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How Hard is Molting For an African Grey?

Scott S. asks:

 

Hi – I actually have a birdie question.

 

We have a 2-year-old male Gray Cockatiel who has the worst case of “owie” feathers under his wings.

 

We can lift his wings and see a number of pin feathers that are causing some distress.

 

Question: what if anything can we do to help him out?

 

He’s fine otherwise, big beautiful boy and a best in class winner here in Florida last year.

 

Thank you in advance!

 

Best regards:

Scott

 

Dear Scott

 

Molting is a hard time for birds.

 

They need to be handled less during these times, allowed to rest and relax as much as possible so they can sit comfortably and wait it out.

 

You may want to keep him in his cage during this time if he will not mind. However if that bothers him more, let him out.

 

But try to avoid handling him other than letting him perch on you or your hands. Leave his wings alone.

 

Perhaps a warm shower or a bath would help.

 

How Much Do You Understand About the Molt?

 

Feather factoid: Africans greys can molt for up to 2 years (most molts last 3  -6 months for psittacines).

 

Not all birds molt heavily every time, every year, but some molts are heavier than others.

 

Our African Ringneck recently had a very heavy molt and he was unable to even fly more than a few feet before he tired out.

 

Just give him some time, a good diet, maybe some treats, fresh foods like scrambled eggs, oatmeal, etc.

 

Comfort foods.

 

This will pass and he will be back to normal.

 

Please let me know if I can help further.

 

Kindest regards,

Catherine.

Mitch Rezman

He's handled a 1000 birds of numerous species when they visited monthly birdie brunches in the old Portage Park (Chicago, IL) facility. The one with the parrot playground.Mitch has written and published more than 1100 articles on captive bird care.He's met with the majority of  CEO's and business owners for most brands in the pet bird space and does so on a regular basis.He also constantly interacts with avian veterinarians and influencers globally.

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