A Talking Parrot

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Everywhere I look, every book I read it says the same thing: Do NOT get a bird for it’s talking ability because that bird may never talk. Although this statement is correct doesn’t it also defeat the purpose of obtaining a PARROT?!?

At one point, my goal was to obtain the 10 top talking parrots in the world. I wanted a parrot because of their intelligence and their talking ability. If I wanted a bird that couldn’t/wouldn’t talk I would go for a regular bird like a canary. Now, of course, this is not my only reason for wanting to have parrots but HELL YEA it is one of the reasons! If you happen to have a parrot and it never says a word or it doesn’t even mimic a household sound, I would seriously question what/who is it bonded too? Now whether or not that bird talks will not make me want the bird any less but the “talking” is definitely icing on the cake.

I currently have 5 parrots with 3 out of the 5 are already talking and my other 2 which is Purrain and Kodak haven’t uttered a word and it doesn’t bother me as I’m in love with our bond more than anything else. Of course, I would love to hear them both talk but Kodak I received at the age of 2 and he wasn’t talking with the breeder so I’m not quite sure if he will or not. I thought I heard him muttering words but the true words never came out so I must have been mistaken. As for Purrain, she isn’t even a year old yet so she still has time.

I have this theory, that a parrot who talks the English language is saying, “I love you, I want to communicate with you”. I could be wrong but this is just my views. Think about it. If parrots truly have the same intellectual level as a toddler than shouldn’t they be able to learn as a toddler would? Toddlers can speak (unless a medical condition), learn to identify letters and numbers, colors etc. We need to hold our parrots to those same tasks.

If you have a parrot who isn’t talking, there are steps you can try to boost that parrot up and see if it helps to encourage them to start. These steps won’t be overnight steps but with time, energy and effort, you can stimulate your parrot to want to communicate with you. You can find these steps by buying/ reading Guide To Companion Parrot Behavior Review

Here’s to wishing you and your feathered fan great success in getting your parrots to talk!

Parenting Parrots

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Toxic Items

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When I first got parrots, I knew nothing about parrot proofing my home or removing toxic items from my home. However, as time went on I kept researching and learning. There are quite a few things that are considered toxic to parrots:

Toxic Food: 

Onions and Garlic I still use but a very little amount.

Toxic Plants:
There are so many toxic plants that I couldn’t possibly list them all but if you click on this link you will be redirected to a site that has a very intensive list. Just remember to click the follow button before leaving so you can stay up to date with us.

Toxic Household items:
Aerosols
Teflon fumes
Cleaning items
Paint fumes
Smoke
Scented stuff like candles, air fresheners and incense

It’s hard to keep your place completely safe if you keep unsafe items in the home so the best way to remain safe is to not allow these things in your home at all once you’ve acquired your parrot.

I hope you found this helpful, please click on that follow button so you can stay informed as we continue to learn about parrot ownership.

Parenting Parrots

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Real Reason I Lost Piper

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I explain Piper’s last days here but I never knew the real reason so here it is:

I will never wait out another sickness again and my post regarding wing clipping is no longer soft now I am TOTALLY against it!
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Let us know your enjoying our truth by following us!

Thank you!

Parenting Parrots

The Conure Escapes

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She is such a doll. I love her vibrant colors and the way she is so easily trained. I would definitely recommend a black-capped conure to anyone who was interested in a parrot that was trainable. She is definitely a smart cookie!

So I was home and she was in her cage, where she never wants to be! She always wants to be with me. I love it but sometimes I need her to be in her cage for safety purposes. I guess on this particular day she was like nope I had enough and she came flying out her cage right to my shoulder. I was shocked!

I had downsized her cage as it was rusting and she is currently in one of those small white cages that the doors slide up and down. I don’t know how she managed to keep a door open long enough for her to fly out but she did! I’m just grateful that it didn’t come slamming down on her head! She came out of her food bowl door and as soon as she did, the door shut! So I was happy everything worked out but this is why I don’t like these kind of cages because I’m afraid of this exact thing happening except more fatal.

