Is taming bigger birds different than taming smaller birds? - Talk Parrots Forums

Parrot Behavior, Bonding and Training Discuss parrot behavior, parrot training, parrot bonding, and other psychological aspects of parrot care.

 
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
 
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Question Is taming bigger birds different than taming smaller birds?

Are there different techniques you need to do to tame bigger birds like cockatoos or macaws?
I know how to tame small birds like budgies, cockatiels, conures, ect. I want to know if the same rules apply for big birds, or if there's different rules.


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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 03:53 PM
 
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well its completely different mentally, these are smarter birds with bigger beaks there more likely to bite you then say a budgie and when they do, ouch! Plus it would be harder to say; tame a 5 year old cockatoo whod never been touched then it would be a budgie, I would go with a hand fed tame parrot if you were to get a cockatoo I would do months of research on there behaviour before getting one, thats the nice part these birds are already tame so its more behaviour then taming you have to work on, like what what to do when they bite you, how to react when their scared, and how to raise them to be well adjusted parrot.

IM sure someone here can help you more on the subject who has larger birds, but I hope I could help a bit

H
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 04:21 PM


 
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I have hand raised everything from Budgies right up to Sulphur Crested Cockatoos. Usually the only reason Budgies are hand raised is if there is a problem with the parents feeding them. With time you can tame a budgie without hand raising. But I have tamed a young Sulphur Crested Cockatoo that was born in the wild. This bird was given to me by one of the local vets who had had him brought in and he had Beak & Feather disease. The look on his face when he saw me playing with my hand raised Sulphur Sammy was one of absolute disbelief that Sammy was not frightened of me. Don't ask me how they can express so much with a face that has no lips, eyebrows or cheeks etc but the do. The cage he was in meant that I had to put my hand in the cage to put seed in the container and within 2 months he would let me touch him and a month later he was talking as well. He was a fairly young bird when I got him, between 6 and 12 months of age.

Sulphurs are extremely intelligent and they seem to realize who is a friend and who is a enemy. They can be extremely loving like my girl Charlie who just delights in giving me kisses and cuddles. And she really cuddles.

It is hard to explain the special bond that can develop with a Sulphur and their human friends. Charlie had left me at about 16 weeks and I did not see her again until she was 3 and I got her back when she was just on 4. She had never forgotten her mother who hand raised her. At the time I saw her again I was the only female she would let come near her without biting. After leaving me she grew up in a household of males. She is now good with both males and females and she is 11 in September.

To get any bird other than a budgie to bond to you it is really best if they are hand raised. But not all birds make good pets, large or small. It really depends on the species and the personality of the bird. They really do have very different personalities.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 05:31 PM


 
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I agree with everything said so far. Individual birds of the same species are very different from one another, and species are very different from one another. Knowing that a bird can cause major damage to you has a big impact on your reactions to the bird.


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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 06:44 PM
 
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Bigger birds are different simply because of the fear factor on the human end from a bite and from the damage a big bird can cause. The basic principles are the same - go slow, build trust, reward positive behavior. You just have to be more cautious and aware of their mood. In a way, bigger birds can be easier because their emotions are easier to read and it's easier to tell when they're going to bite



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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 10:18 PM
 
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I have very dim view on 'hand raising' of birds.
That deprived the little birdie on proper interactions with its parents and designed to hopefully 'imprint' on it that he/she is a human. Are we that incapable of understanding and training with a bird that we felt compelled to rip a baby from his/her parents?

This lead to the marketing and selling of birdies thats not weaned. Perhaps better the profits to the breeders, but is that a better life for the birdie?
Or is a perceived easier life to us the only thing that matter?

Of course, claims of 'handraising' sells especially to people who do not know and wanted something quickly.

It seems too that handraised birdies later on developed serious psychological problems.

The sad part is even older birds, and birds caught from the wild, are really trainable.

Riamfada was a wild caught CAG as seen in her open leg ring. She was a rescue and given to my charge when she was about 5-6 years old. She came to me bitey and fearful.


In about a year, she was doing free flights to me.



Yingshiong above is a white rumped shama. A shama is a songbird. He was caught from the wild at about 3 years old. He was given into my charge at about 5 years old. He flew to me on cue within a month of coming to me. Breeders of shamas told me even their breed shamas , some they hand raised, never ever landed on them. They told me above was the first ever they seen of a male shama landing on a human.



Libai is a Greater Greenleaf song bird. Caught from the wild and probably about 3 years old or so when he came to me.

