My friend came over for a cup of tea, and as normal, we were discussing our parrots.
His young parrots have been a hop, skipping, and jumping around his home, and he asked me, ‘can parrots jump?’
Our conversation moved on to all things about parrots and jumping and if it’s normal behavior.
Let’s discuss all the questions about parrots jumping and answer the question; Can parrots jump?
Yes, parrots can jump. It is common for small parrots to jump. However, larger parrots may hop or run rather than jump due to their weight and pressure on their joints. Larger parrots will tend to keep one leg on the ground at all times and display a running motion instead.
We will frequently see a parrot jump from perch to perch, or wild parrots will jump between branches of a tree.
In this article, we will look at if it is normal for parrots to jump, is it bad for a parrot to jump, if you can train a parrot to jump, and much more.
Let’s look into all the answers about parrots and their ability to jump.
Why do some parrots hop or walk rather than jump?
You will tend to see smaller parrots jumping around due to their lighter bodies.
The smaller birds have fewer issues with their joints and less pressure on their bones, making jumping more comfortable for them.
A single jump for a smaller parrot can take them a fair distance compared to the action of a single hop or walking.
Jumping for a small parrot allows them to travel faster on foot than walking or hopping, which is why you see them jumping often.
A larger or heavier parrot will tend to walk or hop along.
The heavier weight on the parrot’s bones and joints can cause pressure and can be uncomfortable for them.
The larger parrots will tend to leave one leg on the ground at all times for this reason.
Their long legs also make walking a faster option compare to smaller species of parrots.
If a parrot is overweight or gaining weight, you may see jumping behaviors change.
Like the bigger birds, the excess weight gain will affect their joints and cause discomfort or pain.
It is like us humans putting on weight.
A slim athletic runner would be able to run a long-distance quicker than an unfit, overweight person who may not even be able to finish the race.
Why is my parrot jumping?
While jumping can be a great form of travel for a parrot, there are many other reasons why parrots jump.
Research tells us that parrots will jump as a form of enjoyment.
It is typical behavior for a parrot to start jumping or dancing when you play music.
If your music speeds up or slows down, you can watch your parrot’s movement adjust to the music.
This tells us, parrot owners, that our bird can keep a beat and is enjoying themselves.
You may also see your parrot jumping in celebration or showing excitement.
A parrot may do this when you return home from work or offering your bird a favorite treat.
It is a form of communication between you and your feathered friend and is classed as the parrot displaying body language.
If your parrot is very happy or excited, you will see the combination of jumping with a squawk or a cry to indicate their enjoyment.
Is it normal behavior for my parrot to jump?
Yes, it is normal for a parrot to jump.
A typical form of communication for a parrot with you or other parrots is to use body language to communicate.
It shows your parrot is intelligent, aware of its surroundings, and trying to show engagement.
Can I train my parrot to jump?
Yes, you can train a parrot to jump, and many parrot owners like to train their parrots to jump onto their fingers.
Training is always beneficial for a parrot to create mental stimulation and helps an owner and parrot bond and form trust.
Let’s look into how to train a parrot to jump onto your finger.
Ensure your parrot is happy and comfortable in your company.
Pet them and reassure them before attempting something new.
It can take time and effort.
Remain patient as any frustration will only intimidate your parrot, and they will refuse a new command if they feel uncomfortable with a new situation.
This training can take a few days.
Firstly, you will need to train your parrot to step onto your finger.
Encourage small steps, to begin with.
Place your finger near the body of your parrot and slowly lower your hand to their feet and say the command ‘step.’
When your parrot has become comfortable stepping onto your finger, it is time to increase the distance between your parrot’s step.
Increase the distance, so your parrot has to stretch their stride onto your finger.
When your parrot has become comfortable with this extended step, it’s time to encourage the jumping to your finger.
Extend the distance again and command your parrot to jump.
This distance should only be far enough for a small jump.
This stage may take your parrot a little longer to get to grips with as it’s a higher level of trust.
Eventually, your parrot will jump to you from a longer distance and encourage them to flap their wings.
Be mindful if your parrot has clipped wings to keep the distance short as they won’t be able to generate enough lift to fly.
When training your parrot, remember to reward the good behavior.
Every time your parrot successfully steps onto your fingers and eventually jumps, reward them with a treat.
Is a jumping parrot trying to fly?
Your parrot may well be trying to fly.
It is a natural instinctive behavior for a parrot to fly, but there are many reasons why a parrot may jump, as we have discussed here today.
Your parrot can jump due to enjoyment, feeling excited, demonstrating a celebration, or as a form of movement.
If you are concerned, your parrot is trying to fly, contact your vet.
A professional vet can discuss with you the options about domestic parrots taking flight.
There are options such as clipping feathers to stop a parrot from flying, but this can be detrimental to their well-being.
A professional can discuss the pros and cons of clipping wings and decide what is best for you and your parrot.
Is it bad for my parrot to jump?
No, it is an entirely natural and instinctual thing for a parrot to jump.
You will see smaller parrots jump more frequently than larger birds due to the weight difference.
Take your parrot’s lead, and if they don’t want to jump, they won’t.
Never force your parrot to jump, you can ask them, but if they don’t want to, that’s ok.
There you have all the answers about parrots and jumping.
We have discussed why parrots jump, training a parrot to jump, and that it is normal behavior for a parrot to want to jump.
Allowing your parrot the opportunity to enjoy themselves with an activity like jumping is an excellent way of instilling trust and friendship between parrot and owner that both of you will enjoy.
If you are ever concerned about your parrot’s physical well-being or feel they cannot jump or show signs of discomfort with physical movement, always contact a professional vet.