How Feathers Colour Our World
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How Feathers Colour Our World

Published on Thursday, 2nd April 2015
Filed under Avian Articles

It’s a rewarding exploration that will help you to gain an even deeper fascination and appreciation of your beautifully coloured bird. After all, their colours contribute wonderfully to your own psychological health and your complete enjoyment of them.

There is a psychology that surrounds colours. With an inevitable study of how colours impact our lives, much as many other factors do, we have learned that all the colours of the spectrum have their powers. It’s in the colour selections that we choose to paint our interior walls, matching our moods, pieces of art, and sectional décor.

It’s in the furniture colours, rug designs, and so many other things that we choose to complement our lives with. They make us happy. That’s the power of colour.
 

What can be more colourful than your bird? You and I are lovers of birds. If we weren’t, we wouldn’t be here, right? If you watch birds in the wild – and I’m betting you do – then a flock of birds in singular shades of brown and white doesn’t capture your view as much as a brightly coloured male Northern Cardinal in all its red glory.
 
If you’re lucky, you will see the male’s mate, the green-coloured female. A blue jay coming to your feeder will earn your rapt attention for more than a few minutes. As will an oriole, a flock of finches, or even the brightly coloured, fast-moving hummingbirds.

The colours of an exotic bird are an extraordinary feature. The Parrot, with all of the primary colours that make up its feathered body, is a beautiful creature. The same can be said of the stunning Rainbow Lorikeet, a Macaw, and the feathers of peacocks.
 

Many birds in the world have gorgeous displays of colours that are enticing to the discriminate human eye. Just as well, those colours are soothing to our being.
 
In a study of psychology where colours and their effects on human nature are concerned, it is often determined that blues evoke calm behaviours.

Reds are a deep colour that encourages love as it seems linked to the cartoon colour of the heart and the pervading colour of Valentine's Day cards and gifts.

Bright yellows help to effect cheerfulness and warmth, a feature that the shining sun contributes to.

Whites are a colour that demonstrates purity. After all, the white of freshly fallen snow often evoke a sense of freshness, a new beginning.

Orange colours and shades signify a sense of excitement, while purples give off an impression of ascendency, a feeling of royalty likely linked to the rich purples of gowns and cloaks seen on kings and queens of old.

Of course, there are more colours. But imagine a marriage of many of these colours and the collective sense of peace and comfort they bring. That’s what an exotic bird often brings to our lives. How perfect is that?



There are, no doubt, effects that colours of a bird’s plumage have on each other. In mating, some studies suggest that birds can not only discern colours (or pay little to no attention to them at all), but also see UV light reflecting off, or being absorbed by, the colours of the feathers.  This ability to detect UV rays and its effects often plays multiple roles in various bird activities.

Look at the choice of bird lights here


There is a science, of course, as to how colours of a bird’s feathers come to be. A brief flight around the internet will be more than adequate to inform you of the role melanin plays, as well as feather structure, mutations, and psittacin levels, in the creation of the colourful display of a bird’s feathers.

This article was originally published on Lafeber’s website in February 2015. 
 

 
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