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Macaw Diet? (was advised to starve bird into eating fruit)

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Hiya. Just looking for a few tips really, Ive had my B&G Macaw 2 months. Shes an 06 Bird, last week i took her to see Matt Brash, and he said she should not be on a (macaw)seed diet. I tried her on fresh veg/fruit when i got her, and she will not touch anything at all.

 

He said for me to starve her and leave fresh fruit/veg in her bowl. which i have been doing for the past 3 days, but now shes a really moody bird, Loud, Nips other people in the house, and generally abit of a pain. I gave her abit of a chip earlier (wrong i know, but i hate to see her like this) and she nearly ripped my hand off, and it was gone in litterally 3-4seconds.

 

Just wondered if there is anything else i could try? My DYH Amazon eats anything you put in front of her, and is really healthy.

 

Abit of background info on Amber my Macaw - I bought her roughly 2 months ago, She was bullied by her previous owner (which i later found out after buying her) and is underweight and had mutilated all her wings. She was a really unhappy bird. The progress she has made over the 2 months is unreal.

 

Anyways - any help/feedback would be brilliant.

 

Thanks, James.

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Am gobsmacked!

 

I have heard of partial 'starving' as in having nothing but fruit and veg in the cage for most of the day but with that method the bird is also allowed his/her fill of seed mix at least once per day.

The idea being to encourage the parrot to try the new foods as nothing else is available but not to detrimentally starve him/her.

Perhaps this is what the Vet was trying to explain but made a bad job of getting across to you?

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Try hand feeding her with a spoon?

Warm mashed fruits, mashed warm carrot, sweet potato, and gradually add other things.

Even the above with your fingers if she likes taking food from your fingers.

Or if she takes food like chips from your fingers you sit and eat bits of healthier things in front of her.

Have a bowl with carrot sticks, slices of apple etc.

Get a bag of greens from the supermarket.

The "salad" mixes of watercress, rocket, chard are good.

They tend to be sweeter than other greens, and it is a start..

Munch in front of her, and almost refuse to give it to her. She may want it if she sees you eating it especially if you pretend it is not for her to be having your special food .

 

It does take time ,months even, of persistence. But it can be done:-)

Good luck poor birdy.

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I suspect that as Roz has suggested he intended you to starve Amber all day except for fruit & veg and then give an evening meal of her regular diet . It`s a method that I`ve seen reccomended several times !

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I agree with gary and MMM. Macaws do well on a slightly oily diet and will tolerate fats much better than most parrots. Has anyone ever seen a fat Macaw: I doubt it.

At least he didn't try to flog you Harrisons pellets!

Unless your bird has a diet-related health issue you need to feed it quite a lot of nuts: Hazels, Walnuts, Brazils, either in shell or out. Only buy human-grade nuts. A small amount of a "normal" clean sunflower-based food will be fine. It is quite possible that the Macaw will, one day, for no apparent reason, start eating fruit &veg.

The DYH Amazon is the bird out of the two that could easily get fat unless it gets a lot of exercise so I would be wary of feeding it too much fatty food.

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You have only had her a short while, so let her settle in before you try to force her into eating fruit and veg,

Macaws need a much higher fat diet than other parrots so a good parrot mix for the next few months wont hurt and if she is under weight she will need building up not starving.

 

If she will eat chips, mash, rice, curry (all you eat apart from avocados, mushrooms, chocolate and coffee) then great give it to her also a chicken leg at least twice a week (or other meat),roast potatoes are a firm favourite with mine and Yorkshire pudding and don't forget the gravy :lol:

 

Don't starve her love her and feed her.

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I think you may have misunderstood Matts advice. I use him for my birds and have always found him to be excellent. Perhaps you might phone him to clarify exactly what he meant??

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The fact that she's small is almost certainly down to the breeding rather than her health. Sadly B&G Macaws do seem to have shrunk in recent years: probably due to poor husbandry and rearing.

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Net - I will try to contact him tomorrow.

 

The last pic doesnt really do her any favours. lol. She looks more like an Amazon with a Macaws head and colours.

 

I gave her a bowl of seed earlier and she ran off the back of the settee, up onto the top of her cage, down into the door way and straight into her bowl. And Didnt stop eating for a good 15-20 minutes.

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i do remember once reading a article of matts stating that birds can live on a mostly fruit and veg diet and he recomends this with added pulses and a few other bits

he also said in the article that he can hospitalise a parrot to convert it to this diet but if my mind remembers rightly he did mention the starvation route but maybe like others have said he may mean for a couple of hrs

how come when you need to find something you never can not sure if it was on here i read it or the general net but i wanted to post it and carnt find it lol typical must be an age thing

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I have Bobby a tag who will only eat grapes and on the odd day apple. i have tried alsorts to get him to eat other stuff. but i have never took his seed out. Bobby is happy and looks healthy to me. So i have stopped worring about him. We still give him stuff to try but he just drops it. But he does love chips and toast.

 

Yet my two sennies will eat everything. Ozzy my baby wants everything i eat.

 

u could always buy vitamin drops/powder to add to his food/water.

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try getting one of those fruit spears and hang whole fruit / veg on it - my two see it as a toy to destroy - he may eat a little while hes playing with it - hes a lovely little chap

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I always take out the seed in a morning and put in their fruit then replace with fresh seed/pulses/soaked seed later in the day, if i dont do that they dont eat their fruit.

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w6eva - ive got one of the spears, she wont entertain it.

 

Net - ive tried her with raw veg, cooked veg, i put a few bits in the blender, she took few bits off a spoon, and that was that.

 

I tried her with abit of brocolli off my plate what she seemed interested in, she ate 3/4 of it with a bit of gravy on - Result!

 

She wont touch it if its in her bowl though. I think i may have my work cut out for me with this one, shes a little mischief.

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Keep on trying. We have Charlie an OWA and he doesn't eat much fruit but gradually he takes more and more different types. he started with only eating satsuma but now will eat apple and pomegranite (purple poo time!) amongst other things. I think seeing our CAG Sombra stuffing anything he can into his fat beak helps because he gets nosey and wants to try the same. Sometimes he takes things and drops them, but sometimes he decides he actually quite likes them.

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Seen that Matt Brash on sky 107 this afternoon. He was trying to tame a macaw, who was taking over his owner life. he took the parrot in to his vets for a week to tame her to step up on to a stick. i must admit i was not to sure at the start but he did get her to step up on to the stick and the way he handled her i will always wonder how he never lost any fingers.

 

But he did say he didnt think people should have them as pets.

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and the way he handled her i will always wonder how he never lost any fingers.

and that`s why some people will never get their birds tame ------- because they fear getting injured by their bird`s beak ! Sometimes the only way is to show no fear and physically show the bird that it has nothing to fear by firm but gentle handling !

Yes that goes against what many of the books say on animal / avian psychology (ethology) but sometimes the only way to overcome fear is by soft words and firm but genle handling !

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