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Flight Training a Baby Macaw

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Uploaded on Dec 19, 2010

What a difference a few weeks makes. Blu Lu the Blue Throated Macaw from the conservation project Bird Endowment has now been here about two weeks. In her first week here although quite cooperative I would describe her as hesitant. In other words the environment was so different to her that she was slow to get out and explore.

Because she is a flighted parrot I really wanted her to get those wings flapping and get to know the perches in the house. She quickly learned to fly to a PVC perch that was similar to one she knew from her time at the breeders. But I had to spend some time teaching her to fly to other perches in the house. You can see this process in the video clip.

The training has paid off! Now she is showing the kind of confidence I would expect out of a seasoned flyer. She knows where her perches are and has figured out how to maneuver through doorways and around corners. So far she has not made too many attempts to fly to places that are not sanctioned for parrot. However when she has, I have returned her to an acceptable perch and reinforced her there with a toy, head scratches or a treat. My goal is to make the perches I want her to use the most reinforcing places in the room. Because Blue Throated Macaws tend to be active and inquisitive parrots (someone once described them to me as the engineers of the parrot world) this means I am going to have to be very attentive to this, especially in these early stages of training. Fortunately I just had a fabulous outdoor aviary finished that I hope will help keep her enriched throughout her lifetime. You can read more about Blu Lu at the Good Bird Inc blog http://goodbirdinc.blogspot.com/

Barbara Heidenreich
www.GoodBirdInc.com
Copyright Good Bird Inc 2010

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