I got a crimson belly Conure!


11 Years
Mar 20, 2008
I've wanted a parrot (or cockatiel/cockatoo/something. basically any bird that acts like it loves me) for a long time. I finally splurged and bought one. His name is Toby and he's a crimson belly conure.

He's still young so he hasn't developed his red plumage fully. This picture was right before he went crazy and started unraveling my tank top and biting and squawking if I tried to stop him. He's a little crazy. Are all parrots like this? Quirky?
LOL unfortunately this is the nature of parrots. They are all brats when they want to be. They love to play mind games with you. I have four: a Quaker, a Parrotlet, a Cockatiel and a parakeet. My Quaker is very destructive but he is the best talker, can say over a dozen words and sentences but loses his temper easily. My parrotlet could talk if he wanted but instead he just blows kisses because he spends more time eating than he does trying to say anything. The parakeet is very playful and loves to chirp her head off but refuses to say any words. The Cockatiel can whistle and when he gets mad, his bite isn't nearly as hard as the others, which I like. It takes time but eventually they learn who you are and become more friend than foe.
Congrats!!! To you getting a best friend,, you will find out that parrots are not pets sort of speaking, they own you, you are now a lead flock member. Your baby does not know the rules, but you as a leader flock needs to show him the rules.
Your baby is testing you, and will test you, for a long time.
do your homework on his breed, so you know what to expect, and how to understand how he thinks.
Diet very important, is he on pellets?is it the right food for his breed? Why do I say diet, my cockatoo, (Lady) she was at the time 11 years old very tame very loving, then one day she went on a attack mood NEVER did she do this before, so it was pillow, spray bottle of water, to her beak, she was attacking me the pillow was used to protect me from her beak the bottle was used to get her back to her cage,she got back in her cage.then I thought what changed, nothing was moved around by her cage, nobody new came over, so what did I do? Then I thought her new TREAT that I gave her three days ago, and it was that!!! White sunflower seeds, that was making her mean, she is on a pellet diet but I gave just a few of these sunflower seeds as a treat, I guess it was like giving a child very strong coffee, they cannot help that extra energy that can get them all hipped up. This also happen to a friend of mine with the same bird that you have it was the diet.when she found out that her mix of the birds diet was wrong, she changed it, and her bird became very loving.
As for training
Your baby does not know about the rules, like bitting he don't know any better, your finger, hand and arm is a tree branch, in his eyes, so its telling him NO BIT, also teach him step up, so if he got your finger tell him to step up change his way of thinking at that moment, does that make sense? Then tell him no bit,show him the bit mark, lol they are very smart they will understand in no time.
As for chewing on things that he cannot, show him a toy, if he got your shirt say no bite!!! And give him his toy, here play with this.
They need your time, your freindship and most of all your love.
another thing that helps in bonding, while you are having your meal, dinner or such, give him a plate of veggie, rice what ever so that he eats with you as a flock, you can find out what not to give him when you research your bird.
I hope this works, I raise a lot of babys also I am owned to cockatoo, macaw, and a grey birds that can take your finger off lol.
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Oh here's a site that can be very useful, you can talk to people that has your breed plus a lot of infor about parrots

Also please find an avain vet!!! Near you, even take your bird for a wellness check. Because its very important, if for what ever reason you need an avain vet for your friend EVERY SECONDS COUNTS, they are not like dogs or cats and most vets don't take parrots.I learn this the hard way!!! And would not want anyone to learn the hard way, its took me years to get over my mistake, and still the pain for being stupid my fault.
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Yeah, I've been scolding him when he bites hard. I like when he nibbles my cheek or finger, but if he chomps down on my finger or lips I tell him no bite and blow on him. That's what the breeder said.