All my birds do not live in cages. The cages existed more to hold their food and the door wired to stay opened.

Try reading the thread I started here
Understanding the mind of your grey and other parrots
https://www.talkparrots.com/showthread.php?t=2199

Perhaps that might help you for any training, or any biting.

Warmest regards

Shanlung
山 龍



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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 10:59 PM Thread Starter
 
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Oh. Don't worry. I'm not getting a big bird lol.

The reason I'm asking this is because I'm planning to write an article about how to tame your bird. I get asked all the time how I got my birds to be tame. And I'm tired of writing it out for everyone each time I get asked. So I want to just write an article and post it online. I need to know if my methods should only be used for small birds though, or if they can also be used for big birds. I've only used them on small birds. And I was seeing how exactly people train bigger birds to see if my methods would work on big birds as well. So far besides the increase in fear though, I think my methods would work pretty well. Though people usually don't get untame big birds. But some people do


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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-12-2011, 11:22 PM
 
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Luti-Kriss,

It is ok. I write for the thread and those reading the thread.
A person can start a thread, after which the thread takes a life of its own.

What is a big bird?

This big enough?



Above with my firend's birdies, that he warned me are bitey, until I showed him otherwise.

I find what I wrote hold good for big or small, feathered or fur. And for all I know , scales or no scales.

But I bow to your greater prowess. You are asked to write article and no one think of asking me to write article.

Warmest regards

Shanlung
山 龍




Last edited by shanlung; 06-12-2011 at 11:24 PM.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 04:55 AM



 
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^^^
what those guys said!

Shanlung, those pictures are fantastic

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 05:51 AM
 
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Daisy,

Thank you.
The photos you seen so far, here and other threads, are just a tiny handful.
Click onto my webpage in my signature. Every refresh will get different photos at random for a taste as to the window into my world with birdies and beasties.
Clicking on any of those photos will give you the enlargement.

More important than those photos will be the stories behind them and how that were done. And if you chose to follow the path I walked on, you can get the same, if not better, from your birdie too.

Warmest regards

Shanlung
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 06:19 AM


 
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Shanlung in Australia it is illegal to take a bird from the wild. The only ones I have had out of the wild are ones that have been injured and cannot be returned to the wild as they would not survive, if a vet cannot re-home the bird they have to be put to sleep. We have very strict laws here regarding birds, it is illegal to sell a bird that is unweaned unless it is to another breeder who has experience in hand raising. Most of our birds need a licence to keep them, it is only the most common parrots and finches that are exempt from that licence. Many birds we are not allowed to keep in captivity at all.

I never ever sell any of my birds unweaned. They are kept until they have been weaned for at least 3 weeks of independant feeding. I do not sell any of my birds to people who cannot look after them properly especially with the large parrots that have a long life span. To me they are like having a child that you are responsible for and are yours for life. Sammy and Charlie were brother and sister and I hand raised them for the person who bred them and he gave me Sammy. When their home was sold and they had to go into a unit they had to sell their birds and I bought Charlie back when I realized who she was. She has no psychological problems now and her only problem was she was not used to women. The family that had her were divorcing and it was not a pleasant divorce so the only time she saw a woman there was trauma involved. She lives with other members of her own species and has a boyfriend. None of the handraised birds I have have psychological problems. Most live in aviaries or large cages and have members of their own species to talk to as well as me. They are more than happy to come and sit on my shoulder or my arm.

Palm Cockatoo's are native to Australia but there are none in captivity in my state not even in a zoo. There may be a few in the Northern Territory where they are found but they would more than likely be rescues that would have died without human intervention.
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 06:57 AM
 
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I dont think hand raising is bad, alot of breeders just do it the last couple of weeks before the bird is weaned and its brothers and sisters will still practice the same skills the parents show at that young age. if we want to say hand raising is wrong, that may be so, but then wed have to say that raising pets altogether is wrong. i mean puppies are basically the same maybe we dont hand raise them but if they were wild they would stay with their parents till they are at least a year old where they would learn valuble lessons on growing up, instead we teach them these things and help them to grow and adjust to a human society, hand raising to me, is a way of keeping pet birds with their owners, alot of people still get parrots who dont know much about them I believe there would be a higher chance of these birds being rehomed because to an incompetent parrot owner they would have to work harder on taming and showing the chick that they are their friend not their enemy. my parrots are hand raised and none of them have psychological problems there are very happy I take them out of the harness and I stimulated them with training, toys, and games.

