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Northern Parrots Blog: Avian Articles


It’s Time To Celebrate Cockatoos On Northern Parrots’ First Cockatoo Day.

Tuesday, 24th November 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We're celebrating our first Cockatoo Day on November 25th with four special offers you won't want to miss. Plus read up on facts about Cockatoos and find out which products are available for the many different Cockatoo species.


Small Bird Myths Vs Facts

Tuesday, 17th November 2015Written By Northern Parrots

There are lots of myths surrounding small Parrot species such as Lovebirds, Budgies and Cockatiels. In this blog, originally published by Lafeber in September 2015, the myths and the real facts behind them are explained.


Greys Are Fun!

Friday, 6th November 2015Written By Dot

Dot Schwarz is the proud owner of two Greys, Artha and Casper. Here Dot discusses her training strategies, what she has taught them and how their behaviour has changed over the years.


Fireworks & Your Parrot

Tuesday, 3rd November 2015Written By Liz

Liz Wilson provides some expert advice on how to help your feathered friend(s) have a less stressful time during these noisy celebrations.


Go Cook For Your Parrot on November 1st

Tuesday, 27th October 2015Written By Northern Parrots

It's Go Cook For Your Pet Day on November 1st, so here are suggestions for some yummy foods you can prepare for your Parrot on the day.


How to Teach Your Parrot To Step Up

Friday, 23rd October 2015Written By Dot

Teaching your Parrot to step up is one of the most important skills you can teach your Parrot. Here Dot Schwarz explains how you can teach your bird to step up using her real life examples.


No Vain, No Gain! How Pampering Your Parrot Can Keep Them Happy.

Tuesday, 20th October 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We know how much you want your Parrot to look their best, as the vibrant coloured feathers of Conures, Amazons and Macaws can easily become dull and tatty looking. Here’s some of the products that help your feathered friend look their best.


Celebrate Your African Grey on African Grey Day

Tuesday, 13th October 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We're celebrating African Greys on October 15th, and we hope you and your Grey get involved. We'll have some very special offers on African Grey products, sharing pictures of Greys and more, so get involved using the #AfricanGreyDay


Find Out More About Caring For Your Parrot With These October Campaigns

Friday, 9th October 2015Written By Northern Parrots

October is a really big month for pets and consequently our Parrots, with big campaigns running to promote their welfare. Read on to find out what they are.


Find Out More About Pet Obesity Awareness Day 2015

Tuesday, 6th October 2015Written By Northern Parrots

October 7th is Pet Obesity Awareness Day so read on for more information about the day and how you can manage your Parrot's weight.


What's Your Parrot's Play Personality?

Tuesday, 29th September 2015Written By Northern Parrots

In this article, originally published by Lafeber in April 2015, the author discusses the different types of Parrot personality and how they suit the types of toys they play with.


Travelling With Your Pet Bird or Parrot

Friday, 25th September 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Many of us love to take our Parrots out and about with us, whether it be for short day trips or longer two week family holidays. We've compiled a handy list of travel options for you and your Parrot, so you never need to leave your feathered friend at home ever again!


Overcoming Fear Responses. Two Tools Every Animal Trainer Needs.

Friday, 18th September 2015Written By Barbara

There are lots of techniques you can use to train your Parrot. Positive reinforcement is one of the most popular, but you can also use two other tools. Read on to find out what they are.


Who's Joining Us For Our First Meyer's and Senegal Day?

Tuesday, 15th September 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We're holding our first Meyer's and Senegal Day on September 17th, and we'd love a many people as possible to get involved by talking advantage of our special offers and reading about these delightful members of the Poicephalus family.


Enrichment Or How to Keep Your Parrot Happy

Friday, 11th September 2015Written By Dot

Parrots need plenty of toys in order to enjoy an enriched life. Here Dot Schwarz explains some of the toys that her flock loves and how you can keep your Parrot occupied too.


5 Things You Should Know About Parrots

Tuesday, 8th September 2015Written By Barbara

Whether you're a new Parrot owner or have been a happy Parrot owner for years, you might be surprised to learn these five interesting facts about Parrots by Barbara Heidenreich, that make Parrots a bit different from your usual companion animal.


5 Top Tips to Teach Your Parrot to Speak

Friday, 4th September 2015Written By Steve

Follow these five simple tips, developed by Steve Hartman of The Parrot University, to teach your Parrot to talk. This article was originally written and published by Steve on his website in 2015.


What is National Wildlife Day 2015?

Tuesday, 1st September 2015Written By Northern Parrots

4th September will be National Wildlife Day. Here is a little bit of history about the day, conservation projects around the world and what you can do to help.


Animal Training Quips: Set Them Up for Success

Friday, 28th August 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich has developed numerous methods to set the Parrots she trains up for success. Here she explains what they are.


How To Choose the Right Perch For Your Parrot

Tuesday, 25th August 2015Written By Northern Parrots

There are lots of different styles of perch available for your Parrot and many different sizes too, so how do you choose the right one for your Parrot? Here we explain the wide choice you have available.


Join in With Our National Quaker Day Celebrations

Tuesday, 18th August 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We're celebrating our first Unofficial Quaker Day on August 20th, so why not treat your Quaker Parrot on this very special day with some of our Quaker products and read more about our wonderful Quaker Parakeets too.


What Is International Homeless Animals Day?

Friday, 14th August 2015Written By Northern Parrots

International Homeless Animals Day takes place on August 15th. Here's a little bit of history of the day so you know what it's all about and how you can support homeless Parrots.


Fresh Foods Your Parrot Will Love

Tuesday, 11th August 2015Written By Dot

There are lots of fresh fruits, vegetables and plants that Parrots love and it is really important that you incorporate a lot of green stuff into your bird's diet, as Dot Schwarz explains.


Why Do Parrots Need UV Light?

Friday, 7th August 2015Written By Northern Parrots

UV lights are one of the most important items you can buy for your Parrot. Read on to discover what huge benefits they can bring to your Parrot's overall wellbeing and the range of lights available.