He seems to favor my girlfriend more than me, but he lives at my house. Can I expect him to like me more over time?
When they nibble, sometimes that's called preening you, they do that, that's a good sign.does he play with your hair with his beak? At this young age, you need him to be around everyone that you trust, he needs to be held, loved and played with, this opens up his trust. But make sure its someone that you can trust not hurt him when he bites or freaks out and make a sudden move that will scare him.as this will ruin what you are trying to do which is social training,lol not just your girlfriend, but your buddy's, your mom,so he understands that humans are a flock and they are to be trusted. This training is for his future, as in what. 50 years I don't how long your buddys life span is.
You really need to read up on his breed, how they think to how they play, this research is for his future!!!!! I cant tell you how very important this is.
Your bird is (am sorry for saying this.) But he is picking his mate, which is your girlfreind. Parrots will pick and chose a mate,and it might not be you, so I am saying, give him a social training now.before its to late. This opens his freindship to others, the more he is around others he wont pick a mate does that make since?he will understand that he can run to you, if he had a bad day.and yes parrots have bad days just like us.
Play time, do you play peek a boo with with him? You can roll a paper as a ball and teach him catch lol its more like he throws it and you catch. Do you put him upsidedowm on your hand, let his feet hang on to your finger then put him upside down on your other hand, did you know that you can pooty train him?if you can read his body language, when he is ready to poop, fold his tail under him then give the command to poop. All of this that am showing you what to do, is also giving his mind to think, they need to use their minds as they are very smart.
Do you have his cage, where your whole family is? So he can watch and be apart of the human flock.
I raised a very well balance cockatoo,cockatoos is a very hard parrot to raise, they demand all of your time!! They are not for a first time parrot owner.I taught mine to play my herself, took her to social events girl scouts to soccer, I wanted everyone to hold her, this told her to trust everyone.I had her when she was 6 months old and she is 16 years old,
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The site you told me to go on said his species lives for about 20 years.

He bites me really hard if I try to interact with him when he's on my shoulder. How do I get him to stop this?
Ok what he is doing is he is on your shoulder, acting like he is the BOSS, then sometimes they get on top of your head, you see he is taller then you are is he thinks he is in charge, same thing with shoulder.
I guess the safer way to fix this untill you /him understands that you are the lead flock, don't let him on your shoulder.sounds easy but I know for a fact its hard.to this day I will not let my macaw on my shoulder, reason, that beak can rip me apart she will aim for my eyes, if for some reason she wants to bite, biting can be for many reason it might be a warning, warning as telling me danger is near by.to telling me its time for bed, they don't bite for no reason when they are older.in the parrots eyes they have a reason to bite its up to you to find out why, like right know he is telling you he is the top dog lol. Yes you are going to get bit, just grab his body and put him on your lap, grab some toys show him TOYS, if you don't have any make some, paper towel roll, cherrios yup that is a toy and treat, popcorn no butter and salt.or you can start training him to shake with his foot, to the saying SHOW ME YOUR WINGS, as you move your hand up and down untill his wings come up then praise him and do it again "this is taking his mind off on the power play TOP DOG.
and all of this, even the bloody bites is going to pay off, don't get unhappy about him, you have to learn him, he has to learn you.
Tell me if this works, sometimes as with kids, you have different ways to help being top dog.
I don't have any good advice about the biting that ladybirdb12 hasn't covered.... I just had to laugh when you said he went beserk and started shredding your shirt after the picture, he looks so cute and sweet in that moment! Ah the nature of parrots!
I have been reading about the bird you have, they sound wonderful.
But do really believe that Toby got your number, LOL this is being called out witted, out smarted by your buddy.don't get upset about it it happens all the time even to those that been around the parrot world for years.
reading about the breed its about the samething that I have been telling you, They have to use their minds, they need to be very active using their minds, as in doing tricks, keeping their minds busy.
I am thinking, the best answer to all of your questions, is call the breeder, ask her for help, as in you and Toby go back to the breeders house for training. She should show you, teach you Toby's body language, to stop him from biting you and to show you how to keep his mind busy .and it might take a few trips to her house that's ok, you are doing this for Toby and saving your hand from bites.
I know that I would help,if someone needs it, I would be more then happy to get you on the right track.

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