H

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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-13-2011, 06:11 PM
 
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Hand raising is a controversial issue. getting more so with time, and I can definitely see both sides. I agree with Shanlung that a bird does not need to be hand-raised to be a wonderful companion. We had an umbrella cockatoo who had been wild caught and then physically abused before coming to us and she was the most darling, kindest bird I've ever met. She was very nervous but with time really came out of her shell.

However, non-hand reared birds are not for everyone. For the greater pet industry and most parrot owners, they wouldn't know how to work with a non-tame or aggressive bird. It's not for everyone. It takes a lot of time, patience, and an open mind. I've worked with many an aggressive bird and just going slow and showing respect goes a LONG way. Many birds who will "bite everyone" will come to me and be gentle, if I'm gentle and slow with them. Personally, I gravitate towards the aggressive or shy birds and enjoy working with them until they will not only welcome attention from me but from others who go slow with them. That was my favorite part of working at the pet shop was working with older birds until they will trust me and trust others and then find a loving home where their new family will love and respect them for who they are.

Parrots have to be respected as the wild animals they are, hand raised or not. They are far from domesticated, especially the larger and rarer species. We don't fully understand their dietary or psychological needs, even the leading experts are still learning something new everyday. And if you can respect and understand your bird, you can truly understand them and form a very close bond.



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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 04:39 AM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanlung View Post
Luti-Kriss,
What is a big bird?
Well by "big bird" I pretty much mean any untame parrot bigger than a caique. Good examples would be amazons, african greys, cockatoos, macaws, elclectus parrots, ect.

Well thanks. Nobody really asked me to write an article though. It was my own idea just so I don't have to keep writing it out every time someone asks me. So next time someone asks me how to tame their parrot, I can just give them a link instead of typing the whole thing out again. And if they wish, they can also show my article to anyone who may be interested on the subject


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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-14-2011, 11:12 PM
 
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I take it the forum is an international village of many different countries and different laws and not a place beholden to Australian laws.
Not as if Australia is the epitome of caring for its native flora and fauna. The same laws of Australia led to the extermination of the Tasmanian Tigers among a host of other creatures. Not to talk about bring in of rabbits, foxes and cane toads that decimated the remnants left of her wildlife and birds.

So nice to talk protectively of wild birds and cluck the tongue on other countries. How much of the original forests and woodlands are left in Queensland ? 20% 10% ? Or even less than that?

How nice to say wild birds and beasties must be left in the wild while most of their original habitat been turned into sugarcane fields, corn fields, fruit plantations and town and city surburbs for the better enjoyment of Australians.

I felt not the slightest bit of guilt or shame at my having of Yingshiong the shama or Libai with me. Their lives would have continued without me. But they would be nameless and kept in a tiny cages just to sing.
With me, they became known and went on to show the thousands who kept those song birds in tiny cages that they sing so much better when treated with kindness and understanding. While I wrote in English, I was surprised and delighted when more than 2/3 of visitors to my webpages came from non English speaking countries such as Indonesia and Thailand poring via translator software on what I wrote.

I like to think what I have done with Yingshiong and Libai made a big difference, for the better, to their brethens kept with others.

Keeping of shama and greenleaf birds in South East Asia is very legal and common by the way as Australian laws do not apply here.

So my relating of how even adult wild birds can be tamed and bonded with kindness , with photos and videos and accounts that cannot be disputed, been turned into tirade that wild birds be left in the wild according to Aussie laws.

As for hand raised birdies I suggest to folks with open mind to read this article by Jane Hollander

http://parrothouse.com/congotimineh.html

That article was titled "Congos and Timnehs, Is There A Difference?"
But in reading that, I found it was more than that, relating the post natal caring of the birdies by its birdie parents that make a HUGE difference.
That many of the problems with captive bred and raised birdies did not exist with captured birds. That trend extended to cockatoos too.

But of course, people with vested interests in selling 'handraised' birds that they make out to have greater value will always want to tell you that is the smartest and the best thing you can do.
With that, I seen with sickness in my heart so many baby birds sold in birdshops with eyes still close as 'handraising' them will make them fond of you. A big lie fostered by people with vested interests.

I wrote a few years ago of that in my Livejournal and the comments of others with problems on handraised birds were so disturbing.

I do believe properly supervised sustained taking of wild caught birds is essential if we want our parrots to continue to exist in the wild.

