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Everything posted by neoow

  1. I love the photo of Huey peeping out over the top of the drawer!
  2. It has been absolute carnage here due to idiotic panic buying. I've never known anything like it. However it does seem to be calming down somewhat now. Shops put in fairly hefty restrictions and reduced their opening hours to give themselves chance to restock the shelves. They also opened early for the elderly/vulnerable and also have dedicated times for NHS/health workers to shop. They're also restricting how many people can be in the store at any time, so you have to queue outside (keeping in mind social distancing guidance) and go in when told. I went today around 1pm to grab a few bits of food. We only bought what we needed before the lockdown and so we were getting towards the end of our supplies. Thankfully I was able to find everything I needed today. I did forget a few bits but I was trying to get in and out as quickly as possible so stupidly didn't take a list. But we have enough of what we need. Alfie has a mix of pellets, seeds, dried fruit and dried veg. He rarely eats fresh produce and usually launches it with gusto across his cage. So he's fairly happy with what he has for now. I've seen others who have use dehydrators to create bird food and as far as I'm aware there's no issue with that? I buy in dried fruit and veg for Alfie as I have such a small kitchen. Otherwise I'd make it myself.
  3. I assume it depends on the bird. Alfie loves to to shred boxes and magazines and will spend many happy hours doing so. And whilst he's shredding boxes, he's not shredding my furniture, so it works for me. I have never seen any mating/nesting behaviours triggered by him shredding magazines and boxes. The only thing that had triggered a response are some foot toys- usually small ball shaped toys will set him off as he seems to think of them as eggs. Needless to say, he doesn't get those if he's feeling hormonal!
  4. I'm glad you're both on the mend and recovering.
  5. That's great news, glad the issue is sorted!
  6. Brilliant! I've also seen similar but with two macaws side by side.
  7. Love the photos! Especially the messy beak! Hope things are settling down ok with your new addition. I would love to see/hear more about them all!
  8. Well first things first... photos please! 😄 I don't have much advice for you I'm afraid, as I'm a single bird home. But I wish you and your flock all the best! I hope Morgan settles in quickly.
  9. neoow


    For the most part, I understand Alfie's boundaries and respect them. But he does catch me sometimes when he (seemingly) lunges at me for no reason. I am thankful that Alfie doesn't seem to bite as hard as he could do. He might leave a slight bruise but rarely if ever breaks the skin.
  10. neoow


    I'm glad you seem to have found something that's working! I can't touch Alfie anywhere except on the head and back of his neck but only when he allows it. He has to put his head down before I can go anywhere near him or I will definitely get bitten. Same for anyone else. I can sometimes get the bottom of his foot if he puts it up at the side of the cage- but I have to be very aware of what he is doing because he'll take exception to that and try and bite sometimes too.
  11. neoow

