Monday, November 17, 2008

Beginnings of a friendship?

Thomas and I were hanging out in the kitchen with most of the parrots when he drew my attention to the parrot stand.

The greys were sitting pretty close to each other and not fighting! Of course, they weren't exactly preening each other, but it's a start.

When I got the camera, Max put her foot up, like I was going to pick her up and rescue her from the congo who'd dared try to perch near her:
Then, she started doing this weird thing where she was picking at her toes. Stella seems to do this when she's nervous, but I've never really noticed Max doing this before:Finally, she did one of my favorite parrot body language moves; one that's saved me from dozens (scores?) of Rocky bites over the years:
I've noticed many parrots make this move over the years; they put their foot up, toes extended, towards the offending parrot that they want to keep away.

Soon after we got Rocky, I decided to try it with him. He was approaching me on the ground, primed for an attack. I lifted my foot up towards him, and he immediately retreated. I no longer fear an attack because he really respects this body language! (Of course I have to stay on alert for his attacks so that I can get my foot in the "stop" position!)

Of course I wanted to try to get this on video as well, so you can see some of the body language in action. Sorry this gets a bit boring at the end!


But there's more action here! I've watched this video at least 10 times, and can not determine who's at fault for the altercation, though I'm strongly leaning towards putting the blame on Max at this point.


Perhaps my hopes for a grey friendship are premature. It will be interesting to see how they are with each other 20 years from now!

7 comments:

Sammi said...

The foot thing reminds me of the "talk to the hand" gesture that was popular when I was in fourth grade.

Mary said...

Sammi -- Thomas and I joke about that, too. That's exactly what it's like! It always amazes me how much they respect that gesture, I must add!

Mary said...

That foot thing is funny! I like the third photo. Kind of a "yea I have one of those too!" It looks like the start of a great friendship. Actually I'm surprised the birds aren't more into each other.

Beloved Parrot said...

Your first video didn't show up (at least for me), but I'm willing to say that the fault of the altercation in the second video is BOTH of 'em. They're both moving so fast . . .

I love that extended foot. I've never seen my brown-head do it, but I'm going to try it on her.

Beloved Parrot said...

I stand corrected -- the first video just loaded really slowly.

DoodleBird said...

Wow that's amazing. I've never noticed the foot thing before. is it a grey thing or do all parrots do it? I'll have to watch for it with Nani. She's started being a lot more naughty lately and bites now when I try to keep her from getting into trouble, it hurts but she doesn't latch on or anything.

Mary said...

Mary -- I'm surprised that none of my birds are into each other, also. Two years ago, I had hopes of caging the caiques together, but I risk a bloodbath, so separate cages it will be for them.

BP -- I'm glad you could finally see the video. It was really long because I was expecting some action, which didn't happen until I started a new video.

I'll try to take a picture of my foot extended with Rocky so it makes sense what I do. As I said, it's saved me many bites.

The greys do antagonize each other, so they both had it coming.

Doodle Bird -- I've seen 4 of my 6 (not Calypso or Daphne) do this, plus many different birds at the rescue.

But, I've only ever seen them do this to other birds, not people (Rocky never puts his foot up to me; only to Max.)

Good luck getting through the beaky stage. My caiques both can get so wound up, so "gentle" was one of the most important things they learned. I think they get so worked up sometimes they need to be reminded to behave again :)