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Parrots/Training Lovebirds



I received a pair of lovebirds from someone I know whose friend is emigrating the only information given to me about them is that they are 3 years old. I left them alone in the cage without disturbing them for a week before trying to handle them, they are terrified of people's hands, although they are fine with arms and shoulders one even likes to sit on top of my head. I open the cage and let them leave by their own chose before getting them to hop on to my arm. What would be the best way to hand train older birds like this?

Thanks for any help.


--  The fun fact about birds is that whether they're a year old or 10 years old or even 50 years old (depending on the species) birds are flexible survivors.  They've been on this planet billions of years longer than we have and will be here billions of years after we're gone

To start this, we need to hit the 're set' button on the birds.  That basically means to first take all the time necessary to 'rehab' them.  Get them happy, healthy and trusting.  They need to be bonded to their human before they'll want to do anything with and 'for' that human.

 The one mistake you're making is letting them make decisions about leaving their cage or getting on an arm.  

 Also, keeping them together in one cage?  I'm not sure if I'm understanding this part, but if that's what you're doing - time to stop.

Birds allowed to touch, will bond.  To each other.  You need them bonded to you.  So separate cages.  They can still be in the same room and enjoy each other's sight and sound, but no touching.

 Check here to get these steps started  


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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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