You don't have kids, do you?
Another thing: Just because they are fully flighted and have
the roam of your house does not mean they are adequatly using
their wings, anyway. Especailly for those big birds with the
equally large wingspan that need a equally large space to fly.
There is not enough room in the common house for them to get
the distance they need for cardiovascular exorcise in the first
place with walls that seperate each room, and the common middle-
class bird owner does not live in a mansion. Just think about
I do not condone those who keep breeder birds in "flight
cages". You cannot spend time with breeder birds as you do with
pet birds. They have a mate, both can fly and this drives
their "flock" thinking, which is a wild behavior when with
their own kind. If you keep a free-flight aviary, this keeps
them in shape, and the flock keeps them entertained. This is
not how a pet can think because they are with humans in a made-
for-human environment, not other birds in a made-for-bird
environment. There is a BIG difference in those aspects of how
birds will live their lives.
I am still not convinced. Keep trying, but until you tell me
you have one room that is bigger then and average bedroom and
completely birdproof with every activity for their senses and
muscles to be top-notch FOR BIG BIRDS, at that, I will
stereotype you with the rest of the lazy and ignorant owners.
If you knew any better, you would understand I had a hard time
biting my tounge on that persons post. The bird hurt his wing,
so he DID look happier and healthier BEFORE he was clipped.
Duh. Do you think the pesron who wrote the first post EVER took
her bird to the vet after she posted? She has not posted back
in 2 days, so she probably didn't like what she read about TWO
people urging her to take the bird to the vet. This means
This is one of the worst examples about pro-clipping I have
ever seen. That OP's bird was entertained and happier with his
wings, and now is probably board stiff because his owner does
not give him enough attention and activities to keep him
occupied, and this will altimately cause a birds' depression.
But who am I to cut into what she does in her home? I don't
know this, niether do you, so hence "if this is the only
environment your bird has ever known", because your bird is the
product of the life you give it. If they do not have their
wings at a young age, or when they are clipped when being re-
homed, they find ways of adapting by just gliding and playing.
Sometimes, that adeptation is to pluck because it gives them
something to do or an outlet for agression, even fully flighted
that is let out of its cage.
Your persistance to beat the dead horse about comparing
clipping to cutting legs off is insane. They get around just
fine without their wings. You don't go from parrot to carrot
when you clip- you would if you cut the WHOLE WING off at the
bone; that takes away their balance- but, as in parapalegics
and amputies, they WILL find ways of adapting. These people
still have their arms and build streagth in the upper-body and
use their hands all the time, as birds can still walk, climb
and glide. THEY ADAPT if you let them. If the owner takes the
proper steps, you can keep birds in top shape. I do keep mine
in top condition, because I have to think like a human in a
bird body, not like a bird.
I give them spaces where they have to glide to get where they
are going for a short distance. I play games with them. Every
day, I rotate what they do, between the shower curtain on the
floor I spread millet seeds, fresh corn, chopped kale and diced
fresh carrots they can nibble on in their own birdy way (and it
they want it, THEY glide to the floor, I don't put them there),
the cages are built tall and are between a distance of one foot
to 1 and 1/2 feet away so they have to glide to the next cage
if there is a treat on top, I have platforms set at the base of
each cage I have toys on they have to flap or climb down to get
to, I give them mounds of attention and play "Fly, birdie! Fly"
with them ALL the time, they watch TV with me (and so far the
shows they like to watch are "Who's line is it anyway" and
those anmimal cops shows on Animal planet, and some cartoons on
the Disney Channel), and there is a ladder obsticle coarse for
them if they want to get to the highest perch at the very top
of the window in their room if they want to see outside. I also
have other activities and games I play with them.
I am fully involved with my clipped birds. Are you as involoved
with your flighted birds? Probably not- as they would rather
fly then be your companion. This was your choice to allow them
to have semi-wild habits. You can't fly, so why would they want
to be with you? You cannot be an active flock member; you can't
fly with them. If it does, it's just because he cannot find
anything better to do, as it would see you as a peice of
entertainment on his own behalf. This is just how a bird thinks
and takes advantage of your ignorance.
Human babies are born to be breastfed, but some mothers don't.
You want to debate this, too? This is the choice of the mother,
as it is the choice of the owner to clip. This is what they
deem best for their birds and children.
You cannot tell me that my choice to clip is "for the birds".
Every time someone tells me they lost a bird, or the bird got
hurt or he runs into walls (but not enough for them to injure
themselves, mind you- just maybe a temporary concussion or
brain damage that is unknown by the owner) I laugh my tether
of. This is lack of common sense, and you CAN have healthy and
fit clipped birds if you really do your job as a bird owner.
It's just like playing fetch with your dog (Yet again, this is
called "involvement"). The exorcise is good for them, but you
either do it in a fenced in area or far enough away from cars
so the dog does not get hit. You can't teach a dog that a
MOVING car is bad, so you stay away from the danger by going to
a large park or fence in your back yard; you can't teach a bird
that an OPEN window is bad, so you stay away from the danger by
clipping. This is called "creating boundries".
How many people take the time to teach their birds about the
dangers of their home in away the bird can undestand? Both dogs
and birds can be taught to understand the word "No", but birds
(as well as even some obeidient dogs) push their limits from
time-to-time because they are smart enough to be conieving, and
see if they can get away with it. If they really want to do
something THEY WILL, and there is nothing you can do other then
go and catch them before something bad happens. This is why
people fence in their yards, shut doors, get crates for their
dogs and cats and CLIP THIER BIRDS.
