Noming on People {Another Guest Post}

April 17, 2011 § Leave a comment

It’s Guest Post Day again, and that means we’re back! I’m Mango, and today, we’re going to be talking about a very serious issue: Noming on people – also known as biting. Now, biting is a perfectly normal thing; most of us do it. But funnily enough, people don’t seem to care if it’s perfectly normal when their Macaw decides they should have more earrings. So today we’re going to explore the different types of biting, and how to stop it.

First of all, there’s “exploring” biting. If you had no arms, what would you use to explore? We use our feet and our beaks. Now let’s say you’re asking Polly to step up. What you see is a perfectly stable perch (your arm) for her to step up on. What Polly sees is a possibly unstable perch. So of course she’s going to explore: Feet won’t work, of course, so she uses her beak. What’s happening here is not biting, so much as checking. But most humans will jerk back at the apparent “bite” – and now Polly is going to bite! The important thing to remember when exploring happens is to keep perfectly still and stable. This will encourage your parrot to step up, not bite. Kiwi’s going to describe the next biting behavior.

Many of us, including Mango, are protective of our cage – just like people are protective of their houses. Let’s say a man comes barging into your house; you would probably protect yourself in whatever way you could. Our way is biting. Usually, protecting a cage isn’t something you can stop. Instead, you can use the simple safety measure of having your parrot step up onto a perch, and then (once the cage is out of sight) onto you. Another cage-related biting behavior is biting when being put back into the cage. Again, you can simply have your parrot step up onto a perch when putting him back into his cage.

“Beaking” is a stage during which a young parrot experiments with biting. Parrots’ beaks are filled with encapsulated nerve endings used to experience sensation, texture, etc. (Information found here.) Young parrots should be given appropriate things to bite, such as toys. Mango’s up.

Imagine that you were fired by your insane boss. When you get home, you’re impatient with the kids and snappy with your husband. This is “displaced aggression,” and we have it too. If your parrot really wants to bite something or someone, but you’re the only available option, she’ll bite you. There isn’t an easy way to fix this, but mostly you should simply not pick up your parrot when she’s in a bad mood or someone/something she doesn’t like in near.

If your parrot has decided you’re his mate, you’ll be subjected to plenty of biting. For example, if your husband attempts to hug/etc you when your parrot’s on you, your parrot will quickly bite you to prevent an “affair.” Or if he thinks your sister is dangerous, he’ll bite you to encourage you to “fly” away. Most of us won’t take no for an answer when it comes to the safety of our mate, and so the only fool-proof way to the prevent this is simply not to handle your parrot and interact with someone he deems unsafe at the same time.

If you’d like us to include another type of biting, please leave a comment. Arrivederci!

English, Mango, not Italian. Goodbye!

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