How do Parrots Learn to Talk?

Tuesday, 4th August 2015Written By Steve

Does it talk is one of the most common questions people ask when they meet a Parrot for the first time. Here Steve Hartman of The Parrot University explains how Parrots learn to talk between themselves and with humans. This article was originally published on The Parrot University's website in 2015.


Celebrate Exotic Pets Awareness Day 2015

Friday, 31st July 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Exotic Pet Awareness Day is happening on Sunday August 9th and here's what's happening on the day, so you can celebrate our exotic Parrots too.


Help for Parrot Behaviour Problems: Live Webinars Coming Up

Wednesday, 29th July 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich has useful webinars coming up in late July and August. Read on to find out more.


Barbara Heidenreich's Secrets to An Awesome Training Session.

Tuesday, 21st July 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich has been busy training zoo animals this week, but you can easily use the methods she uses in these sessions, like free shaping and target training, to train your own Parrot, as she explains.


Celebrate The First Northern Parrots Macaw Day With Us On July 16th

Tuesday, 14th July 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We're celebrating our very first Macaw Day on July 16th. Read about what we have planned for the day and learn more about some of the more popular Macaw species.


Why Do Parrots Need Exercise?

Tuesday, 7th July 2015Written By Steve

It's so important to give your Parrot plenty of exercise, as Steve Hartman of The Parrot University explains the benefits the benefits Parrots receive from exercise. This article was originally published on The Parrot University's blog and newsletter in May 2015.


Applying the Three Basic Animal Needs to Parrots

Friday, 3rd July 2015Written By Eb

After watching an episode of "The Dog Whisperer" where the host discussed the three emotional needs of a pet dog, exercise, mental stimulus and affection, Eb Cravens realised the same essentials could be applied to Parrots. Here he explains what they are. This article was originally published in Parrots Magazine in November 2008.


Think Parrots 2015 Review

Friday, 26th June 2015Written By Dot

Thank you to everyone who came along to Think Parrots 2015. The day was once again a huge success for all Parrots and their owners and it was lovely to meet you all. Here is Dot Schwarz's review of the day. She had a fantastic time as well.


The Importance of Hideaways for Parrots

Tuesday, 23rd June 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Keeping your Parrot feeling safe and protected is really easy when you use a hideaway. Our article explains how important they are to your Parrot.


"Yeah, But"...What Not to Say During Parrot Behaviour Training.

Friday, 19th June 2015Written By Barbara

When supporting Parrot owners with their training, Barbara Heidenreich often hears them saying, "yeah, but." People say it all the time when they are given advice, but it can hinder a Parrot's progress during behaviour training, as Barbara explains.


How to Potty Train Your Parrot in 72 Hours

Tuesday, 16th June 2015Written By Steve

Potty training your Parrot could be one of the most important skills that you can teach your Parrot. Use this method developed by Steve Hartman of The Parrot University to successfully toilet train your bird. This article was originally published on The Parrot University's e newsletter in May 2015.


Celebrate National Conure Day on June 10th.

Tuesday, 9th June 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Celebrate the very first unofficial National Conure Day with us on 10th June and share the love for all our Small and Large Conures.


Show Your Parrot Some Love During Pet Appreciation Week 2015

Tuesday, 2nd June 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We've just started Pet Appreciation Week, so now is the time to show your Parrot you love them even more than you might do normally, not that many of us need an excuse.


World Parrot Day 2015

Friday, 29th May 2015Written By Northern Parrots

World Parrot Day, one of our favourite days of the year, is fast approaching. Here's a bit more information on the day and how you can celebrate with our feathered friends on May 31st.


Benni Takes to the Air

Tuesday, 26th May 2015Written By Dot

Dot Schwarz's Blue and Gold Macaw Benni has been freeflying outside since March 14th, when he was 28 weeks old. Here’s how Benni’s behaviour has developed and how Dot's nerves have withstood the strain.


New Live Webinars. Parrot Problems and More

Friday, 22nd May 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich is presenting some more fantastic webinars over the next few months. Click the link for the dates and all the information you need.


Northern Parrots National Cockatiel Day

Tuesday, 19th May 2015Written By Northern Parrots

As our World Budgie Day was such a success earlier on this year, we thought we'd celebrate another one of our most loved smaller Parrot species in May. Step forward the Cockatiel, and Northern Parrots first Unofficial National Cockatiel Day on May 19th.


Endangered Species Day 2015

Friday, 15th May 2015Written By Northern Parrots

As it's Endangered Species Day on May 15th, we take a look at how our bloggers have been supporting conservation projects around the world, and which Parrot species are rare or threatened.


Why do Parrots Need Foraging Toys?

Tuesday, 12th May 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Foraging toys are one of the most important toys you can buy for your Parrot. They keep your bird's clever mind occupied and stop them becoming bored, as our blog explains.


A Critical Look at the Question of Handfeeding Parrots: Nurture vs Nature

Tuesday, 5th May 2015Written By Eb

Eb Cravens looks at the question of handfeeding Parrots and which is better, nature or nurture. This article was originally published in Parrots Magazine in July 2008.


What Types of Parrot Toys Are Available?

Friday, 1st May 2015Written By Northern Parrots

There are so many different toys you can buy for your Parrot, to keep them physically and mentally stimulated. Here we look at some of the most popular type of Parrot toys.


Do Parrots Get Along With Children?

Friday, 24th April 2015Written By Dot

As it's National Kids and Pets Day on April 26th, Dot Schwarz takes a look at how children and get along when they live together in the same house.


Go Birding Day 2015

Thursday, 23rd April 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Are you planning a trip to see wild Parrots in their natural environment, either in the UK or worldwide? Then why not plan it around Go Birding Day 2015, which takes place on April 25th.


