General Question

abelovedsongwriter's avatar

Should I and what kind of bird should I get?

Asked by abelovedsongwriter (10 points ) March 7th, 2010

I want to adopt a bird, but do not know if my home is the right environment, and if the bird will be happy. I know it takes a lot of time to handle and take care of these creatures, but my main living space is in a basement. I am worried that it may be too cold down there? Will a bird blanket be sufficient enough?

I am also curious as to what kind of bird to get. I know I want a bird in the Parrot family such as a caique or conure. I also want to be able to teach them to speak, and was wondering are there parrots better equipped for this than others, or faster learners?

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10 Answers

sevenfourteen's avatar

Conures are cute, but if you’re in a basement a bird won’t get any sunlight.

cockswain's avatar

I had an Amazon Parrot for about 12 years when I was a boy. It was a terrific bird, very personable and talkative. I recommend that.

dpworkin's avatar

Conures are very, very loud. I like them, but you have to be aware of the noise.

mrentropy's avatar

Birds need sunlight for vitamin D and probably mental health reasons. Parrots are usually tropical birds so you want them somewhere that isn’t cold.

I have an African gray parrot and she talks up a storm, learns very well (sometimes too well), and is one of the most affectionate critters I’ve ever had.

Parrots, African grays in particular, have a long lifespan in captivity if they’re treated right. Around 30 to 40 years. So you must be prepared to be in a long term relationship. And they need to have attention, so they aren’t the kinds of birds you can keep in a cage and just feed once in a while.

Speaking of feeding, you have to be careful what you give them, too. Most food that a person would eat is fine, but you have to stay away from onions, garlic, chocolate, and the dreaded avocado, among other things.

Cockatoos can be destructive little… fellows…, so if you’re planning on owning a bird with a beak like a tree pruner then be prepared to keep an eye on it whenever you let it out of the cage. Which should be often.

Oh, yeah, you have to be careful about cages, too. Not too big and not too small. And shaped correctly for the type of bird you have.

mrentropy's avatar

Oh, I forgot. If you cook with Teflon coated cookware, toss it out. Evidently, if you have the misfortune of burning your Teflon you run the risk of killing your bird. We got rid of the Teflon and went with stainless steel. I wanted cast iron, but my opinion doesn’t count around here.

And… don’t burn candles or use spray cans if you can help it.

YoH's avatar

Amazon parrots are great social birds if you work with them. The yellow headed ones have great talking abilities. My Rudy is a red lored amazon parrot and he speaks appropriately and doesn’t chatter senselessly. He also sings to Billy Jean and the music from Hogan’s Heroes.
Rudy is comfortable with two cages,one for climbing and one for traveling but spends a lot of free time roaming or following me about. He is included in most social gatherings and considers himself a family member.He thrives on attention. A favorite activity is taking a shower.He loves the water.
We also make sure he gets fresh air and sunshine. He tolerates cooler temperatures but not below 60 degrees.
His diet is as ours except for salt,spices,chocolate and avocados.I am very careful with his diet. He has his favorites, pizza,scrambled eggs, sweet potatoes,most meat and Whoppers.
Rudy has a life span of 75 to 80 years so he is in our will to ensure he is provided for. He even has his own FaceBook page in birdbook.
Guess you can you tell I love my bird. :)

rooeytoo's avatar

I had a cockatiel and she was wonderful. We found her one rainy morning on our walk. She was huddled under a picnic table looking very wet and miserable. My dog actually discovered her. My husband put his hand down and she hopped right on and came home with us. We never found her owner so she lived with us until she died. She had so much personality. Here is a pic of her with my akita. She loved bacon rind and would guard it ferociously. The big dog knew better than to try to pinch it! She never talked though some do. I have seen flocks of them in the center of Australia, it is amazing to see them in the wild. Let us know what you decide.

CMaz's avatar

I miss my birds. I loved them, they were so cool. But like children they need constant attention.

And, unlike children. They will be with you for a long time. A very long time.

I like the African Grey.

mrentropy's avatar

@ChazMaz I totally understand what you’re saying. On the plus side, unlike children you can cage them while you’re out.

Siren's avatar

Birds live a long time and are very social animals, so if you have the time to spend with them, and hope to keep them for a long time, I recommend visiting a local shelter or bird sanctuary and volunteering there first to get familiar with their needs and behavior. When you spend enough time you will be able to determine if a bird is right for you and what type of bird you will want to get.

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