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Readers Respond: Tips to Stop Your Parrot from Feather Plucking

Responses: 17

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Birds pluck their feathers for several reasons. In the wild, they use plucked feathers to line their nests during breeding season. Many bird feathers also come out as a bird performs its normal preening and grooming routine. In captivity, however, a plucking bird can be a sign of veterinary or environmental problems. Birds that are stressed will pluck as a means of pacifying themselves, and sometimes out of boredom or lack of interaction. What tips and tricks have given you success in curbing the plucking problem in your parrot? Share your answer below with other bird owners!

If your bird is on a pellet diet...

My pet Senegal had a plucking problem for a long time and I was frustrated trying to find the reason. He has so many toys that boredom was probably not the reason, and I read online somewhere that the reason could be due to food coloring. I was feeding him pellets at the time that looked like old-fashioned Trix cereal, which had multi-colors and shapes (I wanted to eat them!). I decided to try Harrison's organic pellets, reluctantly, because to be honest I was skeptical and thought that the whole thing was a gimmick for new pellets. But to my surprise, once my bird was on the new pellet diet, his plucking stopped, and the sheen of his feathers dramatically improved. Even my roommates commented on his feathers. I usually don't endorse products, but if you are having problems with your parrot that eats pellets as a part of their diet, give Harrison's a try. Its pricey, but if your parrot is happier, its worth it...and don't forget fruits and veggies.
—Guest ELS

My Bird Plucked his tail

My bird lost his tail. I just found out about it this morning. What should I do? I couldn't find a good advise on http://www.google.com
—Guest John

Plucking!

My 14 year old, female sun conure wont stop plucking her feathers. She just laid her first two eggs in 14 years and ever since then she has been freaking out. She even lost her tail feathers. How do I fix this? she's not sick is she??
—Guest Tara

Red fruit palm oir

I have bought it on the internet cause it's the only place I could find it. My bird won't eat her food when I mix it in there. She hasn't had know change since I started it.
—Guest Stacy

Important

Birds require lots of attention. They will do anything to get noticed. If not played with enough the plucking may start. Another reason is their diet. They need meat. Think about it if they were in the wild they wouldn't b eating seeds. Cooked noodles serves as a good treat (without any sause). Unhealthy for them, which could result in plucking. They could be alergic to something in the room, or something they are eating. Don't move them into another room quickly because that will stress them out. Just make sure no added smells are in the room. Add vitamins into their water daily after changing the water out daily. Once all this checks out you will be on you're way to a healthy bird. It will b full of feathers in no time.
—Guest Gibran

Plucking feathers

I understand that a Rubbermail cotton mop head as a toy will do the trick in entertaining a bird so it doesn't pluck.
—Guest Diane

Chivken

Too bad you can't get a chicken to pluck it's self. That would sure make dressing one out a lot easier. I bet your plucking parrots would taste awesome! Just a thought.
—Guest Taste like chicken

plucking

i have a orange wing amazon he is about 7 months old, i have noticed that tere are all these little snowflake looking feathers all over and one thing his tail is looking ragged now. i haven't changed his diet or anything is this maybe because he is loosing his baby feathers? only change is that i came down with cancer and i cant seem to spend as much time as i did before
—Guest JO-JO

Birds that pluck their feathers

Theres a product on the market called "Red palm fruit oil", you can buy it for health shops and some pet shops. It is a oil, free of cholesterol that you mix with your birds seed, fruit, or vegatables. Soon you will see that your birds feathers will come out again and it works 100% on all birds. People can use this oil on salads or cook with it.
—Guest deidre@sa-business.info

Her Readjusting and Mine

We've faced alot in this house recently and the poor cockatiel and lovebird have been neglected considerably--just cleaning out those cages has helped tremendously--getting their regular routines back is calming both birds down..it's a good thing I didn't wait to find out these things while she picked away..What a way to have to, huh?
—Guest Shar

help stop the plucking

I have a macaw, and never seen a bald spot on her in 20yrs. I'm scared too death. What shoud i do?
—Guest glenn brinkman

feather plucking

MY LOVEBIRD IS A SWEET AND LOVING BIRD I play with him often and he is allowed to fly around the house.He is allways pulling his tail feathers out and it seems to bother him all the time,any advice or similar problem?
—howlandhil

bleeding

my bird plucked so much that it started bleeding. I first sprayed with cleaning solution and kept an eye on him so he doesnt pluck when he does i say something loud or tap the cage to tell og get him to stop. later after that i eased up on the attention. but soon after the bleeding was worse than before. he had blood all over his face from plucking. that is when i went to get a vets help.
—Guest paraceet plucker

plucking

i just got a ruby macaw but i had known him for a few weeks befor he came home with me. his first owner died of cancer and none of her kids wanted to do anything with him. so he became very deppressed and plucked out almost all his feathers. i dont know how long he stayed with the family before my dance teacher adopted him. she nursed him back to heath but she had other birds at her house and did really have room for him. so she asked me if i would like to have him ( i was the only one with enough bird experience to take him). i said yes and he lives out side in a very big cage but im worried that he is starting to pluck again. i cant really tell if he is multing or plucking because he doesnt have all his feathers back yet. how do i tell if he is plucking or multing? and if he is plucking how do i stop it?
—Guest kelly

Coco

Original owner of Coco, could no longer keep her, vocal, speaking, singing, . owner came home, to discover that Coco, had plucked all of her feathers out, visit to the Vet, diog- STRESS problem, with time, the feathers would return, NO! I took her to the Vet, who, sugg that I should buy this collar, she would be unable to remove, and with time, make the plucking would stop, got home, and 15 min later, she had the collar off, I put it back on 10 times, and she removed it every time, just gave up with collar.Large cage, HER ROOM with toys, cleaned daily, diet, great, fresh fruit etc, plus the regular pellets, enjoys spagetti, special treat, Pistashio nuts. Freedom until bedtime. Tip, Camomile tea in drinking water. She scares our cat. Naked, but loved. She keeps saying PRETTY COCO BIRD.beauty in the eyes of the beholder. Any tips, to stop the plucking, APPRECIATED.
—Guest lucille

Help! This is one stubborn cockatiel!!

I purchased "Belle" from a breeder, she was supposedly hand fed but she is very stubborn and I work with her daily for 15 minutes and frequently "stop in" to say hello while I'm doing chores. Her cage is where she gets positive stimulation but she also gets her 12 hours of rest/sleep. I have had her almost 3 months and it feels like she's never going to be tame & trust me. I suppose I will just continue to provide positive reinforcement and love...she does this weird "dance" jumping side to side every morning when I remove her covering, I think she's happy to see me, am I right? She loves to be misted (refuses to take bath) so I guess I'll keep trying. I had a male cockatiel for 17 years and he was so lovey dovey it was amazing, so I guess I am having a tough time with "Belle". I am hoping that with time & patience she'll come around.
—Guest mysticnana

PLUCKING!

My parrot is still plucking his feathers. What i learned is that i wasnt really playing with her because all my work and making food so it was hard but then everytime i do work and i just play with him for a while and he doesn't pluck, its a miracle. If your having these difficulties try playing with him/her more often!!!
—Guest JoJO
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