World Vet Day 2015

Tuesday, 21st April 2015Written By Northern Parrots

It's World Vet Day on April 25th, so let's take a moment to thank the avian vets who care for our Parrots.


Is Animal Training Really All About Relationships?

Tuesday, 14th April 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich says she often hears animal trainers talk about relationships. She loves the relationship she builds with her animals, but the phrase is a little vague. So here she explains if animal training really is all about relationships.


The Importance of Microchipping your Parrot.

Tuesday, 7th April 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Have you had your Parrot microchipped yet? Richard Jones of Avian Veterinary Services explains why it is so important to do this and why it is a lot safer than standard, traditional methods of identifying individual birds, such as leg bands.


How Feathers Colour Our World

Thursday, 2nd April 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We all know how the colour of an object affects how you view it, but the colour of a bird can also change what we think of them and what their potential mates think too. This article was originally published on Lafeber's website in February 2015.


My Last Week at The Ara Project in Costa Rica

Tuesday, 31st March 2015Written By Heather

Heather Scott's time volunteering with Macaws in Costa Rica is coming to an end. She has absolutely loved her time there, so here is what she will miss and what she hopes the future of the Ara Project is.


Training Benni the Macaw

Friday, 27th March 2015Written By Dot

Dot Schwarz has been training Benni for several months now. Here's another update on how Benni's training is going.


Get involved with Wild Bird Feeding Month - Part 3

Thursday, 26th March 2015Written By Northern Parrots

It's the final part of our three part series looking at Wild Bird Feeding Month 2015. In this blog we focus on the feeders you can feed the wild birds from.


Do Animals Bluff?

Wednesday, 25th March 2015Written By Barbara

Have you ever wondered if animals bluff? Barbara Heidenreich explains if Parrots can bluff, how other animals use bluffing and explains other animal behaviours you may have encountered.


How and Why Delayed Fledging Helps Young Parrots

Thursday, 12th March 2015Written By Eb

Eb Cravens explains why he always delays fledging in the young birds and Parrots he cares for. This article was originally published in Parrots Magazine in September 2008.


Get involved with Wild Bird Feeding Month - Part 2

Tuesday, 10th March 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Here's part two of our series looking at how you can feed the wild birds during wild bird feeding month. This time we're looking at fat balls, nuts and peanuts.


My Personal Contributions to the Ara Project, Punta Islita

Friday, 6th March 2015Written By Heather

Heather Scott has been volunteering at the Ara Project in Costa Rica for four weeks now and has been able to contribute to some exciting developments at the centre. Read on to find out what they are.


Are Birds Meant to Fly?

Tuesday, 3rd March 2015Written By Dot

Flight development in baby birds is essential for their mental development. Wing clipping can therefore have a huge effect on a Parrot's development. Dot Schwarz looks at the arguments for and against wing clipping a Parrot.


Get involved with Wild Bird Feeding Month - Part 1

Friday, 27th February 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Here’s the first part of our series on Wild Bird Feeding Month. In this part we’re focusing on the history of the month and wild bird food and seed mixes.


Come along to the 2015 Stafford Spring Bird Show

Thursday, 26th February 2015Written By Northern Parrots

On Sunday 1st March it's the return of the Staffordshire Spring Bird Show, which hundreds of bird lovers and breeders attend to see which high quality bird are available. Find out more about the show on the link.


Settling Into Work at the Ara Project in Costa Rica

Tuesday, 24th February 2015Written By Heather

Heather Scott has been working at the Ara Project in Costa Rica for three weeks now and has kindly taken time out to write this blog for us. She writes about her daily duties, the kinds of Parrots she is caring for and her own personal challenges that she's faced.


Show your Parrot how much you love them on Love Your Pet Day 2015

Tuesday, 17th February 2015Written By Northern Parrots

It's Love Your Pet Day on February 20th so here's how you can treat your Parrot on this special day with a new toy, pedicure, perch or even a lovely warm bath!


A Review of the National Theft Register and Its Objectives For The Future.

Thursday, 12th February 2015Written By Northern Parrots

It’s Pet Theft Awareness Day on the 14th February. In the UK, the National Theft Register records thefts, losses and recoveries of exotic species, which includes zoological birds, reptiles and other animals. We asked John Hayward, who was one of the founders of the National Theft Register, to explain what the organisation does and the methods that pet owners can use to reduce the risk of their animal being stolen.


Alternative Foodstuffs Our Parrots Love to Eat

Wednesday, 11th February 2015Written By Eb

Eb Cravens outlines a list of foods that your Parrot will love to eat, based on his own experience of caring for Parrots. This article was originally published in Parrots Magazine in October 2008.


Dot Schwarz's Daily Life with Benni the Macaw

Friday, 6th February 2015Written By Dot

Benni Macaw is six months old and has lived with Dot Schwarz's flock for five months. Here’s her second report of the ups and downs in his education and how Benni has been getting on.


Heather Scott's Trip Of A Lifetime Volunteering with Parrots in Costa Rica

Monday, 2nd February 2015Written By Heather

Heather Scott has worked with the Parrots at the Butterfly House in Sheffield for 5 years. On 2nd February 2015 she is going on the adventure of a lifetime to Costa Rica to volunteer with the Parrots at the Ara Project. Here's some more information on what she'll be doing on her trip and where her passion for Parrots began.


5 Myths about Parrot Behaviour You Need to Know

Tuesday, 27th January 2015Written By Barbara

Barbara Heidenreich takes a look at 5 myths surrounding pet Parrot behaviour. Have you ever come across any of these or others? If so why not leave a comment?


Unwanted Parrots and Hand-Rearing

Friday, 23rd January 2015Written By Rosemary

Most Parrots sold as companions in the home are hand-reared, but, as Rosemary Law explains, there are numerous problems associated with doing this, so here's what you can do to minimise the risk.


The Dangers of Teflon to Parrots

Tuesday, 20th January 2015Written By Northern Parrots

We’ve received some unfortunate news from one of our customers who has recently lost their feathered companions through Teflon poisoning.

