Sunday, December 30, 2012

Birds together (so far, so good)

I have been keeping the birds together in the large cage for a week now. The only injury came two days ago when it was getting late and it was dark. Both birds were hanging upside down and were doing some very angry sparring. I heard Manzi scream, which made me run to the cage (upon which I found them sparring). I didn't have a quick plan and I didn't want my hand to take their bites, so I quickly grabbed Manzi's tail to get him to turn around, then I picked his feet off the top. He was happy to be rescued. He must have wandered too close to Maui, whereupon she bit him in the nostril, causing Manzi to begin a counter attack. The bite did leave Manzi with a broken skin, some blood welling up in the area and some swelling. Now, it is healed over, but definitely still red (which it will probably be for some time). I was scared to leave them back in the cage together, but they have been fine. I check on them in the camera all the time. It seems that they just stick to themselves. By evening, they will perch on the top branch about 1' apart and preen themselves, so that is nice. They aren't too stressed for that.

The goal of this is so that both birds have more room than in their smaller cages. But, if they are too stressed and have to give each other a huge girth, then that will defeat the purpose of having them together. So far, they seem to be okay, not great. They do pay attention to where the other is in the cage and they don't come closer than 8" from each other. Hopefully they will relax. Last year when I tried this, it lasted for about a week before they started beating each other up. It has been a week, so hopefully it doesn't go down from here.

Another topic: I had a rotisserie chicken on Friday. The birds love chicken, so I gave them the scraps (bones, cartilage, etc.). Manzi was in the way of the food dish and wouldn't move so I put the scraps in having to brush past him. The scraps were so greasy, so now he has a big grease mark on his entire right wing. I was hoping he would preen it off quickly, but after an hour I wrapped him in a towel to get out some of the grease and bits of chicken. Today I put him in the shower and he is looking much better, but his wing may be dark for some time.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Hercules' turn

Yesterday Hercules escaped the kitchen/dining area and roamed my place. In the process, he tipped over three potted plants, ate two of them (one will survive) and kicked dirt all over the carpet. Can just one of my pets not be destructive?

I also found out that Manzi does not really like the strategically positioned second air filter. I bought a second one after the first was so successful. I put the second one right next to his living room stand. That way, when he is preening himself (which he likes to do on that stand), the feathers/dander will get sucked right up keeping my place clean and dust free.

Well, that was the theory anyway.

Turns out, that Manzi doesn't like to preen himself when the very loud and strong air filter is blowing a powerful draft right at his bum. At first, I noticed he kept trying to land on my chairs to preen. I promptly would return him to the play stand with the conveniently located air filter. He would promptly return to a chair or his cage. After about 4-5 times of this, when I was putting him on his play stand I noticed my hair was blowing upwards, then I finally connected the two. I need to put the air filter in a place that not only I find convenient, but Manzi as well. Maybe two feet away will be nearly as good.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Manzi in sink

Manzi has been quite an explorer recently. Today he decided to look in the sink and to his delight, he found dishes I recently put in there that had not yet been washed. He spent a good 20 minutes cleaning off the dishes. Here are a couple shots.

Usually Maui is more destructive than Manzi in terms of furniture, but Manzi has been on a roll lately. He figured out how to chew the corner of the refrigerator and pull off little bits of plastic. I temporarily am holding him off by putting an object that he is very much afraid of (a piece of cardboard) on top of the fridge. It isn't visually appealing, but it is right now beating Manzi in the stand off.

Manzi has also figured out how to land on the door frame of the coat closet. It is a very small landing where he ends up sideways, but he has mastered it pretty well. From there he pulls off bits of wooden door frame (who needs those anyway, right?). I wedge the piece of cardboard in that door and close it to keep him away. Before long, I'm going to have scary pieces of cardboard all over my house protecting it from Manzi.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Halloween Attack

Manzi and Maui seemed to get a big kick out of seeing all the kids come on halloween. They were chatty and the kids always would see the birds and get very excited. One group had about 12 people and when I began passing out candy, Manzi no longer could contain his excitement and flew over to the group. Instead of excitement, the kids and adults in the group began to scream and run. Manzi had no where to land out in the hall, so he picked the shoulder of an adult. The adult began running away with me running after her. I told her that if she didn't stop, then I wouldn't be able to get Manzi off of her. She did stop and Manzi gladly stepped onto my hand from his very unstable perch.