This was also a wake up call to me though. This told me that she needed more of my attention and was feeling a bit neglected because she risked her life to come to me. I apologized to her and told her never to escape the depths of hell again hahaha, no, I’m joking but I did agree to make sure I gave her a bit more attention as Conures do need.

You will have some birds who like their independence. Doesn’t mean they don’t want to be out and about with you but they don’t require physical contact as much. Then you will have parrots who thrive on a personal level with you. For example my black-capped conure, african grey, black lory and female indian ringneck – they need my one on one attention basically anytime they are out and about with me. However my rainbow lorikeet, male indian ringneck and the quaker (r.i.p) likes my attention but can manage if I’m busy for a few, they definitely find ways to entertain themselves.

I’ve taught all the birds the importance of independent play but doesn’t mean they want to do it if they don’t have to. Anyhow, so back at the issue at hand my black-capped conure escaped her cage and flew to my shoulder, makes me feel special to know she personally seeks me out. I mean, she could have flown out of her cage to the potty perch, the java tree or the activity stand but instead she came to me. I think this deserves an AWWWW!

Parenting Parrots

Lost Piper, our Quaker Parrot

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So I did the stupid month of no pellets and everything seemed fine however I forgot about Piper. His diet should have been monitored a little more closely because he is prone to the fatty liver disease. The last week of “no pellet month”, he started refusing to eat his food, he was still eating his treats when trained but otherwise the fruit, veggies, pasta, rice, bread etc was not being touched.

He somehow managed to maintain his weight of 99 kg so I wasn’t too worried and I knew it was just a matter of days before I would go to the store to buy pellets. I continued to monitor him. His poop was hard to monitor because of all the fruit and veggies being incorporated into their diet, so it was very watery. Anyhow he was still training and activity level remained the same, until that Thursday, he came out of the cage and started training but refused the treat at one point. Piper has NEVER refused a safflower seed EVERY! My red flags immediately went up! He flew away from everyone on to a stand that’s in a corner. If you know Piper, he is a social butterfly and never wants to be alone. The Wednesday he weighed 97kg but it was still close to 99 so I wasn’t concerned but that Thursday he weighed 91kg I immediately was scared. He flew away from me and wouldn’t fly back when called, I was scared.

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Friday came and he was at the bottom of his cage, not being able to lift his head up for long. He weighed 81kg. He mustered up all his energy to fly once or twice when out otherwise he would find a dark spot and hide. I was in trouble. My credit card for the birds were maxed and I was in negative in my bank account (being on maternity leave is not easy :(). I was devastated over the fact that Piper needed me and I couldn’t bring him to the vet because I was broke! I made sure to provide him water via my finger so he wouldn’t be dehydrated and put him in his cage with a cover so he could rest.

Saturday morning, I was scared to uncover him but I did and he was still alive. I sent for pellets, milk thistle and a syringe. I made the pellets into a mash with the milk thistle and fed him through the syringe 1ml every hour. He seemed to be doing better. In the night I tried to give him 4ml of the mash and when I went to weigh him he became unbalanced, fell to the floor, I believe hitting his kneel (I made have that spelt wrong) bone and died.

I feel like I failed Piper, Lola, Parenting Parrots, my kids and myself. I’m so sorry, I don’t know where I went wrong but I know just like with Lola I feel an empty space in my heart.

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Piper was amazing beyond words. Every morning I was greeted with “Good Morning, How are you?” and I would respond with “Good Morning Piper, I’m good how are you?” He would then say, “I’m good, how are you?” I believe he was waiting for me to teach him what to say next but I never did. Every evening we ended our night with a wonderful, “Good night”. Piper would sing Sugarland – Stuck like Glue. It was his favorite song, even when we would be singing a different song he would jump in with Sugarland lyrics. He knew all the kids’ names and would call each one. He especially loved to call Shennai because she would bring him a treat every time he called for her. He would be the starter of our “peek-a-boo” games. He would say it first and the other birds would follow. He just learned “Peek-a-Boo, I see you”. So if I said Peek a boo he would respond with I see you. He was just so talented. He loved interacting with people and other birds.