Because of the tragic passing of his birds, the customer has asked us to raise awareness of this danger to help remind other bird owners to be careful.

So let’s remind ourselves of the dangers around our home and what we can do to limit and remove these dangers from our Parrot’s lives.


An Old Parrot - Part 2

Monday, 19th January 2015Written By Dot

In Part 2 of her blog, Dorothy Schwartz continues to talk about Joanna Burger's life with her old Amazon Parrot Tiko. She discusses how he is coping with old age, how his behaviour changed around an elderly relative and what he likes to eat every day.


Liberta Cages Endorsed by the World Parrot Trust

Friday, 16th January 2015Written By Northern Parrots

Liberta Cages, the UK's premier supplier of quality bird housing is pleased to announce their latest range of Parrot Cages has now been endorsed by the World Parrot Trust - the first time the charity have made such an endorsement. Read on to find out why...


An Old Parrot - Part 1

Tuesday, 13th January 2015Written By Dot

Not many of us Parrot carers will have enjoyed the experience of Professor Joanna Burger who, with her husband Michael Gochfield, shares her life with Tiko, a red-lored Amazon who is now over sixty years old. Joanna wrote a book about her life with Tiko, and Dot Schwarz discusses it here.


My First Macaw

Tuesday, 23rd December 2014Written By Dot

Dorothy Schwarz has been a Parrot owner for most of her life. However, she has never owned a Macaw, until now that is, at the age of over 70 years of age. In her latest blog, she introduces us to her blue and gold Macaw Benni, and shares her diary with us, which details her experiencing training and caring for him in his early days. Don't forget to post your memories of your first Parrot in the comments!


It's All About Flying by Mike Simmons

Friday, 19th December 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Mike Simmons, bird trainer at A World of Wings, discusses how important flying is to Parrots and other species of bird.


How You Can Support Blue-Throated Macaws in Bolivia.

Tuesday, 16th December 2014Written By Northern Parrots

The Bird Endowment Charity are doing some fantastic work in Bolivia to increase the population of Blue-Throated Macaws. Read on to find out more.


Some Thoughts on Conservation and Why It Matters

Tuesday, 9th December 2014Written By Dot

Dorothy Schwarz has some thoughts on conservation that she would like to share with you in her new blog.


Get Involved with World Wildlife Conservation Day 2014

Wednesday, 3rd December 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Thursday 4th December is World Wildlife Conservation Day, so read this blog to learn about conservation projects involving Parrots in the wild.


5 Foods Your Parrot Should Avoid Eating This Christmas

Tuesday, 2nd December 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Christmas is on the way, which means lot of food, drink and general merriment, and your Parrot is sure to be joining in with the festivities too, you just need to ensure they're safe and avoid these five foods.


Tips to Make Veterinary Visits Stress Free

Tuesday, 25th November 2014Written By Barbara

Many of our pets don’t like going to the veterinary hospital. And it is difficult for us to see our companion animals upset. The good news is that training can really make a difference.

When it comes to companion Parrots there are very few behaviours they need to know that can really make a difference in veterinary care. Read this blog by Barbara Heidenreich to learn more.


Fracture Repair in Parrots

Tuesday, 11th November 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Richard Jones of Avian Veterinary Services has kindly written an article on fracture repair in Parrots. Have a read to find out how it happens, plus how you can contact the AVS team.


Tips for Training Difficult Behaviours...Like Nail Trimming

Friday, 7th November 2014Written By Barbara

“Go Slow to Get There Fast” is a phrase you will hear me say over and over at my Parrot training workshops. It’s quirky, ironic, a little ambiguous...and it works to help caregivers achieve amazing behaviours.


Help! My Parrot Laid an Egg

Tuesday, 28th October 2014Written By Barbara

A veterinarian once said to me there are two times in a bird's life when it looks like it is dying. When it is dying and when it is laying an egg. It is no wonder I sometimes get emails from panicked Parrot owners when they see their feathered friends “give birth” to an object that seems to be as big as their bird.


Parrot Intelligence - PART 2

Tuesday, 21st October 2014Written By Dot

Read Part 2 of Dorothy Schwarz's article on Parrot Intelligence; where she looks at the use of tools and how Parrots adapt. Plus real life stories from Parrot owners who believe their birds have shown true intelligence.


Parrot Intelligence - PART 1

Tuesday, 14th October 2014Written By Dot

We’re convinced that our birds are intelligent. By intelligent we mean the ability to learn facts and skills and apply them, especially when this ability is highly developed. Here’s a look at Parrots’ intelligence from my personal experience, and also from some recent research on intelligence in wild and captive Parrots.


Skype Q & A on Parrot Behaviour Problems with Barbara Heidenreich

Friday, 3rd October 2014Written By Barbara

Recently Dr Susan Clubb and Terry Timberlake organized a great bash for Parrot enthusiasts called The Rainforest Parrot Party. It was held in Florida and well attended by 400 Parrot loving people.


Harness Training Your Parrot By Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 30th September 2014Written By Barbara

Ah, the harness. So many people want to train this behaviour. And for many Parrots this is a very difficult behaviour, and for trainers a behaviour that can try your patience.

However this doesn't mean a caregiver should give up on positive reinforcement to get there. It just means preparing to take some time, maybe a lot of time. But for me that is absolutely A-OK.


One, Two Or Many Parrots - Which is Best?

Friday, 19th September 2014Written By Dot

A well written and balanced article from Dorothy Schwarz on the thoughts of the bird keeping community. Take a read and have your say, what do you think is best?


Katala – Protecting the Red Vent Cockatoo - PART 2

Tuesday, 16th September 2014Written By Dot

Follow the rest of Dorothy Schwarz's visit to the Katala Foundation in the Philippines in Part 2 of her article.


