Teaching Bacon the Budgie to Fly With Clipped Wings

Teaching Bacon the Budgie to Fly With Clipped Wings

Last Updated on by Mitch Rezman

From Birdie Brunch reader Betsy Lane:

File under “the universe is too complicated to be arbitrary” which begs the question “does a dyslexic agnostic believe in dog?”

THANK YOU for today’s (9/11/16) birdy brunch!  It was perfectly timed….

Yesterday evening, a Quaker parrot landed on my friend’s head while he was out on his deck (near Lawrence and Kedzie) . I took the bird overnight and am trying to find its owner (it’s not wild). I’ve used the links in your post, as well as spreading the word on FB and among my bird-rescue friends. We can’t keep this guy (already have one bird in quarantine–now two–and a hubby recovering from pretty major spine surgery), so hopefully his rightful owner will surface soon.

Just wanted to say thanks!

That’s CRAZY in a good way – best of luck – shoot us a pic and contact info and we’ll post it on Facebook

Thank you!

quaker parrot monk parakeet eating a morel of food

Bungees & other Soft Perches

The bird is currently being fostered, and I’ve asked the foster “mom” for contact info. In the meantime, here are a few pics of the little guy. He landed on my (male) friend’s head in the 4900 block of N Francisco last Saturday late afternoon.

He ate peanuts off his head and then rode around on his shoulder for awhile (which is how they got him inside and into a cage). He was stressed but seemed healthy and really acted like someone’s pet bird as opposed to a wild one.

Hi again!

Kathy at Happe Parrots Rescue helped me with this situation. She has the contact info for the foster and is happy to talk to you if you have a minute. (I asked her for contact info to send to you directly, but I think she was more comfortable doing it this way.)

I really hope we can find this guy a good home soon. Seems like a nice bird!

Thanks again for all the great tips in the last Birdy Brunch!!!

And thank you for a great opening act Betsy

Geek warning

Whether it’s a child learning to tie it shoes or pilot learning how to fly a 747 the four stages of learning are the same.

1) unconscious incompetency – you don’t know what you don’t know – as in “we’re going to teach you how to tie your shoes today, Susie”.

2) which now makes Susie a conscious incompetent – she now knows that she doesn’t know how to tie shoes.

3) it becomes conscious competency – you’re able to accomplish a task but you need to think about each step – “put one lace over the other – create two loops – one loop under another and pull it tight”.

4) unconscious competency is you driving a car – you’re thinking about where you have to be – paying bills – where the kids are – you’re not thinking about the mechanics of driving – they are being taken care of at some other part of your brain.

You bring a new bird home – it’s always been in a cage. Boy it would be fun to see the bird fly. The bird flies into a wall not hurting himself but you say, “they were right on the Internet you should not let your birds fly in the home, because they will fly into a wall or a mirror.”

Have you given this much thought, Martha?

Bungees & other Soft Perches

I would imagine most of you reading this are drivers. There are probably some aspiring drivers as well. Let’s go back to that day when you got your learners permit and dad takes you out to the big parking lot.


You get the seat adjusted – the mirrors, the seatbelt. Foot on brake – put the car into drive – hands at two and ten – and you accelerate slowly. Dad calmly says “let’s try a stop.”

Which you did and somehow the airbags didn’t deploy when the two of you were thrown towards the front of the car due to near Newton’s third law (Google it)

This is when dad said, see this will never work out, you will never drive, get out, let me drive home and call it a day.

Even if you went solo you found yourself maybe coming too close to another car making a turn too fast, and it took a number of miles over a number of months or even years before you were comfortable driving.

A subtle change in our rebranding program with the new website is the retiring of the tagline Simply Everything for Exotic Birds. Which means we have a lot to sell the caged bird keeper – which we do.

The new tagline We Speak Bird @ Windy City Parrot is meant to convey that we understand how birds think and we want you to learn their thought processes.

There is and always will be the debate between clipping birds and allowing birds to be flighted. We are advocates of flighted birds BUT it’s not that simple. Parrots in the wild can fly dozens if not 100 miles or more each day seeking food.

Recently a self driving Tesla rear ended a truck killing a person. At the time the vehicle relied on cameras for positioning around other vehicles.

The forensic investigation discovered that it was a very bright day and the truck was very white so the car’s computer decided the white truck was sky. Tesla has now installed radar in the self driving cars as an added level of safety.

So here’s a hypothetical, your bird flies across a room for the very first time in flies into a wall? Is it possible for the bird to know the difference between wall and cloud or sky?

Birds don’t know what glass is. A male canary will argue with the other male canary in the mirror until it drops – which is why you never put mirrors in canary cages.

We are going to work with Bacon the way we started with our cockatiel Popcorn – who flew into a wall and landed behind a dresser less than an hour of being in our home.

Last night we clipped Bacon’s wing feathers. This accomplishes a couple of things. The birds confidence level is reduced – a good thing in this case because it’s only temporary and the chance of flying into a wall has been diminished.

That said don’t ever think for a minute a clipped bird cannot fly – you’ve been warned

Next we’ll see how much lift she has out of the cage (yes, Bacon is a girl).

your zygodactyl footnote
(I was having a problem replacing my toner cartridge and came across this video)


This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Hi, Mitch! Just catching up on emails and here I discover WCP has a great new look…. and I’m kind of a star! 😉 Thanks for spreading the word about the Quaker. He’s safe and sound in a foster situation and I just got a call this afternoon from a friend of my husband’s who has had parrots in the past and is very interested in adopting this bird or–if he’s not the right fit–another parrot in need of a forever home! Yay! (By the way, we bought a travel carrier from you a couple of years ago, and it saved the day by providing a temporary home for this little vagabond Quaker. At the time, Catherine helped immensely by answering my questions about what size cage to get. This is why it is so much better to work with small shops run by experts rather than a some big-box store where nobody knows much–assuming you can even find someone to help you!)

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