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.

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