When people talk about pets, they normally think about dogs and cats. Although these four-legged creatures are the most adorable and lovable, there are still lots of interesting animals out there that make excellent household companions, such as parrots.
Among other animals in the animal kingdom that can be made pets, parrots are considered next to dogs and cats. Not only are they colorful, they are also interesting and fun to play with. But, not everyone can appreciate these beautiful birds. The reason is that they don’t just understand everything about them, from their behaviors to their diet.
To be familiar with this bird, we present you several facts about it:
1. Parrots can mimic various sounds.
One reason parrots are opted as pets because of their ability to mimic sounds. When they are in the wild, they follow the sounds created by other members of their group, allowing them to alert the rest about an incoming danger or the presence of food.
At home, parrots can imitate the sounds of things like water flowing, a phone ringing, and a vacuum cleaner humming. Also, they can copy how humans speak. Just by listening to people talk, they can learn and speak by themselves.
Amazon parrots and African grey parrots are among those that are great at imitating sound.
2. Parrots are clever birds.
Obviously, parrots learn easily. They don’t just speak words, they even associate them with some situations or objects. They also have the ability to solve problems. In fact, after some tests and experiments, some scientists found out they possess the logic of a 4-year-old kid.
3. Parrots are the only birds that have the ability to eat using their feet.
Parrots have a pair of zygodactyl feet, which means they have 4 toes on every foot. They are very strong that they can just hook themselves to the branches of trees, even for long periods of time.
However, it isn’t the only use of their feet. Just like the hands of humans, their feet allows them to pick up objects and food, and take them into their mouths.
4. There are parrots that can live as long as 100 years.
Though the life span of parrots differs from one species to another, normally, the smaller ones live from 15 to 20 years. On the other hand, the larger ones may survive up to 100 years.
While Macaws are among those species that are long-lived, a Major Mitchell’s cockatoo holds the world record as the oldest living parrot, surviving for 81 years.
5. The beaks of parrots are very strong.
Parrots are easily distinguished for their colorful feathers. But, aside from that, they are also noted for their curved, broad, and strong beak.
According to studies, the beak of the world’s biggest flying parrot, the hyacinth macaw, is so strong that it can crack Macadamia nuts, which is the toughest nut to crack, as well as a coconut. For that, these birds must always be handled with care.
6. Most parrots mate for life.
To be able to find a partner, a male parrot shows off its courtship display, dancing and making sounds and expressions so as to attract a female. When a female picks him, they stay as a couple for life.
As a pair, they help one another in finding food, sleep together, and take care of each other to strengthen their relationship.
During the mating season, a female parrot can lay up to 8 eggs, which are often colored-white. But, unlike any other birds, they don’t build nests. They only lay their eggs inside tree holes or in bird aviaries. For the eggs to hatch, it would usually take 17 to 35 days.
7. Parrots have been considered pets for 3 millenniums already.
Ancient Egyptians were those who kept parrots as pets. It was then followed by the Chinese and Indians. In 300 BC, they were taken to Europe, where they were raised by the nobles and the rich. Among the famous personalities who owned parrots were Marco Polo, Marie Antoinette, Aristotle, King Henry VII, Queen Victoria, Steven Spielberg, Teddy Roosevelt, and Martha Washington.
Nowadays, parrots are still considered among the most sought-after pet birds on the planet. However, if you are planning to get one, keep in that they need of love and affection. And, if they are not properly trained, they could become very noisy. Worse, they might bite.
8. The largest parrot species in the world cannot fly.
The kakapo, which is the largest parrot on the planet, is a flightless bird. As a matter of fact, it is the only parrot in the world that cannot fly. Among other parrot species, it is the only one that is nocturnal.
Whether its their charisma or wit that makes parrots very enjoyable, for sure, they’ll make a wonderful addition to any family. But, like any other pets, it is essential that you understand everything about it, from its history to its behavior. This way, you can easily welcome them to your home.