I used to grow sunflowers in my garden when I was in Oman. I found out Riamfada loved to eat the sunflower seeds from the heads. At the same time, wild Indian RingNecks came into my garden to eat those sunflower seeds. I only had a few plants. I build feeding stations for those IRNs stocking them with store bought sunflower seeds. But those IRNs did not want my feeding station and wanted my plants.

With regret, I had to tie bags around the head of the plants so my Riamfada can have those seeds.

I, who love those wild IRNs , had to do that for the greater love of my Riamfada.

What if I was a farmer who had to feed my family and wild parrots, with their habitats gone from land I took from them, came to feed on my crops?

If those wild parrots have a value to me by my being able to sell some of them for money for food on the table of my family, I would let them live. But if they have no value to me as folks campaigned to urge all wild caughts to be banned from sale, I might have to kill them and eat them.

As what happened in Africa.

And sell the red tail feathers and their heads for the money I can get.

Read this very depressing report Smuggler caught with heads of 353 african gray parrots
http://ecolocalizer.com/2009/01/25/s...-gray-parrots/

Have you by fighting and urging to have blanket ban on wild caughts any responsibility for the heads of 353 ?

This campaign against wild caughts seemed by be championed by breeders of parrots in the first world. So that perhaps they have a monopoly on supply to the pet trade. They then urge folks to join in the campaign., and to contribute money to that cause.

As did I, before that report above opened my eyes. I have to acknowledged my earlier voice against wild caught trade and my money contribution contributed to that 353 heads,and more uncounted.

Nevermind the fate or the heads of the parrots themselves as long as their profit margins are good to them.

Btw, the BP2s, M2s and U2s in my photo were all captive bred and raised. And legal too unlike the innuendoes made. All very bitey until I showed my friend otherwise. Took me about 30 minutes to talking to them Before I approached them. So simple to me. So incomprehensible to my friend and those flogging handraised birdies.

I rather go smell roses and play with my birdies.

This is my last posting in this thread so any others can continue on to say what I think they will say. I just do not wish to read anymore of that
as I know that they will say.
Long live the handraised, and down with any and every wild caughts.

Warmest regards

Shanlung
山 龍




Last edited by shanlung; 06-20-2011 at 12:40 PM. Reason: change to working link for 353 heads
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post #16 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-15-2011, 06:42 AM
 
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I think thats going to be a very controversial issue the same as hand feeding would, to me wild birds should stay wild because even though I keep pets I know there life would be better in the wild where they are free, but since the ones I buy have been among humans for generations they wouldnt have a chance in the wild. And I believe every country is the same as Australia, Australia does protect its land more then a lot of other countries, but most countries are corrupt in the sense that people have taken over and killed the forests and the land leaving the animals without a home, Im sure every single country has a list of animals that have become extinct, and the tasmanian tiger was sadly killed because of eating livestock but you'd find that anywhere, back in the 1900's they killed anything that threatened livestock so I think in recent times Australia has really been protecting its land and do alot better job then some other countries.

H
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post #17 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-15-2011, 08:50 AM
 
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This forum is an international community, yes, where each country has it's own laws and regulations to be followed. And each member has their own opinions of such. As such, it is a community where differences must be respected.

A constructive debate on this topic is encouraged, as it's an interesting subject to discuss, but this thread is not the place for it. Please stay on topic guys and please remain polite Thanks!!




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post #18 of 18 (permalink) Old 06-15-2011, 05:04 PM


 
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If I may respond to Shanlung. I don't necessarily disagree. I was pointing out our laws. I think it is often very short sighted of this country not to allow legal exports of our birds. Yet farmers are allowed to kill them. I believe there is someone or a group of people high up that have influence regarding the legal export of our birds. They don't want it to happen as their profit margin would go down the tube. A recent discovery about the illegal import of cheap cigarettes and also people showed that they had a contact in customs that assists them. I think the same is happening with the illegal export of our birds. My personal opinion is I would rather see a bird alive in a cage than dead on the ground. A dead bird is not much use to anyone. If god forbid we got a deadly bird disease in this country it could feasibly wipe out many species of birds, and with a very restrictive gene pool overseas it could spell the extinction of them, even some of the very common birds. While there is big money paid for our native birds there is going to people illegally smuggling them out of the country and the same goes for birds that people would like to have that are not readily available in this country and are very expensive they are being smuggled into the country increasing the risk of disease entering here.

I am not advocating wholesale trapping of birds to send overseas but some ease off in our very strict laws would be of benefit to everyone.
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