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Behavior change since winter onset?

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yramnot
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Joined: Sat Aug 28, 2010 6:13 pm
Location: Oregon

Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by yramnot » Sat Nov 06, 2010 2:02 pm

My father has a young female alexandrine that's due to turn two in December. Winter has come early for us, and the days are not only short but dark. And I mean DARK. It seems like since this has happened, the bird has experienced some very dramatic behavior changes. She's become highly aggressive. On two separate occasions she has attempted to attack my face. She seeks out my father's attention and then bites him for no apparent reason. When she's not biting people, she appears agitated in general. She screams constantly, and she gorges herself on whatever food we provide her. It shows, too. She's gained a tremendous amount of weight, and she's got a bit of a buddha belly.

Could she be deficient in something? I'm well aware of the hazards of no sunlight, so I have taken to giving her a whole scrambled egg on a fairly regular basis, powdered shell included. It doesn't appear to be helping, however. She's very clearly in distress over something, but I can't figure out what it is. How can I help her feel better?

jeansieluvszazoo
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Joined: Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:03 am

Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by jeansieluvszazoo » Sat Jan 22, 2011 1:03 pm

I find it interesting how you have posted this about your female because for the past two weeks I have noticed changes in my female.
She is two and I have been noticing that she is becoming veryyyyy territorial over things and has no problem attacking me to tell me that they are hers.
I have always allowed her to come into the kitchen with me, while i did the dishes, but for the past two days, the counter has become hers and I can't touch it. Also, when I am getting something out of the fridge she will attack me, drawing blood.
I have only had her for two months, but she has been such a great bird!
I am wondering what this could be....
Maybe breeding season? Not sure if the change in light could affect that?
If I find anything on it, I will let you know.
Hopefully someone can help us both on this forum!

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Donna
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Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by Donna » Sat Jan 22, 2011 1:59 pm

You can try a spectrum lighting, not only does it curb aggrestion it helps with their vitiman D and calcium intake.


Donna
In Loving Memory
of one special husband and one special bird.

I miss you both
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thorsmom
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:25 pm

Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by thorsmom » Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:53 pm

Oh... now I know I'm not alone!!!

I haven't even gotten a chance to post my info on this site, but I am determined to find out what's going on with our 6yr old male Alexandrine, "Fred." I did not name him... and it seems that right NOW "Dr. Jekyll" would be more appropriate, but we rescued him from a very bad divorce situation a couple of months ago... and for the past week, our formerly perfect little gentleman has been anything BUT.

Before last week, Fred was MY bird. Couldn't get him off my shoulder if I wanted, and he wouldn't go NEAR my husband. All he wanted to do on my shoulder, however was the "M"-word and lick my face... so I had to constantly keep him busy and keep his mind off RO-mance. We "upsized" his former 18x18x24 cage ( can you believe that?) to a King's SS dometop that is 3x4x6, and he happily chattered away throughout the day, climbed around and played and chewed with all his new toys ( he had none in his other cage because there wasn't any room for them... idiots ). That was the HAPPY bird we knew him to be.

Then... someone came in one night and changed birds on me. All the sudden, Fred wouldn't leave my HUSBAND alone... flying right off his cage onto Frank's shoulder and doing the "M"-dance with HIM! Talking to him, chattering to him, biting buttons off his shirt.... BITING ME when I went to try to give Frank a break from Fred's attention. Fred never offered to bite ONCE since we brought him home. Now he won't talk to me, won't look at me, and if I open his cage door, sometimes he'll WALK AWAY from the opportunity to come out! What have I done? He has full-spectrum lighting... 10 hours of sleep, several hours out of cage, 3 different types of pellets, SEED ( Higgins Mayan Harvest blends & Vita Prima safflower mix w/out sunflowers), 3 meals a day with a variety of fresh fruits, veggies, grains, beans, greens, YOU NAME IT! And now, I'm the bad guy? What do I do?

We also have 3 other parrots... a 15 year old female Moluccan cockatoo, a 5 year old male BH Caique, and a 5 year old male Hahn's mini-macaw. They all "talk" together, but we have to supervise when everyone is out because the Caique and the Hahn's want to hurl insults... and themselves... at Fred, and the Moluccan wants to defend my husband ( "The Chosen One" in her eyes) against this nerdish green "intruder" who lands on the back of my husband's chair, looks over at Thor ( the M2) and goes, "OH... HI!" So far, no squabbles, but when Thor is close to him, Fred rolls his head way back and opens his mouth and makes a weird "Aaaaaah" sound. Thor just looks at him like he's nuts. Well, after this past week... I'm looking at Fred THE SAME WAY...

Does anyone have any suggestions or little tidbits of information to kindly toss my way? I just can't seem to find a whole lot of info online regarding the "specifics" of Alexandrine behaviour, so I was THRILLED to find this site! I did read something about this being their "breeding season" until April? Do I have to wait until APRIL to get my bird back? OH GOD!!!! :)

Anxiously awaiting tidbits and morsels....

Cathy

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ellieelectrons
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Location: Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by ellieelectrons » Sun Jan 30, 2011 10:52 pm

Firstly, I've noticed that (with IRNs at least), relationships do change over time. Right now, our blue IRN, although she _loves_ my husband (eg. gets agitated when she knows he's nearby), she won't step up onto him for some reason and is more likely to bite him.

Secondly, I'm wondering if increasing foraging opportunities will help. See this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=11701

Finally, I believe that if you spend enough time and have enough patience, you can will win them over. Your bird has had a lot of things to get used to and it is still figuring out who he is in his new home.

I'm realising that with one of our birds, we haven't been reacting appropriately when she bites and so we are more or less training her to bite more.... so it's a hard road, but we have to retrain ourselves in order to change the way she behaves towards us!

Best wishes Cathy!

Ellie.

julie
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Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by julie » Mon Jan 31, 2011 2:10 am

I have both an alex and irns and they Have the exact same behaviours. And both males and females change during breeding season (winter) treat them the same as bluffing.

thorsmom
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Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 8:25 pm

Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by thorsmom » Mon Jan 31, 2011 6:37 am

Thank you both so much!

What might I be doing that would cause Fred to want to bite more? The only time that he tries to bite is when I try to take him away from my husband.... which I guess I should just let my husband deal with him during those times.

And regarding bluffing, which I don't know anything about.... yet.... what is that and how would I treat him as though he were doing so during those times?

I read one post about not making a lot of eye contact during this time... I do that a LOT, but only because it's a habit with my other birds and they really love for me to look at them and blink.

Fortunately, he's really not that "bad," but it's just SUCH a turnaround for a formerly meek and docile bird to become sort of "sullen," moody and crabby. But I'm glad to know that it's probably just the "season." Does the season end anytime soon? :)

Thanks again, and I'll keep working!

Cathy

julie
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Re: Behavior change since winter onset?

Post by julie » Mon Jan 31, 2011 8:05 am

LOL as funny as it sounds he may have chosen your hubby as his mate :D and thats why he is protecting him. Does your hubby give Fred treats or is he the one that feeds him? For ages I was wondering why my boy indie (irn) was more interested in my hubby and one day I caught him sneaking him treats :o I quickly got onto that one and reclaimed my boy. Bluffing is when they act all mean and try to bluff you into backing off from them, its pretty muchly them trying to be the boss. The trick is to not let them know it gets to you.

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