Katala – Protecting the Red Vent Cockatoo - PART 1

Tuesday, 9th September 2014Written By Dot

I’ve read about projects and interviewed individuals involved with bird conservation but I’d never visited a project in the field so I was thrilled when my dear friend Chris Shank from Oregon USA, a Cockatoo owner and trainer and ex-breeder for over thirty years, invited me to accompany her to visit the Katala Foundation in the Philippines.


Scale Training Your Parrot By Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 2nd September 2014Written By Barbara

One of the easiest and most important behaviours to train your Parrot to do is to step onto a scale. It is very helpful to your veterinarian to have a record of your bird’s weight throughout their lifetime.


Help - My Bird Bites

Tuesday, 19th August 2014Written By Dot

Yes, they can bite. One of Casper Grey’s party tricks is opening a can of Coke. Artha my other Grey is 15. She’s never bitten anyone. I believe this is part nature and part nurture.


The Impact of Early Learning Experiences on Kakapo

Thursday, 31st July 2014Written By Barbara

What happens to a young Parrot matters. Our last night of kakapo training was quite exciting. A three year old bird who had been hand raised several years ago had discovered a way to enter the large enclosure where the chicks are housed as they prepare for...


Lena's Story

Friday, 11th July 2014Written By Dot

Twelve years ago our local zoo contacted me; would I take any of their unwanted birds? The most suitable turned out to be Archie and Lena, a pair of elderly Orange-winged Amazons (Amazona amazonica).

Like most wild caught birds, their history was largely unknown.


Why Train Kakapo? Parrot Conservation

Wednesday, 9th July 2014Written By Barbara

Conservation projects are all about saving wild birds, the emphasis of course being on the word “wild.” Training tends to conjure up images of pet birds and cute tricks and seems on the surface quite contradictory to keeping birds wild. However conservation involves more than breeding and releasing birds.


A Day Out to Treasure

Monday, 7th July 2014Written By Dot

Dorothy Schwarz visited the recent Think Parrots Show with her Parrots Artha and Casper. She has kindly written about her thoughts and opinions on her experience of Think Parrots. Whether you managed to visit the show this year or not this is definitely worth a read...


Parrot Training Challenges - Training Kakapo Chicks

Tuesday, 1st July 2014Written By Barbara

One of the cornerstones of animal training is to set your environment so that it is easy for your Parrot to do what you want. This often means arranging your props just right, having a stash of the perfect training treats and making the set up comfortable for both you and your bird.


A Commitment to Kakapo - Working with Parrot Conservation

Thursday, 19th June 2014Written By Barbara

Barbara returns to New Zealand to work with the Kakapo Recovery Program. This time the focus is on this year's chicks living on the very special Codfish Island. Read on to find out what Barbara has been getting up to...


Easy Parrot Training - Capture a Behaviour by Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 17th June 2014Written By Barbara

One of the very cool things Palm Cockatoos have been observed doing is holding a stick in their foot and tapping it against a hollowed out log. As an animal trainer I think this is a very interesting behaviour.


You Cook for Parrots?

Monday, 9th June 2014Written By Dot

Dorothy Schwarz is regularly asked if she cooks for her Parrots and Parakeets. Here she explains her methods and reasons and beliefs why providing a healthy, wholesome and varied diet helps her birds to stay healthy and look great.


The Parrot Training Diet? by Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 27th May 2014Written By Barbara

That is such a weird concept to me. It seems to suggest you need a fancy diet to get your Parrot into training. This is not my experience. The more Parrots I meet, the more I find the strategy of micro managing of diets to be outdated.


Lost But Not Forever

Tuesday, 20th May 2014Written By Dot

Time flies and so do Parrots - the Parrot that flies out of the window, the aviary or the door. Recently reading on internet some truly sad stories of lost birds, I thought I might share some happier experiences both of my own and my friends.


Treating Gus for Aspergillosis

Friday, 16th May 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Two weeks after an accidental fire in the home, Gus a 13 year old Grey Parrot was presented to Avian Veterinary Services with his owner describing him as off colour and having a change in his voice. This normally extremely vocal Grey had become less chatty and when he did vocalize he was sounding hoarse.


Stop Your Parrot From Screaming For Attention

Tuesday, 6th May 2014Written By Barbara

“Screaming. Somebody reinforced the heck out of that behaviour.” I said to myself. Misty, a double yellow headed Amazon Parrot, lived with me for only a few weeks. She was there so that I could put some of her vocal behaviours on cue....


Parrots Wanted for New TV Show

Thursday, 1st May 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Do you want to know what your Parrot gets up to behind your back? Channel 5 are looking for animals including pet birds and Parrots to take part in 'The Secret Life of Pets'.


How to Touch a Parrot by Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 29th April 2014Written By Barbara

Isn’t it fun to pet your dog or your cat? Most of our pets usually liked to be stroked from the top of their heads down towards their tails. Have you ever tried that with a Parrot? If you have, you may have noticed the experience was not quite the same...


Harness Training – Pros and Cons

Thursday, 24th April 2014Written By Dot

The use of a harness on pet Parrots to take them out of doors is still unusual. Is the training difficult? That’s a question like how long is a piece of string? Any bird from Cockatiels to Macaws can be harness trained...


Tips to Get Started Training Your Parrot by Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 15th April 2014Written By Barbara

Are you looking forward to training your Parrot? It can be a lot of fun for you and your bird as long as you are prepared.

Before you have your first training session here are a few tips to help make sure you have a great session.


5 Tips to Address Parrot Behaviour Problems by Barbara Heidenreich

Tuesday, 1st April 2014Written By Barbara

This article was written by Barbara Heidenreich of Good Bird Inc and Barbara's Force Free Animal Training.

Barbara offers some advice on how to address behaviour problems in Parrots.


How I Became a Parrot Lady

Tuesday, 25th March 2014Written By Dot

I’m often asked. ‘How did you get so involved with Parrots?’

The questioner is puzzled both by the size of the aviary and the sight of most rooms in our bungalow festooned with Parrot paraphernalia.

