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Bonding and Training Want to train your parrotlet? Just want to bond with your parrotlet? Ask all your questions and suggestions here.

Is feeding from fingers okay?

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Old 04-20-2017, 11:58 AM   #1
sanguinaria
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Is feeding from fingers okay?

Last night and this morning I've been feeding Tihota his new Harrison pellets piece by piece from between my fingers and he just loves it! He seems really excited and happy to eat this way, but suddenly it's occurred to me that this might be like allofeeding between mates to him and encourage inappropriate sexual behaviors like regurgitation or solicitation. He hasn't done anything that would fall under this umbrella yet, but now I'm thinking that maybe I should reserve feeding by hand for occasional treats or introducing new foods.

Have any of you experienced unwanted behaviors due to feeding from your fingers?
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Old 04-20-2017, 12:14 PM   #2
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Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think you have anything to worry about. I've heard feeding by hand suggested as a bonding technique, or as a way to get birds to try new foods. I've never heard of it causing problems.
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Old 04-20-2017, 12:18 PM   #3
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I hope you're right! He's been a light eater for the entire time I've had him and it's nice to finally see him excited about eating!
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Old 04-20-2017, 01:44 PM   #4
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Feeding from hands is normally ok. The exception is to not feed warm mushy stuff (like a noodle or cooked egg) which can be mistaken as regurgitation and maybe send the wrong signals about mating. Hard cooler stuff like bird seed and treats should be just fine.
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Old 04-20-2017, 02:20 PM   #5
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Sounds good to me...I often give snacks to my birds from my hands, but I'd take Ozzie's suggestion to heart and not do so with super soft foods that could suggest to your bird something more. It sounds like you have a real sweetheart there!
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Old 04-20-2017, 10:36 PM   #6
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Thanks guys! It's a relief to hear that feeding crunchy foods by hand should be fine, so I hope he sticks to the "rules" so we can keep it up! I love seeing him so enthusiastic about food all of a sudden and he's definitely still eating from his bowls on his own so I figure I probably don't have to worry about him getting dependent on feedings either.

He had a BIG full crop during cuddle time tonight.

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Old 04-21-2017, 03:11 PM   #7
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Oh so cute. I think it's great if they will take seeds and treats from your fingers, it's a wonderful way to teach thinks like step up or tricks.
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Old 04-22-2017, 04:54 AM   #8
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What a snuggle-bug!! Love that picture----Tihota looks so content/happy. A yellow?
I give Ollie soft foods on a spoon----he enjoys eating that way.
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Old 04-22-2017, 07:45 AM   #9
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Our Huey does not care for hand feeding, however he will eat what ever I just had in my hand if I put it in his bowl or his plate. Every now and again I get lucky and he will but my guy is not a fan of hands.


Since you are having such good success with the pellets, why dont you also put some in the food bowls? When you see him eating them on his own you can wean him off you hand. Then he can try other things from your hands and still get the benefit of the pellets and you can try other foods.

My Huey only used to eat pellets from my hand/treat plate now he chows down from his bowl.

Very handsome little guy.
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lindav View Post
What a snuggle-bug!! Love that picture----Tihota looks so content/happy. A yellow?
I give Ollie soft foods on a spoon----he enjoys eating that way.
He's a dilute turquoise, our evening light is just very yellow.
Spoiled Ollie!


Quote:
Originally Posted by rizzie5022 View Post
Since you are having such good success with the pellets, why dont you also put some in the food bowls? When you see him eating them on his own you can wean him off you hand. Then he can try other things from your hands and still get the benefit of the pellets and you can try other foods.
Oh, I mentioned earlier in the thread that he's also eating well from the bowl now. It's a pellet miracle!
I've also been giving him some grains of bee pollen by hand, which is lots of fun for him... not so much for me. Turns out I'm allergic to it!
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