Anyway, I kept my door a lot more closed after this, making me look like the person with the messy house who doesn't want people looking in. Still, I'd rather that the the person who gets sued for having a curious bird (being mistaken as an attack bird).

On another note, Manzi hasn't been really destructive lately. So he made up for it when he decided my cell phone charger made for a good chew toy. Surprisingly, it still works, but I can see the electrical components now, so I am sure it would not pass any safety checks. I am trying my best not to let it shock me.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Hercules is growing

I haven't posted Hercules in a while. I put Maui next to him for a size comparison (and the usual quarter). Maui wasn't so happy about it. She is a lot more wary of Hercules than Manzi. Lately, Manzi and Hercules have been battling it out. Manzi will threaten Hercules, which causes Hercules to tuck his head and front legs into his shell. Still, Hercules keeps his back legs out and pushes himself towards Manzi. Manzi then backs away. Once backed away, Hercules comes out and goes straight towards Manzi again, which leads to Manzi reaching out and causing Hercules to tuck in again.

This usually happens when Manzi drops food. Hercules will make a bee line for the food, as will Manzi. Manzi arrives first and tries to keep Hercules away, but he is becoming more and more passive towards Hercules.

Maui also often stands on Manzi's cage. Manzi will stand near her on his cage as well and they do not bite at each other. They will just puff up when the other is making direct eye contact, but other than that they have been fairly peaceful. Manzi also goes into Maui's cage still, now even when she is in there as well, but they don't hurt each other. Just eat each other's food.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Air Filter

I ended up buying the Honeywell Air Filter:

Honeywell Filter

I have been very happy with the filter. It is very loud, but that is alright. I keep it in with the birds in their sleeping cages. The dust in that room was incredible, so I couldn't imagine that it was very good for them to breathe. It has a double bonus. Since it is pretty loud, they don't ever scream for me to get them out in the morning because they can't hear me moving around. This wasn't a huge problem or anything, still, it is nice to be able to get up in the morning and do morning activities for a few minutes before they begin asking to be let out.

Anyway, if you have a parrot, I would highly recommend this filter based on a few weeks use. Maybe my opinion will change with time, but I'll post an update in six months or so.

Maui furthering her harassment

Maui has taken the run of Manzi's cage. As soon as she is out, she is on top of his cage. He usually takes off and has claimed the perch in the living room. Maui can't go there unless I carry her over. At first Maui would just climb on Manzi's cage and eat my dry wall. Now she goes inside and makes herself comfortable, eating his food, swinging his toys and napping on his perches. When I first got Maui, Manzi would have killed her if she went near his cage. Now he just waits for her to leave. Sometimes he will patiently wait on the very corner of his cage. Then she knows he wants in and she will usually climb out at that time.

Today I am working from home, so the birds get to be out all day. These days make me forget how much running around I did shooing them back into good behavior, those days when I permanently worked from home. Hopefully I can do that again before too long.

I have plexiglass in the outdoor cage as a wind break. I drilled holes in it and use zip ties to hold them down. Recently, Manzi discovered the joy in chewing through zip ties. Luckily he is only paying one side of the plexiglass any mind. Still, within a couple of hours all the zip ties on that side have been removed. I'm glad I bought the 100-pack.

I'm still looking for a nice, huge stainless steel cage. If it is large enough, maybe Manzi and Maui can share it. I don't think enough of those cages are out in the market, so there is not a great deal of used ones available. I am really happy with the large patio cage. In another two months that will have to come back inside though.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Evening outside

Last time I put Maui outside, she was acting very nervous (doing her nervous tick). Today she is quite happy. She took a bath in the larger water dish and now if playing with the bell toy. Unlike Manzi, she's not too fond of playing with toys. She prefers to destroy things, but doesn't seem to get enjoyment out of attacking toys or swinging from them, etc.

Right now she is swinging the hanging bell. She waits 30 seconds or so until it slows in swinging, then she grabs it again and tosses it into a big swing again. She's been doing that for the last 10 minutes. I grabbed the camera, but of course she stopped and watched me at that time.

Manzi is pretty happy outside as well. Right now he is going through the feed dishes picking up scraps that Maui left.

