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Old 25-01-2006, 10:11   #1
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Cockatoos

This is my first post!!

I am a few years from cruising. I have a plan that I am following including reading everything I can. I just happened on this site, and I am hooked.

One of my biggest concerns is my birds. I have three large birds. Cockatoos, that are like children to me. Now noise and mess are not a concern for me. I downsized from a 3000 square foot home to a 900 square foot trailer a while back to prepare myself for a smaller living situation on a boat We have all made the transition with flying colors.

Has anyone out there ever cruised with bigger birds? How did the birds do? Are there any special concerns? How does customs deal with it if the birds stay on board? What if you want to take them a shore?

I have yet to see anyone on any site talk about cruising with birds. If you know of anyone who has a blog or website I would love to know the link.
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Old 25-01-2006, 14:05   #2
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Welcome aboard jsuak

We have a african grey we travel with
on the boat, she loves it. Never went through customs
with her. But we have had her in Wisconsin, Port
Washington to be exact. Everybody is very curious as
to how she handles it. She sits on her swing and goes
with the motion of the boat. Ask her if she wants to go to the
boat, she gets all excited. Loves the
attention.

Andy
s/v golightly
Young Sun
Annapolis Mackinaw Cutter
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Old 06-02-2006, 14:41   #3
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Cruising Birds

I posted a similar question a while back. Check the earlier posts in this forum to see the responses.
In general, I don't think there is a problem in other countries as long as the bird(s) stay on the boat. The hassle is when returning to the U.S. Take a look at the following site:

http://www.fws.gov/international/pdf/pe.pdf

I have an African grey. We take her along on our cruises on our motor vessel. So far we haven't "graduated up" to the sailboat yet, but it's in the near future. We take our 48' motor vessel up and down the Ohio-Tennesse-Tombigbee rivers between Ohio and Florida. My bird loves it. She has a smaller cage than the one at home and it sits securely on one of the berths in the salon. She does fine. I think that when we start sailing, I'll probably hang a cage in the salon so that it sways when the boat heels. For rough passages, I plan to put her in a smaller pet carrier so she doesn't fall off her perch. I wouldn't think of leaving her behind -- she's like a child to me. I can relate to you and your feathered family! Good luck

Iris
(and Lola 3 y.o. African grey,
currently learning to say "Yo Ho Ho! When do we sail!!"
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Old 07-02-2006, 07:03   #4
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Talking cockatoos

Nice to see someone else with cockatoos. We are aboard with a moluccan, 2 lesser sulphur's, and a timneh african grey.

They handle the motion just fine unless it's storm force winds then they tend to get a bit upset. I would recommend that you put a perch port to starboard to help them with the motion of the boat.

Are you thinking about power or sail? We are on an old converted seiner and have lots of room for the flock.

Love to hear from you and see some photos of your birds!

Miriam
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Old 06-01-2007, 20:27   #5
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That sounds pretty interesting, having a bird onboard. I intend to start cruising someday and a bird sounds like a great companion. Can birds be trained to be let free and return every time so that they can get fresh air? And how would they take to cooler weather, since they are tropical? Can they be potty trained?
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Old 06-01-2007, 22:45   #6
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Cockatoos on board

That sounds pretty interesting, having a bird onboard. I intend to start cruising someday and a bird sounds like a great companion. Can birds be trained to be let free and return every time so that they can get fresh air? And how would they take to cooler weather, since they are tropical? Can they be potty trained?

You ask a lot of questions which is great. I wouldn't recommend letting your bird fly free unless you want some predator to get it. I would also be worried about the bird flu and other maladies that they could get. We keep our place about 24 degrees and wouldn't recommend it to be much cooler than that as that is the low end of their natural climate. Birds are wonderful companions, but they also require a lot of time with you. Before travelling with your bird, you would have to make sure that you have it DNA sexed (if you are getting a parrot) as it is the perfect way to let the customs people know that it is your bird as it has both your bird's name and your name on the certificate. You also have to have owned your bird for at least six months. You would have to be certain to check with the local authorities about cruising with your bird to see if it is okay to enter their country with one. It would be an adventure for the both of you!
Miriam
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Old 20-03-2007, 19:55   #7
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Hello, glad to see others with moluccans, I have two and I am planning the jump in the next year.. Working at least one year before heading for southern waters... When checking with the vet, microchipping the birds was a must. Only concern is the older one occasionally gets motion sick in cars. so wondering how the boat is going to affect him..
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Old 20-03-2007, 21:32   #8
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Here in Aus we have wild cockatoos flying around often in quite large flocks. While they are beautiful and we love them, they can be quite destructive. They have powerful beaks and they like to chew on things with them. There are numerous stories about houses suffering thousands of dollars of damage from them, as they rip apart wooden window frames and the like. I think that might be something of a concern on a boat too.
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Old 17-07-2007, 12:16   #9
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I have an eight year old African Grey and she will cruise (40 ft cat) with me much of the time (except probably New Zealand and Australia). She travels well in the car - I made a perch for the passenger seat. Her wings are clipped. BTW, she does better with cool weather than hot.
I am concerned about other countries where there could be problems, and are there ways to work around them?
What do people do for a cage in the marine environment?
Morgan thanks you too.
Robert
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Old 18-07-2007, 08:31   #10
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Robert,

