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Author Topic: feather tether bird harness
tcup
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hi there.

shopping around online, i've stumbled upon the feather tether bird harness. as well as the 'flight suit'

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Product/Prod_Display.cfm?pcatid=13410&N=2003+62745

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Product/Prod_Display.cfm?pcatid=6323&N=2003+62745

i looked at these products with a grain of salt, but i think in theory they are a great idea. does anyone know the psychological effect of this kind of thing on our birds? i have a U2, and since they can be prone to feather-plucking and self-mutilating, can this really be a good idea? i dont know.... i need some opinions. *shrug*

d and beaker

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Tiasmom
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A LOT of people use the feeather tether with no problem....as for the flight suit, most people here (I beleive) think it's demeaning and goes a bit to far, and could have potential negative effects as far as feather condition, rashes from moisture build up, etc....definitley use the search option on the top right hand corner and search for both, they've been discussed quite a bit.
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hellobaby
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As I say so many times, things depend on the individual bird. Baby absolutely hates any type of harness/tether. She gets this disgusted look, and instead of enjoying being outside, she focuses on the "fashion" dilemna.

There are fairly heated past discussions regarding bird diapers, and I think when you see my posts within those discussions, you will know where I stand on the issue.

http://www.mytoos.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=25;t=000361
http://www.mytoos.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=2;t=000217

So apparently the bird diaper company also sells something that supposedly helps birds refrain from picking/plucking, but I have never found anyone that can definitively say that the item actually works. I simply will not support that company for the reasons I talked about in those past discussions.

I've had the traditional tether, and I've also tried a new type of harness that I think is much better than that one. Unfortunately, as I said, Baby hates anything like that, and our Greenwing we don't have a PRAYER of putting anything on without losing all of our fingers!

Lynne

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Bird Mom
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I bought one with good intentions. I spent several weeks trying to get our M2 to the point where I could lay it on his back....it was pretty much impossible to actually put it on him. No matter how patient I was he pretty much freaked out! I think you have to introduce a harness to a bird when they are babies.
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TLL & Sam
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I adopted a Cockatiel, when I went to pick him up, they had the "Flight Suit" on him. I thought ohh how cute is this? Well when I arrived at home with him, I noticed red on his back, the flight suit had irritated his top of the wing so bad, it was raw! I immediately took it off of him and never put it on him again. Needless to say if I bring it out and he sees it now, he will fly into his cage and will not come out till it disappears!
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Elliott
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I think it all depends on the bird.

I have used a harness and leash on Kyu lots of times. When she sees it come out she gets all excited knowing she is going somewhere. She gets frustrated at me because I keep forgetting how to put it on properly.

I have used a flight suit on her and found it works great. The first time we went out, she had it on for about 3 hours and when I took it off, she had pooped alot but had no poop on her. I think the "diaper rash" issue is only if you leave it on to long just as with a human baby. Just be sure to get the proper size.

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pjcoop
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I agree with Elliott and the rest...It depends on the bird...I am lucky enough to have a 15 year old bird that has had someone who loved him a bunch...he ALLOWS me to put the feather teather on him...The hard part was getting up enough guts to latch it to him the very first time [Eek!] .....oh and it took months of putting it on the telephone before I really knew how it was going to go on!!!! I didn't have a stuffed toy to practice on or the Robot Parot LOL.
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SnowyTheU2
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Tcup,

Here's another pro response for getting a harness for your U2. My U2 has used one for about 7 years. My main objective was to open him up to other people and various environments. It has definely done that. When he’s out he wants to step up and get to know anyone that’s around him.

It took four months for my then 8 year old male U2 (now 13) to accept a store bought harness. During that time he would explicitly let it be known that he would not permit that article around his neck. Fortunate for me he never drew blood, but respect. What converted him was one day he was feeling energetic and was flying/squawking from his cage to the top of the refrigerator (about 30 feet). Decided to chase him. He enjoyed the game, but after a short while he was exhausted. Got the store bought harness and put it on him without the slightest disturbance. Immediately took him outside. Showed him the yard, talked with and showed him off to the neighbors, and from that point on there was never any problem putting on the harness. He even raises his wings for the straps that go underneath.

Two problems with the store bought harness. The first being that he could unlatch the clasps that go under his wings as quickly as they could be put on. The second problem was that he was always picking at it when it was on.

