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Thread Description:Odd courting ritual

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Old 07-11-2016, 01:19 PM
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Default Rescued cockatiel male force feeds female's feet

It is as odd as it sounds. I recently rescued a pair of cockatiels that were in poor health, especially the male. They are on antibiotics right now and are getting better. Now that the male has more energy, he spends a lot of time fixating on the female, namely her feet. He will grab them really hard, pull on them and throw up on them. The female absolutely hates this and it stresses her out to the point that she will hang upside down in the cage and tremble. She's completely exhausted after HOURS of this. Why is he force feeding her feet? Is there anything I can do to stop this?



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Old 07-11-2016, 01:41 PM
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I have no idea why he is doing it, but I would put them in different cages, at least for the time being!
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Old 07-11-2016, 04:00 PM
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I put them in separate cages right next to each other. They are both calm and resting. I had to split the amount of antibiotic water between them, but that should be fine. The male also gets to actually digest the food he eats, rather than throw it up on the female's poor feet. Could his problem be psychological? They didn't come from a healthy environment at all, the male gives off these really weird vibes, don't know how to describe it. He's mentally a bit off in other ways as well.
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Old 07-11-2016, 06:41 PM
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Hello Sabine,

I'm glad you've separated them and I believe it's for the best if they remain separated

The poor female has probably had just about enough of him and it's not fair for her to have to deal with his behaviour any longer.

The male does sound a bit off and considering they came from a "rescue" situation, it sounds like he either developed or was born with some psychological problem.

Have you spoken to your avian vet about his condition?
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Old 07-11-2016, 09:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabine.L View Post
.... They didn't come from a healthy environment at all, the male gives off these really weird vibes, don't know how to describe it. He's mentally a bit off in other ways as well.
I am a bird newbie, but the combination of an unhealthy environment and the weird behavior is making me wonder if he could have some sort of heavy metal poisoning. I gather it's pretty easy to inadvertently give birds access to toxic metals.
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Old 07-11-2016, 10:44 PM
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I'm glad you've separated the two birds and believe it best if you house them separately on a permanent basis.

I agree with Star that the male's behavior would be something to discuss with your Avian Vet.
lbeckman's suggestion of the possibility of heavy metal poisoning is certainly something you will want to bring up at their appointment as well.

Good luck and please update us after you take them into the Avian Vet for a check-up.
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