My 4 Biggest Pieces of Advice When Training a Bird

Because the end goal is outdoor freeflight with Morgan, every indoor situation needs to be looked at in that respect. Now what would this look like outdoors? 

You don't turn your back on your bird, or stop watching your bird outdoors when free flying. So this behavior outside could lead to fly offs or losing track of the bird's flight pattern. Dangerous! 

My husband and I have 6 free-flighted parrots, I get how hard this concept is! This is why we have a system - when birds take off, we call out who we "have eyes on". For example: Sending all 6 to fly at the same time... Dave: I've got Tusa, Jinx and Cressi. Me: K! I've got Bondi, Bandit and Comet. Then a literal play by play. Maybe a bird he has eyes on lands on me, then we SWITCH! Me: I've got Tusa! Dave: Ok, I've got Bondi. 

There's an understanding that each of us take on equal parts - so each keep eyes on 3 birds at a time, we try to group them together when we have eyes on them. So if they fly in different directions it's not as hard to keep track. And we are able to change and adapt based on what they do. Some behavior is more-so predictable - we each have birds that are more "ours" and are most likely to land on us so we use that to our knowledge too. If a bird lands on the ground right by us, we call it out loud. 

Obviously - Patty will only have one free flying bird but sometimes when your one bird is up in the air with several, it can throw you off. It's really important to stay present, in tune and connected with your bird at all times of interaction/training. This is because you want to keep the communication OPEN at all times to receive any messages. If that pathway isn't open, you should not be interacting. 

You can feel a lot just from holding a bird's feet. I can feel little adjustments and emotions, uneasiness, excitement, anxiousness, calm, tense, etc. through the feet and grip, and slightest movements. This is being IN TUNE with the bird fully. It's important. 

Here are my personal lessons: 

  • Be present. 
  • Be open. 
  • FEEL. Feel everything there is to feel, be receptive to the feelings in the area; your own, the environment's and the animal's. Whether you interpret this as mood, energy, or whatever. Be open to receiving its messages so you can adjust and adapt. 
  • If you just aren't "feeling it", or you feel like the bird is just not feeling it, don't train. IT IS OK! Not every day is going to be like the last, not every day is ideal for training. Get familiar with these feelings to identify them, and do not fight them or work against them. Accept them and move on. 

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