

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Internet pic

I did what any new owner would do with a bird that was a scary cat. I made noise before I entered the room so he would know I was coming. I sat and read by his cage and would sing soft songs. Put treats in his bowl every time I passed his cage… I knew all those things would work to get him to stop running when I came around, so that wasn’t my issue. My issue was our wonderful, amazingly grey, beautiful Indian Ringneck was so afraid of hands! He would step up from the ground but would look around frantically for ways to escape the very “perch” that would transport him from one spot to another. So I had to fix that!

I brought him to the training perch and I stood a good amount of distance away and when he fluffed up and went back to normal, I would click and step back. ( This method can be done with him in the cage) ( You only want to go as close as you can without him freaking out – You do not want him to actually exhibit any fear once you see him about to start, you freeze and wait for him to calm down. This is very important because if you let him exhibit a fear response then you just ruined the whole process and will have to start over from even further back than before) Wait a few seconds and then approach him again, I would stand closer than I did last time and wait for the same reaction. Once he fluffed and went back down, I would click and move farther away. Wait a few seconds and then come closer than the last time. Stand and wait. I did this over and over again until I was able to stand right beside him and he would be comfortable. This took me a week to master with him, that goes to show you how scared he was. After I mastered that, I was on cloud nine that I could be beside him and him not panic. Imagine living somewhere and your afraid of the very people who you share a house with? It would be ABSOLUTE torture! I could never put anyone through that so I had to get this parrot to be comfortable. This was a big step for me. I’ll be honest, it has never taken this long to train any of my parrots so I was beginning to feel a bit hopeless as each day went on. Once I realized that the time it would take for him to be comfortable with each step closer was getting shorter, I knew we were getting somewhere.

So here I was with this parrot who would let me stand beside him however DO NOT MOVE MY HANDS OR TOUCH HIM or that comfort zone would be over… What do I do?? I had to figure something out so I decided to try the same method I did with my body with my hands. I had no idea if this would work!

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Ringo not liking my hand

 

I would put my hand on the farthest part of the perch and wait for him to fluffed up and back down. I did this over and over again until I was able to place my hand right beside his foot and have him not panic. His fear worked in my favor to get him to at least step on my hand and that is how I got him to be comfortable with my hands (Seems contradicting right??… Hear me out). He would step on my hands to run to the other side of the perch and when he did I would click and remove my hand. I did this over and over until finally when I would put my hand on the perch, HE WOULD COME ON IT!! Just automatically come on it and STAY! WOW! GREAT! I was overly excited!

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He came on it!!!

I would slowly lift my hand off the perch and click and then put him back on the perch and give him some space. Again, I did this over and over until I was able to transport him anywhere in the house without him looking around frantically. This procedure took me 9 days, twice a day, 10-15 min. sessions.

Parenting Parrots!

Boss – Peachfaced Lovebird

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Boss

Boss was born in our home, she was never handled, just locked in her cage unless she found a way to escape. Boss looks exactly like her dad and until recently we thought she was a he.

Name: Boss

Type of Parrot: Peach-faced Lovebird

Sex: Believed to be a female (Thought she was a “he” until recently)

Birth Date: May 2015

Wings Status: Lightly clipped – wings are growing back

Favorite food: Spray Millet

Noise Level:  LOUD

Training progress: She only knows step up

Tricks: She can step up

Talking ability:  “peek-a-boo”,”poo-poo”

Favorite toys: She loves this bag looking toy that has Popsicle sticks sticking out of it. (when I buy another I will post a pic)(If you look at the bottom of her cage you will see this green thing that was the toy lol)

Fears:  She is the boss! She will just lunge after anything that might scare her

Diet: Harrison’s Pellets with fruits and veggies

Treats: Sunflower seeds,   Spray Millet

cage Size:  This is the closest cage I could find to the one I have the lovebird in.

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Boss’ Cage

Last Vet visit: August 2016 – visual examinations – Everything looks good

Next Steps: Getting her to do the turn around 

Parenting Parrots!

Grayson – African Grey

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Grayson

I purchased Grayson from a reputable breeder in Oshawa when he was 4 months old (Oct. 2012). I would recommend her to anyone because Grayson is the perfect companion and I can only give her the thanks for that. If you want her information click here: Contact Us and send me a quick message and I’ll connect you to her. Her place isn’t the tidiest however her birds love her so she must be doing something right. Grayson choose me when I went to visit the first time. I sat with the breeder as all 3 greys moved around. Grayson was the one that showed me all the interest. I took note of his band number and told the  breeder he is who I wanted. Originally I had asked her for a female. Once she got the dna back and told me Grayson was a male, I told her I will pass on the female and still take him. BEST DECISION OF MY LIFE! I read in this book (if you want an african grey or have one please buy this book, it is so great!) to never take an african grey that is cowering in the corner of the cage and growling, well let me tell you… That was Grayson when I went back to pick him up. I was nervous as hell after having that experience of him growling however Grayson is a beauty. I brought him to the vet when I first got him and he got a clear bill of health. The breeder already clipped his wings. I’ve been his only owner. He will go to other people but sometimes like with my partner, he will fake it and then bite, so we are working on that but for the most part if you are not nervous then he will step up to you no problem. For the past 4 years he wouldn’t go to anyone but me however this year (officially an adult – 2016) he will now go to people – a complete 360 but I’m loving it. I can talk on and on about him but I have nothing negative to say. I was working full time when I got Grayson and everyone told me NO, you can’t have an African Grey and work a full time job… Well guess what?!?! I did it and Grayson is not a plucker or afraid of everything bla bla bla. He doesn’t have all those behavioral problems you get warned about. I believe it is all about the love you show your parrot and in return they will love you back.

