Jealousy: A VERY Powerful Parrot Training Tool

Jealousy among parrots can usually result in two very different outcomes:

  1. Aggression towards one another. 

I've experienced both, and there's a fine line you have to be sure not to cross to keep in the "motivation" side of things and be able to USE that jealousy to your training advantage. 

In my last post I showed you a real training session of me trying to get my galah Bandit to say "baby boy". He didn't really get it in that video, but then I went to visit with my toco toucan, Rocko, and suddenly Bandit figured out just how to get my attention! By saying perfectly "baby boy" over and over and over again... 

He was jealous I was spending time next door in my toucan's aviary instead of giving my attention to him. He used the phrase I had been training to get my undivided attention away from my toucan... here is the session:

If you missed the session I was referring to before, you can watch it here. What a difference, right?! 

Other ways we've used jealousy to our advantage in bird training:

  • Flight training. This usually turns into a race of which bird can respond to its cue the fastest! 
  • We had a client teach her macaw to be harness trained because it was jealous of a stuffed animal macaw getting all the attention of having a harness on it... 
  • Recall training. We had a client get a better response in recall because the bird wanted her attention over her two small, elderly dogs who stayed at her feet a lot. 

This is my first experience using jealousy to get better talking results! And it wasn't even on purpose... but I will take it! 

1 comment


That was so funny because my galah Groot could hear bandit and was answering him back saying ‘baby boy ’. He usually says ’ where’s my baby boy ’ but I think he was jealous lol and copying bandit….. Does Bandit have many words, phrases etc?


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