Last Updated on by Catherine Tobsing
Another mind-bending question from quora.
Why is this question so disturbing?
Parrots are prey animals ~ Cats and dogs (as an example) are predatory animals
I see someone in the back of the room with their hand waving wildly.
I responded, “Yes, Martha”
Clearly, I touched a nerve in Martha’s mind because she blurted out “my Mealy Amazon parrot is always attacking me, I’ve never seen such an aggressive bird.”
“I get that a lot,” a canned reply of mine.
So what’s the deal here?
Let’s lay out the difference between aggressive birds and (non-aggressive) parrots beginning with:
Birds of prey can be hired to clean neighborhoods of rodents
In the wild, predatory(aggressive) birds spend 100% of their time seeking food hunting, parrots on the other hand spend 60% of their time seeking food (foraging), and 40% of their time trying not to be food.
I’ve checked Craigslist twice and no attack parrots are available for hire
It sounds like Martha’s Amazon is really an aggressive bird but it’s now here where we step back and look at the entire psittacine taxonomy
The internet claims the number of parrot species from 350 up so we counted
If your parrot is biting you they are
- Defending their territory
- Defending their property
- Defending their mate or offsprings
You’re a dumbass (me) and just did something to piss off the bird.
Allow me to give you a real-world example
How we got here is another story in itself but we now have 11 Birds in our living area housed in 4 cages ~ upstairs.
Ringneck Quaker and cockatiel have their own cage and the eight budgies have their happy little flock in a good-sized aviary.
Are with 4 birdcages housing from left-to-right African ringneck ~ Quaker – 8 budgies – grey cockatiel
On weekdays around 10 in the morning, Keto (the Ringneck) in Chili ( the Quaker) migrate to the downstairs office where they help with customer service (image below).
Ringneck in cage on left on office counter quaker in cage on right ~ note consistant birdcage lighting principle followed
The other day while installing them in their work cages the Quaker was on my left shoulder and I offered the Ringneck who’s a biter, a peanut that he usually takes with no issue.
That morning, he ignored the peanut and bit my middle finger (appropriately enough).
“He was jealous of Chili on your shoulder” was Catherine’s observation
And So It Goes.
Let’s do an experiment.
I want you to think back in your mind’s eye the last time your bird bit you and write down the trigger.
Now you have your first step in your “how do I stop my bird from biting me, instruction set.
My bird bit me because_______________________ (fill in the blank)
Next, If you haven’t already, introduce your parrot clicker training which is the clearest path to reducing your bird’s biting.
Building trust with your bird through clicker training ~ Video
On the flip side are aggressive birds, for example,
360° Red Kite Bird Feeding Frenzy 4k _ BBC Earth Unplugged
Once you remove the hood all these birds of prey want to find food – aka HUNT.
Walking the walk
In conclusion, Knowing your pet bird’s (or any pet’s) “instinctual expectations” is key to your ability for controlling the relationship.