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2F1FloeticJustice%2Fvideos%2F10153119770610375%2F&show_text=0&width=400>Video of Grayson’s first words

Name: Grayson

Type of Parrot: Congo African Grey

Sex: Male

Birth Date: June 2012

Wings Status: Fully Flighted

Favorite food: Pine Nuts

Noise Level: He can be loud when he mimics the other birds. Otherwise I would say he is moderate when he is talking and making sounds. He is overall quiet when he is just relaxing.

Training progress: He loves training sessions

Tricks: He can step up, Turn around, do pet, stick up his wings, wave hi, say doggy go wolf, wolf

Talking ability: Everything! He says his name – “Grayson”,  “Lola “- our late galah cockatoo, “Piper” – our Quaker’s name, each member of the family’s name, “step up”, “stick them up”, “peek-a-boo”,”doggy go wolf, wolf”, “hi”, “hello”, “what the”, “whats up grayson”, he laughs, does the clicker sound, telephone sound, microwave sound, whistles and my least favorite the squawking of other birds… I’m sure I’m forgetting a few. He is shy to make noise around people but after about 30 minutes of him observing you, he then starts to make noise.

Favorite toys: He is a banger – best toys for him have been his hanging toys that he can swing on and make noise with. He also likes his foraging toys (be prepared to lose a lot of pellets as he removes them though – HELPFUL HINT I put it over his food bowl so if it falls, it falls in his bowl)

Fears: Can’t think of anything he is really afraid of right now besides my partner – they don’t get along.

Diet: Harrison’s Pellets with fruits and veggies. He eats table food – Chicken, rice, pasta…

Treats: Sunflower seeds, Almonds, Walnuts and Brazil nuts

Cage Size: Dome cage. 36.5 x 28 height is 57″ not including the stand. With the stand it would be higher. I was thinking of switching him into a cage with less length and more width as he doesn’t use the bottom of the cage, haven’t found one I like though.

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Grayson’s cage

Last Vet visit: December 2012– Wellness check – Everything clear! Healthy baby! Is in need of a vet visit… Hopefully I’ll take him in September 2016

Next Steps: Getting him to do the bat – hang upside down, getting him use to the harness and shower perch

Parenting Parrots!

Ringo – Indian Ringneck

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Ringo was formerly named Pepper. We got Ringo a.k.a Pepper when he was 3 months old (we were told) from his 1st owner. Before us, he was with the breeder and then to his 1st family and now us, so we are his 2nd official owner. He is banded but it’s just a random number and its an open band, so not sure what it stands for but definitely not his year of birth as we can tell he is truly just a baby. We were told he is a male but still waiting for the paperwork to prove it.

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Ringo

Name: Ringo a.k.a Pepper

Type of Parrot: Indian Ringneck

Sex: Male

Birth Date: April 2016 (we were told)

Wings Status: Currently clipped by previous owner – will let it grow back

Favorite food: Still trying to figure that out

Noise level: Fairly quiet except for his once a day outbursts (however he is still a baby so could change)

Training progress: He can step up

Tricks: None as yet

Talking ability: No words as yet

Favorite toys: He is a chewer who likes to challenge his beak – best toys for him have been his wood toys

Fears: He still runs away from us so right now… Humans

Diet: Harrison’s Pellets with fruits and veggies

Treats: Spray Millet, Sunflower seeds, Almonds, Walnuts and Brazil nuts

Cage Size:Dome cage (The link is a smaller cage but I think the space is still good for an Indian Ringneck) His cage is 32 x 23 height is 46″ not including the stand. With the stand it would be higher. However I recommend a playtop over a dome, only because when I want my parrots to have out of cage time by themselves without me entertaining them, the playtop gives them a safe place to play.

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Ringo’s cage (Lola, our galah cockatoo’s old cage)

Last Vet visit: August 12th, 2016 – Beak and nails trim – Wellness check – fecal gram stain = Everything clear! Healthy baby!

Next Steps: Getting him to not be afraid of humans and to step up calmly from inside his cage (updated monthly)

Parenting Parrots!

Where to buy Parrots

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Before I write this, I want to say…. Please know what you are getting into before acquiring a parrot. I live in an apartment so technically I don’t think I should have as many parrots as I do, but I make it work because I keep their minds stimulated HOWEVER it’s not an easy task.