The resolution of this was I came across a web site where a man who wanted to free flight his CAG had had similar problems and designed his own. Went out and bought a 72 inch shoe lace for a little over a dollar as compared to around $20 for a store bought one. Took a few tries to get the size right, but the above problems were solved. A side note is that he could probably with time bite through the harness, but he doesn’t. Also he destroyed the clasps on two store bought harnesses.

Trained my CAG to this type of harness and found it to be safer to put on. On the store bought harness the fingers are always in close proximity to the beak and I believe it would have been a much longer process not to mention the cuts and bruises.

I hope this helps you in your decision. If you want more details about how it’s made, can send you instructions/pictures.

Web site referred to: http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/indexbegin.html

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hellobaby
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Shanlung actually has/does participate on this board. His & Tinkerbell's story is really something to read through. Here is a link to a past discussion he took part in regarding feather tethers:
http://www.mytoos.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=10;t=001765#000006

Lynne

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ShanLung
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SnowyTheU2 , hellobaby

Thanks for remembering me :-)

First, see some photos of Tinkerbell in harness
and in flight.

http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/

Do a refresh or more to bring out different photos. Then take a quick read down the page to
see the subsections.

All that consist of years of writings and photos. That might be good to refer to for very explicit
descriptions of training and travel with Tinkerbell.

But that can be overwhelming, unless you suffer
from insomnia and must read something.

For a nutshell (big nutshell warning) of what I have done and how to do that, go into

Harness for flighted parrots - To Nick and folks

http://shanlung.livejournal.com/8284.html

You will have some basis to decide if you like
to think about trying it too.

Shanlung

http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/

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hellobaby
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quote:
Thanks for remembering me :-)
We could never forget. [Smile] Thanks for the update. If it's OK with you, I'd like to add your pages as links on some of the flight related pages on our site.

Lynne

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ShanLung
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Lynne,

It is a pleasure to say yes to you. You are welcome to take and post any of the photos of Tinkerbell, whether in flight or not, and any of my links as you requested. I am honoured by your request.

I do feel what I have done can be replicable by anyone else. After all, the current caregiver of Tink now takes her out regularly so this is not unique to me. So I do like to reach out to more people with the story of Tinkerbell and me.

Even if they do not fly their parrots/2s, they might like to know that it can be done, or at least enjoy the photos and the accounts of how life
can be like with a flighted parrot.

I hope you enjoyed that latest visit I made to Tink in Nov 2006. I thought I append an old letter introducing you to Tinkerbell Interlude.

And also as to where I am now working and living.

======================================

http://shanlung.livejournal.com/2006/11/16/

Tinkerbell Interlude photoset and videos, and start of next chapter of life

Hello to all my friends around the world,

The last couple of days were spend in collating the photographs and videos
taken during the Tinkerbell Interlude, a period from 1st November to 8th November
when I was in Taiwan to be with Tinkerbell again.

I sort the photos to cover the day by day with Tinkerbell.

The Livejournal entries now have the appropriate photos in them that
better illustrate some of the events I wrote about. The videos are
also embedded in the Livejournal entries.

You find that in

http://shanlung.livejournal.com/2006/11/

Tinkerbell flights were very weak at the beginning. Yu treated her
too well, taking delicacies and tea to her. As a result, she hardly
had to fly. She never made recall flights to him for a long time. That
led to him not trying to let her fly. That was a sad spiralling circle.
It took me just one morning to put right in my "Retraining the trainer".

Tinkerbell needed to be reminded of the joy of flying, and given the chance
to fly again. In the videos at Chiayi Park Confucious temple, you can hear
clearly the heavy landings she made on me, none of those feather soft landings
of before.

It was only a week later, that I trusted her with longer flights at BanTienYen.
Look at the video where she flew at me, circled off with the leash screaming from
the reel and her breaking off and returning to me.

The photosets can be seen here.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/shanlung/sets/

You can also see the videos here.
http://www.youtube.com/profile_videos?user=shanlung

You should see that from bottom up starting from Confucious temple flights.

Why I went to Taiwan for this short holiday can be told now.
When I left Saudi Arabia, I went to Brisbane Australia and accepted a 4 year contract
to work and live there. I came back to Singapore to do the paper work to get that work
visa for Australia. I knew my time frame will be short. So I had to see Tinkerbell
when I could.

It was lucky that I did so. Yesterday, I received news that the visas for me and my wife Joy
were granted. I hoped to start there early next year. That company then wanted me over asap.
We compromised in that I fly over to Brisbane on 26th November starting 27th November 2006.