Piper would fly to the other parrots’ cage and let them out.  I was planning on having a video on YouTube called “Prison Break – Parrot edition” and it was going to show Piper letting out Rasta or Ringo or himself as those are the only 3 cages he could open. I would turn my back and all of a sudden I would have Piper and Rasta out doing nonsense hahaha. I miss those days now. The house doesn’t seem the same without him – he was the glue that truly kept the flock together.

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He would always engage with all our visitors. He is going to be missed so much! I loved watching his green and blue wings soaring through the house, I was so excited to get him harness trained so I could take him outside and now I will never have that chance. NEVER  in a million years did I think I would lose Piper so soon. I was always so careful with him and his diet. I don’t know what exactly went wrong but I take full responsibility. Life will never be the same without Piper here to stir things up but this has gotten me doing further research into the other parrots’ diet because it’s the only thing I could think of that went wrong.

I’m sorry for the long post but I’m still hurting. I sit and watch the videos of him every night, it feels unreal and I’m to blame because I didn’t have money saved for their emergencies like I recommend others to do. I feel like a hypocrite, I tell everyone to make sure they do it and here I am with their credit card maxed so I couldn’t do what needed to  be done. Maybe if I had the funds, I could have saved his life. I will still be blogging about things to do with Quakers because now more than ever do I feel the need to share how they should be taken care of and how precious they are. I feel like I took Piper for granted and I’m experiencing that feeling of: “You never know what you have until it’s gone.” I have a video of Piper, the Friday before he died but it’s sad.

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I will not be obtaining another quaker parrot a.k.a monk parakeet unless I somehow inherit one. It hurts when you lose a member of your family.  We got Piper the same time my 1st daughter was born maybe that’s why they were so close. She keeps asking me for him, so far I told her he is at the doctors. I don’t know how to tell her he is gone. At first, I was wondering if I could get another quaker and re-teach it all the things Piper knew so she wouldn’t know the difference but financially it’s not an option so I’m hoping with time, she will slowly become unattached and I can then break the news.

Please don’t judge me, I just know Piper was her favorite and I don’t want to see her heartbroken. The below video was a brief video that isn’t complete, it was shot in the end of December 2017, I started it for our YouTube channel but changed my mind and used a different footage.

Parenting Parrots

The Love Is Real

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The Love is Real” was a comment posted on this site when I first started blogging by my late uncle/twin. I laughed and was like yup but I never really thought twice about those 4 words until now.

Why today? I have no idea, maybe I’m just in a loveable mood but the statement couldn’t be more true. I never knew how much a pet could mean to a person. Growing up we weren’t allowed pets, well, we had some fish but I was never into them and wanted a rabbit or a parrot. I never wanted a dog because I don’t like the cold and there was no way I was going outside regardless of the weather to let a dog relieve itself. It’s weird because I never understood how people could talk so much about their pets, like do they lack an entertaining life? Or are they that lonely that they can only talk about their beloved pet? Pathetic!

Look at me now…. I blog about my parrots haha, you want to get me talking bring up parrots and I will never stop! I can completely understand those people who spoke such passionate words for their pets now. When someone’s pet would die in the office, I was the one standing there listening to them but rolling my eyes inside my head like, “seriously, it’s just an animal go buy a new one.” I’m now that person who will shed tears for my parrots. I guess you truly can never understand or relate to a person until you have experienced a similar situation. I sympathize with all those co-workers now.

My sister has a dog, a cat plus a bearded dragon, a catfish, a turtle and her 3 kids and she will passionately talk about her dog and cat (the others are really her husband’s and the kids). I can relate, so I listen and talk to her regarding training, vets and sicknesses. It’s funny because we talk more about the animals when they are ill than we do the kids haha. But it’s the passion that captures me.

Here, I share my love for parrots with cyber space and I’m glad I can. So to my uncle Brandon and all the other non-pet owners out there that can’t grasp why people devote so much time and energy to their pets, I have four words for you, “The Love is Real“.

