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Sandra J <email address not displayed>
Sandra J wrote on the Nanday Conure Forum message board: > Hi, Zi-glitterati. > > I'm happy you have taken this Nanday as your own. I agree with Bruce's > recommendations. You must convince yourself you are not afraid of a > his bites and project that confidence to him. Move your hands slowly, > but firmly, when you are interacting with him and try not to startle > him. If he reaches for you with his beak, don't assume automatically > that it will result in a bite. Birds use a beak like an extra foot or > hand. If you ask him to step up, he may use his beak to make sure your > finger is stable before he steps up on it. If you are cleaning his > cage or feeding him, make sure he is aware of what you are doing and > talk to him while you are doing it. Give him the opportunity to come > out of his cage before you do those things. > > Just know that as a new conure owner, you will be bitten at times and > you will survive, so there is no need for fear. (He's not large enough > to bite off a finger, but he might bloody it a little if it's a really > hard bite!) I also encourage you to have lots and lots of patience. It > may take weeks or months to change his behavior, but I think it is > possible and it will be worth it to gain his friendship and loyalty. > > Just hang out with the bird in his room and offer your affection in > the tone of your voice and slow, non-threatening movements. When you > want to interact with him, open the cage door, then sit down and watch > TV or read a book so he realizes that he is not your main focus (this > takes the pressure off him a bit!. Talk to him every now and then. Let > him decide when to interact with you to satisfy his curiosity. Nandays > are social birds and they need a flock. Also, eating is a very social > activity for Nandays, so you can munch on a snack you know he loves. > He may come to you to try to steal a bite! Once he is more comfortable > in his new surroundings, he should eventually start coming out of his > cage to seek you out to draw comfort and warmth from you. When he able > to be the one to decide when he is ready to interact with you, you are > less likely to be bitten. > > One of the best recommendations I remember reading from the experts on > this board when I first got my Nanday was to ignore every bite. Don't > respond at all. Pretend it didn't happen. Try not to yelp or make any > noise. Don't scold, don't react, don't jerk your hand away. Parrots > like drama, so if you react in any way, it is exciting for them. If > you don't react, there is no "reward" for him when he bites you. I > find this advice especially useful for a new bird owner. This new bird > is trying to gain control of his new environment and gain control of > you and a bite is his natural response when he feels threatened. When > you don't react to the bite, he'll have to try something else to get > your attention. > > If, a year or two from now, you feel you and your bird have a better > understanding of each other, a "no bite" could be effective if you > have good communication already between you and you have success in > getting him to obey your other commands. > > So, instead, lavish praise on all the good behaviors and just ignore > the bad behaviors. If he's screaming for your attention, ignore him > until he makes a cute, soft noise that you like or he "talks" to > respond. That way, he'll learn to make more pleasant noises when he > wants you to interact with him. If he bites you, ignore it, but stay > there with him until he realizes that his biting won't make you leave > him. Wait until he calms down to do whatever it was that caused the > bite or do something completely different with him so that he realizes > that you are not afraid of him. > > Also, start to learn his moods and make sure you respect those moods. > I've learned that my bird gets very "emotional" at certain times (for > instance if she REALLY, REALLY wants to chew on something that is NOT > for her!). . . rather like a toddler throwing a tantrum. Just like > with a toddler, I can make the event ease up by taking the desired > object away from her, then ignoring her and doing my own thing, but if > I react with any drama or try to physically manipulate her, the > tantrum could escalate. In a tantrum, she is least likely to obey my > requests and commands, so I just give her some space until she calms > down. That doesn't mean she wins, because if what I wanted her to do > was for her safety or a necessity for me, she knows it will happen. > The funny thing is that she knows the difference in MY moods this way. > Sometimes when she has done something "bad" she figures out that one > way or another, she's going back in her cage, so when I approach her, > she puts herself in the cage before I can. It's not that I yell at her > or do anything violent to cause this, instead I just hold myself with > a determined energy and with a firm expression on my face and a > determined tone of voice and she realizes that I am definitely in > charge. Yeah, I guess at those moments I must assert that I am the > "flock leader." I'm no "bird whisperer" though, I just understand my > bird (most of the time!). > > If, a couple of years from now, you feel you and your bird have a > better understanding of each other, a "no bite" could be effective if > you have good communication already between you and you have success > in getting him to obey your other commands. > > At the bottom of this page is a search button. If you type in "biting" > or "stop biting" you should come up with lots of discussions on this > subject. Following those threads will provide you with a wealth of > useful information. > > In regards to clipping bird wings, I agree with Lynda that it is your > choice. I do not clip Zindor's wings because I feel it is a healthier > option for MY bird. I understand completely why Enyar clips her bird's > wings. I even understand Linda's fierce arguments against > clipping.(Yes, we have a Linda and a Lynda on this board!) To me, I > find Lynda's argument the best. Assess your situation and your bird. > However, if you find that all the other techniques you try to stop the > biting does not work, clipping may be something you might want to > consider. It will make your bird more dependent upon you and may > lessen his aggression. Still, you may not need to go to that extreme > just yet, since you prefer to have a free-flighted bird. (Just make > sure your house is safe for a flying creature!) > > Well, that's enough opinion sharing from me for today! I injured my > elbow and wrist with a bit of "extreme" gardening, so I need to stop > typing! > > Best wishes, > Sandra J > > > > Bruce Byfield wrote: > > zi-glitterati wrote: > > > My daughter recently moved and could not take her bird, a nanday > > > conure, with her. I am keeping the bird. The bird is > > approximately > > > 10 years old. I love the bird and would like to let him out of > his > > > cage to fly and get some exercise. He was free to fly around the > > > first few years and then he began to attack and bite! He took a > > bite > > > out of my face once, and I have been afraid of him since. He > seems > > to > > > protect my daughter and doesn't bite her, but everyone else he > > attacks > > > and bites. Do you have any suggestions for me. I would appreciate > > any > > > help or info. Thanks, zi-glitterati > > > > The first thing that stands out in your message is that you are > > afraid of him. Nandays are highly social creatures, and your bird > is > > probably well aware of your fear, and is using it to dominate you. > > Also, he is probably biting because he feels insecure without your > > daughter around. Quite possibly, he has bonded to her as though she > > were his mate. > > > > The best thing you can do is to spend some quiet time with him. > Start > > by sitting by his cage reading or watching television, making no > > demands on him. Then start feeding him. If you regularly spend time > > with him over several weeks, I think you'll be amazed at the change > > in him. > > > > One thing, though: do everything you can to suppress your fear. If > > you're nervous, he'll be nervous, and more likely to act in ways > that > > make you nervous.
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