I received a message from a customer who's rescue Amazon is terrified of the Training Perches she ordered. It's not a flaw with the Training Perches but rather a somewhat common problem that parrots get scared of new stuff. Since I'm sure this isn't the first or last time a bird will be scared of a Training Perch, or some new bird stand for that matter, I decided to make a video and article on the topic to help everyone out. Katie asked:
I am so happy with the quality of your training perches. Unfortunately, my new rescue Amazon is TERRIFIED of the perches (the wood part). She goes into a panic when she sees them clear across the room. It's so bad that it's heart-breaking. This is the only time i've witnessed this behavior. I have not been able to handle her yet, and now that I know of this fear, I feel hopeless. Do you have any tips or videos to point me to? Thanks in advance.
Now once on the Training Perches, training a parrot should be a breeze. The Parrot Wizard Training Perches are height adjustable, simple, and comfortable. This helps get the parrot at a comfortable height with no distractions for maximum attention during learning exercises provided during training.
Most parrots will just step onto the Training Perch off the bat or at most with a gentle nudge onto them. Afterall, why not? The perches are very plain and non invasive looking. Yet, there will always be the one bird that is just petrified for no explainable reason. Abused birds, older or rescue birds, and African Greys are most likely to fall into this category. However, any parrot, even a baby, can be fearful of anything at any time. So, when you introduce your parrot to Parrot Training Perches, or any new bird stand, here are some steps to follow to minimize the fear and even prevent the possibility of becoming fearful preemptively.
1) Use a similar perch in the cage. Give the parrot a chance to become familiar with that style of perch, wood, shape, material at its own pace in the cage before encountering the training perch, tree, or stand for the first time! To make this easier to accomplish, Parrot Wizard NU Perches are offered as a series of perches for cage, training perch, scale, window perch, tree stand, and more. So once the parrot gets used to the NU Perch in its cage, it is much more prepared to accept not only the Training Perch, but an entire series of bird furniture that you can use around your house.
Once the parrot starts perching on the NU Perch, it will fall in love with the comfort and shape. It's just like a comfortable pair of shoes, relaxing on the feet. Many parrots will just go to a Training Perch after because they realize it will be a comfortable place to stand. Or at least, the parrot will be more familiar with the perch on the top of the training stand so it will only be a matter of getting used to the sight of the stand at that point. This will still alleviate fear and make further steps simpler.
When you buy the "kit" version of the Parrot Training Perch Kit direct from Parrot Wizard, it comes with a free bonus cage NU Perch so that your parrot can start getting used to the same style of perches right off the bat.
2) Set the Training Perch up to the cage. Give the parrot the chance to explore the Training Perch at its own pace. You might have the patience to spend 5 or 10 minutes introducing the bird to the Training Perch. But, if you have a really scared bird it could take hours or days. As a person, it's hard to be patient for so long. However, by leaving the Training Perch up to the parrot's cage, it will give the parrot all the time in the world to think it over and explore.
With the cage door open, you can set the Training Perch at a suitable height to just peak inside the cage. At some point the parrot may walk across or onto it. Another way to set it up is with the parrot on the door or on top of the cage, the Training Perch height can be raised so the parrot could get onto it. The ability to manipulate the Training Perch makes it easy to create this hybrid step between the parrot not being on it and getting used to it nearby until it gets comfortable.
3) Target the parrot onto the Training Perch. With the parrot on your hand (if it's already hand tame) or with the parrot inside the cage (just starting training), you can use target training to teach the parrot to get onto the Training Perch entirely on its own!
The method of Target Training is a whole other topic, however, the Training Perch Kit comes with included clicker, target stick, and DVD to help you learn this training method effectively. Generally, the Training Perch is the best place to perform the target training exercises. However, if you have a fearful parrot and need targeting to get the parrot to come onto the Training Perch, that puts you in a bit of a bind. No problem. Teach the parrot how to target inside the cage through the bars. The parrot will feel safer in its enclosure and you will feel protected because you can't get bit. Next, you will be able to use step 2 and 3 to get the parrot onto the Training Perch to let your training experience really begin.