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Parenting Parrots

Killing My Eardrums!!

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I love my flock, overall a quiet bunch even though they can be noisy at times, it’s not an everyday thing or an all the time thing… Then I added to my flock.

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I have never had to actually train any of my parrots to be quiet until now. It sucks because I can’t introduce her into the same room as the rest of the birds until she learns how to be a little less noisier.

She makes noise all day long until I turn her lights off. I know she’s lonely and wants to be included but I also have to be mindful of what her vocals may teach the others. So I said if  I can get her to realize that she will only get my attention when the noise levels diminishes then I can move her to be around the other parrots.

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So I came up with a game plan:
Goal -Quiet for an hour straight

First day: I waited and timed how long between screams was she quiet for? 11 seconds (That’s not very long).
Aim – If she can make it to 15 secs of silence I would click, enter the room, give her a treat and talk to her for a bit. Once she finishes the treat, I would leave the room and wait for 16 secs, 17 secs, 18 secs, 20 secs then 25 secs, 30, 35,40, 45, 50, 55 and then  1 minute.
It was a success!!

Second day: I waited for 15 secs again then 20, 25, 30 and 1 minute. Once we got to the 1 min mark, I started waiting for 1 min and 15 secs, 1 min and 30 secs, 1 min and 45 secs, 2 mins. Went to 2 mins and 30 secs, 3 mins then 4 mins and 5 mins. It was a successful day!!!

Third day: No quiet session training

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Fourth day: I waited for 5 mins – it didn’t come after a hour of waiting. Then I waited for 4 – nope then 3, nope and finally 2. Click, entered the room and gave a treat. However she didn’t stop making noise after that, I think she was panicking that I was going to leave her alone always… I’m not sure. So I went back to 30 seconds of silence hoping to progress fairly quickly back to 5 minutes at least. Even 30 seconds was a struggle so I reverted back to 15 seconds. I did 5 sets of 15 seconds then I did 5 sets of 30 seconds, at this point the other parrots were getting noisier in response to her so having her remain quiet was definitely becoming a harder task but I know you have to be persistant when it comes to these types of things.

I know where I went wrong in this and it was missing the 3rd day. But I’m not giving up and I won’t miss another day hahaha. It’s weird because she is so smart so I assumed after the first few repetitions she would remember and  we would pick up where we left off, I guess not. What I should have done was just start back at 5 seconds and jump every 5 instead of doing the 5 sets of the same time frame and jumping to 15 sec intervals… At this point we were a hour and a half into her 2 hour focus time and she only made it to 45 seconds of quiet once. Definitely unfortunate but it is, what it is…. Tonight before dinner time will be another attempt. I usually only do this once a day but to make up for yesterday I will attempt it again later tonight. She won’t get any personal one on one time in this session it looks like but hopefully later tonight will be a better session. With 15 minutes left of her 2 hour focus time she finally started progressing! I did the 5 sets of 45 seconds, 3 sets of 1 minute and then I was able to start jumping after 1 set on each timeframe. We went to 1 minute and 15 seconds then 2 minutes, 2 minutes and 30 seconds! I wanted to be at 10 minutes today but by the time we were moving on to the 3 minute mark we ran out of time in the session so the goal will be to get there tonight. If we only make it to 5 minutes, I will still be happy.

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After a week I’ve trying to teach her how to be quiet I was unsuccessful making it to a hour straight, so just like any other training method I  had to re-think my approach. I took a leap of faith and wondered if my current parrots could teach her how to be quiet. So, I took a chance and moved her close to the other parrots, she still goes on her rampage of noise BUT it’s only in the morning and afternoon now. Definitely decreased in frequency. She still is the only nosy one in my flock and no other parrot has copied her. My philosophy is: they see that her noise is not benefitting her (getting her any extra attention or reinforcement) so there is no point in copying her actions. Unfortunately none of them have chosen to tell me so I can only speculate at this point but it’s been months and I haven’t heard anyone mimic her.

