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Thread Description:a happy, but very bitey hen

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  • 5 Post By ceruleanblue
  • 4 Post By aluz
  • 2 Post By FaeryBee
  • 2 Post By StarlingWings
  • 2 Post By HappiBudgie
  • 2 Post By JoTaMi
  • 2 Post By BooksBudgies
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  #1  
Old 03-13-2017, 03:41 PM
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Default Artoo update

Its been almost 8 months since I found and rescued Artoo and shes come a long way since that day in July. Now shes healthy, happy, and just coming out of a moderate spring molt and has pin feathers all over her head and face.

Her new favorite green thing to eat is kale. She imitates a bird whistle that I make and that is now our call for each other. And she rings a bell when she wants something (usually if I leave the room and she wants me back). Its too darn cute. I've been owned.

Her cere is still brown, but not as much, and her hormones aren't raging like they were the last time I posted. She will still coo at me and raise her tail once in a while (usually in the morning when I'm cleaning her cage and making her breakfast), but she's calmed down a lot. The kabobs and an extra early bedtime helped. Now she prefers to go to bed at sundown and so that is our routine.

Artoo has been very resistant to hand training and while she will take millet from my hand and is not afraid and allow me to clean her cage, rearrange she stuff, and give her food, she wont tolerate a dowel perch inside her cage for learning how to step up. Nor will she step up on a finger.

Until last Wednesday she even refused to come out of her cage at all. Then all of a sudden she decided that human clothing was The Most Interesting Thing EVER and had her first outing. The first thing she did was to come and check out my shirt. Because I have her cage on a rolling kitchen cart and take her between the office, living room, dining room, and kitchen, she is familiar with those rooms. She did a few laps around the living room and dining room and then flew back to her cage and explored the top, looking down inside at all her things.

Since then Ive been working with her outside her cage for about 30-60 minutes a day when shes ready to go inside she just goes in herself. It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. I imagine that she'll want to stay out longer when she's ready.

I put a perch on the outside of her cage - near the main door - so shed have something to sit on. Shes very particular about where she perches when she flies into another room, and really prefers to just do a lap or two, then come back to the top of her cage. Shes not interested in playing with toys or anything while shes out yet I think shes still in the OMG THIS IS SO COOL LOOK AT ALL THIS STUFF stage.

Because she is not hand tame, or tame in any way at all, the fact that she wants to fly to my shoulder or arm when she is out is surprising to me. The thing is, once she flies there, she starts to bite. It seems that she pinches and pulls skin in the same way that she does when she preens herself so Im thinking that shes preening me. I think. Except that it hurts a lot. I try not to react, but its hard.

Today I got her to step up on to a dowel perch twice while she was outside her cage. She got lots of praise for that. I will continue to work on that with her. Shes very smart and Ive been letting her determine the pace for everything.

Ive been reading the taming and bonding stickies and, in particular, the article on biting. And thats where we are now. I hope I can encourage her to be more gentle or something.

Here's a photo of her while she was out today.
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  #2  
Old 03-13-2017, 05:38 PM
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Welcome back! It's good to know that Artoo has been doing well, her hormones are under control and she's starting to take full advantage of her out of cage time.
Preening isn't supposed to be painful, in fact it's more of a gentle nibbling that can even cause more of a ticklish sensation.
From your description, it seems Artoo is truly biting.
Hopefully with continued work and by using positive reinforcement techniques, you will be able to limit or put a stop to the biting.
You have been doing an excellent job with Artoo and I'm wishing continued success with her.
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Old 03-13-2017, 06:03 PM
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I'm glad that Artoo (and you) have made such great progress.

You may want to start wearing long sleeves when you have her out of the cage.
I had to do that for awhile with a couple of my male budgies as they both wanted to bite whenever they'd land on me.
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Old 03-13-2017, 06:49 PM
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It's great to hear that Artoo is doing so well You've been given great advice, I hope that soon you are able to limit her biting mood!
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Old 03-13-2017, 10:50 PM
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Artoo is very cute It's great your making progress with her! I hope you can stop her biting soon
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Old 03-14-2017, 06:05 PM
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Artoo is beautiful!
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Old 03-14-2017, 07:23 PM
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Glad to hear you're making such great progress with Artoo! And I sympathize with you on hen bites. They are not fun at all- maybe wrap yourself in bubble wrap?
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