The answer’s bittersweet.


Omega Fatty Acids: Getting the Balance Right

Tuesday, 11th March 2014Written By Northern Parrots

Lafeber Company discuss the importance of Omega 3 & 6 Fatty Acids which are a vital part of a healthy diet for birds, animal and people.

Find out what exactly they do and how they are used by the body.


Jo's Busy Beak Gets Her Into Trouble!!

Monday, 3rd February 2014Written By Northern Parrots

This blog has been provided courtesy of Avian Veterinary Services (AVS) and is about Jo, a two year old female Galah who has previously boarded at the clinic on a number of occasions, and like virtually most Cockatoos is an extremely 'busy' bird, positively bursting with character!


All I Want for Christmas is My Two New Wings!!

Monday, 23rd December 2013Written By Northern Parrots

Budge the African Grey was severely clipped several years ago and the missing flight feathers have never grown back.

Richard Jones of Avian Veterinary Services tells how he used donated feathers to repair the wings and stop Budge having so many accidents.


Cockatoo Research Project 2013 - Part 1

Thursday, 1st August 2013Written By Thomas

Northern Parrots are pleased to announce that we will be supporting a 3 year PhD research project investigating the captive welfare and management of Cockatoos (Cacatua).

The project will be undertaken at the University of East Anglia, by Thomas Clark who specialises in behavioural ecology and conservation of Parrots


Parrot Rescues

Tuesday, 18th June 2013Written By Liz

With a Parrot’s long potential life span Liz Wilson looks at why everyone in the Parrot world needs to confront the question of where a psittacine bird should go when it can no longer stay in their present home.


Old Wives’ Tales You Hear About Parrots – Part 2

Tuesday, 19th March 2013Written By Liz

Liz Wilson continues to highlight pet bird and Parrot keeping myths, hopefully putting an end to the many which could be potentially fatal!


Old Wives’ Tales You Hear About Parrots – Part 1

Tuesday, 5th March 2013Written By Liz

Even though our overall knowledge and understanding of pet birds and Parrots has grown in recent years, there still seems to be a lot of incomplete and incorrect advice and information around.

Liz Wilson takes a look at some of the Old Wives Tales she has come across and looks to explain each one.


THE GREAT ESCAPE: Recovering Lost Parrots

Friday, 15th February 2013Written By Liz

Having been through the emotion of losing and finding her own bird on more than one occasion Liz Wilson is able to provide lots of useful information in this incredibly informative blog on how best to get your bird back safely.


Which Parrot is Right for Me?

Wednesday, 6th February 2013Written By Liz

Thinking about getting a bird or Parrot as a pet or companion? In this article Liz Wilson looks at some of the more popular species of Parrots kept as pets and discusses their negative attributes, in order to create a little balance against all the positives a feathered friend brings.


Recycling Parrots: Giving An Older Bird Another Chance

Wednesday, 23rd January 2013Written By Liz

Choosing a baby Parrot is best if you want a stronger bond...Myth or Fact?

Liz Wilson explains how giving a Parrot a second chance and a new home may actually provide a better, healthier bond than buying a baby bird.


Parrot Nutrition

Tuesday, 22nd January 2013Written By Liz

So what is the best diet for your bird? Conflicting information has been around for as long as people have cared for Parrots.

Liz Wilson looks to clear up some of the confusion as she draws on her experiences from the many pet Parrot owners she has helped.


Are You A Caring Breeder?

Tuesday, 8th January 2013Written By Rosemary

Rosemary Low asks the question...Are you a caring breeder? It just takes that little something sometimes to stop, think and evaluate what we do and how we approach things.


What CAN`T I Feed my Parrot?

Thursday, 27th December 2012Written By Liz

Following on from the recent articles covering what types and kinds of food you can safely feed your Parrot, Liz Wilson takes a look at the flip side and talks about what you can't or shouldn't feed your pet bird.

There are many foods and drinks that we consume which are known to be harmful to birds, but which ones...?


What CAN I Feed My Parrot? - PART 2

Tuesday, 18th December 2012Written By Liz

PART 2 of Liz Wilson article on What Can I Feed My Parrot. Some experience Parrot owners share some of their diet tricks and addition food items they add to their Parrot's diet.

Liz covers and list many foods which are good for you bird and that you should be encourage your Parrot to eat.


What CAN I Feed My Parrot? - PART 1

Tuesday, 11th December 2012Written By Liz

Still unsure about what foods are SAFE to feed your pet bird or Parrot? With so much conflicting advice it is easy to get confused.

In What Can I Feed My Parrot? - PART 1, Liz Wilsons look at what you need to take in to consideration when deciding on which foods to use in your birds diet.


How To Stop Your Parrot From Biting - PART 2

Tuesday, 27th November 2012Written By Liz

PART 2 of Liz Wilson article on Biting & Aggression. Learn how to collect information about your Parrot's behaviour in the form of a journal or diary.

You can look back at this information to work out more closely when or why your Parrot shows signs of aggression or attempts to bite.


How To Stop Your Parrot From Biting - PART 1

Tuesday, 20th November 2012Written By Liz

Biting and aggression problems in pet Parrots are common, so don't think you are alone! In PART 1 of this article Liz Wilson helps to explain the common reasons bites occur.

You might be surprised how easy it is to misread your bird's body language!


Positive Reinforcement Training: Dealing With the “Cage Bound” Parrot

Tuesday, 13th November 2012Written By Liz

Great results can be gained from using positive reinforcment as a training method. Liz Wilson explains how to successfully implement this method to improve the life of your cage bound bird.

This gentle approach will help to reasure your bird that they can leave the comfort of their cage and enjoy a more sociable life with their human flock.


Is It A Boy Or A Girl?

Friday, 2nd November 2012Written By Liz

Everyone likes having their own identity and your Parrot is no different, but how can they begin if you are unsure if they are a boy or a girl?

Aspects of your Parrot's behaviour could also be simply explained just by knowing what sex they are.


