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Thread: Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

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    Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

    For several months I have been trying to vary my cockatiel's diet to include, seeds, pellets, greens, and vegetables as recommended. However he eats only the seeds, but screams at me the rest of the day if I do not give him more. It seems like every day is a power struggle. I am now trying to cold turkey him from the seeds and ignore his screaming, but he is very stubborn, and drives me crazy. How do I deal with this?

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    Re: Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

    You don't want to cut him off from the only food he will eat, he will starve himself. Take the seeds away for a set time period - like when he first wakes up in the morning, give him veggies / pellets and after about an hour give him his seeds back. It can take weeks/months to get a seed junky to try new foods, it's all about being patient. And giving him his seeds back when he screams, just tells him "you scream, you get what you want - so do it more!" - now that it's a habit, it'll be hard to break (birds can be bratty sometimes lol). Make sure everything is on a schedule, birds love schedules and try varying the different pellets/veggies cause some birds have preferences. Also, use different ways of presenting - hang veggies as a toy, try them on a plate, cut, whole, dice, raw, cooked, etc. Figure out what he likes. A lot of the time it is a texture issue when birds are just starting out with fresh, so try dehydrated too! And you can get samples of roudybush, harrisons etc in case he doesn't like the pellet you are offering - mine likes zupreem fruity and roudybush crumbles, but won't touch harrisons with a 10ft pole.
    Last edited by Marrie; 02-16-2012 at 11:44 AM.

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    Re: Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

    I put a piece of greens in my bird's water dish. When he drinks, he'll see the veggie and will get accustomed to it. Also, the flavor of the veggie will bleed into the water, so your bird will learn the taste.

    When I wanted my baby birds to learn how to bathe themselves, I'd put a leafy green veggie in their bath water. They'd go after the veggie and learned how to bathe really quickly.

    So, the water and veggie thing works both ways - in drinking water it helps the bird to learn about the veggie. In bath water (after the bird's been eating veggies) it helps the bird to learn to get wet and begin to enjoy bathing.

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    Re: Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

    If you do that, just be careful to monitor that the bird is drinking - some fids can be finicky about their drinking water and won't touch it if something weird is in it (like mine, who eyes it if food gets in it like theres an alien in there! Even though he is the one that put the food in the bowl, silly chicken).

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    Re: Very finicky cockatiel, won't stop squacking.

    Marie, I tried to get Woodstock to eat veggies and pellets and he was so stubborn too. I figured if Piper ate them, and she loved veggies and pellets, he would eat them too. I tried for over a year and he would not touch them. I think he was born a seed junkie. The only thing he was willing to eat besides seed were scrambled eggs. He was also like your tiel when it came to his drinking water too.. There is seed in there! You expect me to drink that??

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