My Male cockatiel is starting to loos head feathers along right side of the head.I have two males, is it possible the one loosing head feathers is neurvous with the otherbird.Eileen
no, We got Floyd as a baby 2 yrs ago. Than came Trouper last november.
Both are in the same cage, get along well. This last 2 weeks the go chest to chest with
wings out, I thing they are playing
How can I stop this
ok, does that mean also at night when they go to bed?
such as ?
can the later bird be trying to become the alfa male, over the first one Floyd?
are you still there??
sorry, i had to step out
I am back now.
Feather plucking is a very complex problem. As you were saying it can be self inflicted, and stress can be a reason. However there are many other reasons why feather plucking can occur, like mites, secondary to pain, viral diseases, etc.
Nutrion plays also an important part. Diet deficiencies can lead to another form of stress, problems during molting and plucking.
Husbandry is also an important thing. As you were saying stress can be important. Air conditioning and heaters can lead to low relative environmenta humidity and cause itchiness.
This itchiness can lead to feather plucking.
ok I have been feeding them Cockatiel mix "Royal Cusine" which is the best we have here in
As you can see there are many reasons why feather plucking can occur. The best thing to address the problem is to see an avian veterinarian first. A complete examinatin may point out possible problems that I would not be able to help here because I cannot really evaluate your birdies.
Once a exam has been done, it is all about correcting possible problems and determine a plan of action.
These are the things I would try:
1) Monitor them carefully to see if Floyd is pulling his own feathers or it is the other birdie who is doing that. Generally, missing feathers from the head would be pulled by the other bird.
2) If you feel that they may be fighting or that the other bird is doing it to Floyd, you can separate them. At night you may want to put them back together as long as they are ok, and going straight to sleep. If you feel they have been fighting, the best thing is to completaly isolate them so you can avoid any type of accidents.
This sounds very possible. I think that since they are two males, one is trying to dominate
3) the size of the cage can be an stressor in itself. If the cage is too small, Floyd may not have much of a choice that be very close to the other birdie all the time. So please consider this when making decisions.
Trouper likes it when Floyd peckes at his head, but Floyd is not used to it.
Sometimes is not just about domination. In the wild, birds spend the majority of their time foraging for food. This means going from grocery to grocery. A smaller percentage of their time is spent in socialization and grooming, and then the last part of the day is actual resting time.
In captivity, they do not have forage so most of the time is actually spent on eating, grooming and sleeping. It could be that Trouper likes to groom Floyd and that is what he does most of the time.
4) Changing diet. The recommended diet would be a pelleted diet for about 50-75% of their actual diet. The remaining is completed with variety of fresh vegetables and sprouts (23%), fruit (<5%) and seeds/nuts (<1%). There are many avaiable brands in the market, my favor one is Harrison's bird food.
sounds good the change of diet.
5) increasing ways of spending time in a more useful way may help with the plucking. In the pet market you can find foraging toys, these type of toys promote healthy foraging so birds have to think and excersize in order to obtain their food. A very good DVD available in the market is "Captive foraging". You should have a look. The other important thing is to promote healthy playing with the use of bird toys. Bird toys should be supervised first, and then when you trust them, you can leave a toy with them. It is important to rotate toys too. Otherwise, a toy becomes one more part of the cage.
As you can see, there are a lot of things to consider and not just stress. You can find an avian veterinarian near by you at the Association of Avian Veterinarians (http://www.aav.org/search/)
Please let me know if you have any additional question or if there is anything that I did not explain clearly. By the way, please forgive me if I had any spelling mistake or grammatical error but English is not my mother language.
Thank you for the good advise. And your spelling was perfect.
Thank you very much, please do not hesitate to contact me back if any questions. I will check on you guys in few days to see how this problem is going. Thanks.
Hi,Glad to see that all is going well.Floyd is doing better, his feathers are going back in, but is and Truper are molting, due to weatherchanges. Changes there diet, and gave them more fruits. They still do not eat the pellets, so I do not force it on them. Thanks for the advise.