I saw a really nice stainless steel cage online. They are quite expensive new. This one is listed new at $2500. It is 6.5' x 4' x 3'. That would be a wonderful replacement to Maui's current indoor cage, which is small and non-collapsible. The price is still pretty high, so hopefully I can wait it out to get it for a lower price. I measured my place and that cage would be a squeeze, but it would fit where Maui's cage currently resides (although it would have to be turned sideways along with Manzi's cage).

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Maui chewing my dry wall

For the first year that I had Maui, Manzi would constantly raid her cage as soon as she left. Lately, the roles have been switched. Maui, for the first time, has taken a liking to raid Manzi's cage. She plays with toys, climbs around, eats some snacks. I found it amusing until I saw that she also found the dry wall within reach from Manzi's cage. I had moved Maui's cage away from the wall so she couldn't reach the dry wall even when outside and stretching for it. Manzi doesn't have the bad habit of trying to destroy my apartment (he goes instead for personal items), so I left his cage up close to the wall. Maui has only been raiding Manzi's cage for a few days, but there is now a 5" section where she pulled the dry wall off the corner. Toothpaste will not cover that up!

Today the two have been outside in their patio cage while I have been painting all day. They are doing very well together and have stayed in close proximity to each other in that cage with no threats or anything. They are talking back and forth to each other right now. Manzi often does the "charge" whistle followed by Maui's "Charge!" Maui is so consistent at her "charge" that I often tell visitors about it and she rarely disappoints me.

Maui has taken to a guy who comes and visits. He often gives Manzi and Maui treats when he comes over. Maui has always followed him around, seemingly making sure he wasn't up to no good. One day, she put her head down for him to scratch her, but chickened out (backing up very quickly) when he reached down to fulfill her request. Yesterday, Maui began to beg him for scratches and even flew to him. I was so shocked as she has never flown to anything except her cage. Once I got her to land on my arm, but only because it was between her and her cage and she eventually gave up flapping. I am really happy that Maui has come out of her shell so nicely. She is very friendly with women, and now even has a guy on her list of people whom are "okay."

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mild Update

I spent another week away from my birds. They seemed okay. I don't think I'll be traveling for a while (but it seems I always say that).

The birds are doing great. Today they are in their outdoor cage together while I am working from home. I need to figure out how to set up the camera so I can see them while they're outside. Right now the problem is sunlight. If I leave the camera inside, it is way too bright to see them in the patio cage. I don't really want to set the camera up outside either.

Maui is not picking up on the phrase "Happy Thanksgiving!" After she learned her last phrase in a couple days, I figured I'd teach her a seasonal phrase to be ready by November on voice command. I get tired of saying it with a fake, excited tone. Maybe I will torture them with a recording while I am at work.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Fine together

I have been leaving Manzi and Maui in the patio cage unattended now, but just for an hour or so at a time. I am slowly increasing the time they are unattended. They stay out together for 6 hours or so, but usually I am working around the apartment meanwhile. The weather is cooler, so I am going to start leaving them outside while I'm at work.

Camera update:
The camera was working great, then the new router settings didn't work so well. It is back in commision though. The website is once again:
Post a comment asking for the user name and password and I'll be happy to share it.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Manzi scared

Manzi has been scared of something for many days now (4 - 5 or so). In the morning he doesn't want to come out of his sleeping cage and I have to force the issue. As soon as he enters the main room, he takes off flying and does several loops around my living/kitchen area till he tires himself out, and usually lands by the glass door on the carpet, huffing and puffing. I don't know what is scaring Manzi so much. I have been cleaning and moving boxes, bags, etc. but I can't find what exactly is scaring Manzi. I hope Manzi gets over his fear soon. He absolutely will not fly to his cage (he even leans back from it when I carry him to his cage, but will stay on it once I put him there), but has found safety in the speaker stand I made a few years back. He's on that now.

Today a bad storm came through. It was really sunny and nice and both birds had been in the outdoor cage for several hours. I noticed it began clouding up. I brought the birds in and within 5 minutes the wind was blowing so hard that the tree outside was blown to a 45 degree angle. Pretty soon, it began hailing marble sized-hail. I am glad I brought the birds in. The storm came in a fury and left just as quick. Still, when the hail was hitting my windows, the birds we pretty panicked. Maui cowered under her cage (I've never seen her do that before) and Manzi stayed right next to me flinching every time there was a bang. The lights were flickering, which didn't help.