I have friends that are bird sailors that I can ask for their experiences. They started out in the Great Lakes, I think, went around the Caribbean, through the canal, across the south Pacific, Micronesia and are now in Malaysia/Borneo waiting to go over to peninsular Malaysia.

They had an African Senegal parrot until the red ants ate him in Palau. They've has a cockatoo for awhile now.

For a cage they would get cheap painted thin gauge wire shelving at a hardware store. Cut it up, bend it into shape by hand and zip-tie or nut-n-bolt it together. Then they'd sew on a little sun/rain flap on top and the backside and then attach old backpack straps to that backside. They could then go in the dinghy and around on shore with the birds(s).

I know there are/is places they couldn't go because of the bird, but it doidn't bother them as their lives do revolve around it. The bird flu thing in se asia gave 'em a scare, but they've avoided any problems so far.

If you PM an email addy I'll email it to them for you and y'all can take it from there.

best - J
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Old 18-07-2007, 09:53   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat
Here in Aus we have wild cockatoos flying around often in quite large flocks. While they are beautiful and we love them, they can be quite destructive. They have powerful beaks and they like to chew on things with them. There are numerous stories about houses suffering thousands of dollars of damage from them, as they rip apart wooden window frames and the like. I think that might be something of a concern on a boat too.
We own a 23 year old cockatoo and while she has the sweetest disposition, our house is one that has suffered significant damage from her. Imagine my despair when I had just finished rebuilding, casing in and trimming the big Bay window in our house when my wife left the bird out for the day. She went straight for the new casing and trim and it was completely destroyed within hours. Cockatoos have a huge chewing requirement and will chew on anything available. They are not doing this maliciously (I don't think )
I truly believe that a cockatoo could cut through a main sheet before you knew they were at it. And undoubtedly, it would happen at the worst possible time.
Just my thought on the matter.
My wife says that we ARE bringing our cockatoo when we go cruising......
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Old 11-02-2008, 10:52   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydh View Post
They had an African Senegal parrot until the red ants ate him in Palau.
Wow! What kind of ants do they have in Palau?
When someone said you had to be careful of preditors, ants did not come to mind.
Did these red ants come aboard using a boat, or do they attack from the air?

I own a lineated parrot, and hope to take him out to sea with me some day. I would keep him on my shoulder like a pirate, and let him go for long flights whenever he desired. I would keep him in a cage while inside the boat so he would not damage anything.
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Old 11-02-2008, 13:17   #13
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Our Tuki

We just bought our sailboat Saturday 2/9, and we intend to take Tuki, our Dusky Conure, out with us when the weather becomes warmer enough for her. She loves riding in the car, so I think she will adapt well to the boat.

I would advise anyone who has a companion bird to have their primary wing feathers clipped, especially if you intend to take them out. Even the tamest birds can take off.
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Old 11-02-2008, 17:16   #14
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We sailed around the world with Dufus....our Rainbow Lorikeet. Be sure to check out of the US (which is not required by US Customs) and have your birds listed on your manifest. When arriving in foreign countries, be very careful to be sure that they list the birds as entering.

The risk with taking any pets to a foreign country is that you must abide by that country's laws (which are subject to change at any time). The big risk is if one of your birds gets away. You could be held in violation of that country's law. Be sure that you understand what the consequences are. It could mean forfeiture of your vessel, in some countries. Be particularly careful in New Zealand and Australia.

In New Zealand, we were required to have an inspector come on board once a week. If we were in some far flung place, we were responsible for the inspector's's transportation (that was 14 years ago).

BTW, from my experience with experience with Cockatoos, I will just guess that you may not be very popular in the anchorages. Also, I can't tell you how many times I had to go up the mast to get dufus out of the rigging. I'll bet the Cockatoos will be worse.

He's fallen overboard a few times while messing around but he learned to splash his way back to the boat........then, of course, he'd be mad at me.


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Old 11-02-2008, 18:33   #15
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Thats pretty harsh punishment. Lose your bird, lose your boat.
Must be a way around that.

Here is my daughter Marcella and Forest her Lineated Parakeet (parrot).
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