    Picky Eaters

    Alfie has dumped the entire contents of his food bowl because I dared to put something new in his bowl - no matter how small! 😂 He ALWAYS knows when I'm trying to be sneaky with his food and trying to convince him to eat something new.
  12. Thanks for all the wise words. I'm just letting Alfie come and go as he pleases at the moment. He seems quite happy as he's being quite vocal and he gets lots of exercise when he's out of the cage because he keeps flying round the room. He's fascinated by the 'new' cat tree (we got it in December) so keeps flying towards it but circling back... he'll do this several times in the evenings. He used to spend a fair bit of time on the old one and I think he's keen to do the same with this new one but has only actually landed on it once. He has his two shelves which are full of toys and paper/card to shred. I got him a new foraging toy and hung that near his shelves so he often grabs himself a walnut or banana chip from that. He's still good at getting in his cage to go to sleep - I have to use a perch to fetch him from his shelf (I'm a little too short to reach the higher shelf!) but he often steps up with no problem and climbs into his cage without issue. I give him lots of praise but have held off offering a treat in case he lunges at me. I want to ensure I am able to offer treats with confidence. I think if I approach whilst feeling nervous he will pick up on that and it's more likely to result in a lunge. I also (finally) got him a UVA/UVB light this week which he seems to enjoy sitting under. I don't think that will necessarily make a difference in terms of behaviour, but hopefully it will help beat the winter blues. (It's always very dull, grey and miserable here during winter)
  13. I have watched this several times now and it never fails to make me laugh!
  14. In good news- Alfie flew to me (by choice) this evening and perched on my knee for a few seconds. He was still in 'adventure mode' though so didn't stop long, wandered off down my leg and on to the sofa before flying back to his shelves. But hey, I'll take it... after being mostly ignored (or lunged at!) Please excuse my whining post. I was feeling particularly run down and exhausted yesterday so everything seemed a lot worse than it perhaps is. I know I just need to be patient and ride it out. I can also recite the type of response I would be giving someone else if they had posted a similar story! I just want a happy and healthy bird. If he hates me, so be it... so long as he's happy and healthy whilst hating me! 😂
  15. Seconded- probably best to get him to an avian vet to get it checked out. 😊
  16. I assume it was a combo of all the upheaval of redecorating as well as the haircut, as they all happened within the same few weeks. My hair is super thick, super curly and totally unmanageable. 🤣 I have it short so I can deal with it easier and so I don't have to stress about it. I'd rather not grow it back out if I can avoid it because its so much hassle to keep it long. I had it cut short previously a few years back (similar length but a straightened style instead of curly) and didn't have these issues with him then. So I'm surprised if this is the only trigger. I just wonder if it was too much change/upheaval all at once? Either way, it all happened about a year ago and he did settle back down for a while before he started getting more distant. Coincidentally, 'BirdTricks' are doing a UK tour this year in July so I have signed myself and Alfie up to one of their masterclasses as they are travelling relatively close to where I live. I'm hoping they will be able to help out and give me some advice on how to repair and rebuild my relationship with Alfie. That's happening in July (all being well). In the meantime I guess I need to try and find a way to be less nervous around Alfie and hope he starts to tolerate me a bit more...!
  17. I'm having some troubles with Alfie in that he doesn't seem to tolerate me any more... let alone like me. Alfie has been with me for his whole life- since he was 11 weeks old. I have always been his primary caregiver. He is going to be 17 years old this year. I'll be the first person to admit I haven't always been the best owner I could be over the years. I got Alfie when I was 17 years old and thought I had life all figured out (as you do at that age). Well, life happened and I wasn't always as present as I should be for Alfie and he didn't get all the attention he deserved. Since joining these forums I have been trying to correct that and Alfie get a lot more attention and time out of his cage than he probably ever has these days. The problem is... he doesn't seem to like me anymore. Now I'm well aware that greys will have their 'favourite' person and that this can shift and change. I've got no problem with that. At the moment his favourite person is my housemate, who has very little to do with him but is able to give him the odd head scratch and treat. This is fine and I have no problem with that. I like that they have become friends over the years as my housemate never used to like Aflie (or the noise he made). Last year there was a bit of upheaval as I was redecorating the rest of the house so the cats had to live in the same space as Alfie for a few weeks, which meant he has less out of cage time. There was a lot of noise and people coming and going because I was having flooring fitted and family came round to help decorate the other rooms. Alfie's room/space hasn't been changed- other than having to live with the cats for a few weeks. I also had a biiig hair cut and now have shorter hair. He took a dislike to me after all that and would fly to the back of my head and bite it a few times. We got past that but it's never been the same between us. He stopped letting me scratch his head- either through the bars or when he was out of his cage. He stopped putting his head down for scratches and it got less and less as time went on. I can't just walk up to Alfie and start scratching his head as that is a sure fire way of getting bitten- you have to wait for him to offer his head/neck to you. He doesn't do that at all anymore- even when it's time for him to go to sleep. I can't remember the last time he asked for scritches from me. He will ask my housemate, but never me. When he is out of his cage he comes out and pretty much does his own thing. He plays with his toys and throws things around and flies to whatever perch/surface takes his fancy. He no longer wishes to fly to me, either of his own accord or when asked. I know I shouldn't apply human emotions to his behaviours but I'm feeling pretty run down from work and being a bit poorly over the last few weeks so I keep finding myself getting quite emotional about this. I'm trying to remain cheerful in front of Alfie but it's now progressed to the point where I can't even give him a treat. I always try and reward him with a tasty treat like a walnut or banana chip when he goes into his cage nicely... but now he sees this as an opportunity to lunge at my hand rather than take the treat. Now I'm finding that I'm really nervous around him (I know, I know, he'll pick up on that!!) and I'm really wary of him lunging at me or trying to bite me. Is there anything I can do to try and repair this relationship or do I just have to deal with whatever comes my way? I can stand right next to his cage and chat to him and he doesn't show signs of anger/aggression. When I get him to go back to his cage I'm asking him to step up on to a perch rather than my hand- usually because I can't reach where he is but also because I'm too nervous to offer my hand/arm. When he comes out he just climbs out of his own accord- if I offer an arm he ignores me and won't move until I get out of his way so he can climb out himself. I don't care if I'm not his favourite person but something has definitely shifted over the last year and I worry about how nervous I am around him now. I don't know how to try and shift things back to how they were before... I wasn't the favourite but I was able to give him scritches and interact with him more without worrying about him lunging at me.
  18. I'm not familiar with this brand. Do you have a link or a picture you can share with us? I have used liberta cages and Alfie's travel cage is a kings cage. I would buy a kings cage as his main cage but they don't do one big enough*. Alfie currently has a liberta enterprise cage as his main cage. (* = they do plenty of cages which are "big enough" for an African Grey but I wanted the biggest cage I could get)
  19. neoow

