b&g macaw

by virginia
(rineyville,ky us)

our male b&g macaw is balding and plucking out alot of his feathers what do we do?

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Dec 22, 2009
b&g macaw
by: Linda

You'll need to take your bird into an Avian Vet to be examined to rule out physical causes for this plucking. You cannot proceed with any kind of training until you have this question answered.

Diet can affect the skin and feathers as can parasites and infections, so rule out him being sick soon as you can.

After that, look at his diet which should be an organic pelleted one with organic fruit and veggies added as treats. Birds get bored with just one type of pellet, so pick a couple to keep the variety in his diet. We use the Harrison's for the base diet and add some of the Golden Feast for variety of shape, taste and texture.We also bake up the Birdy Bread mixes and give a few times a week.

Boredom also will cause birds to pluck themselves. I believe Tracie has an article or two out here about plucking birds, so you may wish to read them. Outside of illness, boredom and lack of stimulation will cause this to start and once started, it becomes a habit. Your bird needs mental and emotional stimulation in the form of toys he can chew on that are changed out at least once a month and another toy hung in its place. You can rotate toys until they are completely chewed up. So have 3-4 heavy duty toys for your bird and rotate them out every month to keep toys looking new. Emotionally, your bird needs YOU, and he needs to be able to interact with you frequently. If he is all by himself while you work, get another bird kept in another cage for company. The type of bird needs to be one from the South or Central American regions because birds get along better with birds from their home countries. It does not matter that the birds are born in the US, as they are still products genetically of their home countries. Macaws and Toos don't get along as well as two Macaws or two Toos. Macaws and the South/Central American conures will usually like each other. Toos and Greys will be okay together. Of course, anytime one bird is larger or smaller than the other, playtime has to be constantly supervised as one can hurt the smaller one by accident.

So, take bird to Avian vet for a checkup to rule out physical. Read some of the information on site about plucking, enrich your bird's environment along with more attention from you, plus possibly adding a friend to his world so he is not so lonely. Also read the Feather Damaging Behavior article written by our resident avian vet. Good luck and God's speed,
Linda

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