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Old 01-18-2011, 11:15 AM
Nika Nika is offline
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Default constant crying for attention

Hi Guys, we have a bit of a predicament- Cuddy, who as some of you know, is totally in love with my fiance, non-stop cries for his attention. It's actually quite difficult to describe the noise she's making- it's like a cross between crying/weeping and tweeting and she does it, I mean it, NON STOP when he's around. Chris is getting tired of it, before she would be quiet when she was sitting on his lap, but now, even that doesn't stop her.
She's not hungry, or ill and she is always super quiet when it's just me.

In the last two days we're trying not to pay any attention to her when she's making crying noises, as not to reinforce this behaviour, but that basically means we need to ignore her all the time !!! I try to interact with her and give her loads of affection, but she simply tells me to bugger off when her favourite member of the flock is in the room with us.
Does anyone have a similar experience and idea how to overcome it?

Last edited by Nika; 01-18-2011 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 01-18-2011, 11:42 AM
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Do you know if she was handfed by a man? Sometimes handfed birds will react that way to someone that looks or sounds similar to the person that handfed them.
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Old 01-18-2011, 12:29 PM
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You might need to get her a mate (does not have to be a male, could be another female tiel). Sounds like she is a very needy bird who wants constant contact and attention from her mate, who happens to be also your mate It might not be easy to get her to like another tiel because she is so very imprinted on humans, however it would be worth it in the long run and I think everyone involved would be happier.
My male cockatiel, Jackie, was constantly screaming for attention when on his own, he could do hours on end of ear piercing screeching. He was only quiet when with me but that was not all great either because although he would want to be with me at all times he also wanted to bite me whenever to mood struck him, so he could be sitting on my shoulder and out of the blue bite me on the ear, neck or face. He has been with me for over 17 years now and the first couple of years he was on his own and a total pain in the butt. Then he lived with another male cockatiel for about seven years, they did not like each other from the start but once they bonded life was much easier (with two male we still had a fair bit of noise but not the really annoying screeches all the time). Then the other male died and Jackie once again became very demanding and much noisier. Then a few years later we got Tiko who turned out to be a female. It was not love at first sight and they still have some issues with each other but overall they are better together then on their own. From my experience, two cockatiels are easier to live with then one, in most cases they still have a strong bond with the owner but do not require constant attention and do not scream nearly as much.
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Old 01-19-2011, 04:50 AM
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Very interesting I'm really tempted to get another baby and if I do, I might fork out on DNA test to get a male so hopefully there will be some whistling and singing coming out of his beak as well Cuddy's only sound has been whinging and crying, we've never heard her do anything else.
And yes, Srtiels- she was handfed by a man, she generally dislikes women in general, she's ok with me, meaning she tolerates me, once in a blue moon she asks me for kisses (not scratches, she abhores my fingers near her face, unless I have something she likes to eat), but even then, out of nowhere she'll nip at me.
We're thinking of getting now NOT hand reared baby this time as I've heard they cause much less behavioural problems in the future and don't tend to bond to just one person. What's your opinion?
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Old 01-19-2011, 12:59 PM
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The problem with non-handfed is whether its tame or not. They can be lovely pets too but only if tame. If untame it'll bite and sometimes they draw blood! So it just depends on whether you have the time to train this 2nd bird.
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Old 01-19-2011, 03:51 PM
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I think the best is if you can find someone who lets the parents raise the young but still spends a lot of time with the babies. This way they have the best of both worlds, they know that they are birds, not humans, therefor they do not form such extreme bonds with humans but they are still tame and will want to spend time with people. Unfortunately it is hard to find breeders who "co-parent" the babies with the bird parents, most either hand feed or let the parents raise the babies and do not interact with them at all. If you do get one that is totally parent raised then you should get one very young, just after it has weened. Not sure which make better pets, my are both hand raised. I think a lot of it has to do with the individual bird's personality.
If you do want to get a second tiel then you should get one sooner rather then later since the longer you wait the harder it will be to get your cockatiel to accept the new one, it will be easier while she is still fairly young.
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Old 01-19-2011, 04:19 PM
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Nika,

I have done it both ways, handfed and parent raised. I have learned that the handfeds can imprint to one sex (human) therefore I have learned to try and have strangers or famly members come and handle them or be around them so that they are used to various people, and don't fixtate on one type of person. So if you can find a breeder that has a large famly and can socialize the handfed to different people of different sexes and ages that would be good. That is also where a petshop has it over the private breeder because their handfeds are exposed to various people.

As to parent raised, find a breeder that is home all the time. What they can do is to condition the patrent birds to be used to them cheeking the nestbox several times a day from the time the first ewgg is layed. As the babies hatch they can check on them several times a day and handle them. Once the eyes open they can take the babies out for 10-15 minutes at a time several times a day so that they are used to people, and then allow the parents to wean the chicks out. I did this once with a colony flight that had 18 babies between the pairs. I handled the babies from hatch. The parents fledged them. I got neglectful and did not handle them once they fledged. When they were 3 months old I went to move them to another flight. i was so surprised that they were laid back, tame, and would hop up on my finger. They were as tame as handfed birds.

also, I would like to point out, just because a bird was handfed does not mean that it is going to be a tame pet. I have seen many handfeds revert right back to wild once they are weaned. A lot of this has to do with their dispositions. If the parents had good dispositions this is passed onto the babies, and they in turn have good dispositions and make great pets. If the parents do not have good, gentle dispositions, especially if they were handfed themselves, this gets passed along to the babies and they in turn tend to be less reluctant to want to interact with as human.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:56 PM
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Sincere thanks, it's definately food for thought! Unfortunately the country I live in, doesn't seem to have more than two breeders, if there are, they're extremely well hidden! Both seem to hand raise the chicks and we're both not too willing to get bird with similar behavioural problems. Don't get me wrong, I love this irritating Missy, but she can wear us out!
Maybe somebody from Ireland know of good breeders?
And once again- thank you.
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