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#246247 - 07/22/12 02:30 AM Long-term parrot-human relationships  
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I was up at the rescue where I volunteer today. It breaks my heart because I always want to help more birds, but I know that I am currently at my limit.

I was socializing a previously abused african grey, who was perched on my arm. Suddenly, he walked down my arm and bit my bicep!

It got me thinking to what a nice routine my flock and I have established together over the years. I know their body language and habits, so it would be extremely unlikely that something like that would happen. They know better ways to communicate with me, and I would have read their body language and have known what was going on earlier in order to prevent it.

It's amazing how in tune we are with each others' moods, emotions, desires, etc. They are incredibly empathetic, and I feel like our bond just strengthens every day, week, month, year, decade that we spend together.

One thing I love about mytoos is the large number of people who are here that have the long-term parrot relationships, and how they are willing to reach out to others who are just embarking on their own, to help make it more likely that the new member's parrot will be a long-term family member and not just a passing fad.

While I obviously wish that no parrots were captive, there is something about the bond with these complex, gentle souls that just gets better with age.

#246294 - 07/23/12 01:57 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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This topic has been on my mind a lot lately,having just finished our eighth year together.
Unlike you,our flock is just the two of us,and since Nadia is only twelve,I am certainly her longest relationship,even though there are people in her life she has known longer,we are together pretty much constantly.
All this is to agree with you regarding the empathic,subtle,and continuously revealing personalities they display.
I came to Nadia with absolutely no bird experience whatsoever,and discovering the true nature of these winged wonders has been more than a revelation,it has changed my life in fundamental ways.I have trouble visualizing my life before Nadia,not so much in remembering events,but the context,and more importantly,the meaning.
The simple truth is the value of my life now,and my bond with Nadia,is more important than anything that has come before.
I do not say this lightly,as I have had a full and happy life,and I am not young,but my view has been totally upended,and now it is with great comfort and joy that I share this constantly evolving bond with Nadia.
I never seem to tire of it,and I want it to go on and on.
I know eight years is not really very long,and I look forward with anticipation of continuing this inter species love affair with my little 'Soul of Gold'.

There is a small painting that hangs over my bed.I have had it since I was a kid.It has always hung over my bed,wherever in the world I was living.
It is a simple depiction of a white bird about to land in a tree.

I guess she finally landed.
It feels so nice to be a tree.

John and Nadia grin cool

#246320 - 07/24/12 01:40 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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John, What a lovely statement...

Beeps, I can't express myself as well as you and John, but I feel it and understand it. It is truly amazing. I honestly believe that I have become a better person for having adopted Lucy...wow...that is deep.


Karen, Lucy (U2), BooBoo (CAG),Pina (BCC),Willie (Cockatiel),
Melody, Sonata, Penny & Dory(dogs)
#246338 - 07/24/12 05:25 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Beeps you are so right. In taking the time to know our birds we do start to understand their moods, body language etc. I know when to pick my birds up and when not to, just because I know their body language, which is totally different from any other birds body language. I do think though that all bird owners, probably will get a bite in the beginning when they relax and dont pay attention to what the bird is trying to tell them. I know I got too relaxed with angelina and wasnt worried she would bite me. She did. Now like you we have a routine and because I know Angelina's and Vada's ups and downs, Im not worried its going to happen again. I know what she likes and expects to do when she comes out of her cage and if she is being difficult going back in which does happen from time to time if her playtine has been cut short. I know exactly what treat will make her hop into her cage. I am so blessed to have these birds in my life. And I still thank god every day for the short few years I had with my beloved Charlie

#247791 - 09/01/12 06:32 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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As well as we may know them I think we need to remember that they may be unpredictable because the are prey creatures. They get spooked,etc.. I always tryto keep Paulie away from my face bc those bite pics were a warning to me. Those people were experienced bird handlers who knew their birds as well. I'm not ready for plastic surgery yet.

#247813 - 09/01/12 08:01 PM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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(chuckle) John, "Feels good to be a tree" is great! Which reminds me, that little grey at the very beginning of this thread may very well have given you a terrific compliment, Beeps: don't parrots usually like to give their beaks a "workout" by nibbling or gnawing on their roosting perch? (Well, maybe being a tree isn't ALL good feelings, huh?)


