Pair behaviour - chewing elbows and feet

by Lyne
(Portsmouth, UK)

I have a boy lovie called Biggs, I've had him since he was about a month old and we've had him a year. I've recently acquired a 16 month old girl called Lily. Shes had about 3 owners who, for no fault of hers or theirs, have givrn her away. She and Biggs get on great although she gets frustrated because her flight feathers are cut and his aren't.

They preen each other and seem to get on but he keeps grabbing her feet or trying to preen her elbows, can you tell me why?

Comments for Pair behaviour - chewing elbows and feet

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Feb 04, 2013
Pair behaviour - chewing elbows and feet
by: Linda

Separate these two birds into two cages. Never put a strange bird in with another because all parrots do not get along. The behavior you are describing will escalate to severe injury and can possibly end in death for the new bird.

This chewing on elbows and feet has nothing to do with pair bonding or anything like that. It has to do with the male does not really like the new bird in his cage, so give her a cage and leave him in his. Anytime they are outside cage, make sure you are there at all times so you can put one up if the other becomes aggressive. Whether or not they will ever be able to be in same cage is unknown. When putting birds together, cage has to be at least 2-3 times larger than the one for one bird with separate feeding/watering stations. Two birds in a cage meant for one causes any number of aggressive acts.

For now, put them into two cages and keep an eye on them when out of cage at the same time. It may take a year or more before they can live together if they ever will be able to. Birds do not always like the mates we pick for them because they have their own ideas about who they like and don't like. It's always best to put birds into separate cages and see what happens on down the road.

Another tip is that if you have not had the new bird thoroughly examined by an Avian Vet ONLY, she could be sick. In a wild flock situation, the healthy birds either drive out or kill a sick one because sick or injured birds bring predators with the way they smell. This could be part of the problem and all new birds should be examined by an avian vet during the first few days we have them because infections are highly contageous for any other birds which means the male will also be sick.


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