My ringneck parakeets are biting me one day after I bought them – help

A pair of Rose-ringed Parakeets perched on a bird bath on a rooftop in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India
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You may have noticed the “live help” tab at the bottom of the site coming on now and then: Here’s a “fly on the wall” look

Chatting with Guest (Egypt)

Mitch: Hello, how can I help?

Visitor: I brought 2 Indian parrots 6 months old yesterday.

Visitor: Yesterday they were nice but today they tend to bite so hard.

Mitch: Birds use their beaks to communicate – unless you had them surgically sexed or DNA tested you will not know the sex until about 18 months when a male ringneck’s ring will come in feather by feather. {note by Catherine: When I had my Indian Ringneck baby his ring started to come in at about 11 months old. The first feather was bright orange against his yellow feathers and it was beautiful. It was complete by 18 months old.}

My first guess is that day one they were a little off balance by the new surroundings but the birds have bonded to each other and you are now a threat to their relationship thus the bites.

I would encourage you to work with the birds individually using clicker training and let me grab a couple of videos for you

Mitch: clicker training. 

Mitch: stick training. 

Mitch: Can I answer any other questions?

Visitor: No thanks.

Mitch: Have a remarkable day.

Speaking of ringnecks

Joy M replied:

True! The people toys or food are always best. Whenever I give Bird a blackberry or chunk of sweet potato or something, I carry it over to his cage on my plate so he thinks he’s getting some of my food.

Sometimes when my Goffin is unsure about a new toy, I’ll put it in my mouth like I’m chewing it and let him steal it while I “try” to get it back. He’ll run back to his playing spot and play with it. What was minutes ago scary becomes his treasured loot.

{Note from Catherine: Please don’t put food or toys in your mouth and then let the bird have them, our saliva is toxic to birds and they are just too precious}

Feb 14, 10:50am


Years ago my Indian Ringneck Sunshine found that if he stepped on one of the buttons on the phone that he would get a dial tone and then a recorded operator message saying to hang up and try again, well he LOVED that and it became his. It became rough after awhile as in doing that, the phone then would go dead and we would miss calls and he started to bite of you got near it.

We tried covering the phone but that didn’t fool him. I eventually had to move the phone across the room out of sight and replaced it with a toy phone. The toy phone did not interest him, but the problem went away.

Another time the same bird decided that the FAX machine was his too and bit anyone trying to get their FAX. He would stuff his toy into the feed and get it jammed too. Eventually a hunk of cardboard wedged to hide it helped.

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