I’m Heather and my blue Quaker parakeet is Willow. He is about nine years old and has been with me for just over two years. We are in the upper Midwest US. I am also on the QPS chat group, but that group is not very active. I have a Meyers parrot, Jasper, who’s also about nine years old and a boy.
I have had Quakers for 25 years or all my adult life. My green Quaker, Lucy, was with me for 22 years plus. I miss her though she’s been gone for two years.
I found Willow a few months after Lucy passed. Willow is a sweet boy and very loving. He is learning to talk a little. He’s so different from Lucy, who talked a lot and was the life of the party. Willow is more retiring but he is very affectionate and likes to lick me and preen my eyelashes and eyebrows.
Willow is afraid of many new things and is also protective of his cage. That’s new for me. But once he is out of his cage he is a cuddly boy. He has been anxious as we’ve had brickwork done on the outside of my apartment building. He was staring up and screeching yesterday. But it was quiet today and we had a nice long cuddle and scritching session.
Welcome to you and Willow. We've already met on another parrot forum and had some recent conversations there. It's good to have you join us here on the Quaker Parrot Forum and hope you will participate often. I know you have lots of interesting things to say about Willow and memories of Lucy to share too.
Willow has been edgy, I think due to the construction upsetting him. He has been more nippy when he comes out and takes a lot longer to settle down for scritches and cuddles. I hope the work is done soon and Willow feels more complicated and less bitey.
I was listening to a cd today and Willow got excited. I think he was talking in his cage though I couldn’t tell what he was saying from my bedroom. That was fun! I will have to play more cds. I think my apartment is so quiet that he doesn’t talk much.
I really hope the biting stops once there’s not the upsetting noise and sights outside.
Parrots usually don't like any changes or disruptions to their life or environment and things like biting and screaming can be the way they express their objections to what's happening. Once things settle down with the construction. Willow will probably be his usual self again.
I always have the television or music on when the parrots are awake. They appreciate having sounds in the background though they don't always focus on them. Ralph pays more attention to them than Scooter the CAG does and Ralph really likes music. Try playing more CDs for Willow or see if there's anything on the radio or TV that he might like.
I will definitely play more cds for him. I didn’t expect him to like the cd as I sing to him a lot and he doesn’t croon along like Lucy used to. It seemed he wasn’t enjoying it. Last night’s was an old laurie Anderson spoken word and music cd.
It would be a lot of fun if Willow would talk more! It is so helpful when they can tell you what they want.
Ralph doesn't sing but he likes to listen to singing, even when I do it. If I sing something with words that he knows, he'll say them quietly while I sing. I made up our own variation on the QP version of "I'm a Little Teapot." It goes "I'm a Quaker parrot, green and gray. I like to squeak and squawk all day. " He knows most of those words and says them along with me, saying "Quaker parrot" and "squawk" a little louder than the other words since he knows those words better.
Lucy used to sing parts of the Quaker song. In fact, that’s what she’d sing when I sang something other than the Quaker song. It was hysterical! She also goo-goo-goo’ed tunelessly but very enthusiastically when I sang something or played a vocal cd that she really liked. For a while I was in three choral groups that met almost daily so she heard a lot of singing. Willow sometimes goo-goo’s in his cage but he only does it when I’m in my bedroom and he’s in the living room cage. So I can barely hear it. He’s still upset about the construction on the building and is not coming out of his cage very easily. Then he needs a while to calm down before he wants to be cuddled. And then I think he would stay out forever! Willow has finished his molt and I must trim his wings soon. I hope he’s not mad at me for long. I’m glad he chews his nails short. Those are hard to cut to the right length but not too short, especially if the bird clenches his foot while you are trimming.
Last Edit: Sept 10, 2022 3:58:19 GMT -5 by heatherg
I guess Ralph just isn't a singer and would rather listen to someone else sing than do it himself. My old Amazon George liked to sing. He sang in an almost operatic style and made up his own songs. His lyrics were things like "bird, bird, pretty bird..." George loved listening to music and especially enjoyed bad singers. If they were loud and off-key, he appreciated them all the more.
Hahaha…I’ve been watching Amazon parrots on YouTube and wish I could have one. But not in a small apartment, I don’t think.
Lucy’s singing was either the words to the Quaker song or stuff about “good good bird, bird, good bird”.
Willow and I watched talking Quakers on YouTube and I think he figured out that I like that (talking). Anyhow we practiced giving kisses and laughing and I answered back to the talking Quaker (and he watched carefully).
Maybe the videos of QPs will inspire Willow to be more talkative. Certainly worth a try.
After 40 years with George I am very fond of Amazons, but they aren't the ideal apartment birds. They can be very noisy, and they do require a little more space than a QP. George was never a problem in the six years he lived in our apartment. Never a single complaint even when he got a bit boisterous. For a while there was another Amazon living in our building, a DYHA. He was a lot louder and more persistently vocal than George, and the complex manager did get complaints-- from people living two blocks away.