Friday, October 30, 2009

New Park

Yesterday I took Manzi to a new park. It is a huge park. It borders a very busy farm road, but at one end I am more than 1/4 mile from the road. I decided to let Manzi fly. He is not used to so much open space. He did flights more than 10 times longer than outside my place. He was getting tired though and was flying lower and lower. After about 45 minutes of flying (and hanging out in trees) he took off towards the busy road (cars go up to 70 mph on it). He flew out of my sight, but other have better sight than me. When I went after him, he immediately began contact calling. He was easy to spot, but on a tree right next to the road. I called him down and he tried about seven times to get down to me. It must have been a combination of the wind and the new place, cause he kept missing his landings. I heard him do his panic call so I know that he was frightened. The sun set and then I began to worry he might spend the night there (and potentially get hit by a car). I decided to get him more worried by walking away. Luckily, that worked and he flew after me. After doing a few circles he was finally able to land on me and was happy to get treats. I'm not sure what to do from here. I could go even further from the road (another couple hundred yards). I don't know why Manzi took off towards the road. It was a new park, there were lots of soccer teams playing and there was a bit of wind.

Today I am going to get a t-stand to do A-B flights. Hopefully that will help him with landings. He is still having a lot of trouble stopping and thus lands in trees and then flies down to me from a closer distance.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Roomba

I have a roomba now, which I love. Manzi also is very interested in it. He has already figured out how to turn it on. He chases it and sometimes will hop on. Once he is on the roomba he often gets scared and bails out.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Brooklyn and Rey

Yesterday I finally met up with another person who aims toward free flight. He has a 4.5 month old Green Wing Macaw, Brooklyn, who is beginning with free flights. Currently, Brooklyn is in a harness while outside, but he did great. He flies to Rey, his owner, and then back to his perch. He flew towards me once, but I held out my arm and he then flew away. Brooklyn is three times the size of Manzi! Manzi was scared to death of Brooklyn and wanted to stay as far away from him as possible. Due to that, Manzi did horrible and stayed pretty high in the trees for most of the time only coming down a few times. By the end, Manzi was not panicking as badly, but it will be a while until they are friends.

A really good thing happened. It has been a while since another bird has gone after Manzi. The last few times it has happened, Manzi panicked and took off as fast as he could. Well, yesterday a black bird dived down to Manzi and chased him. Manzi flew very fast, made some loud noises and as soon as he lost the bird, he flew right back around and landed in a nearby tree. It made me feel pretty confident that even though a bird chases Manzi, he can keep his head on his shoulders and not just take off.
video

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Costume

I just finished the costume for Manzi this morning. I don't want to force it on him and it just so happened that an old water bottle volunteered to do the modeling. Over the next couple weeks I will give Manzi treats a few times a day for getting close to the costume. Hopefully within a short period of time he'll be fine with it being on him and the games will begin!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

No Fast Stopping

Manzi has been flying incredible these past two times. Today we were out for 1.5 hours and Manzi didn't get into any trouble and he did 20 flights which is way more than he's ever done before. It seems that one thing he still doesn't do is fast stops without turning. If he is in a tree and I am too far away when I call (100+ feet) he will fly towards me and then since he's going too fast, he'll pass right by and do some turns to finally land in a nearby tree. Once he is close in a nearby tree, he immediately flies down to me. Finally, when I went far away, he made the flight, but he didn't pick up much speed to begin with. He never stopped after flying fast. I don't know if he will ever learn that. Manzi did do a fantastic dive which impressed everyone watching (he was flying straight and then turned nearly upside-down as he dove sharply to one side). Also, his indoor behavior today was so much better than it has been over the past few days. Maybe we are both back into the routine of being around each other and hopefully it stays this way.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Successful Flying

Yesterday Manzi did great outside. I chopped up two grapes into eight pieces each and Manzi went crazy for them. He is still having trouble stopping from high speeds, so when I went too far away and called him, he was going so fast so he dodged me at the last second and did many large circles. He went further away than ever before, but he circled right back around and landed in a nearby tree. I left him for a few minutes and then called him and he came right down to me. I was very happy with his recall yesterday. I didn't have time to take him out tonight, but we'll try again tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Flights

I ended up taking Manzi out on Sunday. He did pretty well, but it was windy and he missed many of his landings. We're going out again today so hopefully all goes well.

Manzi doesn't spend more than 10-15 minutes eating breakfast in the morning and in the wild they spend much more time than that. So, I tried making breakfast more difficult by wrapping pellets up in newspaper. It took me a few minutes to make many little balls of bunched up newspaper (each holding a few pellets). I was disappointed when Manzi finished his breakfast in 20 minutes. It only took a few minutes longer. I need to make it much harder. Maybe instead of putting a few pellets in each piece of newspaper I should put just one pellet per newspaper. Also, I can spread them around the bottom of the cage so he has to go digging for it and maybe even put balls of newspaper with nothing in it to make him work harder. I'll try that for this evening's dinner.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Patriotic

Out of all the things that my friends could have taught Manzi, they choose the National Anthem. He can only sing the first few words, but he can whistle most of the song. All morning long I had my own patriotic pet reminding me of how great of a nation we have!

I arrived back yesterday and Manzi was so happy. He even gifted me some of his partially digested food. I was not impressed with the gift, but I guess it is the thought that counts.

I didn't want to take him flying yesterday as he had been fed too many treats. Today is windy and it look like it might rain. If the weather improves we'll go flying, but otherwise it will be postponed till another day.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Update on Manzi

This is directly from the family taking care of Manzi:

Adele!! I Love Manzi , he cracks me up. Im trying to teach him songs and so far we are progressing. He's so smart. You'll see when you get back .. oh and you are not going to like what he learned from Tyler. O.O hehehehe..


I am very happy to hear the update. Luckily, since I'm still in the country I can call anytime to get updates. Manzi seems to be doing very well in a house that has so many kids and different things going on. He doesn't have a chance to get bored.

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