Aggressive Green Cheek please help

by Gemma
(Brisbane, Australia)

A few months ago we rescued a green cheek conure which had been brought into a local vet and not claimed for more than 2 weeks. When we first got him (unsure of sex) he was cuddly, after a few days he became nippy as he always wanted to be with someone.

He then began to chew his own tail feathers. His tail feathers are about 1 inch long now as he always chews them. He has been trained at some point as he says 'What are you doing' and 'Stop it'. He also spins around for a treat. He will come out of his cage and has accepted the house routine for birds, Breakfast, sleep, play time and so on.

He has started biting to the point of no return it is out of aggression and out of nowhere at times. He will be happily sitting on your shoulder and then he will bein to hiss and demonstrate aggresive behaviour, he is drawing blood, this all has the potential to alienate him from the rest of the family which is not what we want.

As we did not know his upbringing we decided to take on another rescue this time a 6 month old green cheek who was not hand tame. They seemed to get on really well, Leo(Older and more Aggressive bird) seemed to take on the care straight away, feeding him and cudling into him (again not sure of sex). They both play in the same cage during the day, and on the same Gym, however they sleep in different cages. We did attempt them to sleep in the same cage however the baby seemed to be being bitten. The older conure will not attack the other bird at times and Hiss to the point that the baby conure is now begining to display those behaviours.

I love my birds and would like to be able to keep them all however I am affraid that either a member of my family or one of the birds will get injured.
We have a 1yr old Alexandrine however have never allowed them to play together due to the size difference, they live happily in seperate spaces of the same room.

Please help, every site i see says GC conures are happy birds, it seems as though this conure may have been ill treated, does anyone have any tips on how I can help this bird - Do i need to go back to basics, seperate cages, sperate rooms etc. Please help any advice is appreciated.

Comments for Aggressive Green Cheek please help

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Apr 30, 2013
Aggressive conure
by: Anonymous

Bless you for giving this bird a new home. He was obviously mistreated in his previous home to have such aggressive behavior. I got a Quaker parrot two years ago from an abusive home. They would yell and scream at her because she chirped too loud and they would throw things at the cage to get her to shut up.

She was timid with us at first because she was scared of us and her new home. After we established a routine she seemed better but would pluck her chest to the point of bleeding. As time went by she became cage aggressive, but only towards my husband so I am the one that feeds and cleans and she has to inspect every bit of food before I put it in the cage.

She suddenly started becoming nasty and biting hard enough to draw blood. She would be perfectly fine and then lash out and take chunks of skin. Instead of crying out in pain or getting angry, I would give her a firm "no" and put her back in cage and walk away. It took some time but she got over it. She does try to nip once in a while and if it gets too much I say "no" and put her away. You need to be firm and persistent and the birds behavior will change. Good luck.

Apr 30, 2013
Aggressive green cheek conure
by: Tracie

You have a big heart, this is obvious. :-)

In my experience green cheeked conures are often nippy. If not trained they can become aggressive.

Putting the two GC's together is nice for the birds, if the cage is big enough for them and they WANT to live together. The cage must be at least 24" wide, if not more. You need to have 2 feed dishes and 2 water bottles so that they don't have to share. You need to have a variety of toys to shred and chew to keep their beaks occupied.

You mentioned a vet, but I don't believe you said it was an avian vet. If your birds have not been examined by an avian vet, you need to do this. For all you know one or both of them have a disease or illness that could pass on to your other bird.

I have an article at this Parrot Training page link that tells how my husband got our green cheek conure to stop attacking me. You may have to accept that the birds will not want to be with you, because they have each other though.

As a side note, our birds became cage aggressive, meaning we could not put our hands in the cage without being viciously attacked. We would open the door and let them climb to the top of the cage to pick them up and put them on the play stand.

We kept our birds wings clipped, because we did not have a bird safe house where they could fly around without finding something toxic to chew on or get trapped in. We also did not allow them on the floor because we knew we were possibly bringing in wild bird diseases on our shoes and because we didn't want the birds to get stepped on accidentally.

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