Tailfeathers
Contact | Tour
where bird lovers gather
Bird InformationMessage BoardNetwork Home

 

Results 1 to 7 of 7

Thread: taming a mean cockatiel?

  1. #1
    Brand New Egg
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Posts
    1
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    taming a mean cockatiel?

    I got a male cockatiel he's around 2 years old the other day and he is MEAN He is a rescue bird and I've never dealt with a rescue bird before. I'm told the lady never took him out of his cage because she was older and had 8 birds. he will whistle at you and jump right on the cage when you're in front of it but if you go in his cage he bites and runs from me If I go near him. I really need help because everyone is telling me its to late to tame him but I really want to give him a good home. I want him to be tame and be able to fly around the house but I can't let him out if I can't get him back in.

  2. #2
    Parent clawnz's Avatar
    Name
    Clive
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Auckland New Zealand
    Posts
    3,512
    Thanks
    47
    Thanked 361 Times in 355 Posts

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    Hi! Welcome to the forum.
    Don't get me wrong, but as I do not know you or your bird in question.
    There are several things I would ask you!
    How old are you?
    What bird experience have you had?
    And how do you find you relate to any birds and pets?
    I know this may seem personal, but it will have some bearing on your ability to connect with this bird.

    The bird is only 2yrs old, so that is not too old to tame. It sounds like there has been no abuse, so that is also a bonus.
    You maybe moving too quick. Take a step back and let him settle in. Remember his world has changed 100% and he needs time to adjust, and he also needs reassurance from you he is safe and loved. Try and stay out of his cage as much as possible and any movements to a slow action.

    I am working with an agro mood swing bird right now (Indy) you can follow that thread.
    Also look up whatever you can find on using Positive Reinforcement Training. This will help you form the bond you need to tame him.

    Good luck and don't give up.
    R.I.P my little ones.

  3. #3
    Teenager
    Name
    Bill
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    San Francisco,Ca
    Posts
    1,407
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 75 Times in 75 Posts

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    I was going to answer your question about the bird you say is mean. However, after reading the reply sent to you by Clawnz, I will just suggest that you try what he suggests with this bird. That answer was good enough, so no reason for me to go on about it.

  4. #4
    Tailfeather
    Name
    Ellen
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    USA Midwest
    Posts
    10,941
    Thanks
    16
    Thanked 1,246 Times in 1,245 Posts

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    Patience and time are always on your side. My suggestion is to step back, take a deep breath, and think of yourself as this little bird, who has come to a brand new environment, does not know you at all, and is struggling to understand what has happened to him to end up with you. First of all and most important, he has lost (7) of his best buddies who have been with him most likely for the long term. Now he is alone. That in itself is very stressful for him, and quite frankly, I am sure his heart is sad, because he has lost his friends.

    Secondly, when we bring new birds into our home, they always will show some sort of fear, or even aggression, because that is their natural instinct to protect themselves from danger, and from predators. In the wild, that is how they survive. Personally, I would not force him out of his cage, nor would I do anything other than to clean his cage for at least a week. I would not put my hands close to him, because it is natural that he will hiss, and most likely bite you, and cockatiel bites can cause your hands to bleed. I would talk gently to him, sit by his cage, eat a snack while I am sitting there so that maybe he will eat some of his own seed and/or foods you are providing him, and just let him get used to his environment. Any loud voices, yelling, or trying to discipline him is only going to make it more difficult for you to bond with him. Personally, I don't like to put labels on birds like "mean", because birds are very, very intelligent, and they can judge for themselves whether in fact they feel loved by their caregivers. If for any reason, they don't feel secure, then it is going to be very difficult for them to ever get used to a new owner and new environment.

    You might also consider playing some music such as classical, or soft music. Generally, they do not like very loud music. In fact, my cockatiel doesn't like anything loud, including the TV.

    When he gets used to his environment, if you decide to let him fly free in your home, I would let him come out of the cage by himself, and do not force him out. You do need to be sure that he is safe while out flying, because since he has been caged for such a long time, his wings will not be strong, and he very well may fly into walls, hit windows, mirrors, and other dangerous things in your home. If he hits anything too hard it can injure him. Also, they are very keen on getting into electrical cords, and computer keys, cell phone cords, etc. These also can injure him.

    I really don't feel that he is a mean bird. In my view, he is just lost right now, and you as the caregiver are the only one that can have patience, and give him lots of love and understanding. Take baby steps with him, and when he does begin to respond to you give him a treat, such as millet sprigs, or a seed treat stick as a reward.

