Jodi's Exotic Birds

Choosing Your Bird
By Jodi Montaño

People often ask for my advice on what type of bird is best. I tell them all birds are great, but what’s important is what type of birds is best for them!

There are several hundred species of parrots, and while there are many similarities, each is somewhat different from the others. Add to that the personality differences among individual birds.

So you’ve recently discovered parrots and have to have one, RIGHT NOW! OK, slow down…take some time to do your homework! Birds live longer than most other pets, and even longer than most humans. This is a decision you should make after reading and researching for a while. All too often people tell me they got a particular type of bird, but were disappointed in it because it wasn’t very cuddly, or it didn’t talk enough, or it was too loud, so they got rid of it. How sad! Birds are sensitive creatures, and I can only imagine what they must think when the family they thought they were a part of, pawns them off on someone else. So much of these “disappointments” could be avoided if only people would do a little homework before they bought a bird.

So where do you start? I always recommend new bird owners read as many issues of Bird Talk Magazine as possible. There is so much information in that magazine, and anyone can benefit from it. Not only will this help with selecting the right species, but it will give scads of useful, important information about diet, health, behavior, household safety, etc. that you need to know.

You should visit bird stores, and see, handle and interact with different species. You can search the internet, read books, join your local bird club, and talk to breeders and bird owners. Try not to be an “impulse buyer”, because in the long run, your bird may pay the price.

Birds are so unique, and I’ve found that some people are “bird people”, but some are not. A true “bird person” understands that birds are messy, birds make noise (some make a LOT of noise), birds can be moody, and all birds bite, from time to time. We accept that, and do our best to work around it, still enjoying them all the while. If that sounds like you, congratulations! I believe you are on your way to parrot ownership! I wish you all the luck in making your choice, and if I can offer any assistance, please let me know.