African Gray aggression

by Sherri G

I have 2 african grays, a congo and an timneh. They have always had separate cages the past 5 years and never bothered each other. Now my congo (sex unknown) is walking over to my female timneh's cage and attacking her. It's not sexual in nature that I can figure out as the congo has my timneh on her back biting her beak and neck attacking her.

Unfortunately my timnehs lower beak on one side broke off. She's fine however I'm really worried where this aggression is coming from. My husband rescued a cockatoo 2 years ago (separate cage) and we give them all undivided attention. Maybe this could be the cause?

Comments for African Gray aggression

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Feb 15, 2012
Aggressive Gray
by: sherri G

Update: My Timneh's beak will be just fine. She's in great spirits and is in no pain. It's just going to take time healing. As for my aggressive congo, I believe I will get the bird sexed so I know what I'm dealing with. I refuse to put any animal down due to their aggressivness as I understand all animals will always have their basic instincts intact, regardless of how humans try to domesticate them. As Anonymous stated, I need to work with the bird and find out what I can do to work with him. As I stated before, they all have their own cages and they do come out during the day. However my congo likes to wander over to my timneh's cage lately and attack. Now we are rotating the birds, who gets to come out and play for a bit while the other is in. It just mind boggles me that a few short years ago, the greys would hang out on the same bird swing with no problems! Never a dull moment in this household!

Feb 12, 2012
African Grey Agression
by: Anonymous

I would have to disagree with the comment below on having the bird be put to sleep. That seems very drastic and cruel. Even if avian vet finds nothing physically wrong, an emotional bird can be worked with. You will just have to find ways that these birds can not access each other, and work with the Congo more. I would suggest getting (it) DNA sexed because you can learn a lot about behavior when you know the sex. Most of the time birds just dont get along. You are experiencig this. You just now have to change your routine up at home to ensure these two birds cannot have any contact. Even consider hiring a bird behaviorist or talk to local parrot groups or avian vet for advice. Do NOT give up on your bird because yes as stated below, they are indeed wild animals and will never be domesticated.. We as humans took on the responsibility of owning them so we need to commit to them to try and understand them and give them the best life possible.

Feb 12, 2012
African Gray aggression
by: Linda

First of all, the Timneh Grey has to be examined by an Avian Vet ONLY in your driving area. Find an Avian Vet An infection is probably present from the severe attack on her beak. Please take care of that before doing anything else. She could either lose the rest of her beak to infection or die or both, so move on this immediately.

The other issue is the aggressive Congo, and his wings needs to be clipped by an Avian Vet. Have only the 4-6 Primary flight feathers clipped, and these are the long feathers at the ends of each wing. Do not allow them to cut up any higher. Also do not allow him access to either the Timneh's or the Too's cages, and if that means confined to his cage until you figure out what to do, then so be it. Your job is to protect them and youselves from further attack.

As for the Cockatoo, this bird is NOT causing the Congo Grey's violence. Also have the Congo examined and blood drawn to see if there are any viral infections or other abnormalities that show in the blood.

If a bird of mine had done this to another of my birds, I would have the aggressor put to sleep if no reasons for this behavior can be found. This may sound hard, and believe me, I suggest euthanasia as a last resort.

So, take the Timneh to Avian Vet to be examined for infections, have the Congo examined to see if there is a physical cause for the aggression and have it put to sleep if no physical cause can be found for this violent and dangerous behavior. This bird may have been abused in a previous home and parrots frequently develop mental illness in varying degrees from abuse and neglect. This bird is not only a danger to your other birds, but also to you if you ever come between it and the one it wants to hurt. Parrot attacks can be so severe as to require emergency room assistance, so do not take this lightly. You have a monster on your hands. It is heartbreaking, YES, and can you allow it to go on, NO!

I dearly love all parrots, and it is not my usual advice to suggest one is put down. See if Avian Vet can find any reason for this behavior, and if not, you can assume some other human ruined this bird to the point where he is a danger to everyone.I'm a strong advocate of NO Breeding of parrots because a large majority end up the way your Congo is, and it could have been prevented if there were fewer birds to go into the few good homes there are for them. Parrots are exotic wild animals, and abuse causes them to revert back to their wild state along with mental illness's overt aggression to people and other birds. They are rougues and have to be put down. Even through our tears, we must do what is right for the bird and for our families.

Let us know what the Avian Vet has to say and please get the Timneh into the avian vet's right away before infection causes her to die.


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