Fear & Neophobic Parrots

Tuesday, 30th October 2012Written By Liz

Liz Wilson explains how for most Parrots it is essential to take things slowly, especially when introducing new toys or accessories to your Parrot's cage or play gym.

This article also highlights how easy it is to cause your bird to fear something and with simple steps how you can avoid any extra stress to your bird.


10 Basic Don'ts of Bird Ownership

Tuesday, 16th October 2012Written By Liz

10 essential DON'Ts for any Parrot owner. Liz Wilson advises on ten things bird owners shouldn't do when caring for or looking to buy a pet bird. See how many you are getting right!


10 Basic Do's Of Bird Ownership

Tuesday, 9th October 2012Written By Liz

10 essential DO's for any Parrot owner. Liz Wilson advises on ten things bird owners should do when caring for, looking to buy or rehome a pet bird. See how many you are getting right!


Things Parrot Behaviour Consultants DO Agree On - PART 2

Friday, 21st September 2012Written By Liz

Read PART 2 of Liz Wilson article on thing Parrot Behaviour Consultants (PBCs) agree on.

Carrying on from the areas of Management Issues, Liz Wilson moves on to talk about Behaviour Issues and explains where the common ground between PBCs can be found.


Why You Should Choose Manzanita

Thursday, 20th September 2012Written By Northern Parrots

Choosing a perch for your bird can sometimes prove a little more difficult then it may first seem. There is a now a huge choice in styles, materials and benefits, however, if you are looking to provide your bird with a natural wood perch look no further than Manzanita.

This article will help you understand its benefits as well as reassure you that the myths about cracked wood being a danger, is exactly that, a myth.


Things Parrot Behaviour Consultants DO Agree On - PART 1

Wednesday, 29th August 2012Written By Liz

Struggling to find some consistent advice? Liz Wilson explains her findings on what Parrot Behaviour Consultants (PBCs) do agree on, and why - through peoples individual experiences - advice and methods can differ.

Part 1 looks at those areas considered to come under Management Issues.


How to Stop - or Reduce - Screaming in Parrots

Monday, 13th August 2012Written By Liz

Do you know which calls and noises your Parrot makes are just natural and instinctive? Are you aware that you could be accidentally rewarding your Parrot's unwanted behaviours?

Read this article by Liz Wilson and discover a wealth of insightful and useful information and general rules to help you better train your Parrot.


Creative Foraging Systems - What The Experts Say...

Thursday, 9th August 2012Written By Liz

Have you heard about the concept of foraging but not sure where or how to start?

Liz Wilson explains how these fun to use toys from the Creative Foraging Systems range can really help to provide essential mental and physical stimulation for your Parrot.


Keeping Parrots and Other Pets

Tuesday, 31st July 2012Written By Liz

Are you looking to add to your pet family? If so read this article by Liz Wilson to understand how this may potentially affect your Parrot.

Whether you're looking to get a dog, cat or perhaps a reptile (which are becoming increasing popular as pets) each brings their own obstacles and hazards.


Toilet Training Your Parrot

Friday, 27th July 2012Written By Liz

Toilet training your Parrot couldn't be easier...follow the steps as outlined by Liz Wilson and you too can have a bird that uses a dedicated toilet area.

Liz also outlines possible problems associated with the comedy moment when a Parrot poops on cue.


Clicker & Target Training

Monday, 23rd July 2012Written By Liz

Liz Wilson provides a quick step by step guide on how to easily implement and successfully use clicker and target training with your pet Parrot (or other pets!).

Learn how to use this useful tool to steady and correct unwanted behaviours.


Which Species Should I Choose?

Tuesday, 10th July 2012Written By Rosemary

Not sure which species of Parrot is right for you? Rosemary Low helps to explain why starting off small can lead to a happy and long life with companion Parrots.

Useful and insightful information for anyone looking at getting a Parrot as a pet.


Guidelines For New Parrot Owners

Friday, 29th June 2012Written By Liz

If you're a new Parrot owner, whether you have a baby or adult bird, Liz Wilson highlights the benefits of starting Parrot ownership the right way to prevent problems in the future.

Topics covered include medical, nutritional and behavioral guidelines. Ensure you and your bird start off on the right foot for a happy and healthy relationship.


Important Stuff to Teach Baby Parrots

Monday, 25th June 2012Written By Liz

Set your baby Parrot on the right path! Liz Wilson explains how teaching your baby Parrot to behave and respond to simple commands from an early age can have huge rewards later in life.

With the right tools you can help your baby bird learn behaviours that will help them succeed in their human habitat.


How Long Do Parrots Really Live?

Tuesday, 19th June 2012Written By Rosemary

Rosemary Low offers some sound advice and insight in to this sometimes mystifying realm of Parrots.

Providing useful information, Rosemary looks at some historical examples of long-lived Parrots and discusses the effect of ageing on Parrots.


The One Person Bird

Friday, 8th June 2012Written By Liz

Liz Wilson explains why the common perceptions about our companion Parrots preferring one person can actually be the cause of the problem.

This article is filled with useful information covering areas such as rehabililtation, controlling aggression and prevention.



Saturday, 2nd June 2012Written By Liz

Is wing-clipping right for your Parrot? Liz Wilson discussing this hot topic, providing useful insight based on years of experience.

Read about the pros and cons for both sides of the debate and make up your mind if the practise of wing-clipping has its place in the world of Parrots.


Household Dangers And Sensible Precautions

Friday, 1st June 2012Written By Liz

Liz Wilson provides some essential advice on managing dangers within your own home.

Potential dangers can come from a wide range of areas, From simple things such as liquids and foods to household appliances, furniture and household cleaners.

With some careful thought and forward planning you can easily reduce and eliminate many of these risks to ensure your home is as safe as possible for your birds.

With a little more planning you can also ensure you have emergency procedures in place just in case!


