Jojo

Bird ID: 5807
Species: African Grey
Sex: Female
Sub-Species: Congo
Health Status: Healthy
Good with Children: Unknown
Well Socialized: Unknown
Currently in Foster Care
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Jojo came to Mickaboo when her person left the country and was unable to take her along. She’s a Congo African Grey who displays some of the common attributes of greys, namely a lot of caution, notable skill at learning new behaviors, and a lot of interesting vocalizations. Jojo whistles and talks, including saying her name, “hello”, and various sentences, and picks up new noises from time to time. She has also been enjoying clicker training for fun interactions and to learn new skills – almonds are her favorite treat! You can see a cute video of Jojo stepping up and practicing her targeting skills here.

Jojo is scared of hands, and her foster family has been working to help her build tolerance to this fear. In a comfortable familiar environment, Jojo will now let her family touch her beak when cued with the phrase "give me a bump" - and she even reaches out to do it! In other contexts, she will still lunge at hands: for example, when a person is changing her cage paper, Jojo goes to the bottom of the cage and tries to attack hands through the cage bars.

Jojo’s family has realized over time that not presenting her hands has made it much easier to interact and has decreased Jojo’s biting. If you say “come here” and present her with your arm (not your hand), she comes running and jumps up on your arm and will go everywhere with you. She will step off your arm onto a stand and will almost always stay nicely on the stand, even if she is startled a bit. Jojo will go back into her cage politely, even rewarding you with a few sound effects as she goes in…it`s quite cute. She even gives kisses through the cage bars. She does have one sneaky trick that she does when annoyed: she will put her head down like she wants it petted, and then bite.

Jojo has a history of plucking, as you can see from her picture. Plucking has many causes, and in Jojo’s case it seems to have been triggered by hormones. Her family is managing her hormones through a variety of measures including meal-feeding, limiting access to shreddable toys, and regular hormone-modulating implants at the vet. She is not currently plucking, which is great news – any adoptive home should be prepared to continue these same practices and vet care to help maintain Jojo’s good health.

In the words of Jojo’s foster home: “I would say a good home for her would be someone who doesn`t mind a bird who doesn`t cuddle at all but is sweet in personality and does attach. Except for her problem with hands, in general she is not a biter. She learns quickly. She has obviously settled here and really likes just hanging out with us when we are working on things. She’ll talk to us from her cage room if she is in the cage and will talk to my bird too. She’s healthy, but I would highly recommend that she continues to see an avian vet to help out with the feather and hormone issues. She is welcome here, but if you find the perfect people for her, I know that is part of the deal, which is why I’m trying to help her overcome her fear of hands. She may take a little while longer than normal to settle in and having a solid routine for night seems to be very important to her and my other gray. In general, though, I’d say that she does like people (adults), she just doesn`t like hands."

Jojo is currently in her early 30s - with good care, greys can live into their 50s, so we expect that Jojo will have many happy years in her adoptive home.

Jojo was featured in one of our recent adoption fairs. Watch her interview here.