Parrots are fascinating birds and for the most part they are pretty good at communicating their needs.
When a parrot is hungry, they will let you know.
When a parrot is angry, they will let you know. And when a parrot dislikes you, they will let you know that too!
How do you know if a parrot likes you? Here are 25 signs that you are in a parrots good books:
They cuddle with you
This is one of the easiest ways to tell whether or not a parrot likes you.
In case you’re thinking, “parrots actually cuddle?”, the answer is yes – they do!
Parrots are actually quite affectionate birds, especially with those that they are closely bonded too.
If you find that your parrot is nuzzling against your hand, climbing around your body, or rubbing against your neck, it’s safe to assume that you are in their good books.
They preen themselves
Preeing is a natural behavior for parrots.
In case you aren’t aware, preening is just another word for “cleaning”.
Parrots preen themselves on a regular basis to keep dust, dirt, and parasites off of their feathers.
They also preen to keep their feathers well-aligned and in prim and proper shape.
Parrots will not preen themselves unless they are comfortable in their surroundings.
They are prey for so many animals in the wild, so parrots always need to be on constant guard and aware of what’s going on around them.
This is a natural instinct that they have.
For this reason, parrots will only groom when they are comfortable.
If you find a parrot preening their feathers in your company, it’s safe to say that they trust you and feel secure in your presence.
They groom you
In the wild, when a parrot pairs up with a mate, they often preen each other.
In captivity, they don’t have another parrot to preen, but will often do so with those that they are most closely bonded with.
If you notice that your parrot is chewing on your hair, your ear, your beard, your shirt, or anything else on your body, that’s a telltale sign that they like you.
Be aware however, that there is a big difference between preening and biting. If a parrot is biting at your ear, this may not be a sign that they like you.
Preening is much gentler than biting.
They flap their wings
Yes, parrots flap their wings to fly, but they also use them as a form of communication.
If a parrot is flapping their wings while staying in one place (without flying) this could be a display of happiness, which is a good sign that they like you.
With that being said, some parrots also use wing flapping as a form of exercise or as a means of getting their owners attention.
The more you get to know your parrot, the better able you will be to understand what they are trying to communicate with you when they flap their wings.
They flap their tail
When a dog wags its tail, that’s a surefire way to tell that they are happy. When a bird flaps its tail, it could mean the same thing.
If a bird is flapping its tail feathers when you enter a room, this is a good sign that they are happy to see you which also indicates that they have taken a liking towards you.
Keep in mind, however, that shaking of the tail feathers can also be a sign that a parrot is about to relieve themselves – so just make sure that’s not what they’re doing before you move any closer!
They have a relaxed body posture
If your parrot has a relaxed body posture, this is a good sign that they are comfortable in your presence and that they like you.
If they are tense or have their feathers ruffled up, that could be a sign otherwise and you might want to proceed with caution.
They bow their head
When a parrot bows down with their head crouching and pointed toward a human, this is another good sign that they are comfortable around you.
Most often, this means that they would like you to pet or scratch their head – and if they are letting you get that close to them, it probably means that they trust and like you.
Their pupils dilate
As humans, our pupils dilate in response to dark or light. We have no control over what happens to them – it’s just a physiological response.
Parrots, on the other hand, can actually control their pupils. More specifically, they can flash (widen) and pin (narrow) their pupils based on their mood and environment.
Pay close attention to your parrots eyes when you enter a room. If they start to dilate, this usually indicates excitement and pleasure which suggests that they are happy to see.
Keep in mind, however, that the same dilation can also be a sign of stress or anxiety, so it’s important to pay attention to other body language in addition to watching their eyes.
They are hanging upside down
When a bird hangs upside down, it can often be alarming for an owner. Rest assured, however, this is a completely normal behavior.
Parrots may hang upside down for numerous reasons and are often found doing so when playing, eating, drinking, or even sleeping.
If you see a parrot hanging upside down in front of you, this is a great sign. It means that they feel comfortable around you.
In the wild, birds are extremely vulnerable when they are hanging upside down, so it takes a great deal of comfort for them to do so.
In other words, if a bird is hanging upside down with you near, they feel secure. If they are playing upside down, this is further proof that they are happy and content.
They grind their beaks
If you hear a parrot making clicking noises with their beak, this is called grinding.
This is generally a sign that your parrot is in a relaxed state, which is why you will most often find them doing it before bedtime.
Again, parrots in the wild become more vulnerable when they are relaxed. If they are relaxed in your presence, it’s a good sign that they like and trust you.
They mouth you
If you ever notice a parrot mouthing at you, they are probably trying to play.
If a parrot is trying to play with you, it probably means that they have taken a liking to you.
Keep in mind, however, that mouthing is not the same as biting. A parrot that is biting you may be playing aggressively, but they may also be telling you to back off.
Mouthing looks similar to biting, but without the actual bite.
They regurgitate their food for you
If a person were to regurgitate their food to you, I can imagine that you would take it quite offensively (as would I).
When a parrot regurgitates its food to you however, you should actually feel quite fortunate.
This is because, though regurgitation is considered gross to us, it’s actually considered a huge sign of affection for a parrot.
In the wild, parrots who mate together regurgitate their food to one another. Similarly, they will also regurgitate food to their young until they are old enough to find their own sources of food.
