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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-22-2015, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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Smile New & anxious to learn/get help w/skittish bird

Hello Everyone!

Thank you for allowing me to participate in your forum. I am really looking forward to learning all I can and getting others advice.

I have two rescued macaws.

Tanga is a female Mili-gold macaw. She is 31 years old. I got her over a year and a half ago. She lost her original owners due to illness. They were elderly. Along her travels she ended up in a home that thought she was too loud and left her alone in the basement for a year! Of course, she started plucking her feathers out. She finally ended up in a rescue. My sister got her in poor shape. She was so thin we were afraid her keel bone would break. I got her and put her on the proper diet and she is doing well. Tanga can't (won't ?) fly. When I first got her, she wouldn't even put her wings out if she was falling. It was like she had never learned to be a bird. We put her in the bird room with our sun conure, Sunny. Sunny's cage is straight across from Tanga. Sunny has taught her a lot. Tanga no longer has separation anxiety because she has Sunny. She will put her wings out to catch her balance now. She is still plucking when stressed, but otherwise she is healthy and happy now. Tanga has never flown since I've had her.

My other rescue I just got in the last month. They named him Malachi. I am waiting to have a DNA test done to confirm sex. He probably thinks his name is Baby now because I always say "Hi Baby!". He is 12 years old. He was hatched from an egg and raised by someone who kept him for six years. He has never been around other birds. The owner I got him from was scared of him. She got bit and needed stitches so she never put anything in the cage for him to play with. Of course, he started plucking from boredom. His foot is his best friend. He regurgitates on it. He didn't even know how to play when I got him. She barely got food and water in his cage. He hasn't been handled in six years! He is very skittish and apprehensive. I was able to get him to step up and be on me. He even snuggled on me. He really wants attention but doesn't trust anyone. I gave him showers, which he seemed to enjoy. Somewhere along the line I did something that made him distrust me. I probably went a little fast. He started lunging at me and has chomped me a couple times. I didn't know then that he hadn't been handled for six years. I am slowly gaining ground to build trust again and know it may take a VERY long time. He is on a healthy diet now and has gotten plump. It seemed like he couldn't get enough to start with, but has finally slowed down. He has started to investigate things. He is quarantined still, but we have taken Tanga to the window so they can see each other. Tanga has shown him so much! He now plays with toys (slowly introduced as not to scare him) and is saying new words and phrases at an amazing rate! I was told he never flew. He now flies off his cage to adventure and explore. The person I got him from kept him outside on a porch through all seasons! I'm shocked he is still alive being in the cold. He's a survivor for sure. His nails are so long and sharp. They have not been trimmed in at least 6 years and no perches were in the cage to help. They would open the cage door and just let him go in and out as he pleased. He has only known the cage and top of the cage before now. Slowly he is venturing out. His cage is a safe place for when he gets nervous or scared. He is very territorial about his cage and the top. He is much better away from it (when I can get him away).

Sunny, the sun conure, is my daughter's and we got her from a friend who didn't want to take care of her anymore. She was supposed to be for the husband but she bonded to the wife who didn't want her. She came to us on a seed diet and with a respiratory infection. Her diet is now changed and she is very attached to my daughter. She will attack anyone who gets near her. Sunny now doesn't really come after me, but anyone else gets dive bombed.

We also have two male budgies.

Well, that's our little family
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-23-2015, 04:09 AM
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Welcome. Time and patience with your new "baby". It sounds like you are doing pretty well.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 04:44 AM

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Hello and welcome to the forum!

You sound like such a great person, taking those guys in A lot of people don't have it in them to take them on and so many get over looked for imperfections (like plucking). All I would do is take it very slow with him. It's only been a month and most birds can take months to settle in and get used to new surroundings anyway. From what you've said though, he will be easy to work with. If he can already step up that is a really big step! Just open his cage and sit in the same room, read a book, see if he'll take a treat off you here and there. Once he knows that you bring nothing but joy he will soon come around. Also try clicker and target training when he's a bit more settled, it can work wonders!

By the way, everybody here LOVES photos

While I'm here actually would you please mind reading through the forum rules here ~

And once you have would you kindly sign over here ~

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Thank you!

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