    We love pictures, so do post some of your new baby when you get a chance. I hope this information is helpful to you, and I hope to see you on the forum often.
    Last edited by maxollie; 03-16-2015 at 05:54 PM.

  5. #5
    Brand New Egg
    Name
    Brandon
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Colorado
    Posts
    1
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    Everyone has provided some excellent advice...especially in the importance of looking where your new buddy has come from in being separated from 7 other friends, the stress that comes with that and being in a completely new setting, and to not force things allowing him to make progress. I have 3 rescue cockatiels myself (2 I got in 2009 as a pair that were about a year old at the time, and another that came to me from my avian vet in June last year after he relinquished the lil guy from an abusive owner). I had a similar situation with my newest and one of the biggest things I could add onto what others have said, aside from patience patience patience, is that before you even think of sticking your fingers or hands anywhere near his home to simply sit at his level as close as possible, and just talk/whistle/verbally interact with him for about 15 min. before. Sit on a chair if need be, you just don't be towering over him because that'll scare him, likely making him even more defensive. THEN try partially poking a finger through the bars about 8" from where he's at. Also, when you go to get fresh and food and water, approach your hand same as you would to pet a cat or dog (keeping your hand below him and flatly extended out, slowly approaching his home instead of just grabbing the dishes like he has already become accustomed to you). With my newest, that's what I did and still do to handle him (it's an ongoing process with him from the extent of the abuse he endured and he still doesn't like being handled for more than a few min. at a time...but doing what I'd recommended was the key in being able to handle him at all). Like the other person that had posted things like they'd like to know about your experience with birds, I too would like to know 1)what do you know about their diet and what food you're feeding, because a seed only diet is nowhere near enough to keep your buddy healthy, and 2) how big is the cage you're keeping him in? Those square cages that are like 18"x16" are definitely too small. I use such strictly as a travel cage for vet visits with 1 bird at a time, but the actual home should be big enough that your lil buddy can fully stretch his wings in any part of the cage (my newest still hasn't been able to be transferred into the home with my other 2, and the 28"x32"x"56" seems perfect for a single cockatiel)....not expecting a reply and more posting as rhetorical questions, but just something I hope you see aside from the recommendations in case those could also something you need to look into changing for him.

  6. #6
    Hatched! Birdi Lou's Avatar
    Name
    Tracy
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Vancouver BC
    Posts
    794
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 39 Times in 38 Posts

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    Sounds like Malcolm (one of mine). I had a helluva time with this issue, ie getting him back into his cage. But I've learned they do want to go back, eventually. It's where their food and security is. I couldn't catch him. A few times I had to leave the house and just leave his cage open for him; when I came home he was in it. I know you're not supposed to leave them unsupervised outside their cages, but there were times I just could not get him to go in, and I had to leave, no choice!! Not something I recommend though!

    Give him lots more time to settle in, and back off, way off. Let him come out of the cage on his own, when he's curious enough about you. Malcolm is so much more relaxed now, a year and a half later. He still will not step up and I gave up trying long ago, but he enjoys hanging out with my other two and somewhere along the line he learned to understand "go back" means I want him back in the cage. He still plays games if he doesn't feel like it, but I have a system now: First Beau goes in (Beau is willing to step up on a stick and be lowered into the cage). Then Henry (Henry steps up and is very docile). Then I close the top of the cage to prevent the other two from climbing out while I get Malcolm. I say to Malcolm, "time to go back" as I kind of shoo him in that direction. He sees the other two in there and wants to go in too, so I open the cage and he goes in.

  7. #7
    Tailfeather
    Name
    Ellen
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    USA Midwest
    Posts
    10,941
    Thanks
    16
    Thanked 1,246 Times in 1,245 Posts

    Re: taming a mean cockatiel?

    You've got a great system going there, Tracy! That is awesome!

Remove Ads

Similar Threads

  1. Taming a new cockatiel
    By Anjuli E Clayden-Smith in forum Other Cockatiel Topics
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 12-01-2011, 07:14 PM
  2. taming cockatiel
    By tokameaki in forum Other Cockatiel Topics
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 12-19-2007, 08:49 PM
  3. Taming my new cockatiel
    By Jax in forum Cockatiel Care, Feeding, Dangers, Health
    Replies: 25
    Last Post: 07-25-2006, 02:26 AM
  4. taming a cockatiel
    By blackcatts in forum Other Cockatiel Topics
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-05-2004, 03:43 AM
  5. taming cockatiel
    By Toshi101 in forum Cockatiel Care, Feeding, Dangers, Health
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-30-2002, 06:30 PM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Message BoardNetwork Home