Hey all, new here and need some advice

Hey everyone! Nice to meet ya and I look forwarding to getting to know everyone and their fids. I have a problem. I have waited 6 years now to get my dream bird, which is a CAG. I am finally able to do that, I have put down the money, got the cage and started on toys perches ect. I’ve even been picked (or so I thought) by a beautiful female CAG (dna’d). So I’ve been going to the breeder and spending as much time with her as possible, and every single time I’m there, we will have some great cuddle time and talking and a little training, but then the parrot will nail me on the hand. This has happened every time I have been there, she strikes hard enough to draw blood most times. And I am at a loss about what to do to change this behavior. My question is, is it me she just dosen’t seem to like? Am I doing something wrong? She steps up just fine at first but after a while she’s had enough and I can’t get anywhere near her without being bitten. I have been going back and forth trying to figure out of its something about me or if she’d be happier with a different owner or what I need to do to try to work this out. I’m lost here, and I’m scared to death I’m going to bring home a bird that I cannot handle and she’ll just be miserable here with me. Does anyone have any advice or experience with this type of behavior? I could use all the help I can get.Also, today while I was up there she had a red tinge around her eyes, the breeder said that that happens with Grey’s when they become stressed. Is this true? I might also add that they stopped the last syringe feeding over the weekend, and she slept in her new cage for the first time last night, with none of her clutch mates. Sorry for all the confusion in my post, I’m just a very worried parent. I’ve never had any of these problems with any of my other fids. This will be my first large bird also. TIA! Mickie

Run from this breeder, run from this bird. CAGS live really really long, it is important to find THE ONE with a commitment this serious. You should find a baby that you click with, not one that nails you and causes blood. The breeder didn’t do a good job of socializing the babies or setting boundaries. I’d run if anything didn’t feel right. Remember, it’s the next 60years.You’ve read that CAGS can get neurotic and I think it’s very important to find a well adjusted baby.The breeder didn’t do a good job IMHO.I’d keep looking and looking until you find THE one.

Hey Mickie, I don’t know about the red around the eye thing, i don’t have pet grays. I could see that’s disheartening to be bitten by your new baby, but maybe your playing with her for too long and she wants to be back with her clutch mates instead, it’s not a good thing that a bird that young is biting hard enough to draw blood.that will be a hard habit to break… Something you need to realize is that , you have to make the bird want to be with you,not force the bird to be with you. If he steps up , praise him and put him back.If he allows you to pet him, only pet him for a few seconds and put him down before he has to bite you to tell you that he’s had enough and wants to go back to his cage or playmates.You need to leave him wanting more of your attention , not him running you off. I guess i’m disappointed in your breeder that they couldn’t see this and don’t have better socialized babies.

I just think that it’s unnatural for a baby to be so aggressive to draw blood.I mean, when parrots go through their hormonal years, even the sweetest birds can turn into monsters in that period. Imagine how this bird would be when it gets hormonal…

Thanks everyone for your wonderful advice. The baby in question was born December 13th, so about 2.5 months old. I get what your saying about the birds been handled too long and has had enough. That was probably the main issue today, but on other days she had nailed me when I first try to bring her out or when I have first tried to get her to step up. So I’m not sure what the deal is. I am going back up there tomorrow and I’m going to talk to the breeder and see what she suggests as well( she wasn’t there personally today). I have to say, that you have all said what I have been thinking, disappointment in the breeder, and wariness of trying to live for the next 50-60 years with a parrot that is already this aggressive. On another note, I have been able to successfully handle all of her clutch mates with almost 0 issues. I also do not believe that I have the experience needed for this situation. I was literally in tears all day today, I don’t want to give her up, I just don’t know if I can handle her being like this (or worse when hormonal). Thanks again for all the great advice. If anyone else has any ideas I am open to hearing them. I just want whats best for this CAG. If that means coming home with me, fantastic, if it means that she needs a stronger owner, then that is the way it needs to be. Mickie

That does sound disheartening. I brought Merlin (our grey) home at 6 weeks (I handfed parrots for a living, so this was okay with the breeder). He has bitten me to draw blood less than what I can count on two hands in the past 12 years…It is odd that she is biting you, whereas the others aren’t (or not as much). And at such a young age, it doesn’t seem right that she’s so scared unless she’s been unsocialized (but again, I’m not sure if this is the case as the others aren’t biting you…). Oh, I wouldn’t want to be in your position - are you able to transfer your deposit to one of the other babies, or are they all spoken for? The red eye, I’ve never hear of or seen (I’ve reared many baby African Greys…) - were they in a cage with pine shavings? If yes, it could be an allergic reaction to the shavings/dust.Let us know what happens :I

Greymatter - there are no shavings in the cages at all, I talked to the owner/breeder of the store this morning and she too said it was normal for a stressed out bird. Unfortunately all of the clutch mates have been spoken for. But, when I talked to the breeder this morning, she was very understanding and kind and she’s got 3 more babies coming up next week, once they are ready she is going to give me first pick We talked about the little girl I was going to get and she brought the baby out of the cage and even while it was sitting on her hand I went to try to touch her and the bird strikes out, missing this time thank goodness but the breeder was able to actually see what I meant. All of the birds are well socialized, while I was there today I pulled out all of the other babies and they were all just fine with me, they of course were mouthing me which is normal and expected, but not a single one tried to strike out or bite. Its just this one bird that doesn’t seem to like me much at all. Which is fine, now she has a chance to find a home where she will be happy. All’s well that end’s well. Hopefully I will be able to find a baby that is suited for my home and actually likes me a bit Thanks again everyone for everything.

Bloody tears happen. Not super common, but it happens in greys: http://www.exoticpetvet.net/avian/strange.htmlIf the bird’s not a “fit” don’t get it. It may never be a “fit” for you and then you’ll end up getting rid of it or keeping it and you’re both miserable. That particular bird is a “fit” for someone else. I have this happen more so with parrotlets - some of my parrotlets seem to like one person and not another. When I sell my birds, I observe the bird and the person and make suggestions on “fitting” them together. I have a person who’s going to be choosing among three baby conures soon. I’m pretty sure which bird I’m going to suggest they take and will “fit” their family and lifestyle.If all the breeder’s other birds are nice and even tempered, this one may just be an anomaly. It happens. I have an occasional baby that’s more “challenging” than others and I have to put more effort into teaching it what behavior’s appropriate with people and what’s not.


Hey AP, hope it all works out, please let us know, so often we offer advice and never hear back,keep in touch.

Captwest-I will definitely be hanging around. This will be my first "big" bird and I have a feeling I am going to have a lot of questions. Thanks again to everyone that responded. I definitely think I made the right choice to not bring this baby home.