Ask Lafeber


July 29, 2021

Hormonal behavior

How can you tell your bird is hormonal? What are the signs? I have a 1 year old female yellow nape and not looking forward to this and what should I do when this happens? Thank you!


Hi Kim,

There is little question when an Amazon is hormonal! LOL Of course, the best thing is to avoid hormonal triggers. She may still go through hormonal periods when she gets a few years older, but if you avoid the triggers, her behavior should not be too extreme. Hormonal Amazons can be very aggressive, even to their owner. You will see a lot of eye pinning, tail flaring and strutting along with loud vocalizations. As far as hormone triggers, the most important thing is to not send the message that you are the mate. This means no cuddling, and limit any petting to the head and neck. It’s also best to not give her anything she can perceive as a nest – no boxes, bird huts or bird tents. And no paper or cardboard to shred. Shredding and getting into dark cozy places are big hormone triggers. Dr. Lamb has presented a series of webinars discussing parrots and hormones, so I’ll give you the link to that playlist. She talks about avoiding triggers as well as ways to deal with your bird when it is hormonal.

Thank you for asking Lafeber,


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