    Picky Eaters

    Absolutely! I don't actually know where these images originally come from - is it facebook? I can see the credit at the bottom so I'll look it up. I only ever catch them when they get shared on other sites and they don't usually link back to the original post (same as what I've just done!). I'll add a link if I can find the original post. I've seen a few and they are always spot on! This one really rung true for Alfie though! Edit: found it! https://www.facebook.com/FelixLaFollett
  20. neoow

    Picky Eaters

    I saw this and thought of Alfie! 🤣
  21. Alfie has always seemed to pick up male voices easier than female voices. My dad taught him a few words/phrases when he was young. Anything my mum, sister or I tried to teach him was mostly ignored. If my housemate (male) tries to teach Alfie new words/phrases Alfie will often listen and pick them up. I have to work a LOT harder to get Alfie to repeat things that I say. He does say things in my voice, like hello, see you later, bye and night night. He also learned how to say 'what noise' in my voice because I am trying to get him to respond to questions like 'what noise does a duck make' or 'what noise does a chicken make'. So he does listen and can learn female spoken words/phrases... but he always seems to prefer male voices and pick up more words from males than females. He listens a lot more intently to males as well. Whereas with me he will quite often shake his head as if it's a noise he doesn't like. If I lower my voice so it's a bit deeper and say the same phrase/words then he won't shake his head. 😆
  22. Alfie isn't a big talker. He much prefers sounds and whistles to words. However, he does pick up the odd word/phrase and uses it with gusto for a while. He seems to prefer male voices over females voices (which sucks for me as he rarely learns anything I try and teach him!). A while back, my housemate taught him to say "you're a birb!" which sounds very cute when Alfie says it. He goes through phases of saying this and started again recently. However, he has now learned to say "you're a butt!" which is what my housemate and I say to each other when we're joking around. Unfortunately we've obviously said it often enough that Alfie has picked it up and now says it with gusto multiple times a day. It could be a lot worse, of course... and it's quite funny to hear him say it... but it goes to show that even with birds who aren't big talkers, you do have to watch what you say! 😂
  23. neoow


    I wish it was possible to find out what goes on in their brains. I'm afraid I don't have any answers for you - but they are sensitive souls. It might be that his past experiences were enough to make him super wary of hands and it's going to take a LOT to get over that. He might never like hands. I'm not sure if there's anything you can do to change that... a parrot behaviourist might be able to help?
  24. neoow


    I try and check in regularly but don't see many new posts. If I think of something to post, I always do - but usually I'm in a rush or can't think of anything at the time.
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