A Nervous Or Scared Parrot
How Do You Handle Them?
When it comes to a parrot that you have rescued or otherwise acquired as an adult, especially one with an unknown past, well… it’s like a box of chocolates. You never know if you’ve gotten something sweet and loving, scarred and afraid or mean…
Well, our Orange-winged Amazon (a name I don’t understand, he doesn’t have orange on his wing) is gorgeous! We’d given him a name, but he quickly corrected us, calling “Tiko” Tiko had taken to my husband, which is why we brought him home, but at home he was reserved and non-engaging.
To Tame Or Not To Tame
In some ways, he’s perfect in our flock. With a parrot like Tiko, I feel you have to decide whether you want to try to bring out the cuddly and engaging side of your parrot or whether you are happy to let them just have a safe, loving home.
Tiko used to have a cage, but I lean towards an open-door policy whenever possible. Tiko enjoyed this policy and would come out of his cage, but still didn’t engage. He’d talk some and would sometimes bow his head for my husband to pet him as he warmed up, but that was about all the human interaction he would take.
Because I have a flock with over a dozen species of parrots and because I breed Parrotlets (and a few other parrots), and have parrot pets, it works perfectly for me that Tiko just likes to hang out in the bird room. He is currently cage-less. He spends his time on his perch, which has food and water for him, or on top of another’s cage. He is great about not disturbing other parrots and getting along with the other cage-less parrots, like my Cockatiel and Lovebird.
I encourage Tiko to engage with me, talking to him or responding when he talks first. I give him the hand signal for skritches, which he agrees to by bowing his head, or disagrees to by ignoring me. If he is in a bind, because he flew away from his area and got stuck upstairs or some place like that, then he will allow he to offer him a ride back to his area, stepping up. But only when he’s in a bind.
It’s been a couple of years and Tiko is getting more comfortable. With a parrot like him, like I said, you either let him slowly work out his discomfort or you can work to tame them. I’ve let him take his time because there’s no reason to push him. I’m happy to let him be a parrot doing parrot things.
How I Handle My Timid Amazon Parrot
We have given Tiko a space in the bird room to do his thing. We offer attention, verbal and pets, when he’ll take them. I sign to him and praise him often, but otherwise we like to ensure, as best we can, that he can feel that this is a safe and secure place for him.
Safety and security are the first thing any creature must have to relax and come out of their shell. They must have it to maintain physical well-being and to try to bring back their emotional well-being. So, we are letting Tiko find his safe space so that he can come forward on his schedule.
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As the author of “The Parrot Bliss Bond,” I love and welcome questions about having a parrot and creating one of the best experiences of your life!
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