Many countries throughout the world observe Daylight Savings Time or Summer Time when the clocks are advanced one hour to extend daylight hours into the evening. The dates of the clock changes vary from country to country and are generally based on the proximity to their equator.
This past Sunday, the US reverted back to standard time. We set our clocks back one hour meaning that we gained an hour in that day.
Do Time Changes Affect Our Parrots?
Yes, they do. Human beings operate on clock and calendar time. This helps us to be where we need to be when we need to be there. Birds have no use for schedules or watches and respond to solar time. This means that they conduct their business based on the positioning of the sun in the sky.
A bird will let the last rays of sunset dictate their bedtime, no matter what our clocks tell us. This means that if your bird’s bedtime is typically 7 pm, it may be looking to turn in around 6.
The normal family has dinner at roughly the same time each night. They have favorite TV shows that begin at the same time, bringing the family together in the living room, and bedtime as usual.
However, for your bird who has adapted to your schedule at least somewhat, this can be a very confusing time. Everything is happening at a different time in the day. As the winter months press on, you may no longer coming home from work during daylight hours. And bedtime is coming later and later according to their solar clock.
You may be getting ready for playtime just as the sun is directing your bird towards its cage for bedtime. Tired birds are grumpy birds – it doesn’t take long for a bird’s patience to wear thin when things are not as they are supposed to be.
Your interactions might suffer for a while as he adjusts to the new time standards, eventually he will adapt and the changes will become the new normal. Just be sure that he gets ample sleep and attention during this period.
This is not something to worry about, but to be aware of. Many birds make the adjustment without a hitch, but if you notice that your bird’s fuse is a little shorter than normal, this could be why.
Patty Jourgensen specializes in avian health, behavior and nutrition and has been working with and caring for rescue birds since 1987.