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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 09:15 AM Thread Starter
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need help deciding

Hi everyone. I am fairly new still to this message board. I have been looking to get an African Grey Congo for a long time now. When I first posted my intro post on another parrot message board, some suggested that I adopt an older bird. At the time I could not find one. Well now of course I find one. So here are my options and I can not decide.
Option 1) I get a younger 4-5 month old and order the DNA sexing with it. It will have to be shipped here by airplane which worries me about stressing the bird out. I skyped yesterday with a person who works at this location and got to see the two available now. They looked healthy, happy, and perfect.
Option 2) I drive 4 hours away from where I live to adopt a bird from a breeder who says this bird was not used for breeding, and says she is around a year old but really has no proof of that. He says shes a girl and she is friendly, you can pick her up and everything and she does say a few things like Hi, what are you doing, etc. I did ask for pictures of this bird as well, she also looks, healthy, no feather plucking, etc.
I realize that its hard to tell a birds health from skype or a picture and this gurantees nothing, but it made me feel better to see them both. I am just really worried that with no age on option 2 I might be buying a bird thats is a lot older than this breeder thinks. I also don't want to drive all that way and this bird have been misrepresented. So if there is anything else I should ask or do before doing that option please let me know.
Cost really doesn't matter all that much but I will say that option 2 is cheaper by 800 dollars.
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 09:40 AM
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As you know, African Greys can live many, many years, so getting an "older" bird (which may only be a year or two old after all) is not a big deal, at least in my view. Personally, I would go and drive to see that second bird. At least you can see her and decide on the spot. With shipping, if you are not happy, then what?
If the bird is happy and healthy, that's all that matters.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 01:37 PM Thread Starter
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Pretty well decided now

So I emailed the guy with option 2 back, and he doesn't seem to be that reputable of a guy any more. So I don't think I will go that route now. I emailed him and asked him since he had been calling the bird a girl if it had been DNA sexed, and also if he had ever taken it to the vet or if he knew of it ever going to the vet. He then went off on a rant. He said the bird was not DNA sexed, but he knew it was girl because he had breed mostly Greys for over 30 years. He said I did not need to take this bird to the vet that he was a state licensed breeder with a 5 star rating, which is the highest rating. These are his words not mine. When you go to his website he specializes in ringnecks it says and there is very little about greys even on there. I originally found this breeder because I was looking for a baby Grey and he had an ad that he had 1 for sale, the ad was about 2 weeks old so I knew it was a stretch. When I emailed him the only one he said he had was this older one.
I am a little taken aback because when doing my research I have mostly found that the only way to guarantee gender is to DNA sex. I didn't think there were any other sure fire ways to sex them unless he has bred her and therefore knows she is a girl, and he specifically said this bird was not used for breeding and was a pet. Another thing I am concerned about is that he flat out told me not to take this bird to the vet and that worries me. I will for sure be taking any bird I get to the vet. I feel kind of bad for this bird and hope it find a good home, but I can't risk that kind of money and not get what I am paying for .
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 02:07 PM
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Well, that is disappointing...
However, some breeders claim they can tell their bird's gender by feeling its pelvic bones. I was buying a cockatiel for a friend of mine, and she wanted a male. The breeder assured me the bird he gave me was a male, by feeling the pelvic bone (he had three baby cockatiels). It turned out that the bird was indeed a male. Now, this method may not be so reliable, but, like I said, a lot of people claim they can guess the gender that way. Perhaps this guy too.
And it may not be that the bird is not healthy or whatever, the breeder may be just a bit vain and thinks that there is no need to take his bird to the vet as he may think he takes excellent care of his birds.
Those are just my guesses though. I don't know. You go with what your gut feeling tells you though.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 02:08 PM

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Follow your instincts, if it feels wrong move on.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-23-2014, 09:33 PM

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I would go with option 1. There are many reputable breeders....and there are many that aren't. I have experienced that when people say "around a year old" for birds they are lying ( just my experience ). It is a generic age, especially from a breeder, who should have a better idea of the ages of their own birds. I have gotten a few leftover breeders that were " around a year old" that I later found out they were not that young.

The only sure fire way to KNOW that a bird is female is if it lays an egg!

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-25-2014, 12:35 PM Thread Starter
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I went with option 1. I did not feel comfortable with the breeder in option 2. I am however very nervous about have the bird shipped via airplane as it is coming from Delaware. They are working on the shipping stuff now and will be informing me of when my bird will arrive and I will drive to the airport to get him/her they are thinking Thursday. I also am having him/her DNA sexed so they will do that before they ship.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-26-2014, 12:07 AM
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Sounds like you made a good choice there. I personally wouldn't have gone with option 2 either. He sounded too shady. Anyway, depending on which carrier the breeder uses, it can be very safe to fly a bird to you. I know a budgie breeder that does this and she has had a lot of happy customers. I'm actually considering getting one through her. Actually, I will go through her, but I have to come up with some $360 for the bird, shipping, and the travel crate.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 08-26-2014, 06:06 PM

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Option 2 definitely didn't sound right. Why on earth would anybody tell you not to take a bird to a vet? Weird... I hope the shipping goes well and you get the bird that suits you best!

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
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