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Parrots/Nanday Conure's health


Hi there, I have a Nanday Conure that is about 23 years old. I put her food bowl down at the bottom of her cage, and she started acting a little odd. She began to act as though the food bowl was a companion of sorts, putting her foot inside the bowl, and huddling next to it for hours on end. She would stay down in that state, and sleep for most of the time. She has laid about a dozen eggs in her lifetime, and it seemed as though she were going into that position again. However, it's continued for a good 2-3 weeks, and I don't believe an egg is the case. Just today, I put the bowl back up in its original position, and she began acting much more normal- moving around, climbing through the cage, and eating a good amount. Do you think this was just a phase when the bowl was put down on the base of the cage?

-- Let's keep the bowl up and discourage any bottom feeding which increases chances of infection, illness and disease (sort of like eating off the bathroom floor).  

As for the mating behavior in a bowl, I've seen it done by other similarly sized females.  They actually trigger egg production in some cases by getting into the right position.  Whether they're using the bowl as a 'mate' or a nest or both, broody behavior isn't healthy in anything but chickens (and even then, precautions are in place by responsible owners)

 I also encourage regular check ups for our companion birds.  It's like having a child and a once or twice a year vet visit is the responsible thing to do.  

Where I am it's only $40 - amounting to less than .25 cents a day - and it guarantees that if your companion ever needs 'emergency' care, you'll have someone ready to see her and not charge an arm and a leg that's associated with both a 'new patient' and 'emergency'.   That's where the myth of vet visits for birds being hundreds of dollars comes from.  Many owners wait 'til it's an emergency - and when the vet doesn't know you or your bird - it's going to cost a LOT

 Given your girl's behavior, a 'well bird visit' (check up) would surely give you peace of mind  


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Rev. Dr. S.August Abbott


Certified Avian Specialist; Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council member; Own animal rescue org; National Wildlife habitat #66378; bird care, nutrition & behavior consultant; International Assoc. of Animal Behavior Consultants Associate; National Wildlife Federation Leaders Club member; published bird care, info and behavior articles and guides. Ongoing education in exotic bird behavior and nutrition I can answer behavioral, nutritional, environmental, characteristic/personality questions as well as general health and health care. No animal emergency can ever be addressed on the internet. We cannot see your animal, perform an examination, provide necessary care or medication. Please value your companion for the priceless, living creature they are; not for what you might have paid for them.


Certified Avian Specialist. For more than 30 years I've worked with veterinarians, protective facilities, nature centers, preserves and on my own in providing care and education with regard to multiple animal species, including raptors (hawks, kestrals, owls, etc) and marsupials. In recent years I've focused on parrots, usually rescued from abusive or less than ideal situations and helping educate owners as to proper care. Expert in behavior studies and modification of problem behavior.

4AnimalCare is the organization I run as an animal ministry; World Wildlife Association, Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, National Wildlife Federation Leaders Club and more

Bird Talk Magazine articles about rescued and problem macaws.

Doctorate, Ordained Minister

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