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Parenting Parrots

A Month with No Pellets Review

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Overall my month with no pellets was okay but it’s not for me. In order to properly provide for your parrots off of no pellets, you need to completely understand their nutritional needs. You need to cater to each one’s personal dietary requirements (I failed in this part, as I didn’t even think twice about each parrot as an individual with different requirements). You also need to be completely devoted to them with no other distractions around you.

January showed me how much pellets save me as it’s a quick measure it out and put it in their cages. Baking, steaming, dicing and chopping is great when I only have to do it occasionally but when it becomes a multiple times a day process – I am too consumed with other things to do that each day. Training took a back seat because instead I was making meals. I felt I was always in the kitchen, for myself, the kids and the parrots.

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I feel bad. More so guilty because I didn’t realize what I was missing (personal requirements) until it was too late to rectify. I must say, anyone who can do this, my hat goes off to you. We are back to incorporating pellets into their diet and my mind feels at ease.

I did see a change in behavior though.  The house seemed quieter and the  birds seemed more willing to train but that could just all be in my head. Until I record proper data, I can’t make a concrete verdict on that previous statement.

No pellets is definitely the way to go if you can manage it.

Parenting Parrots

A Very Popular Hookbill

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I usually like to get things that most people do not have, like a funky pair of tights or a limited exclusive edition of a Jordan shoe. In this case it seems I went the opposite way and followed the crowd. The most popular medium-sized hookbill in today’s society seems to be the…. (Drumroll  please!)

African Grey Parrot

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My Galah cockatoo would have kept me in the “rare” category but unfortunately she isn’t with us anymore (R.I.P LOLA). Grayson, my Congo African Grey is extremely popular and although I think it’s great because having a CAG (Congo African grey) will definitely have an impact on a person’s life, I can’t help but be a little disappointed that I fell in the crowd with obtaining a popular parrot that everyone seems to have. Everywhere I go, I meet someone who has a grey parrot.

After I obtained Grayson and my dad was showing him off to his family in the states, we came to find out that 2 of his sisters owned African Grey Parrots. An African grey lives across the street from my son’s elementary school. About a month ago I was at a car wash and a man pulled up with his grey in the back seat. POPULAR!!! I could probably start an African Grey club in my neighborhood and have a great turn out.
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Besides being the most popular, they are also considered to be the smartest. They are not only known for their talking ability but for the capability of using words with understanding. This is shown through Alex, Dr. Pepperberg’s grey. Greys can talk in front of strangers but it has to be trained to. My African Grey will not but I’m hoping to change that soon. Greys’ need to be treated like a child vs. as a pet because of their intellectual level.

The best way to teach a grey is through modelling, reinforcement and repetition. Physical punishment should not be used as they can hold a grudge. I felt the need to share this information because these parrots are very popular and I want them all to strive like Alex did.
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Parenting Parrots

A Month with No Pellets

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Am I going crazy? Maybe. But I decided to give it a try anyways. So Welcome to 2018! Today is January 2nd, 2018 and I have a very low bag of pellets so I decided why not try a month without pellets. Obviously this doesn’t apply to my Lorikeets as they will always get their nectar and since I don’t give them any sort of pellets, this will be nothing new. I will be trying to introduce more human food into the lorikeets’ diet but it doesn’t matter if they eat it or not as they will still get their regular meals.

They started their day with their “Shreddies” cereal, then they had a fruit mix and now for dinner hard boiled eggs with lightly boiled carrots.
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I have also decided that for the month of January, I want to focus on improving their beaks, feathers and bones. I’ll be attempting this by making sure everyday their diet will include something that will improve those parts. So Today it was eggs and carrots. These two items are said to improve their bones, beaks, feathers and vision. Very excited to see if I will be able to see a difference in their beaks and feathers by the end of this month.

Tomorrow for their fruit mix I will do apples, blackberries and blueberries as they all help with the 3 areas I’m interested in improving. Will my attempt work? I have no idea but nothing tried, nothing gained. This means more work in the kitchen for me, I think I’m up for the challenge. Wish me luck!
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Parenting Parrots