I worry about free flying Manzi, because if he is out and a storm blows through like that, he would be in serious trouble. We never had storms like that in California. There were warnings a couple of days in advance and they never got anywhere near as severe.

I almost forgot. Maui picked up a new phrase, but does not quite say it on voice command. It is: I love you sweet heart. She learned it in two days and now says it over and over again once she figured out she gets rewarded for it. She still needs to connect the cue to the phrase though. I need a more clever cue. Like, "who do you love?" or something like that, but maybe cuter or funnier. Any ideas?

Thursday, July 5, 2012


A while back Manzi found out that he could fly to the top of the kitchen cabinets. He apparently didn't like how they closed so softly due to the pads. Manzi quickly fixed that problem by prying the doors open with his beak and peeling the pads off in lots of little bits.

Meanwhile, Maui finally gave up on one cabinet just above the floor to switch to another. She is also shredding newspaper like mad and tossing half the shreds out of her cage (not up to standard or something?). It has been way too hot to leave them outside in the big patio cage. It will cool down over the next few days, so they'll be going outside again soon.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Manzi after the neighbors

It has been really hot here in Minnesota, so I often open the door to the main hallway (apartments here are hotel style where they open into a common hallway), which is cooled by a central system, as a cost-effective method to quickly cool my own apartment. Manzi and Maui never seem to pay the open door any mind and continue as normal (Maui chewing on my cupboards and Manzi clearing the top of the fridge of any unnecessary items such as cereal boxes and sandwich bags, including any magnets on the front within reach).

The door had been open for about 30 minutes and I was playing the piano, when I began to hear a commotion from a ways down the hall (outside my apartment). I glanced around and quickly noted Manzi was not in sight. I ran out into the hallway and saw Manzi on a woman's shoulder as she was hunkered over protecting her head while shouting. There were another three people watching, wondering what they could do to help. I quickly snatched Manzi from her back and issued apologies. Manzi didn't hurt her and I assured her that Manzi was just being "friendly," although under different circumstances, I would more accurately describe him as "terrorizing for a dramatic reaction."

I always wondered why Manzi never ventured beyond my front door, and he must have finally wondered it himself. I am going to have to abandon that method for keeping my place cool, at least as long as Manzi is out of his cage. He definitely had too much fun leaving my place that I can almost guarantee that he will do that again as soon as he is given the chance.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Fine again

I had taken a break from teaching Maui to talk on voice command. Last night I started again with the "work, work, work." This morning, while getting ready for work, the entire time Maui was saying, "work, work, work," in hopes of getting a treat. After a while, she moved on to her charge whistle. Finally, I ran between the two a few times to give her a chance for treats.

Over this past week, Maui's picked up two new phrases, one being: "That'll work."

Manzi does copy Maui sometimes, but for the most part, when he sees Maui getting treats for talking, he begins showing off his tricks (i.e. the wave, raising wings, turning around).

Monday, May 28, 2012

Seizure again

I have been taking Maui out this year and she's been doing fine. The first couple times, she was scared, but then she was okay. This weekend I took her out again and it didn't go well at all. She fought a bit to get the leash on, which is unusual. Maui doesn't really like the leg leash, but she's never gave it too much thought before.

I took her outside, without Manzi, and sat down in the shade. Maui was still okay at this point, but then a bug flew by her head. She was terrified of the bug and tried to fly away from it. She only went a couple feet before she landed on the grass and began to twitch and make chirping noises. The twitching quickly became out of control (more on her right eye and side of the body). I held her close for a minute trying to shield her from the light and support her body, but she didn't stop twitching. Then I put her in Hercules' box that I had with me (Hercules was outside as well, but I had someone else watching him), to block all light and reduce wind/noise stimuli, and I quickly went inside.

By the time I got inside, Maui was very weak, totally unresponsive to light and sound and was drooling. Her legs were splayed out, with her toes curled up and her wings out. I unfolded Maui's toes and set her in my hand. After a while, she began to look around and could support her head and body. It took at least 10 minutes before she stood on her own. Then she began softly chirping for another 30 minutes or so. By the end of the day, she was back to talking up a storm and crawling around her cage.

