Do Parrots Like Watching TV?

There’s a lot of different things that we can do with our parrots. We can take them for a walk, we can shower with them, we can keep them on our shoulder while we’re doing dishes, we can play games with them, and we can even watch TV with them.  Just because we can do things with our parrots doesn’t mean that they actually enjoy it. Which leads us to the question, do parrots enjoy watching TV?

The answer is, we really don’t know. It seems that many parrot owners will tell you that their parrot seems to enjoy watching TV. They may become excited when a certain television show or commercial comes on, and even start dancing in some cases. But whether or not parrots actually enjoy television watching, it’s hard to say without being able to ask them. Like many other things, it probably differs from parrot to parrot. Some parrots may enjoy watching TV while others may prefer to do other things.

So how can you tell if your parrot enjoys watching TV? What shows can you put on for your parrot? What benefits does TV watching have? And what do your parrots actually see when they look at the TV? Today we will answer all of these questions and more so let’s not waste another minute.

How can you tell if your parrot enjoys watching television?

As we just mentioned, some parrots will like TV while others may be annoyed by it and others may have no reaction at all. To tell where your parrot falls, all you have to do is look at their body language. Parrots tell you a lot with their bodies including when they are happy. Here are some signs to watch for that tell you your parrot may be enjoying their television show:

Their eyes are pinned on the TV.

Pinning is a common parrot behaviour that can mean a lot of different things. It can mean a bird is angry, frightened, aggressive, or happy and excited. It’s important that you take the context of their eye pinning into consideration when determining which mood they are in. If their eyes are pinned on the TV and they are exhibiting other signs of happiness or excitement, they are probably enjoying what they are watching.

They are singing, talking, or whistling.

Each of these are signs of a happy and content bird. Some will sing and talk along with the TV, and others will learn new words from television shows. If they are copying the television, they are probably enjoying watching it.

They are purring.

Unlike a cat that purrs when it’s pleased, parrots can purr for multiple reasons. Purring can be a sign that your parrot is content but it can also be a sign of annoyance. Take their other body language into consideration when determining whether or not your parrot is purring because they enjoy watching TV or because the television is annoying them.

They are flapping their wings.

Parrots often flap their wings to display happiness but they could also be doing it to stretch or cool down. If your parrot flaps their wings every time they watch TV, they’re probably enjoying the show.

They are flipping their tail.

If your parrot is flipping their tail this is a sign of happiness. They often do it when they play with their favourite toys or when they greet their favourite person. They could also do it if they’re enjoying television.

They are relaxed.

If your parrot looks relaxed, it probably is. A relaxed body tells you that your parrot is happy and content.

Why do some parrots enjoy watching television?

The answer to this question is simpler than you may think. The reason that parrots enjoy watching TV so much is because they are doing it with you. Parrots are extremely social creatures who really just wanted to be around their owner at all times. Any activities that they can do with you are generally good activities.

So if you find that your parrot enjoys watching television with you, it’s probably just because they enjoy spending time with you. With that being said, parrots can also be attracted to the noises that the TV makes and perhaps even the colours of it.

What are some good television shows for my parrot to watch?

Your parrot can benefit from watching any type of television that you were watching simply because being around you benefits them socially. With that being said, shows that portray other parrots are probably the most beneficial to your parrot. You may find that if your parrot sees another parrot on television, they react moreso than they do when watching any other regular programming. Scientists also studied birds that watched other bird behaviour on television.

In one specific study, scientists studied Blue Tit birds. More specifically, Blue Tit birds were assigned to watch television shows of other Blue Tit birds acting disgusted in response to toxic foods. The results? The birds watching the television quickly learned that the foods displayed on the television were toxic. In return, watching such television shows could potentially increase the survival rate of these birds in the wild.

The study also showed that Blue Tits learn best by watching their own species, while Great Tits learned from watching their own species as well as watching other species.

As shown by the study, it seemed that the birds were  receiving some type of social transmission of information regarding which foods are safe to eat and which foods were not through television programming. Not only does this study show that birds  learn from each other, but it also shows that birds are capable of learning from television shows. And if regular birds can learn from television shows than parrots, who are much more intelligent, can definitely learn a thing or two.

For this reason television shows involving other parrots may be the most beneficial to yours.

What does a parrot see when it watches tv?

A parrots vision differs from ours in quite a few different ways.

Firstly, their eye positioning is much different. While we have eyes on the front of our head, a parrot’s’ eyes are located on the side.

In the wild this is beneficial because it helps them to see a wider area around them. In return, this helps to better protect them from predators like owls, hawks, and large cats.

But being able to have this wider vision comes with a  trade off  and it means that parrots don’t have very good depth perception.  So while they can see a wide screen TV, it probably looks much flattered to them than it does to us.

A parrot’s vision also differs from ours in the fact that they can see ultraviolet light. This means that they can see colours that we can’t see.

Because we can’t see the colours, we don’t know if the TV actually is displaying them or not. But this may be another way that our parrots see TV differently than we do.

Finally birds integrate images quicker than we do.

Imagine that humans and birds were both cameras. This simply means that birds have more frames per second than humans do.

This means that situations where we see constant light, birds and parrots see rapid flickers. So while watching TV we see one constant image, but our birds see the screen constantly flickering.

Should I leave the television on while I’m away?

Yes. If you are leaving the house for any period of time, leaving the TV on in the background for your parrot can help them to feel much more comfortable and can prevent boredom. Just remember that whatever shows you put on, your parrot may be learning from them and can take new words away as well. So just make sure your programming is parrot appropriate.

In conclusion, some parrots enjoy TV while other parrots do not. To ensure that your parrot isn’t annoyed by your TV, keep an eye on their body language. Their body language will tell you everything you need to know about whether or not they’re enjoying the television as much as you do.

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