Parrot Body Language

Monday, 14th May 2012Written By Liz

What is your Parrot trying to tell you? Liz Wilson explains what to look out for when trying to read your bird's body language.

Learning to understand your bird's body language can really help to improve communication and improve relationships.


Is It TRUE That You Can’t Tell If A Bird Is Sick?

Saturday, 28th April 2012Written By Liz

It's certainly true that Parrots are good at hiding illness - as prey animals they have to be. There can be subtle indications though that all is not well, and, as the person who knows your bird best and sees it every day, you are best placed to pick up on these.

Parrot behaviourist and former veterinary technician Liz Wilson provides information on how to recognize many of the symptoms and behaviour changes our Parrots may display, so veterinary help can be sought before the problem develops further.


Is Your Parrot Getting Enough Sleep?

Monday, 23rd April 2012Written By Liz

If your Parrot is showing problem behaviours such as feather plucking, screaming, aggression, had you considered if sleep deprivation might be a factor?

Getting a good nights sleep is just as important for Parrots as it is for people. And it's probably true that most Parrots need more sleep than we do - most Parrots are from equatorial regions which have a 12 hour night throughout the year.

But how can you accomplish that in a busy household where the TV is on till late and people need to get up early for work? Liz Wilson has some suggestions...


Breeding Parrots

Friday, 20th April 2012Written By Rosemary

If you've ever considered breeding Parrots but don't know where to start this article is for you.

Rosemary Low draws on her years of experience to discuss everything from initial setup and selection to fledging and feeding.


10 Ways To Get Your Parrot to Try New Foods

Wednesday, 18th April 2012Written By Liz

It can be difficult to get Parrots to try new foods, especially ones that are good for them!

Liz Wilson has over 40 years experience keeping and working with Parrots and has persuaded many Parrots to "eat their veggies". Her most important advice is to keep trying but read on for 10 ideas to help convince even the fussiest Parrot that those funny looking green things might actually taste good!


Spring Behaviours in Parrots

Monday, 16th April 2012Written By Liz

When spring starts to come around the behaviour of pet Parrots can often change for a few weeks, they may scream more, bite unexpectedly or be more attached to their favourite human.

This is also known as hormonal or nesting behaviour and thankfully is only temporary!

Liz Wilson explains how to recognize and deal with these changes in behaviour when spring approaches.


Thinking On The Wing - Part 2

Friday, 23rd March 2012Written By Steve

Part 2 of The Parrot University's research into the benefits of flight for Companion Parrots.

The six main benefits of flight are discussed here and how they affect pet Parrots.


Thinking On The Wing - Part 1

Monday, 19th March 2012Written By Steve

Learning to fly is one of the most important skills a Parrot can develop. It develops mental agility, confidence, fitness, co-ordination and general well-being.

Steve Hartman of The Parrot University discusses how and why flight is so important and outlines the benefits to your Parrot.


Expanding the Flock

Wednesday, 8th February 2012Written By Liz

Now that you've "got the bug" you may be considering getting another Parrot. But there's a lot of things to consider first.Why do you want another bird, is it for the "right" reasons? Have you got the time to look after another bird? What about the space and funds needed?Parrot behaviourist Liz Wilson considers these and other questions to help you decide whether it's the right time to "expand the flock".


Building Trust

Friday, 20th January 2012Written By Liz

Before any training can begin it is vital to establish trust between you and your Parrot.

But that's easier said then done - Parrots are prey animals and who can blame them for being wary of people they don't know.

The key to building trust is to take things slowly, work at your Parrot's pace.

Liz Wilson has lived and worked with Parrots for over 40 years and has put together lots of useful ideas and methods to - gradually - build trust with your Parrot.


Enrichment For Your Parrot

Wednesday, 18th January 2012Written By Liz

Unlike their wild ancestors our pet Parrots have no need to spend many hours every day foraging for food and avoiding predators.

So we need to keep them occupied before boredom and frustration lead to problems such as excessive screaming and feather plucking.

The term for improving your bird's life in this manner is "enrichment" and Parrot behaviourist Liz Wilson has lots of ideas how to go about it.


Calcium, Vitamin D & Specialised Lighting

Friday, 6th January 2012Written By Liz

Calcium, Vitamin D and the correct lighting are important factors in the health and behaviour of birds and as they're linked so closely together it makes sense to discuss them together.

Liz Wilson examines each of these three areas and describes why they're important, and what you should do to make sure your Parrot has enough - but not too much - of each.


Playstands - A Good Idea?

Monday, 5th December 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson explains why having one or more playstands for your companion bird is a good idea.


Feather Plucking - Psychological Factors (Part 2 of 2)

Friday, 2nd December 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson continues her informative read on the factors behind the many causes of feather plucking in pet birds.


Choosing a Parrot Cage

Tuesday, 22nd November 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson discusses the issues which arise when choosing the perfect home for your feathered friend.


Feather Plucking - Environmental Factors (Part 1 of 2)

Wednesday, 9th November 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson provides an insight in to some of the many reasons behind feather plucking in pet birds.


Parrot Toys - The Importance of Play

Wednesday, 26th October 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson explains the important role toys play in ensuring your Parrot stays happy and healthy, as well as some do's and don'ts when it comes to providing safe materials.


Choosing an Avian Vet

Tuesday, 11th October 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson provides some essential information on finding and choosing an appropriate avian veterinarian.


Successfully Converting a Parrot to Pellets

Monday, 10th October 2011Written By Liz

Liz Wilson offers some great advice on how to successfully convert your bird to a complete diet such as pellets.


About Liz Wilson

Sunday, 2nd October 2011Written By Northern Parrots

Find out more about Liz Wilson, a dedicated Parrot person who for most of her life worked endlessly to help improve the lives of companion Parrots and the people who care for them.


Is a Parrot Right for Me?

Sunday, 2nd October 2011Written By Liz

It's important to consider if a Parrot is a suitable pet for you and this article discusses some of the possible side effects you should consider.


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