It is the FAULT OF THE OWNER if the bird is not happy, not
entertained and not fit, and just allowing them to fly is not
going to make it all better. There are fully-flighted UNHAPPY
birds out there that do get into the habit of plucking. Did
anyone ever think of this? You can indeed have clipped, happy,
healthy bird if you give them the environment that they need to
keep all of their senses and muscles in peek condition.
When you clip a baby after a few weeks of it learning to fly,
it is better for the bonding time with the new owner. And, to
let you know, ALL of the birds in my home where fully flighted
when they came here. I never let them out of their cage until
their quarentine was over and they were clipped.
The first bird I brought into this house almost had a
disasterous end. Being flighted all his life, I stupidly
thought it best to let him keep his flight. He was a Mini
Macaw. I gave him free range of my house. Then, one day, I was
doing laundry, a common thing to do in today's household.
Across the area of where my washer and drier are (this, also
the door to my bedroom) I have a bar with a nice curtain I use
to hide that area, and use the bar to hang my permanent-press
clothes. His wing didn't clear the space between the wall and
the clothing I had hung up, and it sent him into a tailspin
that landed him in my washer, that was full and running.
I was lucky this bird survived. I took him to the vet, and that
day the vet clipped him under my direction.
And some other stories about people who had fully-flighted
birds from day one:
A lady washed her fully-flighted budgie she had for 6 years in
And African Grey lost his foot after almost boiling it off when
he hit the wall and fell straight down into a pot of cooking
A Sun Conure got out while a contract company was replacing
windows of the house, and was hit by a car when it landed in
A Hyacinth Macaw ended up with severe brain damage one summer
after colliding with a glass decorative storm door that was
open, cracking his beak and shattering the door.
It was an "all the time" thing that a lady's 12-year-old Quaker
drink from the aquarium on the other side of their large
parlour. The aquarium was a tall 50 gallon, and all the lady
could do is watch her bird drown when it fell in because she
could not reach him in time.
A Rose-breasted Cockatoo died from freezing in an attic- he was
fully flighted, flew up the stairs, but the owner did not know
he was up there and shut him in after pulling down Christmas
A Bourke Parakeet broke his own wing off within the top bars of
his own cage while the family was on vacation and ultimately
bled to death.
A Cockatiel peirced himself on a natural tree branch his owner
put inside his cage, bled to death at night while the owner was
A Hyacinth Macaw killed herself when she crashed and shattered
It was a 14-year-long tradition that "the whole family" be in a
certain room for Christmas. A lady's son brought their Severe
Macaw into the family room- something spooked her, and she
landed in a lit fireplace. She will never be able to re-grow
feathers on her under-belly, tail and legs, ended up with 3rd
degree burns on her legs, chest and posterior.
A Lesser Sulfer-creasted Cockatoo was flying and the
gentleman's cat sprang up and clawed him out of the air, bit a
leg off and broke a wing. The bird had to be put to sleep after
the vet tried to repair the damage, but found severe internal
While the owner was away (just a quick run to the grocery store
for milk), a Husky chased a 5-year-old Cunure through their
home and killed it when it fell from exaustion. The dog was
sitting proudly at the door with the dead bird at her feet. The
dog and the bird had a history of this, and the owner thought
it was just "play".
You are not going to stop a bird if something causes him to
crash, get lost or get caught by another pet, and all of these
owners were long-time owners of these birds, and it was a
tradition of such behaviors. Would you ever think to close the
inside door on a beautiful summer day?
It's only a matter of time before there is an "accident"- which
will be your own fault for allowing it to happen, and you will
find no sympathy from a veterinarian when the time comes. The
guilt on the owners part is unspeakable and embaressing to talk
about. This is why people who have accidents with their
flighted birds rarely speak up about it. If flight is such a
good thing, then why don't people think of the most common
activities we do normally (using the dishwasher, doing laundry
and cooking) as being hazards?
Keep trying to convice me. You are fighting a losing battle.
On 1/12/06, Patsy wrote:
> Posted on the Cockatiel Chat:
> Re: wings
> Posted by Cassima on 1/10/06
> If that is the only environment the bird has ever known, of
> coarse he will be happier and healthier. That is why it is so
> important to clip a bird after it has learned to fly, then
> the owner steps in and shows new activities and entertainment
> to make up for it.
> I would strongly urge you to consult a vet. Your bird may be
> sick, or possibly bored. If you want him to have his flight
> back, the next moult don't clip his wings, but it depends on
> how long ago he shed his feathers.
> Let me take a quote from the advise given to this cockatiel
> owner regarding why her birds was happier when it could fly:
> "If that is the only environment the bird has ever known, of
> coarse he will be happier and healthier. That is why it is so
> important to clip a bird after it has learned to fly"
> This is great advise. Lets clip their wings BEFORE they have
> a chance to realize how HAPPY they could be if allowed to
> fly. No toy in the world could ever make up for that.
> Like Scott, I also own a fully flighted macaw, as well as a
> cockatoo. Keeping them safe in your house is actually very
> simple. All it takes is some common sense from the owner,
> just like owning children.
> How many times to you think a baby falls before learning to
> walk? Would you cage them in fear they may break a leg?
> Birds will also bumb into things when learning their
> surroundings. A bird that has been fully flighted from a
> baby is very agile and can maneuver on the drop of a hat.
> Although all concerns for both baby and birds are valid, the
> idea of cutting wings to deal with them is just as barbaric
> as cutting of your childrens legs.