Hi guys! I'm hoping you can help me with my parrotlet, Saturday. I've never had a bird before, and I'm not sure what to do! I've had her for a little over 2 weeks, and so far it's been a roller coaster ride. I love my little girl; she's so cute and full of personality. When I first got her, she was shy, and then she seemed to warm up to me. She would step up and climb on me and I thought we were starting to make friends. But in the last few days she has become a furious biter!
If I put my hand near her she leans over and opens her beak to threaten me, and as soon as my hand is in reach she tries to take a chunk out of me. I've tried blowing on her and saying, "no biting" in a stern voice, but it only stops her for a second. I've tried rewarding her with seed when she's being sweet (she's a total millet junkie), but as soon as she's done eating, it's chomp-chomp-chomp on me. I know that parrotlets' beaks are their hands, and gentle beaking is fine, but these bites hurt! I feel silly being scared of the bites of such a little bird, but that beak is sharp!
I think that her issue is with hands. She will step up onto a perch, and from there she never misses an opportunity to scramble up an arm and onto a shoulder. She'll preen my hair and sleep on my neck and generally be very sweet once she's out and on me (or on others - she loves sitting on the back of a human's neck), but the process of picking her up, whether I reach into the cage (I only reach in for her when she's on a perch right by the door - I don't chase her around) or she climbs out, is really tough because she'll bite and bite the hand that holds her or wants to hold her.
I've done some searching on this site but most of the biting tips I've found are about how to stop bites once you've got your parrot in your hands. But what can I do for a bird that doesn't even want to step up?
Thanks so much for all of your help. I love Saturday and I want us to have a good relationship, but I'm worried that she'll never want to be with me.