This seizure seemed a lot worse than the other one, but it is difficult to tell because it terrifies me to see Maui like this, diminishing my level of objectivity. In California, Maui did love to go outside, so I don't want to take that away from her, but I need to figure out what to do. I can't handle seeing Maui have a seizure and am so worried that she won't come out of it. Until I figure out a better solution, Maui is going to stay in the house, or in the patio cage.

On the other hand, her and Manzi seem to be fine together. It is not like they get along or anything, they just do a better job of staying out of each other's way.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Third eye-lid

I took a picture that captured Manzi's 3rd eye lid mid-close. Birds have regular top and bottom eye lids, but they also have a third one that normally is not visible. I once took a picture of it halfway closed, but I lost that photo.

I tried to zoom in, but the focus was slightly off.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Manzi was sick

Manzi really worried me. He wasn't doing so well. About a week after I returned from my vacation, I noticed his weight dropped (15% in two days!). He wasn't eating his pellets and even refused treats. The first day I didn't notice too much, but by the second day I was really worried. The second day he also became pretty aggressive. He wouldn't fly around or anything like normal, and when I tried to pick him up he bit me fairly hard. He also completely stopped talking/whistling. I decided that if he didn't eat by the following afternoon, I would take him in to the vet.

When I let Manzi and Maui out of their sleeping cages the following day, I noticed that Manzi had thrown up some really bad looking stuff (dark brown, very thick mush). It definitely wasn't feces as it was way too high up on the walls (gross, I know) and Manzi is not that talented.

That morning Manzi didn't eat his breakfast, but by the time I came home from work, I noticed that he did eat some and gained some of his weight back. Manzi was still pretty grouchy though. Also, his crop felt full when he finally had a bigger meal that evening and it stayed full for several hours. Maui's crop doesn't empty quickly, but that has never been a problem with Manzi. The fourth day, Manzi was back to his normal self, chatting away and eating a ton, with his crop emptying out like normal

After another couple of days he was really loving again too and has been just a darling since then. I'm not sure what was ailing Manzi, but he seemed to get over it really quickly. Maui is doing fine and didn't seem to pick up what Manzi had.

To the outdoor cage: It is going incredibly well. The first day I put the birds out together, I fed them and took them in as soon as they finished their food. The second day, I left them a bit longer, and separated them when Manzi wanted a drink of water, and Maui didn't think he really needed a drink from her side of the cage. I didn't want to chance anything. The third day was great. I left them for several hours. Both birds climbed around the cage a bit, but stayed away from each other. Today they were outside again from 5 - 9 pm and were chatting up a storm with all the neighbors going in and out. I am very pleased with this. I had thought that I might never be able to put them together again, but they seem to be just fine as long as they are outside with people to talk to, other birds to watch and toys to chew.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Amazon Clay Lick Video

Here is a video from a clay lick in the Peruvian Amazon, from a recent vacation (two weeks ago).

In order to arrive at the clay lick just after sunrise (when the parrots are present), we got up at 4:30am, took a short boat ride, then had an hour hike through the muddy rainforest. We arrived at a camouflaged hideout and watched the parrots for the next 2.5 hours. The sound does not come through so well on the video, but it was incredibly loud at the clay lick. All of the parrots were chatting/screaming very loudly. They were also fighting quite a bit (within the same species), until they went down to the clay lick, then the parrots were shoulder to shoulder with all their pride put aside.

Here are the four main parrots in the video: Mealy Amazon (largest of the Amazon species), Chestnut-fronted (aka: Severe) Macaw, Blue-headed parrot (one of these flies on at the end of the video) and the Scaly-headed parrot.

We also saw a toucan, some Scarlet Macaws, non-parrot birds and some marmosets (little monkeys that were jumping incredibly long distances).

A neighbor girl watched Manzi and Maui for me while I was gone, plus I had the webcam set up so I could check on them whenever I wanted. The girl watching them said they began to talk quite a bit the last week as they must have been lonely. Anyway, they were excited to see me back. I got out the big cage and have began to feed them inside the cage. Yesterday I put the cage on the patio and fed them in it. Surprisingly, after they finished eating, Manzi climbed around a bit, but stayed away from Maui, so they never fought. Then they both began chatting loudly having a great time.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Maui talking

I uploaded a short video of Maui saying her two phrases on voice command. It took a bit of effort to catch them on video. She was highly distracted by the camera.

I need to improve her repertoire, but I am happy with two phrases from very little training.

