African Grey Feather Problems

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African Grey Feather Problems

Post by Tony P » Fri, 16 Sep 1994 02:54:03



Hi............

I have an African Grey, Pepe, who is now just over two years old.  He (at
least we think he is a he!) is very much loved and is a really great talker.
He is english bred and hand reared, and we have had him since he was twelve
weeks old.  I do not at this point want to get into the various arguments
surrounding whether or not a bird should have it's wings clipped, as I think
I am fully aware of all the arguments, both for and against.  However, when
we bought Pepe, the breeder clipped him, one wing only and leaving the outer
feathers as is the preferred way by most people here.  It appears from what
I have both heard and read, that most birds on realizing their inability to
fly, accept it quite well and settle for climbing and walking.  Pepe never
has; he has always insisted on 'taking off', which normally results in a
fairly undignified passage to the ground, usually from the top of his cage
or from his stand.  This has been the cause of his having broken all
feathers on this wing at some time or another, usually before they have had
a chance to fully grow.  I don't think that I will ever stop him from
wanting to fly, but what I do want to know, is why are all the feathers on
this particular wing very brittle when they grow, and why do they have what
our vet calls 'stress bars' on them?  All of his other feathers are in
excellent condition and moult and regrow perfectly normally.  The diet that
he eats is very good, being at least five fresh fruit and five fresh
vegetables every day, plus his mixed seed, and things like some cheese and
fish for protein.  To counter any calcium deficiency, he always has cuttle
fish scraped onto his food together with vitamins and tonic.

I would be very grateful if anybody could provide any suggestions, as I am
totally lost for ideas now.

Best Regards

=====
  |
  | ony


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African Grey Feather Problems

Post by Ellen I. Pa » Fri, 16 Sep 1994 06:23:02



Quote:

>Hi............

>I have an African Grey, Pepe, who is now just over two years old.  He (at
>least we think he is a he!) is very much loved and is a really great talker.
>He is english bred and hand reared, and we have had him since he was twelve
>weeks old.  I do not at this point want to get into the various arguments
>surrounding whether or not a bird should have it's wings clipped, as I think
>I am fully aware of all the arguments, both for and against.  However, when
>we bought Pepe, the breeder clipped him, one wing only and leaving the outer
>feathers as is the preferred way by most people here.  It appears from what
>I have both heard and read, that most birds on realizing their inability to
>fly, accept it quite well and settle for climbing and walking.  Pepe never
>has; he has always insisted on 'taking off', which normally results in a
>fairly undignified passage to the ground, usually from the top of his cage
>or from his stand.

Hi, Tony.   Our galah, the crazy toodles, has the same problem.  In his
case, leaping off various high places (top of cage, for instance) has
resulted in serious injury, including severely bruised chest, cut skin on
the chest, and torn ligaments on the chest, as well as a small tear
between his tail and the cloaca that took months to heal (and thousands
of dollars in vet bills).  He now lives on the floor at all times, and
the vet suggested that he live in his pet carrier, for this reason and
also because he was becoming cage bound and ***.  The carrier works
beautifully.  I wonder if he regards it as a nest hole?  In any event, if
Pepe refuses to realize that he can't fly, make sure he doesn't get the
chance to try.

 This has been the cause of his having broken all

Quote:
>feathers on this wing at some time or another, usually before they have had
>a chance to fully grow.  I don't think that I will ever stop him from
>wanting to fly, but what I do want to know, is why are all the feathers on
>this particular wing very brittle when they grow, and why do they have what
>our vet calls 'stress bars' on them?

Toodles also had lots of broken wing and tail feathers resulting from the
jumping and yes, they had stress bars when they grew in.  Now that he is
floor bound (Timo, this is normal - galahs in the wild spend most of
their time on the ground.) his feathers are much better.
Ellen from Maryland

 All of his other feathers are in

- Show quoted text -

Quote:
>excellent condition and moult and regrow perfectly normally.  The diet that
>he eats is very good, being at least five fresh fruit and five fresh
>vegetables every day, plus his mixed seed, and things like some cheese and
>fish for protein.  To counter any calcium deficiency, he always has cuttle
>fish scraped onto his food together with vitamins and tonic.

>I would be very grateful if anybody could provide any suggestions, as I am
>totally lost for ideas now.

>Best Regards

>=====
>  |
>  | ony


>--

>+-----------------------------------------------------------------+
>| The Crystal Tower, Enfield, London 081-447-8244  V21-V32bis,HST |
>| InterNet: crystal.dircon.co.uk               FidoNet: 2:254/220 |
>+-----------------------------------------------------------------+

 
 
 

African Grey Feather Problems

Post by Kevin Michael C » Mon, 19 Sep 1994 17:00:00



Quote:

> we bought Pepe, the breeder clipped him, one wing only and leaving the outer
> feathers as is the preferred way by most people here.  It appears from what

Maybe I haven't been paying attention, but I believe the method
preferred by most people here is to clip both wings evenly,
clipping all primaries.  With only one wing clipped the bird has
no control over its "flight," which could be dangerous.  With
both wings clipped evenly, it can flutter to the ground, and
maintain control during gliding.

Quote:
> has; he has always insisted on 'taking off', which normally results in a
> fairly undignified passage to the ground, usually from the top of his cage
> or from his stand.  This has been the cause of his having broken all
> feathers on this wing at some time or another, usually before they have had
> a chance to fully grow.  I don't think that I will ever stop him from

This should be rectified ASAP.  You don't want Pepe to be
breaking any *** feathers.  I'd have both wings clipped evenly.

Quote:
> wanting to fly, but what I do want to know, is why are all the feathers on
> this particular wing very brittle when they grow, and why do they have what
> our vet calls 'stress bars' on them?  All of his other feathers are in

Stress bars are damage to a feather that show as bars across the
feather.  How are the feathers on this wing brittle?  Are you
talking about *** feathers (new feathers still in their
sheath)?

Quote:
> he eats is very good, being at least five fresh fruit and five fresh

The Association of Avian Veterinarians recommends that less than
10% of your bird's diet be fruit, and they strongly recommend
basing a diet on a manufactured food such as pellets.  Keep
feeding lots of vegetables though.
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African Grey Feather Problems

Post by Rex Dean Kerr I » Sun, 25 Sep 1994 16:04:04



Quote:

>we bought Pepe, the breeder clipped him, one wing only and leaving the outer
>feathers as is the preferred way by most people here.  It appears from what

Actually, I think most people (me included) think that one wing is a bad
idea because if he gets scared and has to fly away or tries he may turn
and land in something, maybe even breaking a wing because it's unbalanced...

Quote:
>I have both heard and read, that most birds on realizing their inability to
>fly, accept it quite well and settle for climbing and walking.  Pepe never
>has; he has always insisted on 'taking off', which normally results in a
>fairly undignified passage to the ground, usually from the top of his cage

He'll get used to it...  My tiel quit trying after the first failed attempt.

Quote:
>I would be very grateful if anybody could provide any suggestions, as I am
>totally lost for ideas now.

Sounds like you're doing good, but I'd be concerned about the one wing thing.

-Rex

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Rex Dean Kerr III (Yes, the third) | Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that

Genesis BBS -- (916) 873-0552      |                     -Psalms 119:11