In captivity then, a parrot will regurgitate their food only for those that they feel closest to.
So if you notice a parrot bobbing their head rapidly and regurgitating their food in front of you, don’t be offended – it means that you belong to them (or so they think)!
They talk, sing, or whistle to you
When birds are angry, scared, or upset, they may make vocalizations, but they generally won’t be pleasant ones.
While squealing and screaming may be a sign of displeasure, there are some vocalizations that signify happiness.
More specifically, if a parrot talks to you, sings to you, or whistles in your presence, this is a good sign that they are content and happy.
This is particularly true if the vocalizations start the second you walk in the room.
They chatter at you
Chattering is slightly different than talking, as it doesn’t necessarily have to be in the form of words. Chattering can often be very quiet and can even sound somewhat like a purr.
But regardless of volume of a chatter, it’s typically a good sign if a parrot is doing it in your presence.
Wild birds will often chatter to each other before falling asleep or in an attempt to connect with other flock members.
As a result, if your parrot is chattering at you, they are probably trying to connect and interact with you – which is always a good sign.
They click their tongue at you
If a parrot is clicking it’s tongue against it’s beak, it’s a good sign that they are trying to get your attention.
More specifically, this is their way of communicating that they would like to be pet or picked up.
They want to play with you
When birds are uncomfortable, they won’t want to play. It’s not uncommon for a parrot to sit on it’s perch while strangers are nearby.
This is because the parrot is not completely comfortable and is being alert in its surroundings so that they know they are safe.
If a parrot is attempting to play with you, it means that they are comfortable enough to be close to you and that they like you.
They stretch their wings towards you
Not all parrots can communicate with words, but they can communicate with body language.
If a parrot stretches one wing out while looking in your direction, this is a good indication that they are happy to see you. This motion may also include curling of the claw and stretching of the leg.
Regardless, however the bird displays their pleasure, an open wing in your direction is generally their way of saying, “hi, I’m happy to see you”.
They are blushing
People aren’t the only species who blush – some parrots do too.
While not all parrots do blush, some species like the military macaw blush quite drastically. Other species of Macaw may also blush to some degree or another.
Blushing in parrots can mean several different things. Sometimes it can mean that they are happy, sometimes it can mean that they are amused, and other times it can mean that they are frightened.
In order to tell whether blushing is a sign that a parrot likes you, it’s important to pay attention to other body language and forms of communication as well.
While purring is not a common form of communication among parrots, it generally signifies happiness when it occurs.
Some parrots will purr more than others, but it’s important that you don’t confuse a purr with a low growl. The two often sound very similar, but mean two completely different things.
While a purr signifies pleasure and happiness, a low growl signifies that a parrot is discontent or frightened.
You should never approach a growling parrot – this is a warning sign to stay away.
They fluff their feathers
When a parrot fluffs their feathers, especially when you walk into a room, it’s often a sign that they are pleased with your presence.
Having said that, feather fluffing is another tricky behavior to read because it can mean different things on the opposite ends of the spectrum.
On one hand, feather fluffing can mean that a parrot is happy and content, and on the other it could mean that they are entering into aggressive mode.
The better you get to know your parrot, the easier it will become to tell which mode they are in. You can also watch other forms of body language to help you distinguish the difference.
They “Call” you
If your parrot “calls” you when you are not in the room, this is another great way to tell that they like you.
In the wild parrots often engage in what is known as “contact calling”. Contact calling is a way of reaching out to their partners, letting their partners know where they are, and letting their partners know that they are safe.
Contact calling can come in many different forms such as screaming or whistling.
If your bird does this when you are not in the room, it’s simply their way of making sure that you are safe.
Answer them back and there’s a good chance that they will settle right down afterwards.
They mimic you
Parrots are extremely social creatures and they will try to fit in with you as much as they possibly can.
In many cases trying to fit in will come in the form of being around you as much as possible. In other cases, it can come in the form of mimicking you.
If your parrot mimics your behavior or speech, they are probably just trying to fit in with you, which again, means that they are fond of you.
They bite others
This isn’t the most pleasant way for a parrot to show that they like you and definitely shouldn’t be a behavior that is encouraged.
With that being said, if your parrot attempts to bite or attack other people when they are in your presence, it probably means that they are being territorial of you.
Parrots bond intensely with one person and sometimes they don’t like when other people take that person’s attention away. Sometimes, the result can be aggressive behavior towards other people.
While this is not a good way for your parrot to display their affection, it is a sign that they consider you their territory and that they like you.
They make eye contact with you
If a parrot is nervous or shy, direct eye contact can make them feel threatened or frightened.
As a result, most parrots will not make eye contact unless they are extremely comfortable with you.
If you notice a parrot staring at you with one eye, it could mean they are interested in you.
They enjoy your company
If you find that a parrot is following you around the house or vying for your attention, they definitely like you.
In fact, this could be a good sign that they have chosen you as their “forever mate”. In such a case, you should feel truly blessed because you now have a true friend for life!
So there you have it – 25 ways to tell whether a parrot likes you or not!
Parrots are very good at letting us know what they like and dislike, and it’s important that we pay attention to their needs.
If you are not receiving signs that a parrot is happy in your presence, always listen to their cues. Failing to do so could result in an attack and injury.