By the way, I do realize my whistling ability is quite sad. Ironic really.

Maui's bath

I often come home from work to see Maui's water dish nearly empty (I know she didn't drink that much water) and water covering the bottom of her cage and the four feet surrounding her cage. I don't often catch her in the act of bathing though.

A few days ago she began taking a bath, so I gave her the large water dish. She went to town in the water dish for an hour and a half. I never knew her baths lasted that longer. I went and got the camera after a few minutes. That disrupted her, but she started up again within a minute. Here are some fun photos.

Here she is completely in the dish except for her tail. She stands in it and splashes around like a madwoman.

She is looking back at me wondering why I find this so amusing.

You can actually see the water mid-fling. This is how she makes such a big mess. She uses her beak and flings water (hoping some will land on her back, which some does), over and over again.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Trying to film flying

So I charged my camera and took Manzi, Maui and Hercules outside, all excited about making a new flying video. Manzi did a small flight to me, while being filmed. I gave him a treat and sent him to his stand. He decided he didn't want to land on his stand and instead did a couple of circles (at the end of his leg leash) and landed on the grass. He no longer wanted any treats either. He was not very happy. I'm not sure if it was because I had someone else filming or what. The other person was present two days before when Manzi did an excellent job flying, so it is not like that was new.

Anyway, we still have a ways to go before he is ready for free flights.

Maui did much better outside than the previous two times. She is getting less and less nervous and this last time she ate treats and walked a bit. The first time she wouldn't really move and the second time she moved slightly, but never took a full step. This time she was more relaxed. Hopefully she gets more and more comfortable outside.

Hercules is loving the outdoors. He is munching away on fresh grass, enjoying the sun.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Flying again

Today I finally took Manzi outside flying. It was awfully windy, although I couldn't tell until I went outside with him. Manzi didn't seem to mind the wind. He has been going crazy for peanuts, so I used those as treats. I kept Manzi on a leg leash, but he was so happy to be outside that he didn't pay it any attention. I had Manzi do some short flights (only up to 20'). When the wind picked up, Manzi wobbled more than I've ever seen before, but he still landed every single flight.

I had him flying to me into the wind. Manzi did all his flights from the ground. That is not ideal, but I forgot about my speaker stand.

I am really excited about his flying. Manzi just had a meal too, but he did fantastic. I will increase the flight distance over the next few weeks and then start letting him free fly. I have seen bald eagles in the area, but no hawks, not even red-tail hawks (the most common hawks here). If a bald eagle picked up Manzi, there wouldn't be much I could do. On the other hand, it seems highly unlikely that I would miss a bald eagle (they don't perch in any nearby trees and only twice have I ever spotted them in the area) and I think Manzi would definitely be much more agile and be able to outmaneuver one.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Maui scolding Manzi

This evening, after getting into too much trouble, I scolded Manzi and put him in his cage. For the next 15 minutes Maui continued to scold Manzi using her regular, "Manzi, stop it!" This is in addition to two new ones: "Get out of there!" and "Go home!"

Monday, February 20, 2012

Words on Voice Command

Maui is now saying, "Work, work, work" on voice command.

She learned by watching me trying to teach Manzi. I heard him saying, "work, work, work," so I began to congratulate him after each time and give him a treat along with the voice command. After two days of this, Maui began catching on. Manzi still wasn't saying the phrase on voice command, but he was saying it enough to realize that him saying it earned him a treat. On the second day, I asked Manzi to say, "work, work, work." After a pause of about 10 seconds, Maui chimed in with the phrase. I was waiting for Manzi, so Maui repeated it. Within two days she was saying the phrase within a couple seconds of the voice command. I'll get a video of it later this week. Now we need to start on a new phrase.

In order to keep Manzi from being left out of earning treats, I have been doing blind flights with him, where I go into another room and do recalls. Manzi is getting really good at this. I always go to a different spot in the room, or even into the closet and he is quick about turning the corner, looking for me and changing directions. I need to get Manzi prepared as I plan to fly him this summer.

Hercules has been keeping under the bird's cages more clean. He eats all of their scraps without objection. It has been a couple of times that Manzi will try to take back some dropped food from Hercules. Manzi knows that he can intimidate Hercules to hide in his shell, whereas Maui keeps her distance from Hercules.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Maui's loose!