So options of where to buy parrots IF your heart is set on it…. (Not in any order)

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Not actual prices

1) Adoption – Rescues

2) Rehomes

3) Breeders

4) Pet Shops

1 – Adoption – Rescues 
You can research in your area for foster homes. These are homes where people keep the bird until they find a forever home. Now this option is a good option because it’s giving a home to a bird that unfortunately was dashed to the side for whatever reason. I personally have not went this route only because I’m impatient, so filling out all that paperwork turns me off. Also I prefer getting a baby over an adult but rehabilitating a bird is very rewarding from what I’ve heard. I imagine that to be true because when I get an untamed baby bird and turn them friendly, it’s the greatest feeling in the world. This is the best option for experienced bird owners. Most likely if you go this route, you have to be aware that you may get a bird with a history of abuse or neglect, etc. so be prepared to put in more work. For a first time bird owner, I say to look into this option but only take a young bird because if you don’t have the experience, it would be very hard for you to deal with an adult bird that has a load of issues. Now the chances of finding a baby via this method may also be slim but not impossible.

Another option would be to become a foster bird owner especially if you don’t know what parrot would be right for you. This would give you exposure to different parrots without the long-term commitment and it would be helping a bird in need. Food for thought!

2 – Re-homes

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This is the picture I seen on kijiji of Nyx, our black capped conure

My black capped conure was a re-home. Her previous owner was the only owner she had. He gave her up because he was working nights and was about to start going to school during the day. I’m very happy he gave Nyx up because she is a joy to have around!  I go on kijiji a lot to see what is going on with the bird community. I don’t necessarily go on there to find a bird, I just like to look at the different birds and look at reasons why people re-home. I wasn’t even into conures however something made me contact  Nyx’s owner and I couldn’t imagine my life without her.

You have to be careful getting a re-home though because sometimes the story doesn’t end as well as mine. Our Indian Ringneck which is a baby was also a re-home. We are working to try to get him comfortable with us but he is still a good story. I have a friend who bought a blue and gold macaw off of kijiji and unfortunately it was sick. The bird died and my friend was completely depressed. This is a risk you take when getting a re-home because it is just owners’ selling their birds. You can’t get warranty so you can bring back the bird and get your money returned if you find out something is wrong with the parrot. This is a hit and miss situation, some are great to get like our black capped. She was already tamed, all the work was done for us. Some are not so great, like the story of the blue and gold macaw.

3-Breeders


This is the way I go, only because I like getting the parrot when they are a baby so I can train them with no previous training. By me doing this though, it is helping breeders to continue to sell parrots, which is what we want to stop right?  IF you decide to go this route please find a reputable breeder. Go to their house, look at how the birds interact with the breeder, how their living quarters are kept, etc.

The  breeder I got my African Grey from, didn’t have an organized place. However once I seen how the Greys just absolutely loved her, I couldn’t say no. I found out about her through a worker at my favorite parrot shop. The breeder I got my Quaker parrot from seemed to be amateurs. They had very untidy cages, I would have left the Quaker but my son really liked him. I found them on kijiji. The breeder I am getting the Green-Naped Lorikeets from lives about 40 minutes from me. I haven’t seen her place however she has been very informative and answers all my questions whenever I come to her with one. I also found her on Kijiji. The breeder I had gotten Lola, my Galah Cockatoo from, was very nice and her living quarters were clean. The cages could have been kept better but she had a very well socialized healthy Galah. Lola was a case of the parrot choosing me, she came right on me and wouldn’t leave. I found this breeder from a worker at P.J Pets.

When I’m looking for a breeder, I go to this website: http://www.parrotplace.ca/ontario.htm

Also when looking for a breeder, talking to people who have parrots in your area is another option and of course searching the internet is always full of resources.

4 – Pet Shops

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Image of a pet shop from the internet

When I was first looking into getting  a parrot, the first place I looked was pet shops. My experience with pet shops was horrible and if I can stop another person from almost meeting my faith, I’ll be happy. Stay away from this option as much as possible. I attempted to buy 3 birds from P.J. Pets and they were all unhealthy. I was able to purchase a  budgie for my niece however it died within 4 months. I don’t know if it was due to the care it was receiving or because it came from a pet shop but regardless all my experiences especially with P.J. Pets was negative.

Do not buy at a pet shop, if you can avoid it. The random people coming and touching the bird is great for socializing however the amount of people who mistreat that parrot in that brief interaction is also many. Pet shop workers are usually not well-informed about the birds and will do whatever is needed to make the sale. If you must purchase through a pet shop, I would recommend having some kind of agreement that if you get the bird checked out by a vet within 48 hours of purchase and something is wrong that you can get your money back. You would have lost the money spent on the vet visit however better safe than sorry in the long run. (I will post my video about shopping at a pet shop shortly.)

The lists above are just a few options to help you get started in your search of finding your perfect feather friend. IF you are indecisive than do not get a parrot as it is the same as having a toddler.

Parenting Parrots!