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Category: Eclectus Parrot Forum

I have a 12-year-old female eclectus, Scarlet, that my husband and I adopted almost eight years ago. She was actually a rescue bird. The person from whom I adopted Scarlet owned her for about three years, and she was very good to her. The person who adopted her as a hatchling abused her terribly, thereby making Scarlet’s first year in the world truly miserable (when my friend adopted Scarlet, she was found in a very dirty cage kept in the back of a warehouse with very dirty water and seed kernals -very little food, which wasn’t a balanced diet to begin with at that). I adopted Scarlet when my friend could no longer care for her (I used to “bird sit” for this woman when I was in college). It took over six years before Scarlet would allow my husband or I to touch her on her feet or her back (she would get on our arm, but she was always on extreme guard). Unfortunately, even though we’ve done everything possible to keep her on a good schedule, good diet, and spend time with her, Scarlet has remained moody and touchy and none too trusting. Despite these challenges, we had developed a pretty good relationship and routine with Scarlet, something which she appeared to be comfortable with, but lately, she has developed more/different behavioral problems. She’s always had behaviorable problems to some degree, but within the past four months or so, they’ve worsened. Among them were biting, forcefully jerking her head down when she’s not happy, she’s stopped talking regularly (replaced by shrill screams), and she likes to take flight… alot (her wings are clipped, so it ends up being a sputter across the living room floor, but she still tries). Lately, her “flights” have become more frequent, and she’s trying to get into a dark little space in between the TV stand and a bookshelf that sits next to the TV. Where she used to be very content to just sit either on my arm while we’re watching TV or on her “living room perch” (usually just for quick “poopies”), now she even takes flight directly from either my husband’s or my arm. She’s screaming more, and we just cannot seem to keep her happy. I’ve always figured her quirks were largely the result of her home life during her formative months (her first 1.5 years of life), and we’ve come to accept them just because we love her so much. Now, however, we’re getting worried. Any suggestions for how to make our Scarlet happier, and for how we may teach her how to express herself in a more healthy way?

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