Jody
#247827 - 09/02/12 05:38 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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mom 2 Paulie. You are right and I think thats exactly what I was trying to say. After almost 10 years, the most important thing I have learned is that they are unpreditacable. But what I also have learned is most of the times now. I know thier moods and I can read their body languge. I know when angelina should not be picked up and when she cant. I also as a smart bird person, never let them near my face. I cant afford any plastic surgery either

#247833 - 09/02/12 07:24 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Its true. Paulies hints are not subtle at all. The crest goes up all the way and his head starts bobbing. That's when I know I'm in trouble. I can't always react quickly enough though. He also cups his beak in his foot a few times just before he bites sometimes.

#253706 - 10/26/13 10:44 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Originally Posted By: Beeps


While I obviously wish that no parrots were captive, there is something about the bond with these complex, gentle souls that just gets better with age.



What makes you think the parrots are the captive ones?

Dear, long-suffering, Dr. Kupersmith: this avian veterinarian has been dealing with my birds for slightly over 17 years. At least once a year per bird, every single bird. It's almost always the same conversation by the end of the visit.

"Who's in charge? You or the bird?"

I always answer, "the bird"

you'd think he would get tired of asking......


~I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 voice recognition software to type~
#253728 - 10/28/13 02:08 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Sounds like your vet knows alot about the bird personality, Meno.
Mine let me think Im in charge but we all know they are, we dont speak of it much. It helps me to feel somewhat in control. I have had winston, the cag, for close to 22 years now. He and I can almost read each others thoughts. I know when he is mad, upset, hungry, happy or bored, I can usually access the situation in seconds. winston is so smart, he amazes me every day, as do all of my feathered friends but his intellegence is far above the others, he even lies! I cannot imagine my life without them, they have enriched every day of my life. My birds are also very empathetic, winston will often ask "are you ok"? and my little quaker will say "aawwww" if I cry.If im sad they seem to be sad too. They are amazing, I'm so lucky to know them.


#254741 - 02/01/14 03:25 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Thinking about this topic again because I'm hitting a decade with my second parrot this year. He's a caique, and 19, so we probably only have about another decade together. (Hopefully longer!)

He's the first rescue bird I adopted (my first parrot, who I've had for 12 years, was purchased from a breeder before I knew better) and he's the one with whom I share the closest bond. (I try so hard not to have favorites, but he makes that difficult!)

He's such a gentle soul, a creature who suffered unimaginable torture before being surrendered to the rescue (I nearly cry, even now, when I think about what they admitted to doing to him -- I imagine they did even more they wouldn't admit.)

He doesn't say a word (anymore), but we communicate anyway. He makes giant kiss sounds, follows me around the house, dances and whistles to his favorite songs, and is such a delight.

When I first got him, he used to walk into a corner, sway back and forth, and repeat "shut up stop it shut up stop it shut up stop it" I've never been so happy to have a non-talking bird as I was when he was content enough to cease that behavior.

These relationships, when you do it right, just keep getting better with age. Of course I have to caveat that I wish he'd never been captive, but since he is, I'm glad he's in my life and that I'm giving him the best captive life that I can. How lucky I was that he was surrendered to my rescue, and that he was the one who picked me!

#254742 - 02/01/14 04:13 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Happy Decade to you both. Sitting and watching his anxiety initially must have been heartbreaking. Knowing that you have eased his fear and forged such a strong bond must be (I have no word for what I'm trying to say) That tight feeling you get in your chest when your love is stronger than words.


Nancy & Cassie BE2
#254743 - 02/01/14 05:31 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Congratulations!!!


Birds are angels who lift us up when our own wings forget how to fly.

"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the world - indeed it is the only thing that ever has!" ~~~ Margaret Meade ~~~

Noelle, A Rehabilitation in Progress
#255059 - 03/17/14 01:24 AM Re: Long-term parrot-human relationships [Re: Beeps]  
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Just saw Beeps post today, congrats on the decade. so sad what some of these guys go through, makes me so mad. Glad he is safe and loved in your home, he sounds delightful.



Moderated by  BE2Cassie, Beeps, Charlie, EchosMom, Janny 

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