Proper Caging For Parrots

Selecting and properly accessorizing your parrot’s cage is one of the most important things you will do for your new companion. The cage is your parrot’s home. It should be a place that offers both entertainment and a sense of security to your bird and should give you peace of mind knowing that your bird is safe when inside.

A good quality cage can be expensive but if you select wisely it will last for the entirety of your bird’s long life. Whether you choose a stainless or powder coated cage, or a wire cage for the smallest of the parrot species, two words to keep in mind are “size” and “safety”.

Since the average companion parrot spends the majority of their time in their cage, size really matters. Birds that are in cages too small have little opportunity to get the exercise they need to stay healthy. A small cage is quickly overwhelmed when you add toys and perches and your bird will have no room to move around.

The overall construction of the cage should feel sturdy and there should no joints or other areas where toes might get trapped when your bird is climbing around. It should be convenient for you to service and keep clean.

Bar spacing must be appropriate for your bird’s species. Heads get caught in bars spaced too widely (they fit through in one direction and the jaw hinges keep it trapped there) and the toes and wings of large birds can get and broken as the bird travels around a cage with bar spacing that is too small.

Appropriate bar spacing:

1/4″ – 1/2″ – finches, canaries

1/2″ – budgies, lovebirds, parrotlets

1/2″ – 5/8″ – cockatiels, ringnecks, doves, pigeons, small conures

5/8″ – 3/4″ – large conures, senegals, caiques, pionus, jardines

3/4″ – 1″ – amazons, african greys, mini macaws, goffins cockatoos

1″ – 1.5″ – large macaws, large cockatoos

The cage should include several perches that are varied in width, size and texture. You can learn about the different perches available and what sizes are right for your species by reading the following articles:

Finally, the cage should be set up in a way that encourages activity. We so often try to give our parrots a life of comfort and leisure out of kindness. However, a parrot’s body is designed for near constant activity level and placing everything within beak’s reach will negatively impact your bird's health down the line.

The perfect cage is a happy place with lots to do, a place that keeps your parrot’s body and mind active and offers the safety and security necessary for a parrot living in a human environment.

More resources:

7 comments

Joice Mou

Hey, I had a weird question, I don´t know if anyone can answer. But, I live in an apartment with my parents and a older brother. We own a yellow crowned amazon male 1 year old named Kiko. We are not able to fit a aviary in our apartment, I was thinking if I got my dads approval and the owner of the apartment thingy, If could make the balcony the aviary? If its made with only metal fences, what if it rains? He will get cold and maybe sick, what if other birds try to get him? I only see pigeons and sparrows and small birds and a couple seagulls. Another option is our garage, all the people that live in our apartment share a garage, each person has 1 car parking area, we don´t use ours anymore because my mom sold her old car and my dad got a bigger car that won´t fit in the garage. We could make an aviary in the garage, but im concerned because I´m worried about people going up to the cage and trying to touch the parrot bc he can bite, also about children´s safety. There is also one garage door that leads to the open, what if a random person comes in bc the garage was left open and tried to steal the bird or harm it? What about the car gas! Nvm I just thought about the gas and the sensitive lungs! NOPE not in the garage. I wish we had a bigger house to provide more space for our parrot. Do you think the balcony idea is good? Could I add windows to the balcony so its closed off? It needs to be approved by the apartment owner and safety thingy of our country.

Joice Mou
natalie kendrick

I have an 11 month old conour, named Mango Waulla! I love your vidoes and teaching. I am excited about learning more and giving my mango the best life possible. I lost my son 4 years ago. Mango Wakulla helps me so much!!!! Thank you for all this amazing education!!! Here is to a life long relationship through our birds!! Thank you .

natalie kendrick
Rodney Larios

I made a little cabinet with a perch sitting on top. Would you recommend painting it and if so is there a criteria on the paint to use?

Rodney Larios
Sheikh Shaheb

Hey, This Sheikh Shaheb.I am a big fan of BIRD TRICKS. Your every video is just awesome. Specially #cage Videos. I have also macaw cage site. If you want you can visit http://www.sheikhshaheb.com/scarlet-macaw-cage/

Sheikh Shaheb
Omar

kindly do make a video on alaxandrine parakeet

Omar
Renea Wade

I am a new owner of a beautiful Blue and yellow macaw. She stole my heart the moment I laid eyes on her. I am new at this so I enjoy learning information by watching videos you post. Thank you for what you do. My goal is to keep my Pixie healthy and happy for a lifetime together.

Renea Wade
Steven Carrigan

Was wondering how caiques react to small dogs. Enjoying your video and helping me with research on this type of bird.

Steven Carrigan

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