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Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Discuss indoor freeflight and managing freeflighted birds around the house. How to live with a flighted parrot.

Is it better for the parrot to not be clipped and fly?

Yes
34
85%
No
6
15%
 
Total votes : 40

Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby MandyG » Mon Mar 22, 2010 10:57 am

Michael wrote:Another question that comes to mind is why do people buy birds if they don't want a flighted pet? And not to single you out or make you appear bad, I really would like to know what made you choose to get a bird if flight was not on that list?

Here are some reasons I could think of in general:

-Flight (only birds can do it except bats but don't know of them as pets)
-Talking - I absolutely hate this reason because there is no guarantee so it is a bad reason
-Plumage - As a primary reason, visual aesthetics of the bird are a terrible reason, poster is better
-Training - While generally not as intelligent as parrots, cats, dogs, mice, etc can still learn many tricks so this is not unique to parrots.

Let me admit that at the time I bought my parrot I really had no clue what I was doing and didn't adequately consider the flight aspect. However, I always had an affinity for birds and flight so when I found out that I can let my parrot fly, I happily accepted the challenges that come with it.


You admit that when you bought your parrot you didn't consider the flight aspect. Out of curiosity and to ask you your own question, why did you buy a bird if you didn't consider the possibility of it being flighted in your home? I understand that yes you had an affinity for flight, but you bought your parrot prior to learning that you could let your parrot fly. So ultimately, if your bird was not guaranteed to talk, visual aesthetics of the bird is a terrible reason to buy one, and there are other animals that can be trained to do tricks, why did YOU decide on a parrot without intending on letting it be flighted?

I know my post doesn't really tie into the rest of the discussion, but your statements really piqued my curiosity. And I have to say I've really enjoyed reading this thread, a lot of great points, opinions, and information were brought out.
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby Michael » Mon Mar 22, 2010 11:25 am

I don't mean that I was dead-set on clipping it and never flying it but I meant more that I had not properly thought it through. I loved flight and always had a fascination with birds so a bird just seemed the best thing for me. I just hadn't thought it through all the way and didn't know what kind of a role flight would play.

At the time of purchase, the parrot was clipped (as are most parrots being sold today) so at that time, flight was not something I had to consider on a specific level. Had I known more about my options and how all the training works, I might have been better equipped to choose. However, I doubt I would have done much different. For a completely inexperienced beginner, it is hard not to recommend a clipped parrot. Especially if they don't know anyone who can show them in person how to work with one. I learned what I needed to know on clipped-Kili to be able to flight train her and ensure that any birds I get in the future would be flighted as well.

So when I bought her, I did not think that she would or would not fly. I just knew that for the time being she would not fly and that I'd tackle the flight hurdle when I get there. I think I mostly assumed that when her feathers grow back that I would fly and figured that I should use the time she's clipped to get her to like me. So to me, it was the birdness that appealed so much. Besides some of the typical things we like about parrots, I just wanted to be able to see a bird close in person, see how it lives, see how it grooms, watch it fly, etc.
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby Erithacus » Sat Apr 24, 2010 9:11 pm

When I bought my baby Grey, I thought of clipping her when she is flighted. Someone advised me against clipping and gave me tons of reasons for keeping flighted bird is a better option to the bird.
I am glad that I didn't follow the majority who favored wings clipping. My Grey enjoys both flying indoor and outdoor.
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby TheNzJessie » Tue Jun 22, 2010 5:38 am

birds are supposed to fly and thats how it should be. i understand some people have an environment that is dangerous for a bird to be flighted to they clip a bird but my response to that is well dont get a bird get a rat a cat a dog a mouse a rabbit. plenty of other animals to choose from that dont fly.

and a response to the current debate: flight in the bird strengthens the muscles around the heart like walking strengthens our leg muscles (and improves Cardio health) so if i bird is not able to fly those muscles are not getting exercised so what condition is the heart going to be in?

only time i condone clipping is when the bird as a disability and its for there own health as long as there environment is adapted to meet there needs. but i dont see a reason to clip a healthy bird and deprive it of the one ability that they have that makes them different from other animals.
Last edited by TheNzJessie on Thu Jun 24, 2010 3:42 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby Athena&beepbeep'smom » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:17 pm

Okay, I totally agree with Michael and the other proflighters here. There are two things that utterly hurt my soul about parrots as pets 1. is small cages 2.is clipped wings. But I get some of concerns of the others. Like all of you I would just die if my kids befell preventable accidents, so lets talk about safe free flight methods we've tried that work. Maybe sharing that info will bring more folks over to the flight side. Here's what my husband and I do.

1. We don't take home birds who haven't fledged yet and we don't buy from people who clip wings before fledging. However we do make sure the birds are clipped lightly (never severely) before we bring them home. This gives us a chance to train the bird some, get them used to us and their environment and less flighty before they have full flight privileges.
2. We never allow unharnessed free flight out doors. We begin flight suit training day one (don't believe me just check my hands for evidence :D ) So when they go outside they are contained and leashed. We even add safety pins when they are in their suits outside the house so that their safety isn't dependent on one strip of velcro.
3. We do not cook or run fans while the birds are out. If the birds are out everyone in the house knows it, toilet seats and fans are checked. Windows and doors are closed and blinds lowered. We go through the same checking process every time like clock work. Once you get used to it it's natural and we've never had so much as a close call.
4. Our home stays essentially bird proofed all the time. That's just much easier for me than reproofing it. No cords, chemicals, water hazards, etc, etc.
5. We spend the first several months while they are clipped training them to stay within a certain area of us and step up and return to us when asked so that they are safer when fully flighted.
6. Beep Beep completely ignores all of this and loves his freedom and has to be chased and dragged down into his cage pretty much every time. But that seems to be fun for him. Free flight will be more inconvenient for you. someone ringing your door bell when you know you can't open it until you get this bird locked down and this bird is intentionally evading capture will definitely happen and will definitely piss you off. Oh well, making mash is inconvenient, flock calls at 6 am on Saturday are inconvenient. If I had 15 mins all day that I wasn't being inconvenienced by a parrot I'd be suddenly terrified they were both dead!

