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Discussion Starter #1
Darla can fly up and she can obviously maintain height but she can't fly downwards so I was wondering what I can do to help her? She keeps trying and trying to fly to me when she's on top of her cage and I'm on the couch but all she can manage is to fly over my head and then loop back around to her cage top. It's definitely not from lack of trying because she's tried like 6 times in the last 20 min alone.
 

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Can you give her an intermediate thing to fly down to? My girl Roo has terrible motor skills because she grew up with no space to move, and I've had good success with giving her small changes in the way that she has to move. For example, when Darla is trying to fly to you, maybe stand up so she can fly from the cage top to your shoulder. A lot of it just takes time/practice for them, though.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for your response. She's just started to fly because she's young and her wings were clipped badly before. I've tried intermediate things but it's almost as if she doesn't believe she can do it, if that makes sense? She lacks the confidence to really give it her all. She will sometimes take flight if I ask her to fly to a lower object but she doesn't even aim for the object, she just flys because I've asked her to but she doesn't go for where I'm asking her to go because it's almost like she's going "I can't do that one, bud".
She doesn't have all of her flight feathers. In fact she only has a few, maybe 3 or 4 on each wing, but she still gets around. Could this be contributing to why she can't go down? Are there particular feathers that deal with going down that she might be missing?
I feel like this post wasn't particularly articulate but I'm half asleep so please forgive me haha.
 

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It might just be a confidence thing, my babies were awful at flying around before, especially Blizzard, now he's like the hover master or something!

They've never been clipped

And now I have 2 more babies I remember how the others were, I think these 2 are even clumsier than they were!


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My girl is a terrible flyer. She just launches off her stand and ends up on the floor with no direction.

My boy Ringo just the last few days has become a super flyer. He now flies from my partners arm to mine. We can tap where we want him to fly and he nails it. If he's feeling energetic he's have a fly around first then land on either my partner or I - or back on his perch.

I'm not sure how you can help her fly down but I think it's just practice. I started Ringo from going from the back of the couch behind me to my shoulder - very short distance and a jump more than flying and just gone from there. I do think it's a confidence thing and it does take a while.

They were both clipped (just one wing) when I got them but I have not clipped since. I've had him longer and he's older so his feathers have literally all grown back so he is brilliant with direction and landing. I'm guessing once my girl Lucy's feathers grow a bit more she will get better with flying. At the moment we just call her 'the moth' as she has no direction! Haha.

Good luck with the flying!
 

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I heard that steep descending is the most difficult manoeuvre when it comes to flying! That explains a lot of lost parrots who fly up in a panic and can't get down. If she's just a baby and hasn't got all of the flight feathers in yet I imagine that really hinders her. I'd just continue recall training (sounds like that's what you're doing?) and build up to it over time.
 

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Based on what I've been through with my 'tiels, once Darla has all her flight feathers back, her confidence will grow and she'll be able to make those tricky maneuvers. It's amazing how much a few missing flight feathers can inhibit their ability to maneuver skilfully in the air.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you all so much for your responses. She's going to be 1 in October so she's not a really little baby but she's still young. She's only had a few months of flying practice so far, though the breeder did tell me she learnt to fly before being clipped but i don't know if that's true. I think this is one of those things that will probably just need time to improve.

I'm wondering I'm even doing flight recall training correctly since I never really went out and looked at how it was done, I just started calling her to me with my hand out and she caught on. I give her a head scratch if she does it right and congratulate her haha. Is that how it's done? Sometimes she just looks at me like "you've got to be kidding" and won't fly to me at all. It's still early days yet i suppose!
 

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Flynn does recall when I say "minion!" And that's how I taught him. He still looks at me like yeah right sometimes


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That sounds like the basics of recall, yeah! If you want to check out some bird training/behavious tutorials, there are a few channels I like on Youtube. The Parrot Wizard is very good, so are some of the more recent BirdTricks 'Bird Tricks Tuesday' videos. There's also a channel called WingsnPaws which is quite informative. Not all cockatiels, but the basic techniques are mostly transferable :)
 

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Growing in the rest of her feathers will definitely help with her control, and time will help her confidence. I think I would just keep doing what you're doing and eventually she should improve.
 

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Flynn does recall when I say "minion!" And that's how I taught him. He still looks at me like yeah right sometimes


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That... is the best recall cue ever. :rofl: Do you ever yell, "COME, MY MINION!" and he fly to you to, just for the fun of it? :'D Because I would totally do that if my bird's come cue was minion!
 

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Yup xD I usually say MINION~ come!


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Thank you all so much for your responses. She's going to be 1 in October so she's not a really little baby but she's still young. She's only had a few months of flying practice so far, though the breeder did tell me she learnt to fly before being clipped but i don't know if that's true. I think this is one of those things that will probably just need time to improve.

I'm wondering I'm even doing flight recall training correctly since I never really went out and looked at how it was done, I just started calling her to me with my hand out and she caught on. I give her a head scratch if she does it right and congratulate her haha. Is that how it's done? Sometimes she just looks at me like "you've got to be kidding" and won't fly to me at all. It's still early days yet i suppose!
Remember they are highly intelligent. Up there with very smart dogs - even smarter. If they don't feel like doing something they won't until you confirm you are boss and head of the pack. I train Ringo all during the week, but when my partner is home and does not train him at all - he flies to him. He knows the easy way out. They work it out. Doesn't mean they love you less as my partner does not really talk and I do all day and night so Ringo eventually comes back to me as he wants the mental stimulation.

They are all different - like kids I guess. A head scratch usually does it but don't go on too long as you can over stimulate them and then they bite to get more. Quick scratch on head but most off all happy voice! Whether saying 'yayyyyy' or 'good boy' or 'good girl' we sound happy and that is what they feed off. Be excited when they do something right. They feel you, they know your in a bad mood or good. Their reward, like kids, is you being so proud of them and excited.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thank you all. I'll keep working with her and hopefully when her feathers grow back in fully she will gain the confidence and skill she's lacking at the moment :)
Still not 100% on how to get her to fly to me every time I ask and not have her think it's just a suggestion. I know she's smart and decides for herself if she wants to fly to me but I'd much rather she saw it as a little less optional when i call her! I think she would do it for sunflower seeds if I gave her one every time but I hate feeding them too many sunflower seeds so I'm trying to avoid it.
 

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Thank you all. I'll keep working with her and hopefully when her feathers grow back in fully she will gain the confidence and skill she's lacking at the moment :)
Still not 100% on how to get her to fly to me every time I ask and not have her think it's just a suggestion. I know she's smart and decides for herself if she wants to fly to me but I'd much rather she saw it as a little less optional when i call her! I think she would do it for sunflower seeds if I gave her one every time but I hate feeding them too many sunflower seeds so I'm trying to avoid it.
I use a kernal of corn as a reward when need be (a lot healthier and Ringo LOVES corn) but mostly the reward is head scratches and praise.

I'm still teaching him to 'wait' or he just flies to me when he feels like it and he has to learn he can only fly to me when I call him.

Good luck with it. It's so rewarding when it happens!
 
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