Avian Expert Articles

Understanding your bird’s emotional health and care needs is the recipe for a happy parrot-person household. Our avian-expert written articles are here to give you the information you need to keep your pet bird healthy and happy. Each week, we bring you exclusive articles written by veterinarians, behaviorists and other experts in the avian community. Whether you are new to the world of companion birds or are a seasoned parrot parent, you’ll find fascinating facts, need-to-know medical information, behavior tips and tricks, and much more!

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African Grey Parrot being pet

Dr. Pepperberg Dishes On Parrots & Preening

Parrots often solicit humans by putting their heads down and rubbing against their humans’ fingers; some will even learn to request “Tickle,” “Scritch,” or “Scratch.” Despite being subjects of scientific study, the birds in my lab are no exception, and they have influenced their trainers’ behavior in some striking ways.

10 Things Bird Owners Do That Others Find Baffling

Life with a feathered companion calls for doing things a bit differently, which non-bird people might find baffling. Here are 10 Things Bird Owners Do That Others Will Never Understand.

white capped pionus sitting on food dish

Is Your Pet Bird A Healthy Weight?

Ever stop to think what type of shape your bird is in? Is he or she underweight, overweight or within normal weight … not sure? Find out what you can do to check your bird’s muscle mass.

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3 Tricks Your Cockatiel Can Do

Small birds like the friendly and outgoing cockatiel can be taught to do behaviors on cue — and it’s easier than you think. Our small companion birds have many natural behaviors that lend themselves nicely to trick training.

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caique portrait

Could a Pet Parrot Be Happy in Captivity?

Is it possible for a pet parrot to be as happy in captivity as they would be in the wild? Is parrot ownership more like prison … or could it be like a happy, perpetual childhood experience? As a bird mom to three cockatoos and a parrotlet, it is a question with which I wrestle […]

African grey parrot

Inside Pepperberg’s Lab: Fish &  Parrots  Outperform Apes & Monkeys

If you put parrots (specifically, African grey parrots), fish, monkeys and apes to the test on who could figure the fastest way to procure two rewards instead of one, who would come out on top? Dr. Pepperberg and friends of her cognitive behavior research lab recently modeled a test for her flock to see how they would fair in a choice-themed task inspired by wrasse fish, and tested on primates as well.

sulphur-crested cockatoo

Cockatoo “Retires” From The Limelight At Age 82

Frosty, an 82-year-old sulphur-crested cockatoo, recently retired from entertaining audiences at the Sarasota Jungle Gardens. Learn more about this special ‘too who was part of the original “jail birds” trained at Folsom State Prison, and for 40-plus years wowed audiences with his high-wire unicycle tricks and more.

male normal gray cockatiel

New Bird? 5 Ways To Get Off To A Great Start

Have a new bird, or know someone about to welcome a bird into his or her life? Setting a bird up for success as a companion pet has a lot to do with the right interactions. Learn what you should do — and not do — those first few weeks after bringing a pet bird home. Get on the right track with your pet bird, and maintain a mutually respectful relationship for the years ahead with these helpful tips to welcome a new bird into the home.

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