My niece’s new parrot Tululla is the height of conversation in our family, and she is bringing many new lessons to my niece.
She is a much-loved parrot until the moment she peed in my niece’s hair.
She wasn’t best amused.
She screamed, saying Tululla has pooped in her hair, and I corrected her that this was parrot pee.
She was determined it was poop.
I thought it was humorous and decided to answer the question, do parrots pee?
Yes, parrots do pee. A bird’s urinary system is different and more complicated than a mammal’s urine system. A parrot’s urinary tract produces both urine and uric acid. Parrots do not have a bladder and have a single opening for poop and pee, usually excreted together.
Our parrots’ pee is very different from how humans and animals excrete waste, which can seem strange to us.
Many new parrot owners are worried about parrot urine and feel concerned that they may be suffering urine infections.
This article will discuss why your parrot isn’t peeing, do parrots pee while flying, what does parrot pee look like, and much more.
Without further ado, let’s jump into all the answers about parrot pee.
Why doesn’t my parrot pee?
Your parrot does urinate.
Your parrot’s urinary system is very different from a mammal, which can cause confusion for new parrot owners.
A mammal’s urinary system produces pee that can be provisionally held in the bladder before being expelled through the urethra.
A parrot’s urinary system produces urine and uric acid.
Your parrot does not have a bladder.
Birds have a single opening for poop and pee, which are usually excreted together.
Do parrots pee while flying?
Parrots and birds do pee and poop while flying, which isn’t so pleasant if you’re caught out below.
It’s meant to bring you luck; however, it doesn’t feel very fortunate.
It is a Russian superstition and is based on the rare odds of being pooped on by a bird.
If you’re a parrot owner, the odds of being pooped and peed on are high.
Do parrots pee and poop out of one orifice?
Parrots do not have separate exits for urine and feces.
Both pee and poop are excreted, usually simultaneously through the cloaca.
While mammals eliminate waste mainly in the form of urine, parrots convert waste into uric acid or guanine, which reduces water loss.
How does a parrot’s urinary system work?
A parrot’s urinary system has three parts: kidneys, ureter, and cloaca.
Birds do not have bladders or urethras.
Unlike mammals, parrots’ kidneys filter waste from the blood, concentrate it, and control electrolyte levels.
A parrot’s kidneys filter out two different waste products: urea and uric acid.
The ureter carries the cloaca’s waste, a small section that is the single opening to the urinary, intestinal, and reproductive organs.
When a parrot opens the cloaca, it simultaneously releases pee and poop from the urinary and intestinal tracts.
The darker part of a parrot’s droppings is feces, the watery part is urine, and the white part is uric acid.
How do parrots’ kidneys work?
Parrot kidneys convert nitrogenous wastes into uric acid; this saves water waste.
White uric acid mixes with the feces before being excreted.
This is what gives a parrots’ bodily waste its distinctive color.
Because they eliminate using uric acid instead of urine, birds require forty times less water than mammals.
Parrots need to be as lightweight as possible, so they have the ability to fly.
Bodily waste adds unnecessary weight, which is why parrots and birds will typically defecate while flying.
Commonly, they will pee and poop just before the flight; however, they have no issues with relieving themselves mid-flight when nature calls.
A parrot’s excretory system is so effective they can get most of their water requirements through their diets.
This is particularly true in the case of parrots, as they feed on many fruits and vegetables with a high water content.
What does parrot pee look like?
Because parrots don’t produce urine in the same way mammals do, their pee can look different from what we expect.
Parrots excrete nitrogenous wastes in the form of uric acid, which looks like a white paste.
Uric acid doesn’t dissolve in water easily.
This is why bird poop will stick to your windshield like blobs of white plaster and is difficult to remove.
The white stuff is actually bird pee, mind blown!
Parrot and bird poop will appear in a tubular coil formation and is often surrounded by the white chalky substance, which is the pee.
Why does my parrot’s pee look like poop?
This is a common misconception that many people get confused with.
The white chalky substance from your parrot is pee, and the darker tubular stuff is poop.
Due to parrot excreting waste from the same orifice, the two are typically combined.
If you are concerned that droppings have changed in color, texture, or excretion frequency, your parrot will require veterinary advice.
This could be a sign of a health condition that may require treatment.
Does my parrot have a urine infection?
A common urine infection is gout.
This is a common infection in parrots and can frequently affect them.
The disease is most often seen in older cockatiels and parrots that have been fed an unbalanced diet of protein, typically above 20 to 25% of their daily intake.
Gout is the abnormal deposit of uric acid crystals in the body.
Uric acid is produced by the liver and removed through the kidneys.
When not adequately removed from the bloodstream, the uric acid will begin to crystallize and collect in various places in the parrot’s body.
It is not toxic or harmful in itself, but the accumulation of crystals can severely damage tissues.
Other things that can contribute to this condition are diets that are too high in calcium or vitamin D3 or too low in vitamin A.
If untreated, gout will affect the joints of parrots and can be severely painful.
If pain control cannot be achieved, euthanasia may be considered to prevent suffering.
Your parrot would require surgical removal of the crystal deposits and is not practical in most cases because they are often located close to blood vessels.
The chance of fatal bleeding is high.
Unless the underlying condition can be corrected or controlled, new crystal deposits will appear very rapidly.
Your veterinarian may prescribe medications given by mouth that are helpful in the control of gout and the associated pain in some cases.
Gout crystals may also affect internal organs.
This type of gout is rarely diagnosed before the death of a parrot.
The membranes on the surface of various organs and the kidney’s tubules are the location of uric acid crystal deposits.
Death is often the only sign noted.
This condition only highlights the importance of a balanced diet for our parrots.
Proper care of our pet parrots should ensure their overall health.
If you are ever in doubt about your parrot’s health and well-being, contact your vet to discuss their individual needs.
There are some of the parrot pee, and poop mysteries all solved for you.
We have discussed the difference in the appearance of pee and poop, urine infection, and how your parrot’s waste system works.
If you are ever concerned about your parrot’s health and notice changes in their droppings, always seek veterinary advice, and they can discuss your parrot’s individual needs.