We had a very successful "intervention" today. We had two late-hatching keets that had hatched about 16 hours apart. The second one was a slow hatch and that baby seemed to take longer to pick up its energy. We had a barrier between them for the first day, and once the baby was more steady, we put them together. The older one became obsessed with the smaller one's feet and relentlessly bit it's toes. The second one cried out and moved but could not stop the onslaught. We separated them, and I found a thread about chickens in which one person had put Vics chest rub on a bird and then the others left it alone. We had some natural eucalyptus/tea tree/peppermint chest rub on hand, and immediately rubbed some on each toe and tried again. Boy I wish we had the video going because the reaction was priceless! The older keet went in for the toes, took one bite and did an impressive backwards jump with it's mouth wide and I think we witnessed the guinea version of a gag. Then it repeatedly opened and closed it's mouth and shook it's head a few times. It was totally startled. Once recovered, it leaned down toward the toes again but then backed away! After a few minutes there were two more half-hearted attempts and then it completely stopped biting! This evening they appear to be best buddies. What a quick fix!
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9/30/15 at 5:18pm