Reading Body Language Of Your Parrot

Learning to identify your parrot’s body language will help you in knowing when it is healthy or when he is ill. Understanding the body language of your parrot will also help you stay away from it when you might get a nasty bite from it.

Majority of parrots are an open book in terms of their body language. Once you are familiar with the signs, it’s not hard to tell when your bird is terrified, sleepy, happy, or simply excited.

Interesting Read5 Signs Of Parrot Mating Behavior And Body Language

Body Posture 1 – An Interested Parrot

Look Out For These Signs When Handling Your Bird:

A parrot that wants to be picked up or played with generally looks directly at you. It may stretch out its wings or neck to signify that it wishes to go somewhere, conceivably with you. Other parrots hop up and down, move back and forth or make a particular noise when they’re interested in something. 

Our pet bird’s eyes are another gateway into their mind. A parrot repeatedly pins its eyes or dilates when scared, excited or just curious about something.

Body Posture 2 – Relaxed Or Sleepy Parrot

Parrots spend a good amount of daytime — especially afternoon just for relaxing or napping. While relaxing with you or in its cage, your pet might stand on one foot. This is a normal position for a bird. Actually, a parrot not capable to balance on one foot might point toward illness.

Parrots need to stretch sometimes, just like humans. They will open up their wings and hold them behind their backs or above their heads. They also stretch out their legs and fan out their tail feathers from time to time.

When sleeping, your bird will put its head behind its wing, balance on one foot, close its eyes and fall asleep to dreamland (well, we don’t know that birds really dream).

Parrots are a prey of many animals, so they sleep attentively and even at the least noise, a flash of light or movement could awake them. To ensure that your bird has a sound sleep, place its cage in a place where there will be no interruption for 10 to 12 hours.

Read more on signs of parrot illness

Body Posture 3 – Disinterested Or Fearful Parrot

A bird that doesn’t want you to touch it might flatten its crest or bend away from you. Depending on the species, it may also hiss at you. It may also give you a warning nip. Leave the parrot alone, and revisit when it’s more concerned in interacting.

A bird that flies, hops or otherwise scampers away from the position might be in a state of panic. Allow your parrot to calm down before you get back to it again. It is also a good practice to eliminate any object that may have caused the reaction.

Body Posture 4 – Territorial  Or Aggressive Parrot

If your pet bird does not want to be talked to, touched or moved, it will give you the indication — in one way or another. It’s upon you to identify for these body language cues to avoid a bite or other unpleasant behavior.An aggressive parrot might pin its eyes, fan its tail or puff up its feathers to become visibly bigger.

Unluckily, these properties also describe an excited bird, so you will need to take care of your particular bird for patterns. Lunging or Beak is snapping also indicates an aggressive mindset

Before biting, a pet bird repeatedly strengthens its hold on its perch, leans forward, pins its eyes, and opens its beak. In this situation, you should back away from the parrot. Letting a parrot bite you reinforce the behavior. So does respond to it by any other physical reaction or screaming.

These were some interesting facts about parrots body language and behavior, If you have any question related to the body language of a parrot or of any breed, you may comment below.


  1. Jackie


    My blue fronted amazon has recently started lying flat on her (I think it’s a female) front and gently fluttering her wings. Not at all agressively. Any ideas why?
    Also she can be very happily on my shoulder, has flown to me, so it is by choice, and will suddenly bite me for no apparant reason. Again, any ideas why?

    • Samantha


      I have a double yellow-headed amazon that does the same thing, lying flat and gently fluttering her wings, when she does that I pet her backside and slide my hand under her wings to scratch her back. She makes this VERY interesting noise and lifts her back end like a cat when you pet its hind-quarters while holding on to the bars of her cage with her beak. We call the noise/positioning ‘orgasmic chicken’ .. we’re not sure why she does that position but she seems to enjoy the scratching.

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