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I received my little TAG 2 yrs ago when he was five or six. I know little of his background. Aside from that i am his third home in his life, and the lady from which i purchased (rescued?) him had lived with him after the relative she had purchased the bird for no longer wanted him. He has no band on his foot either.


when i went to visit i found him in a smoky basement (also in the room was an ailing 30 yr old amazon) with no toy other than a ratty cockatiel bell, and two old chewed dowel perches to sit on. She let him out of the cage (which was at least 20 yrs old), then grabbed him and pried him off the top of his cage and handed him to me. I, needless to say, fell in love. When they brought him and his old cage to me he was contained in a old beer case!!! He ate seed and wtv else they gave him in the past (including coffee, steak etc.) I quickly educated myself and now he is faring much better in terms of diet (hagen tropican pellets) i wish i could feed him a fruit and veggie supplemented diet but i am a student and pressed for time.


However, his problems continued. He wouldn't play, and it took weeks of a toy sitting in his cage for him to begin chewing. Now he luvs to chew and shred things. But he refuses to take any interest in anythhing else, like puzzles etc. He attempts to chew them but that is it, (and because they r not chewable he quicky drops them), it's as if he does know how to do anything but! Any ideas?? I'd like to teach my grey how to use his brain!

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Oh my God, what a deplorable living condition you rescued that poor guy from!!


I would have probably taken all the Parrots out of horror and sadness for them and turned the owners in to the local humane society for animal abuse.


It sounds like that poor guy has a ton of baggage from 6 years of who knows what living environment. You have made significant progress it sounds like.


One thing to consider, you have decades to build a loving and fun relationship with him :-)


Some Greys, even when living with their same owner from weaning time, do not like any changes in their cage, toys or even in your house. So it may be that he will always be that way. One thing that may help, is to give him as much time out of the cage as possible, so he is exposed to a world of adventure and socialization with other people to explore he has never been given the chance to, after being kept in his cage full-time by previous owners.


You have done a great humanitarian deed and I know that little guy loves you for it. :-)


Thanks for posting this, now on to Part 2!!!<br><br>Post edited by: danmcq, at: 2007/09/01 14:49

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What a sad story, Well done you for rescuing this poor bird from his awful life.


Some greys dont like to play with toys, i have 3 & they all love to chew & shred, thats what greys are known for ;) I wouldnt worry to much about other toys if he is happy to chew & shred thats fine.


Why dont you try just hanging some fruit & veg near him when he's out of the cage, im sure he will investigate at some point & if takes a nibble thats a bonus.

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Well, like i said, i'm a student and only working part-time so money is tight, but as soon as it is possible a visit to the vet is in order, as well as new larger cage, uv lighting too!


he also loves to dance with me too! (and he's better than me lol) but i am torn between laughing and ignoring this behaviour because it is a sexual behaviour with him (he also displays and clucks for me when he does this)


veggies and fruits (carrots, bananas and oranges are his favorites!) he eats with gusto (even when he first came to me) actually, but wat i need is a way to perhaps prepare a mix of fruits and veggies etc. that i can store in the fridge so i can give him them on a daily basis

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Guest briansmum

hi there tinytimneh (cute name by the way) i'm going to adress what you said in your first post about teaching your grey how to use his brain, maybe you could repost the veggie question in the bird food room where it will get the responce you want :)


so anyway, i think you need to stimulate that brain of his more, greys do love to chew things this is natural and it's good that you provide him with toys he can do this to. but it would be good if you could teach him how fun puzzle toys and learning is too.


i am a firm believer in the "what colour" trick, inspired by dr pepperberg and her work with alex the grey. this is easy to do and is a great game that get your grey thinking too and once you have established the learning proceedure a good basis to teach other things


take two objects of similiar size and shape, identical if you can, but that are different colous, basic primary colours are best.. red and blue are a lot easier to remember than turqoise and mauve :P


on day one take object number one.. the red one for example and hold it infront of your grey and repeat "what colour? RED" emphasise the word red, eventually he will be curious and begin reaching for it, when you say "what colour? RED" and he goes to take it, let him have it, when he does good he gets the object. spend no more that 5 or 10 mins a training session. on day two, repeat this with the blue block, again 5 or 10 mins only. if you do something too much it becomes a task and not fun.


on day three you can hold both objects together, and ask for the colour you want, keep it simple "what colour..." is the trigger that you want him to do something, which would be take the object and then the colour you specify. if he picks the right one he gets to have it. this is where my grey, brian turned it into a game, he takes the block and throws it as far as he can!


we've been doing this a couple of weeks or so now and i've introduced a green block too, he picks the right one 97% of the time, the other 3% he gets too excited and simply can't wait to watch me run across the room after he throws the block.


you see, i think i've taught him colours... he thinks he's taught me to fetch. happy bird, happy mummy :)

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