How Parrots Are Like Goats – What?
They say ruminants “chew the cud” – well, parrots bite the wood. It IS what parrots do.
That makes my parrot-keeper life challenging. I don’t have a lot of trees around me… I’m in a neighborhood. There are houses, not fruit trees. Bummer. Here in Florida a lot of houses have fruit trees in their back yard, but not here…
Actually, It’s A Frond, A Palm ‘Leaf.’ So, AGs 🦜 Were Fronded!
Today I cut a frond from our front yard for Zeus and Hera – at first I think they were taken by surprise, but then they did some killing of the frond!
Trying to get Zeus and Hera to stop plucking their feathers is like trying to keep people from eating sugar! 🍬
It’s A Hard Habit To Beak, Oh, Break!
It is said that once a parrot has been plucking for about a month… they generally don’t stop. Interesting when you consider that humans are said to develop habits when they do the same thing for about a month and a half – sounds like parrots are the same.
Why it is that they, my African Grey, parrots will let their feathers grow out and then pluck them I’m not sure… I guess it doesn’t matter. They pluck!
Mine may be an uphill battle because I adopted them this way. I can’t guess how long they have been plucking or what their previous experiences were like. Instead, I’m just doing what I can. I’m working on providing enrichment, the palm frond. I’m giving them CBD and hemp oil, since hemp has the right balance of omega 3:6 (for humans, I’m guessing the same is true for parrots) and CBD is supposed to help calm them. My mentor said that, since Zeus plucked some of Hera’s feathers (No! don’t pluck her! She doesn’t need more feathers taken out!), he’s probably stressed out. Ugh!
I’m doing what I can, but I have some circumstances I can’t remedy at this time:
- Their cage is the minimum size, or larger, but I dream of providing them with an aviary or at least a lot more space. I give them the option to come out during the day, but I have a Macaw.
- African Greys like peace and quiet, not Macaws. In case you aren’t familiar, Macaws are the exact opposite of ‘peace and quiet.’ I exaggerate, but not much. African Greys are chill, mellow. Macaws are not.
- Like any other parrot, African Greys love natural things: branches, palm seeds/pods (and I’ve got little palms, but not much- mostly grassy lawns, of course)
It may be that they will always pluck. This is one problem with getting adult parrots, their ways could already be set in stone. Still, we try. And work on it. And try again.
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