How Do I Keep My Cockatiel & Conure From Flying Into Windows?

From: ‘jmcoops’

My buddy flew into the window yesterday twice and all the feathers fell out as you can see (above).

 

I figured that’s where he hit the window.

 

He was stunned and still for several hours on my lap.

 

Today he seems fine.

 

Will those feathers grow back?

 

Anything I should watch for?

 

My husband and I debate constantly about flighted vs wing-clipped birds.

 

I had decided to keep them flighted after years of wing clipping.

 

Now I’m not sure it’s a wise decision.

 

What are your thoughts?

 

We also have a nanday conure who is flighted but seems to know enough to stay away from windows.

 

Thanks for your input.

Joann C.

 

 

Hi Joann,

Great questions.

The problem is pet birds of all species do not understand the concept of glass.

They don’t see the glass only the sky behind it.

 

Flighted Or Clipped Wings – Our Readers Weigh In

 

Before we take a deep dive into the subject it’s important to remember that different species of birds have different flight behaviors.

 

Cockatiels are one of the fastest flying parrots clocking in at over 30 miles an hour in a very short period of time.

 

Conversely, Senegal’s and Quakers lumber along at about 5 to 6 miles an hour (yes we timed it but not with a radar gun).

 

Plus it’s no surprise that buddy severely got his noggin clocked.

 

People also use the excuse that “my bird will fly into walls” so as to keep the bird’s wings clipped making it easier for the keeper and stressful for the bird.

 

Self-driving cars and parrots can have the same problem confusing white walls or white trucks, for the sky.

 

We’ve made our thoughts about wing clipping very clear for years.

 

A flighted bird is more confident with less stress.

 

They also don’t have to deal with the ragged edge of about 20 of their largest (flight) feathers.

 

Trying to preen all these have feathers can be a plucking trigger.

 

We must take two courses of action to overcome the problem.

 

We share a lot of anecdotal stories about new pet bird keepers getting a bird with clipped wings wanting to let the wings grow out to the bird become flighted.

 

The resounding chorus always sounds like “how do I teach my bird to fly?”

 

You don’t.

 

Clicker Training Videos for Birds – From Tricks to Flight

 

Birds have known how to fly for a hundred million years.

 

Captive birds maybe some help to understand that they have the ability but more importantly we need to teach our birds how and where to land.

 

A Better Bird Ep 13 How Bird Proof Is Your Home ~ Video

 

On top of the curtain rod, grabbing onto the blinds or flying onto the kitchen counter, around that acceptable.

 

Homes with flighted birds should have multiple landing areas specifically designed for birds called “play stands”.

 

Some roll on the floor and others will sit on tabletops.

 

They don’t have to be fancy.

 

They don’t need food and water cups.

 

They simply need to be familiar to the bird so instead of panic flight in panic landing they know exactly where to go.

 

The second half of the equation is to obfuscate the windows.

 

Here’s an example of the small picture window found at the halfway landing at Windy City Parrot.

 

 

It doesn’t just stop with windows you really want to bird proof your entire home because mirrors can offer the same problems.

 

Glass tables with sharp edges can be just as dangerous for birds as they can for small children.

 

To answer your question about buddy’s feathers, yes they most likely will but I would certainly keep a close eye on buddy until you start seeing pin feathers.

 

I’ve shared some posts with you that take deep dives into the subject of “ should I keep my bird flighted or not?

 

Stay safe

Best

MitchR

Mitch Rezman

He's handled a 1000 birds of numerous species when they visited monthly birdie brunches in the old Portage Park (Chicago, IL) facility. The one with the parrot playground. Mitch has written and published more than 1100 articles on captive bird care. He's met with the majority of  CEO's and business owners for most brands in the pet bird space and does so on a regular basis. He also constantly interacts with avian veterinarians and influencers globally.

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