How To Keep Your Bird Busy


Do All Geese Fly?
Do All Geese Fly?

In the wild, your bird would be occupied all day. Birds fly to obtain food, play with their flock members, bathe, and so on. When we have them in our homes, we usually only spend a short amount of time with them. We have things to do even when we don’t have to go for 8-10 hours to earn some food for them, while they have to busy themselves when they don’t eat or sleep.

How can we keep them entertained? There are various toys that will keep children occupied for a time, but this is typically insufficient. Some birds like chewing on anything, while others need trials, and a toy that is exciting to one bird may be dull to another. We can usually discover methods to amuse children with a little thought.

So, when we don’t have time to connect with them, what can we do to give stimulus and entertainment? One option is to give something to make your bird work for its food. Hide-A-Treats, Pyramid Puzzles, and Carousel Treat Holders are just a few examples of toys that achieve this. My birds constantly check to see if there’s anything in there, even if they didn’t find anything the past several times they checked. If they have many of these types of treat dispensers, the goody may be placed in a different one every day.

Paper, cartons, dirty socks, and other basic items provide them with entertainment. With 14 birds, I have to be creative at times to find the proper item for each one. The wood blocks to shred cannot be large enough for some of my Conures and Indian Ringnecks. The smaller birds take over the blocks that the larger birds vacate. One of my conures and one of my macaws only touch leather. They chew for hours on everything – even threads made of leather – and reduce it into tiny small bits. My red-faced likes metal objects, especially those that can be disassembled.

My cockatoo needs stimulation. He need items to disassemble, and it is even better if he can recreate something from them. His favorite is a chain with a number of fast links. He spends hours unscrewing them and placing them on the bars of his cage. Chains of various types are also a popular. I have one plastic chain that he has attached to the cage bars so tightly that I can’t get them off. I’m hoping that one day he’ll get weary of them and take them off. He also like funny links since he can disassemble them and place them on the cage’s bars, perch, or other toys. His prison is made with chains and ropes. I just put them there, and he creates various works of art with them.

Other birds like objects that jingle. My GW, for example, will chew wood blocks at times and then ignore them for weeks while she disassembles a sisal rope or rattles her plastic toys.

Some birds just like organizing their surroundings, so containers with items to take out and replace are a lot of fun for them. My grey, for example, enjoys a box on his cage floor filled with wood blocks, plastic toys, and bird kabobs. He pulls them out, scatters them over the cage, and then returns them to the container. He sometimes nibbles on some of them. The container may also be rolled about, making delightful sounds. Socks are another source of amusement for him; he chews the most artistic designs into them.

I thought my budgies didn’t like to chew on anything for almost 9 years, until I put some balsa buddies in their cage. It was gone in a matter of hours. All it takes is the right thing.

It is ineffective to simply provide a slew of toys. We need to find the right ones. It can take some time and money, but when we find the right object, it’s a lot of fun to watch our little artists at work. So go ahead and do it!

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