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Tinkerbell Legacy - Living with a flying parrot

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Getting a very young bird or a hand fed bird?

by Jane Hollander

Above is a very interesting article to read. Even if she talked on another issue, that of CAG vs TAG.

Especially for those who are thinking of getting a very young not weaned bird (any kind of bird) in hope of bonding with.

That is not even necessary as Tinkerbell was already past weaning when she came to me. Yingshiong was about 3 years old when he was captured from the wild and came to me when he was 5 years old. Yet you can see how they bonded with me.

I seen all too often little chicks , some with eyes still closed, offered for sale. Because there is such a demand.

Getting birds young, or even getting 'hand-fed' birds might even work against you in the long run. Read Jane's article and then think about it.

Feel free to post this in your bird forums.


Warmest regards


editted and added on 7 Aug 2011

Natural Birdsmanship – Understanding/Treating Behavior Problems in Imprinted Birds

See this in context it was written in
What prompted me to write mentality of grey // Imprinting of birds// A fairy in my life


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Plucking in Wild Caughts

Hi Shan Lung,

Thanks for the link.

Wild-caught Greys do pluck, contrary to what Jane Hallander writes in her article. You only need to look at the pictures of confiscated (wild-caught) Greys in the bird trade to see countless stripped Greys. It is my understanding that a wild-caught can pluck itself almost naked in one night of captivity.


Re: Plucking in Wild Caughts


You might be right. But I imagine if I am a wild caught grey and in captivity, I might pluck myself bald in one night out of fear and fright.

Just as we have seen there are many levels of birdshop keepers, I am sure there are many levels of CAG poachers. Some even more horrendous than others.
And again, how true are those pictures that you have seen? Could they be kept jam packed in little cages for weeks? and then captioned to be taken after 1 night?

That said, I do not think that detract from the rest of what Jane wrote in her article.

And to my intepretation that chicks are best left with their moms for a long time.

And should they be removed from their moms, a lot of love and tenderness be given to them in compensation to better their chances of growing up well.


My CAG Rebekah

Thank you Shanlung. I had instincts about same conclusion regarding my CAG Rebekah. I got her when she was 4 months old at a local bird fair (she will be 2 years old mid-July) & has just started to talk. Breeder had her on an open perch right next to the aisle & she was shaking from head to toe from fear. Destined to be a plucker - but I didn't know about that then. I noted her but passed on by to continue looking for an American Singer Canary - none. I went back to Rebekah & told the breeder how frightened she was. So they let me hold her & pet her behind the table & she snuggled under my chin & went to sleep . . . End of story.

I took a job & started working long hours; Beka started plucking; I knew, however, from my research on greys that I was leaving her alone too long, too soon.

But the good news is that she is now growing out long pin feathers, tail feathers, & much chest feathers. I am very hopeful that the plucking may stop.

Beka is VERY attached to me . . . wants to be with me continuously; head rub requests any time of day & frequently (she brushes her beak along my cheek & drops her head for rubbing). She also rubs her beak on my fingernail alot, usually after coming out of the cage & before or after a head rub. I'm thinking/hoping that is a sign of affection. Stays on my shoulder almost the entire time I'm at home.

Another grey person who supervises one of the grey lists says that I have allowed her to become too dependent on me; but I wanted her happy & to not pluck - which she did not do when with me. Anyway, I love her whether she's plucked or feathered; but would prefer her feathered so she could fly.

I also have a Brownhead or Emerald parrot, Emmy. I can't seem to find much information about these birds. They are very beautiful & very affectionate too.

YT,Susan (padah@knology.net)

This entry came from this thread I started in a forum

For those with very young birds such as Susan, do not be too worried.
As mentioned earlier, the more you know the better prepared you will be.

Feeding of young birds is just taking care of the physical needs. That by itself is not a guarantee of bonding as hoped for.
Their emotional needs MUST be taken care of.

All too often, taking care of their emotional needs have been chastised by comments that ' Oh! you make them too dependent on you' as if they are the 'know-alls'. Again, it is your choice as to who to listen to. Perhaps the best is to listen to your own heart.

Just as in books written on care of human babies by psychologists who never had baby and yet they know how to tell you to look after babies.

Look after your babes with love and tenderness is going to be good for them, be they humans or parrots.

And treating with with respect and dignity due to any other sentient beings.


Re: My CAG Rebekah

All,when Beka started plucking til she was naked, I almost gave her up because I was afraid I was being a bad owner. But not knowing what would happen to her kept me from doing it. I just know that I got her because I fell in love with her at the show & could not leave her to be displayed in that same manner and so frightened at another show. So I read articles, Shanlungs stories about Tinkerbell, vitamins, took showers with me, slept in an open sleeping cage in the room with me . . . . & paid her total attention when I was home.

I was also told to never let her be on my shoulder because after she matured I was sure to incur a bad bite on the face; but I have not quit doing so. She rubs her beak on my cheek when she wants to be rubbed. She did chew on my ear once when I did not respond to her after a couple of cheek rub attempts. I figured I could only do my best, love her & let her know it, & whether she continued plucking or did not would be up to her and would not change our relationship.

Actually it's hard typing this out because she is being such a pig about me petting her at this time. She takes my finger in her beak & pulls it up as close under her chin as she can get it, then hangs onto my glasses while I rub her head, cheeks, & throat. I just hope I am doing OK by her.


Re: My CAG Rebekah


You just keep doing what you're doing. As Shanlung said, "...Follow your heart.." and you cannot go wrong. Yvonne

wild parrot dont pluck

infact, i was surprise to see alot of wild parrots do not pluck, different from the captive ones. in my local shop, there is always captive breed grey, which cost 700-800 dollars and wild caught grey which cost merely half of the captive breed ones, 350-400 dollars.

the wild caught ones is believed to be suitable breeder while the captive breed one as pets.

after observation over more then 7 years, i always find that the left over of the captive breed will end up to be curl as they have pluck all bald and no one wants them anymore.
the wild caught one has never seen to pluck. eventhough they are put in smaller, crampier cage,and definately enduring huge traumatic expiriances, they do not pluck.

it might be true that congo need the extra nursery months. i always notice that congo has a change in behaviour pass their 1 birthday. not all grey, but i have seen alot. some later and some sooner.

for example, the grey below a year old might seems to be clingier to you. they always want you to be near them, this change quiet quickly after 1 year old. they become more indipendent, start to establish their behaviour(usualy difficult to break) and to some, they seems to reject the previous main caregiver.

to a large extend, i wouldagree with ms.hollanders views. Great research !!

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