Thursday, January 8, 2015

Lokisaurus Rex: Master and Commander of the Step Up

Loki decided that the last day of 2014 would be the perfect time to (hesitantly) step both of his feet onto my hand on command for the first time. Oh good, that only took 214 days. At this rate, I'll have him flight trained and speaking by the time I'm 60 years old.

Jokes aside, I'm very pleased that my scaredy-chicken finally trusts me enough to step up. He still approaches every training session with hesitation, but gradually builds up his confidence so that he'll step up onto my hand and actually stay there for a minute or two before wanting to step back down onto a perch. Today I even threw him a curveball by moving my hand away from the safety of the perch for a moment before moving it back within his reach. He panicked a little the first time I did it, but I distracted him by shoving sunflower seeds in his face as fast as he could eat them, all while praising the fluff out of him. If the tables were turned and someone were training me, I'd do pretty much anything they asked if they were shoveling mini York peppermint patties  (sunflower seed equivalent) into my mouth.*

My little Rainbow-Banshee remains much the same. Broody, demanding, but very sweet when she wants to be. I am casually asking around to see if there is anybody who is interested in adopting her. I approached parrot ownership with an iron attitude that I'd never give them up for anything, but I've come to realize that this attitude is not serving my birds well. Mango needs way more attention than I can give her. There are several factors involved in this decision: 1.) I am away from the house for up to 12-14 hours at a time (although 9 is more typical) due to work. My schedule is inflexible. 2.) The house is not bird-safe enough for her to just come hang out with me before or after work. We have a free-roaming cat who can only be banished outdoors for short periods of time, lots of things she could fly into and hurt herself, teflon pans that emit toxic fumes that could kill her were she out while someone was cooking, etc. etc. The list goes on. I do not own this house, therefore I do not make the rules, and so she must remain confined. 3.) Even if she did have free-range of the house while I was home, so would Loki. And Loki wants to kill Mango. So that's basically the final nail in the coffin. Even if I moved out tomorrow and had my own house, there would still be the issue of Loki's aggression towards Mango. And that's my long-winded explanation on why I've ultimately decided that she would be better off with someone who works from home, is retired, etc.

Sigh.

*I hope D never reads this.