Friday, November 21, 2008

More grey relationship talk

The greys are still not physically interacting in any positive way, but they are showing signs of flock-like behavior. They seem to want to be in the same room, so when one flies in to a different room, the other usually follows. However, if that's not possible (for example, I'm cooking on the stove so Stella has to stay in her cage), they don't call back and forth to each other. They also tend to do things at the same time, like I've seen in videos of wild parrots. For example, they'll preen the same side of their bodies or shake in the same way at the same time.

At least once a day, they'll chase each other around, which I take to be a form of play, but I'm really not sure. For example, Max will be on the chair, so Stella flies to the chair which makes Max fly to the counter. Then Stella flies to the counter, which makes Max fly to the stand. Then Stella flies to the stand, which makes Max fly to the top of the refrigerator. Always at this point, Stella then flies to the shoes. If Max is on the fridge, there's a 90% possibility I'll find Stella in the shoes, and vice versa.

Stella with the shoes:
Last night we had nut & carrot burgers. Stella was in her cage because Thomas was cooking the burgers, but that didn't stop Max from coming over for a taste.
Shortly after taking this picture, I remembered that one of the main ingredients is onions, so I pulled her away. I tried to get her to spit out the piece she had in her mouth, but when she realized what I was doing, she became even more determined to eat it. Luckily it was a small amount so it appears that no damage was done. Silly parrot!

Stella has been imitating many of the things Max does. All of the words she's picked up at our house (which haven't been many) come from Max. She was watching one of Max's training sessions earlier this week and tried to do the same tricks Max was (unsuccessfully, but I'm hoping to eventually teach them to her as well).

To be honest, Max is probably the best-behaved bird in our house, so if she had to choose someone to emulate, I'm glad it's Max and not Rocky!

November has been a great month since Thomas was on a less-demanding rotation. That meant he could often leave for work a little later than usual, allowing time to eat breakfast and shower with the parrots. On more demanding months (including December and January, unfortunately) he is out the door an hour before the parrots wake up for the day.

A breakfast ritual he and Max share is that Max gets to lap up the remaining soy milk in Thomas's cereal bowl. Max waits patiently (well, as patient as you can expect a grey to be -- she does make begging postures and repeat "want some!" in an effort to get Thomas to eat more quickly), and when Thomas is done with his cereal, he puts the bowl on the counter. Max flies over and helps herself.

Wednesday morning, I heard him say, "Max is not going to be happy about this!" as he offered some of his remaining milk to Stella. Surprisingly, Max did not seem to care as she got the bowl to herself after Stella got a bit.
I've really been hopeful in the past few days that a relationship of sorts may develop between the two of them over the years. Even if their relationship never progresses beyond the point it is today, I imagine it must be some comfort for them to see another grey in the house.

Here's wishing everyone a great weekend. Our food mill came yesterday, so I hope to have applesauce pictures on Monday.


Stephanie said...

That home meade apple sauce will be awesome! Do you have one of those apple corer peeler thingys too? Those are so cool.

Beloved Parrot said...

Don't worry -- it just takes time.

Thanks for your kind note about Nicholas. I picked up something that's the birdie equivalent of ibuprofen -- just in case Nicholas is in pain. Now I have to be careful not to watch him too much, lest he decide he's getting attention for flipping his wing.

Mary said...

Stephanie -- I don't have one of those, but with the food mill, you are supposed to not need one. We shall see! It would come in handy for apple cobbler, though...

BP -- time, we've got! I'm just curious to see what will happen. I don't think my caiques will ever bond since it's been over 2 years and they pretty much exist as though the other one doesn't exist. I have hope for the greys...

Sending more good thoughts Nicholas's way!