Hello! I'm new here, although I admit to lurking ever since I adopted Hailey (a 12 year old U2) six months ago. Actually, I did a lot of research before I agreed to adopt her and this forum/site was invaluable! I've worked with animals for a long time but didn't have any real experience with parrots. I was shocked to learn I was a "bird person" after rearing turkeys as pets and discovering how intelligent, affectionate, and amazing they were; I started to suspect I might get along well with an avian roommate in the house. So far, everything has been fantastic. She was so lonely and desperate for attention the first time I met her, I believe she would have been ecstatic and thrilled for ANYONE to handle her- the way she showed off, talked, and displayed without stop seemed so desperate, it broke my heart. I went back two days later and brought her home and shes been my best friend ever since. I do believe she would have loved anyone for giving her the attention she so desperately needed, but I'm definitely "her human" now,in fact apparently I'm her "human mate" and im working on not encouraging that (not encouraging hormonal behavior, nesting behavior, etc) because she is jealous with my family/friends. She was destroying and picking her feathers terribly before I got her, even what little she had left were dirty and crunchy, like she'd stopped preening altogether. Within a couple of days, her sparse feathers were clean and soft at least and within a few weeks she became a fluff ball of down feathers
Now we're just working on the occasional (and bloody) attack/plucking of a pin feather if anyone has specific advice (I've done some searching for sure and still am!). It seems like the larger pin feathers are uncomfortable or itchy, idk.. It'd take a while to explain why I think that, but I try to stop her (distract her with something else or a walk) and it works.. Until the next morning when I discover she ripped it out in her cage overnight.
My goodness, I'm sorry this has gotten so long lol! Everything else is so great and I think I can speak for her and say we're both very happy and got lucky in finding each other. I'm glad to have found this forum before I got her and thank you for all the great (and honest) information/opinions/advice etc! I'm truly very grateful and I think this site has really helped us get off to a good start.