My wife will remain in Singapore for a few months until the work and company find us mutually agreeable
for that long term. Then she will fly over and live with me in Australia.

This started when I was working and living in Riyadh , Saudi Arabia. Then I read this BBC article
in June about the Russian tundra melting. We knew that would happen. But I thought that to be a consequence
of global warming. That article then described the CO2 and methane trapped in the past to be coming
out now. So instead of the permafrost melting as a consequence, that might well be a timebomb giving
us even less time in a world and society that we know.

I rather enjoy life with my wife NOW, than to make lots of money in Riyadh for a future rather uncertain.
There were other reasons, but my preference is to enjoy the time that is left to me and my wife. Working and living
in Brisbane Australia will be much better than in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia even if the pay is less.

Perhaps, what I wrote ten years back might make interesting reading for you.
http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/oldluddite.html

I will not argue if you think differently. In fact, I hoped you are right, for the sake of my son
and your children, that we will have a lot more time in the future. If true leaders are found and all
of us ready and able to accept the drastic changes in our current lifestyles. Rather difficult isnt it?

That bring up what will happen to Yingshiong should and when my wife joins me in Australia.
You note that I deliberately had to fly back to Singapore from Taiwan as my wife flew to UK
to see her nieces.

By the way, Yingshiong is in the PC room with me. He flew in to join me as I wrote this rather long letter.
If I ignored him too long, he would hover over my head. So I do a few recalls for the chance to treat him
with millis.

I love YS too, even if not at the level at the soul as that with Tinkerbell.

Should me and my wife cannot look after YS, I will not allow YS to be back into a round cage.
I had discussed with Taufik with the various possibilities and he agreed with me.

Yingshiong might go into the Jurong Bird Park in the waterfall aviary. This is the largest walk-in aviary
in the world. I have had discussions with the highest level and given an in-principle approval for Yingshiong.
There are 4 resident male shamas there and one or two females among lots of other birds. It will
be a life and death struggle for Yingshiong. But I think YS is a prime 4-5 years old. I believe he will fight
and be dominant or at least carve out a space for himself.

So if anyone go there in future, you might be hearing Yingshiong singing up in the canopy of trees.

My friend BK offered Yingshiong a permanent place in his huge aviary, and beautiful shama wife for him too.
But no one other than me , BK, and a few of his friends will ever hear Yingshiong again. He will be safe there,
pampered for the rest of his life.

Another option will be to release Yingshiong back into the appropriate forest. This might have the risk that he
is unable to integrate back into nature or capture by other people to be kept in a cage again.

It is yet too early to decide now.

Warmest regards

Shanlung

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Tsuki
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We bought a feather tether harness for our Triton cockatoo about a year ago. She loves it. It took no time at all for her to get used to it. It's an M size and getting a bit snug but we could not find an L harness anywhere. It seems Premier, the manufacturer of the feather tether, is bringing out a new harness. Anyone know anything about this?
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U2GIRL
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hey there i had botten a flight suit for my baby! she dont liek it very much couse you have to Pull her wings in the loop but she getting the hang of it. I like it better then the harnish!
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Janie
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Love the flight suit. Kiwi has a number of them in different colors. She has bows to match. Just for grins, I tried a doggie bow on her attaching it to the feathers on her crest. She demands it always. I think she can see the bow up there. She wears the flight suit whenever we go away, The minute we're back home the she removes the suit, steps out of it and tosses it to me. The pantyliner option is great. If we travel, I just change her in a public bathroom. The harness option on the flight suit is fabulous. It allows her safety when on the boat, and in the car. We have a perch strapped into the middle seat in the car, I wrap and tie the leash to the perch so in case of accident she only pitches forward a very little bit, or would slam into my husband or myself, and believe me we're well padded. When we adopted her, we didn't like the car carrier method. In case of accident, she would slam around in one of those like a ping pong ball. We worked with her to acclimate her to how she would travel in the car. The flight suit is invaluable.
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mom2paulie
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Tried the feather teather. I thought it was a good idea and Paulie didn't. It wasn't worth it to me to force him, so we don't use it.
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momma2darwin
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Flight suit : thumbs down...Feather tether : have gotten it on Darwin, but so far a no go. [Frown] Next I may try a figure 8- type of harness, one that's not so restricting or noticeable by His Highness. Thusfar , we do better by having Darwin's wings trimmed and not being too adventurous in our forays into the great outdoors. Safer for him and also he seems to be more secure in attitude that way. He is a bit timid to get too far away from me outside, and I watch him VERY closely when he is out, PERIOD.
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Kim & Lilly
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quote:
Kiwi has a number of them in different colors. She has bows to match. Just for grins, I tried a doggie bow on her attaching it to the feathers on her crest. She demands it always.
I'm sorry, is Kiwi a Yorkie or a Cockatoo? Sigh..

