Training Sessions

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I decided to implement 3 training sessions a day however I have only been able to continue doing 2. I really need to get up earlier in order to fit in that 3rd session so I put an alarm on my phone to make sure I get up and get going when I should.

Training sessions are meant to be fun and enjoyable when I’m waking up tired and miserable, fun and enjoyable is not happening. I love my parrots so I’ll get up and get going, eat my breakfast and start my training with a jig in my step. If you haven’t already, please read my best parrot post as that’s what we are working towards.

I will not put in actual set times because I don’t want the birds falling into a routine and if I miss or can’t keep up to it then they will be affected and act out. I think this is the issue for a lot of lashing out by parrots because they fall into a set schedule and when the human’s life changes, the parrot isn’t ready for it and therefore causes it to act out. The parrot is really just asking for their schedule back and unable to express it in any other way than screaming, biting and feather plucking.

I, once did a schedule for one of my parrots and it backfired greatly. Ringo, the Indian Ringneck was making so much progress but when I couldn’t keep up with the schedule due to my life changes, he started plucking. My beautiful grey Ringneck is now a grey bird with a lot of white fluff on his chest and belly. I miss the look of his soft grey feathers covering his whole body.

So training sessions is important to do whether you do it once a day or three times a day is up to you but please do not put them on a time schedule as it could be destructive if you need to alter it somehow.

Parenting Parrots

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How to Solve your Parrot’s Behavior Problem!

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Good Bird, a guide to solving behavioral problems in companion parrots by Barbara Heidenreich is a wonderful book to have in your collection. Whether or not you have a parrot with behavioral problems doesn’t matter because this book gives you the knowledge to understand why the behavior may happen and solutions to solve it. By reading this book, you can start to know the signs and see if a problem may be arising before it actually arrives.

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Barbara Heidenreich has actually been in our shoes, she is a parrot owner. Who else to learn from if not one of our very own. She has also been a parrot trainer and have helped many families with behavioral issues in parrots.

So how do you solve your Parrot’s behavior issues? Simple! POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT! Barbara tells us this in the very 1st chapter, the introduction. If you have no idea what I am talking about, I explain all about training in my post called “What time is it??“.

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But before you start implementing positive reinforcement, there are a few things you must first learn about: Body language! The first communication you will always have with a companion parrot is body language. Learn how to read it and what certain signs mean and you will be able to connect with your parrot better. In this book, Barbara explains their body language and gives you some insight in how to read them and what it means. What I love in this section is that she does her best to include pictures of birds that are displaying the body language she is describing.

She dedicates a chapter to each behavior issue you may come encounter with so you can either read the whole book (which I recommend) or you can just jump to the chapter that you may need help with. Her chapters go like this: Introduction – Chapter 1: Preparing the Companion Parrot Owner – Chapter 2: Screaming – Chapter 3: Biting – Chapter 4: Bonding to one person – Chapter 5: Cage Bound Bird – Chapter 6: Feather Picking and her closing chapter her Final Thoughts. Each chapter is filled with possible scenarios, why it may be happening, what you can do and a detailed explanation. I read this book about once every two years just to refresh my mind.

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I can confidently say that I do not have to worry about any screaming issues. For her biting chapter, now that I have Marlee, the lorikeet and she tends to nip, I will be practicing this chapter and hopefully by the new year, I will be completely bite-free! Next is the bonding to one person – This refers to my African Grey, he is completely bonded to me however when I am not around he will go to others – Barbara’s methods do work! I haven’t been able to test her cage bound theory or her feather picking theory as none of my parrots have  any of these issues  but I’m sure it works also.

You can follow her blog and check out her stuff at http://www.goodbirdinc.com/. She offers e-books, dvds, books, blog posts and seminars. I haven’t had a chance to check out her stuff as yet but I do give this book a 5 star rating as it’s an easy read with pictures and very straight to the point. From front to back it is a total of 81 pages. Really can’t go wrong.

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Parenting Parrots!