The Squawking Parrot

Dear Parrot Lover,

Unless you are a brand new parrot owner, you probably already know that parrots can be quite vocal at times. And most parrot owners are fine with a little sound, but will all agree that dealing with noisy parrots can be very hard.

Unfortunately parrots are, by nature, noisy. Just listen to the birds that are sitting in the tree in your backyard right now. Birds use vocalizations to communicate with each in the wild; and they continue to attempt to communicate by vocalizing in captivity too. By our own natural design, we humans have a natural inclination to attempt to quiet our pets, be they dogs or parrots. We desperately need to understand that animals kept in captivity, like dogs and parrots, are going to bark and screech to some extent. These are healthy and normal vocalizations.

Even though parrots are natural screamers, some parrots have more of a tendency to be vocal than others. For example, parrots of the Conure family are renowned for packing a loud punch in their tiny little bodies, whereas African Greys prefer to mimic the sounds in their environment. So if you don’t mind noisy parrots, then choose a Jenday Conure to join your family.

Remember that just because a screeching parrot is annoying, those screeches may not necessarily be classified as excessive screaming. Parrot Behaviorists believe that excessive screaming is defined as a parrot that screams non-stop for hours at a time, especially when there is no apparent reason for the screaming.

As humans it is or natural inclination to react whenever we hear a baby cry, a dog bark, or even our parrot’s screams, by attempting to console them by interacting with them. The problem with this is that if we respond to every scream our parrots make, we will be unable to distinguish between the types of screams, and we will, inevitably, be rewarding our parrots for screaming. Such reward results in more screams. Try to avoid this common mistake.

Instead, refrain from giving your parrot any attention until he has quietened down. Even parrots that are in the bad habit of excessively screaming will take a short break amidst the screaming, and this provides a perfect opportunity for you to interact with your parrot, rewarding him for his silence.

The best advice, however, is to learn to distinguish between your parrots screams. If they are screams for attention, the best thing you can do is ignore your parrot. But if the screams signify that your parrot is hurt or scared, then you need to react immediately.

The Squawking Parrot

Believe it or not, screaming is normal

While not the most enjoyable part of living with a parrot, some level of screaming is likely to come along too. Parrots and most birds in general are vocal creatures. A wide variety of vocalizations are used for a lot of different purposes. It helps to understand the reasons behind why your bird is talking so much in order to help modify the behavior.

But, the first step in any training plan is to know that what your bird is doing is natural to him. You will have to accept some vocalizing from your parrot and be okay with that. Any excessive screaming or vocalizations can be modified in training.

Click here to read more about loud vocalizing in birds

What you should and shouldn’t do

A good majority of screaming is done to communicate with the humans in the parrot’s life. It can be used to get your attention or have you return to him. It’s best to avoid getting upset with your bird, yelling at him, or any other types of punishment. This type of reaction may actually further upset your bird. Screaming can also be used when a bird feels frightened or threatened, so threatening behavior may increase his screaming rather than reverse it. It’s also possible that he may get louder if you yell because he thinks you are squawking in unison with him.

It’s best to reward the behavior you want to see the most. That means only paying attention to him or returning to him when he is quieter. If you use a clicker you can also click when you see appropriate behavior and reward him for those more quiet moments. It can also be used to help if the
bird screams out of fear by helping to desensitize the bird to whatever or whoever is upsetting him and creating a new positive association.

Another thing to keep in mind, particularly if your parrot is screaming for attention, is to really make sure that you enrich the environment that the bird is living in. Birds are so very curious and intelligent that they need activities to help keep them busy. Puzzles and food toys are just one way to enrich the environment, but also active training helps too.

Click here to read more about training your parrot to quiet down

Parrot Screaming Secrets Revealed

The Parrot Screaming Secrets Revealed from birding professional Chet Womach is a 3 disc course that includes 2 dvds and an audio cd seminar. If you want to really know all the reasons behind your bird and his screaming, you’ll want to check this out. You’ll learn things that can help you easily modify his screaming. There is also 100% money back guarantee for 90 days so there is no risk at all to you!

Click here to learn all about Parrot Screaming Secrets Revealed

Nathalie Roberts

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