All 3 methods mentioned here are far less intrusive or intimidating than just forcing a highly fearful bird onto a stand. They give the parrot time to adjust so that it can be at ease and in a good learning mindset once on the Training Perch. Just remember that the more fearful the parrot is, the more time it can take to desensitize it. Patience is key. Never push the parrot into a panic by moving too quickly with any of the steps. Give the parrot plenty of time to get used to seeing the new perch in the cage or at a distance for seconds, minutes, even days if necessary before bringing it closer. You have to be the judge based on how your bird responds on a case by case basis. But if you patiently work at it and give the bird a chance to get comfortable, your bird will adjust and be ready to use the Training Perches before long.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone from Parrot Wizard and TrainedParrot.com! It has been a fun filled year of parrot training and I hope you have been enjoying the experience as well.
Despite having just arrived, I had a special Christmas present in store for Santina, the gift of training! I got her a Parrot Training Perch Kit from the Parrot Wizard (oh yeah, that's me) because it is the most powerful training tool you can have for a parrot. Not only does the kit include two training stands, it also comes with a clicker, target stick, and basic instructional DVD to get you started. I think becoming social, learning to fly, and simply developing a mutual form of communication is the best thing for a captive parrot.
I unwrapped Santina's present and had the perches set up in no time. I made for her a set of T-Perches in size Extra-Large because she has some massive feet (about the size of my hands!). I assembled the perches in play sight but not too close so she could see what's going on and not get frightened (after all it's only been a day since she had come from the rescue). In no time I had her up on the Training Perches stepping on and off. She got super excited about her Christmas surprise and did a little dance!
The stands took a big weight off my shoulders.... quite literally! Santina weighs more than two pounds and can be quite a handful. My arm feels like it's going to fall out of its socket after a few minutes of holding her. Part of the problem is that I try to hold her away from my body just to be safe that she can't bite my face. The bigger issue, however, is that she has a killer grip and digs her talons into my arm. Worse yet she starts to slip as she leans back and the claw slides across my skin making a long cut. By having these training perches, I can take her out of the cage room and have a place to set her down to begin training.
But this is only the beginning, I look forward to teaching her tricks and more importantly flight using these stands. There's no better gift for your parrot than the gift of training and Parrot Training Perches help you make that happen! Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!
You don't need to wait till Black Friday to get a fantastic holiday gift sale this year. Give your parrot the gift of training with a set of Parrot Training Perches. These stands come in a variety of perch sizes and the height is instantly adjustable.
As a bonus holiday incentive to promote my Parrot Training Perches, I am including a free 2011 Parrots and Parakeets 16 Month Calendar. It is a beautiful full color calendar featuring some of your favorite parrot species. All you Poicephalus lovers will especially appreciate the Jardine's Parrot cover shot.
After receiving much interest in the stands I use for all my parrot training, I have finally decided to release these on sale to the general public. Originally I designed a simple set of stands for the purpose of teaching Kili to target back and forth between them so that she could learn to fly as I would increase the distance. Since then I have made numerous improvements to the design and have found countless uses for these stands. Just to mention a few:
· Target training · Perch to perch flight training · Recall flight training to your hand · Training parrot tricks such as wave, shake, nod, turn around, wings · Advanced and variable height flight recall · Potty training parrot to poop from stand onto newspaper · Socializing parrots to each other · Place for parrot to hang out and play with toys
They are lightweight and portable so they can easily be moved from place to place. Yet they are heavy enough to be durable and support a small to medium parrot landing on them at speed. Some of mine I keep in a permanent location so the parrots know where they are and can fly there for safety (or toilet). The other stands I move around depending on what I am training. Typically I keep the height a bit below my head but sometimes I raise them for video or special training. If I'd like to sit in a chair, I can bring the training stands down to remain at a convenient height for training.
Parrot training perches eliminate the distraction that colorful play gyms and multi-branched climbing trees can create, keeping your parrot's attention on you for training. Since the two stands are independent, the ways you can line them up are numerous. Set them up parallel to each other to teach the parrot to fly between the two stands. Set the perches up perpendicular to each other to keep two parrots on them but not fight with each other. It is easy to add a newspaper at the base to collect any mess.