Doing this our birds fly, go outside for sunshine, go other places to meet people. I never worry that my procedures are lax and might allow a semi-clipped bird to get out because I know they can fly and I always use full precaution. Remember even a severely clipped bird can get some distance with determination or, god forbid, a strong wind. And they can get into most household hazards with excellent climbing skills if they are unattended. On the other hand, birds can not feel secure, exercise muscles, or properly respirate without flight. Studies have even shown that unflighted birds are more likely to bite because they don't have the security of their most favored defense mechanism. I hope others will use these methods. For my opinion I think of wing clipping as tantamount to de-barking dogs or removing venom sacks from venomous snakes. God makes certain animals to do certain things if you don't want an animal that does this or that get a different animal.
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby rebeccaturpeinen » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:33 pm

i find this discussion very interesting... as some of you may know i recently got a stray rosella parakeet (would like to think that he found US as he just simple stayed in our garden...) anyway, i didnt even know you COULD clip a birds wings! thats sadly how much i knew. i know A LOT more now and he seems pretty happy, we bought him a BIG cage and he is ofcourse alowed out of his cage to fly if he wants to.

i havent been able to vote on clip or not clip because i havent decided yet but i have to say, both sides have very good arguments!! here i have this bird that i absolutly adore and i know i have to train it. i do not know where he is from or how old he is or how he was kept or handled... he seems pretty tame but the fact that he can fly away whenever he wants to does make the training harder.

i have to say, the idea of clipping him just the ONE time so he can get used to our home and i can train him sounds very appealing and MUST be to a lot of new bird owners. but yes, he is a bird, so how can i take his ability to fly away from him? especially since he might have been flying for a lot of years already.

so, i am definitly leaning to not clipping but have not decided 100%. that is why this discussion is so interesting to me (and to joey too :D)
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby Michael » Wed Jun 23, 2010 1:54 pm

See how it goes first. For instance my Cape Parrot arrived just yesterday and has never been clipped. Besides a couple short exploratory flights he took, he doesn't fly off at all and is virtually no different than a clipped bird (in terms of being able to step up, etc). But meanwhile he has confidence (which many clipped birds lack). If he starts slipping from a perch he can flap and get himself back up. He's not scared of swings or people because he feels safe that he can fly away if he needs to. I think smaller birds tend to fly more but even then they still spend 80%+ of their time on the ground anyway.
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Flight: Yes

Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby rebeccaturpeinen » Wed Jun 23, 2010 2:00 pm

Michael wrote:See how it goes first. For instance my Cape Parrot arrived just yesterday and has never been clipped. Besides a couple short exploratory flights he took, he doesn't fly off at all and is virtually no different than a clipped bird (in terms of being able to step up, etc). But meanwhile he has confidence (which many clipped birds lack). If he starts slipping from a perch he can flap and get himself back up. He's not scared of swings or people because he feels safe that he can fly away if he needs to. I think smaller birds tend to fly more but even then they still spend 80%+ of their time on the ground anyway.


exactly, thats what ive seen with Joey, sometimes he slips a bit and he just gets right back up. or if he gets a little scared he can get away and take it at his own paste. i have subsribed to your newsletter as i am very curious about your training with Truman :D

and even though Joey flies off once in a while, we ARE making progress, he has no problem eating from my hand, also outside of his cage. and its only been a week. so yes, i am very hopefull and am at the moment not at all planning on getting him clipped

so now i have votes ´yes´. if i, a person that was clueless about birds, can train this flighted parakeet, dispite knowing his age former home or former handling, shouldnt most people be able to?
now some people mention safety as a reason but i do not have enough experience to say anything about that... i dont see our home as very dangerous to our Joey though
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby pchela » Wed Jun 23, 2010 3:31 pm

TheNzJessie wrote:birds are supposed to fly and thats how it should be. i understand some people have an environment that is dangerous for a bird to be flighted to they clip a bird but my response to that is well dont get a bird get a rat a cat a dog a mouse a rabbit. plenty of other animals to choose from that dont fly.



By that logic though, birds are wild animals who are meant to fly free in the skies and be amongst flocks of their own kind. They are not meant for cages. So, where do we draw the line and who gets to decide? There are some things that individual owners have to decide for their birds. If we go by your logic, none of us should have any type of animal because none of them are meant to be trapped in a humans home without the ability to go out and socialize, hunt, mate and all of the other things that nature intended them to do.

BTW- I can't vote in this poll because I am in the middle on this argument. I can't say if it's better or not with 100 percent conviction.
"I bet the sparrow looks at the parrot and thinks, yes, you can talk, but LISTEN TO YOURSELF!" ~ Jack Handy ~ Deep Thoughts
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Re: Is it better for parrot to fly inside?

Postby Kim S » Wed Jun 23, 2010 4:13 pm

I'm in the middle as well, but I voted yes. Michael stated that in the best of circumstances, what would you choose. In that case I would choose flight.


But the reason this topic was started again was our little discussion over on the other topic.
I think its not right to say that people who clip their parrot are bad owners and should have their pets taken away. Thats too black and white for me.
If the parrot can get a better life when clipped because the owner will take/leave him out more, then I say: please do! But if in any way possible, I prefer to see them flying.

Like pchella says. Where do you draw the line.
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