Have you ever seen your parrot changing his mood in a second?
Today I was giving food to my parrot but he bit my finger. I was surprised because I have never seen him biting until unless he is feeling sad or he is ill. So, I thought he is ill and I took him to the vet. He was perfectly fine and there was nothing to worry about. Then I have observed some more changes in my parrot-like he started showing some behavioural changes.
I concluded that my parrot wants to mate. Yes, the behavioural changes in my parrot-like a moody teenager suggest that the mating season is around the corner. The pet parrot was showing affection towards me and the other minute he was aggressive. All this is because of the hormonal changes in parrot which occurs during mating season.
The light of the spring season triggers these hormonal changes. Like other animals, parrots have physical and biological needs. And when spring or autumn season kicks in your parrot suddenly transform from a sweet little to an angry little bird. Once reached the maturity level, there is only one single urge that drives your pet parrot crazy- i.e., urge to mate. In the wild parrots find their prospective mate and have babies. But in captivity, pet parrots who don’t have any mate see their owner as their mate.
What triggers these mating hormones?
Light: If the parrot sees too much light in his room, he will think that spring has come. Artificial or sunlight both can trigger their desire to mate. So, give your parrot around 12-14 hours of sleep in the dark.
Diet: Giving your parrot an extra enriched diet can trigger its hormones. Treating them with more nutrition and love than need can confuse them. Yes, it is important to give your pet parrot proper food but giving them care will only confuse them. In food items, pellets are known for hormone triggers.
Cuddling: Showing physical love to your parrot is good but giving extra head kisses, cuddling anytime, patting them, give them the sexual indication. This will encourage them to think of you as their mate and they will feel more attracted towards you.
Environment: Providing your birds with too much bright environment can trigger their hormones. Don’t let them hang around in the light for too much time.
You should avoid these things if you don’t want your parrot to breed. Well, they can only breed if they have a breeding partner but these things make them anxious. Female parrot without male parrot lays unfertilized eggs. You can dispose of these eggs because they are unfertilized and won’t hatch.
But how do we identify mating signs?
It’s not that difficult because of the different changes that will occur to your parrot. He will behave abnormally and start showing signs of aggression or flirting. You heard it right!
If your parrot doesn’t have any other partner then he will try to flirt with you. Your pet parrot will try to woo you and shower you with love, affection. They will start making moves and will try to attract you or another mating partner.
When the mating season arrives, parrots go through some hormonal changes which affect their behaviour and personality. How can you identify these changes? How can you understand that your parrot wants to mate? To get the answers to these questions… Read on!
Biting: The first change which occurs during mating season in parrots is that they become aggressive. If your parrot starts biting you or nipping out of nowhere then that could be a sign of their aggression. Parrots bite their owner to release their sexual frustration. But if your parrot always bites then it isn’t because of the hormonal changes. There is no cure for this and to deal with this behaviour of your parrot you should ignore it till he becomes calm.
Physical displays: Parrots tend to make moves of the physical display during mating season. They will flip their wings, tail fanning, eye pinning, or even regurgitation of their food. Like humans make moves to woo their loved one, parrots are no different. The male parrot tries to impress the prospective mate by these actions. In captivity when parrots have no other parrot in the cage then they will try to impress you. Some parrots get too attached to their pet parent and think them as of their mate. So, one day if your parrot makes these to woo you don’t feel disgusted or offended. They just love you and trust you, they see you as their lifelong partner.
Screaming: No doubt parrots make noise but during the mating season their noise can make you irritate. During these times their vocalization increases and they start screaming for no reason. Your parrot will scream louder than usual to gain your attention. But this is not his fault as it’s all because of his mating behavioural changes. So, you don’t need to scold them for this instead just ignore and cover your ears with earplugs.
Feather plucking: During the mating season you will see your parrot plucking its feathers. This is very normal during mating season and nee not to worry. They will pluck their feathers but will stop after some time. But some parrots do it because of their illness. So, need to make sure of the reason behind their behaviour. If the parrot is plucking its feather because of hormonal changes then it’s normal but if not then you should consult a vet for this. This can be a sign of illness in your parrot.
Territorial behaviour: Have you ever seen your parrot become bossy over his cage or toys? If yes then that means the mating season is around the corner. During these times they become territorial of their thing and act possessive to its cage, toys, and other things. What to do? Give them their space and let the things pass.
Just like humans’ parrots also have their physical and biological desires. And when the mating season comes, they start showing their changed behaviour because of the urge to mate.
Now the question is how do parrots mate?
Parrots mate to reproduce the young ones. But unlike many other species, male parrots do not have a penis. Rather, the male has internal organs and a small opening that is similar to a female. To get the female pregnant, these openings are pressed together as the male climbs on the back of the female. You may see the male swaying their tail back and forth, or flapping their wings up and down. In some cases, this may look aggressive, though no aggression is involved. Parrots choose only one mating partner throughout their life. They do not change their mating partner and mate with only one parrot all the time.
Parrots in captivity do not have any other mating partner so they consider their owner as their mating partner. They will show affection towards you and will start making moves to impress you. Although there won’t be any physical attraction since they see you as their mating partner, your parrot will love you and try to woo you by dancing, singing, bobbing his head, flipping his feathers.
What is the mating season?
The mating season happens around the start of the spring season when the flowers start to bloom and the rain is more frequent. During this season parrots undergo hormonal changes and they have the urge to mate with another parrot to reproduce. Parrots feel a physical attraction towards their prospective mate. In the wild, during these times of spring, it becomes easy for parrots to raise their young ones as the warmer temperature brings out the warmer supply. Breeding season and the changed behaviour will only last for 1-2 weeks, so you don’t have to worry about it.
How do parrots reproduce?
After the mating season comes the breeding time. Parrots breed sexually and reproduce eggs. Male and female parrots look similar in size and colour. But their internal organs are different and only an expert can tell whether it’s a male or female. After the mating process is over the sperm of the male parrot travels inside the female parrot and meets up with the ovum. Then ovum develops inside the ovary and it takes around 10 days for the yolk to develop from the small to large size. The oviduct begins creating the shell membrane, egg white around the yolk. After the egg white is created the shell glands provide more egg white to create a strong shell. During this period, it’s really important to give your pet parrot calcium so that the depletion of calcium because of the egg whites insides the body can be fulfilled. After all this process the egg reaches to cloaca where it is expelled.
Parrots lay a clutch one or two times in a year. Each clutch has around 2-8 eggs and the numbers can vary depending on the species. It takes 18-30 days for an egg to hatch. The female parrot will take care of the eggs while the male one will gather the food and fulfill the female parrot’s needs.
Is your parrot behaving abnormally these times? No need to panic… Just give them time and it will pass.
Can parrots mate with other birds? No, parrots cannot mate with another breed of birds. They can mate with other species of parrot but not with other birds.
Can female parrots lay eggs without mating? Yes, she can lay eggs without mating but those eggs won’t be fertilized. Eggs will be completely unfertilized and no chicks will be hatched.
Why does calcium deficiency occur in parrots? Calcium deficiency occurs in female parrots during the egg-laying process. The outer cover of eggs is made up of calcium and after laying eggs it diminishes the nutritional value in female parrots.
Do parrots feel pain during the egg-laying process? No, generally they don’t feel any pain but in rare cases, some problems can occur. If a female parrot does not have enough nutritional value then egg binding problems will occur. In case you don’t solve this problem in time then your parrot may become critically ill.