I forgot to close Maui’s cage this morning. I was able to see on the camera. I have been locking them away from the food, so they are more encouraged to eat together. This morning neither of the birds was interested in their food, so I left the dishes in front of their cages with them locked up (or so I thought). A few minutes ago I checked their cages and saw that Maui’s was open. I am sure she will go down and eat her food to her crop’s content, and she will probably antagonize Manzi, as she has been doing whenever he is in his cage. Poor Manzi. Maybe he’ll have a bad day today.
Since taking away the eggs, Maui has stopped being overly aggressive, which is Manzi’s cue to try and re-assert dominance. Yesterday he did two fly-by, dive bombs at Maui. She is always ready for him and isn’t caught off guard. I’m not sure the food technique is working. It took a couple days to get them hungry enough to eat together, then over the weekend since I was gone quite a bit I fed them in their cages, so I have not been very effective in implementing this strategy. I am losing my discipline.

Please send me an email if you're interested in access to the online camera. Also, remember not to leave it open all day (as was done by my sister: see previous post's comments).

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Success at last

I have a replacement camera and it is up and running! I will only leave it running during the day, and while I am on vacation, and other times I forget to turn it off.

If using internet explorer, it has sound as well. The site to access the camera is:

Once there, you will need to log in. To get log in information, please send me an email at adele (dot) thompson7 (at) gmail (dot) com.

An update on the birds:
I took Maui's eggs away from her yesterday. She was very distraught about it and searched for over an hour digging around in her cage looking for the eggs. This morning, she tried to stuff a large toy ball underneath her body. The toy was one of these, that has a bell in the middle. It is nearly the size of her body.

I began feeding the birds together again on the ground. I started last night. Manzi refused to eat on the ground and went without his dinner. I thought he would be more hungry in the morning, but he ran around all morning getting into trouble while Maui chowed away. Anyway, but this evening he finally humbled himself enough to eat off a plate on the ground, next to Maui. Hopefully this will get them to be more tolerable of each other.

Tomorrow night I will check my email and send out the user name and password to the the camera. Be mindful of the bandwidth and don't leave it on constantly in the background.

Thank you,


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Utter failure

The camera was defective. This is my second defective camera. It was a different company this time, but same camera (it is supposed to be really good). The company will replace it, hopefully with a working one.

Maui hasn't lain any more eggs since the last post.

Monday, January 16, 2012

More Eggs!!!

Maui’s egg laying is beginning to worry me. She is now on her 22th egg and I can feel that she has a 23st on the way. I did not take her last one away as I thought that maybe if she sits on them she will stop laying. The problem with that is that when she has an egg to protect, she does too good of a job. She won’t let Manzi get anywhere close to her cage area. Just to show him who is boss, she ran to his cage and chased him out. Manzi wasn’t quite fast enough, so Maui caught his wing with her foot and began biting at him. I heard the scurrying followed by really loud shrieks from Manzi, so I quickly put an end to that. Manzi stays as far away from her as possible now and keeps an eye on her in case she decides to teach him any more lessons.

Yesterday, a friend who usually comes over about once per week, stopped by. Maui usually follows this friend around, but doesn’t threaten or allow any scratching. It is as though she is still deciding whether to make friend or foe. Anyway, yesterday when the friend was over, Maui left her egg and stayed on top of her cage the entire time. She didn’t follow the friend around, but she didn’t sit on her egg either. I thought maybe she gave up on the egg, but as soon as the friend left she was back to sitting on the egg. It seems she is very sensitive to visitors. I noticed this before, but I didn’t think she would be like this with someone who comes over on a regular basis.

I am not sure what to do about Maui’s nesting. As soon as I let her out of her cage, she goes for the cabinet (well, while not sitting on eggs) and digs around, nesting, for hours until she is hungry. After a quick snack, she runs back to the cabinet. If I keep the cabinet closed, she’ll chew on it trying to open it up. If I block off the cabinet, she’ll find somewhere else. She desperately wants to nest, sit on an egg and raise it, but just as desperately she wants to keep Manzi away from her. She doesn’t realize that Manzi, or any male African grey, is a must in the procreation arena. To stop her from nesting, I can keep Maui locked up in her cage, but I really don’t like this option. I’m still not sure what to do about this dilemma.

I got a new camera and tomorrow am going to have it set up. Hopefully it will be on the web shortly after that.

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