I don't mean to be rude, but how degrading for a wild animal. Having the flight suit is bad enough, but a bow????

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momma2darwin
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Sorry, but must strongly disagree with the perch in the car idea. Small wreck or evasive maneuver : danger to the bird...Large wreck: probable death, or at very least, loss of the bird. VERY bad practice, period!
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ShanLung
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It is not a good idea to do things by half measure such as trimming wings to lessen flight.

Trimming wings is about the worse measure to try to stop birds from flying away.

In fright and with wind gust, clipped birds will , and can fly away.

By trimming feathers, you lull yourself into a false state of mind that all is safe. Then when the clipped bird fly away in fright up a tree, the very lack of those clipped feathers meant that bird cannot fly down to you again.

Those who live with flighted birds will know that flying down is one of the hardest act EVEN WITH ALL FEATHERS INTACT. Successful flying down from high points require much more skills than flying up in fright.

But then, those who never flown birds always appear to know more than those who fly birds consistently.

For all it is worth, Tinkerbell adapted well to perches in car. But then, she adapted very well to a perch on motorbike .

At the end of it all, it is the knowledge and the training that really matters, and not what you think is right especially if you do not know what is right and do not wish to know what is right.

Shanlung

http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/

Sha

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hellobaby
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Kim & Lilly, I had much the same inner response to the one post above. I have no vested interest in giving my opinion on the flight suits but wanting what is best for these birds. I realize each bird is an individual. All I ask is that when people read these types of things, they consider the source. I've been on here a long time and have two flighted birds. I have a real problem with the concept of donning WILD animals up in outfits.

That said, I know there are some funny quirks birds may have about adorning themselves. Baby can't resist trying out any/all sunglasses she sees - but that's only for a moment and completely HER idea. I do have a friend whose M2 occasionally likes to have a clippie put on her crest. Again, it's short-lived, and seems to be in the realm of playtime.

If someone can take the time to put together "ensembles" for their bird, they can also could have used that time to establish patterns in behavior - such as "potty training". When I hold Baby over a toilet, trashcan, piece of newspaper (or even a paper towel), she'll poop. I pay attention to her metabolism and make sure - wherever we are - that she is given ample opportunity to go. Why on Earth would I need one of those poopsuits? To me, it seems easy to just pay attention and provide her plenty of opportunities to do her business.

It was EASY to develop that understanding between her and I. It's just a little bit different with our Greenwing, but he is also really good with the pooping issue. I can't really have him perch on my arm and go. He's not one to have anyone hold his feet (like Baby is), and my lower arm/wrist area is too small in circumference for to hang off and do his business. (His talons encompass my entire wrist.) He's not big on traveling like Baby is, so it's rare that he is out of our home.

On the rare occasions that he does travel, we plan things ahead so he has a big enough spot to make his Greenwing splatter art. He travels in a carrier, and before we let him loose, there is paper laid out and a comfy perch for him. It's a given that either of our birds will poop first thing after being let out of their carriers.

While I would love for them to be able to enjoy the actual outdoors, I am not willing to let them loose "freeflight" (outdoors, untethered) because of predators and the risk that they would get caught up in her wildness and wind up miles away for a future uncertain. Beautiful as they are, there is a price on their heads, and a good possibility that someone would capture them and not provide them with as good an environment as we have...

For us, even a harness isn't an option. I've tried them over the years with Baby, and she just obsesses how much she hates them rather than enjoying the "freedom" of them. Getting one of those on our Greenwing would be impossible due to the fact that he was abused in his past. We would violate all the trust we've had to build with him over the years if we tried to harness him. That is our individual situation.

I know there are birds out there enjoying their harnesses and the "freedom" (relative freedom when comparing it to actually living in the wild) it gives them. However, I think there is a fine line between using a harness that a bird enjoys for freedom, and having a bird wear something to be fashionable and/or release the human from the responsibility of keeping tuned in to the birds' needs.

If someone wants to dress something up and have it be fashionable, I believe they should get a little dolly! (NOT subject an already gorgeous WILD animal to their human whims!) That's my opinion.

