Korridge-Cup, the Red-Tailed Black Cockatoo that took a flight through suburban Mosman last week, has also been lacking a little bit of a confidence in his training sessions at Bird Show.
If something’s a bit different, Korridge has been flying off his trainer’s hands and landing somewhere else … usually somewhere high! He always comes back but it can take a while.
To help both Korridge and us out, I started doing some extra training sessions with him today to boost his confidence.
To begin with, I simply offered Korridge some sunflower seeds from my right hand. We generally walk our birds around on our left hand but if he’s excited, he will fly away from this hand. Once he started eating the seeds, I slowly moved my left hand centimetre by centimetre, until it was close enough for him to step onto if he wanted to. Our birds always get to choose so they’ll want to do it in the future!
Once Korridge stepped onto my hand, I let him walk on and off as he pleased giving him a seed whenever he stepped on. I could then pick him up! After a very short time, Korridge was stepping onto my hand and flying to me from wherever he was perching… such a great bird!
I kept my training session short so Korridge-Cup didn’t become frustrated but also so he didn’t get too many sunflower seeds, as they are high in fat. I will do more sessions in coming days as the repetition in training animals builds confidence.