Friday, June 26, 2009

Changing it up, and making progress

I started today's session with the parrots like yeaterday, with flying Peepers from perch to perch on cue. In that part, I tried to vary my location in relation to the perches, so that sometimes he needed to fly ahead of me, and sometimes he followed me to the perch. I am also trying to instill the idea that he should try and get to the perch ahead of me, even if I start off before him. Peepers is clearly digging this kind of start to the training session, which is fine with me. I need to add in another perch, and a pole, and some more space to really work on directing him where I want him to go. Considering his enthusiasm, I spose I had better get busy :).

I thought that Peepers and I would go straight into harness training, like we have been doing. He wasn't prepared to do that, and went back to his cage to have a drink and ring his bell for a while. So, Sparky got to go first. She did really well. I draped the harness over the target stick, and asked her to touch the stick (anywhere) for her treat. She thought about touching the harness once, and I missed my opportunity to c/t that (bad bad me :)). She also continued to work when Peepers flew to the perch nearest the table and watched. You can see in the video that she gives him a good look, then comes back for another touch of the target.

Peepers waited really patiently for his turn, but when Sparky was done, he flew right down to the table. I thought we would go ahead and work on sticking his head through the loop first, like we have always done. When I pulled it out, Peepers made it clear that he really didn't want to do that. So, since I had asked for the behavior, I got him to do it once, and then put the harness away and worked on wing lifts.

Peepers totally rocked this exercise! He got all excited again, and was kind of slow to offer each behavior, but by the end he was putting up both wings for his c/t. sweet!

I am going to change the order that we do things in, because Peepers still needs to get comfortable with sticking his head in the harness, but I also want him to enjoy his training to the fullest. So I'll play around with it and see when Peepers wants to work on that aspect, or at least won't mind as much. I also will be fiddling with sparky's training, to keep challenging her in little ways, and add other things to do to her repetoire.

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