Lynne

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Charlie
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quote:
For all it is worth, Tinkerbell adapted well to perches in car. But then, she adapted very well to a perch on motorbike .
Everyone seems to completely ignore the human part of this equation. The human has no thought that he will have a wreck and that he will be disabled, unconscious or dead. What happens to the bird then? It is unbelievable to me that anyone would even consider having a bird loose in a vehicle, much less a motorcycle. [Roll Eyes]
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momma2darwin
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((SIGH)) Once again, assumptions are made by one member that another is ignorant because they do not share the same opinions as they do. I have had birds that are flighted, and have allowed on brief occasions Darwin to be flighted. But in very protected circumstances, and very practiced ones. Inside, to say the least. With all dangerous surroundings minimized, to say with certainty. And yes, I do know that a frightened bird, clipped correctly, or fully flighted, can be a disaster in the waiting, or in the unexpected circumstance. We can only try to anticipate the things that CAN go wrong, and sometimes do in spite of our best efforts and good intentions. Such is life! [Wink] so let us share our experience and our opinions without belittling those of others, especially when the experience of the other is not known to you. [Smile] [Frown]
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ShanLung
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Charlie,

You want ALL contigencies to be guarded against. Should I write on how those contigencies you brought up be avoided, I am sure you will dream up of even more. If you believe the safest way is to clip the wings and stay at home with your bird, you are entirely at liberty to do so. But is your home earthquake proof? Have you thought of possibility of a comet hitting your house ?

What? No?

Then let me go riding on my bike with Tinkerbell. I decline to buy an armoured Humvee prior to taking Tink out. Besides, an IED can take out an Humvee. I cannot guard against that contigency either.

momma2darwin,

Above is for you too and not just for Charlie.

What you advocate about clipping wings as long as you keep a close eye is dangerous. I am against that idea and not you.

Let me quote into here

"
lost cockatiel 'Tory'
Lost cockatiel. Grey/yellowish pearl. Banded 03. ay come to 'Tory Bird'. Poor flier due to wing clipping. Email: dbrueck685@aol.com. White Lake, MI.

Our bird was lost on 11-23-03 in the area of St. Petersburg, Fl. In the region of OLD NORTHEAST. We are heart broken over it, any info that is given will be greatly helpful, wings are clipped and can't fly There is a reward out for the return of the bird , under one year old. Email: ywwalker@mypetshop.com. St Petersburg, FL.

Blue & Gold Macaw, Lost in Pembroke Pines, Fl Distinctive Forth black Line Under Eyes. Still Being Handfed. Wings Were Clipped First two Wing feathers Still On. Lost On Sept. 21. Reward If Found. Email: mattshaninfl@aol.com. Pembroke Pines, FL.

etc...

"

Enough? I can quote even more appeals for help from those who thought clipping wings will be 'safe'.

Or I should not spoil your current illusion that clipping of wings will be enough.

Do you have any idea how much better parrots can see and hear as against humans? What you think is safe is safe only from your context and that may not be the case. And should the parrot spook, you have not seen the power. That power is just unbelievable!

And not just the power, their takeoff speed can be so fast too. It is unlikely the speed of your reaction (or anyone for that matter) can do anything. You think keeping a close eye is enough to ward off Murphy's Law?

Of course, I could be wrong.

Take what I know and written as something you can disregard if you so wish. Such as the summary of how I got into this and the training that was done and how you can protect yourself in the URL below.

http://shanlung.livejournal.com/8284.html

Shanlung

http://www.geocities.com/shanlung9/

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awakeningfate
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Ok, I have to be pro on the flight suit issue...

Henrietta sometimed DEMANDS car rides. She sees the keys, or hears them jingle and it's screamfest 2007 untill she gets her way.I've tried keeping her in a small dog kennel for the rides, but good luck keeping her in it. Well, poop doesnt exactly do my car interior any good. Personally, I dont care, but I car pool, and nobody else wants to sit in poop.

Also, when I bring henrietta to my parent's or other's places for holidays, poop was always an issue. I would clean it as much as i could but she always manages to sneak one or two past me [Razz]

As far as rash and demeaning.... henrietta sometimes isnt in the mood to wear it, so i listen to her and she doesnt have to wear it... and most of the time she doesnt care, she's just glad to be able to stomp around the table or car at her leasure. And I've never ever had a problem with rashes. If you put the bird in the suit 24/7 maybe a problem would occur, but for occasional car rides and to be able to have her at my moms for christmas dinner, it's worth every penny plus some. Just remember to change the pads often.

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