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Parrot Flight Skill Levels

Written by Chris Biro, Copyright 2008

A Freeflight list member wrote: “When our Rosina (grey) was teaching Arina (B&G) to fly, she had problems to turn the big bird in the right direction. So she was flying around her [head] in such manner that Arina had to change the direction of her flight in order to avoid the impact. Such a herding bird 😀 “

We sometimes see our young flyers bump each other. They don’t seem to care that much about contact with each other when flying. This is really interesting to me because I know what amazing control they actually have when flying.

When Cosmo (B&G) was first flying outdoors there were some days where she was flying back and forth to me from the stage perches. They all loved this game but not as much as I did. I loved watching Cosmo fly at the Pierce County Fair about 3 ft above the ground, down the isle way between the benches and timing her wing beats so that they always flapped between the benches. It never looked like she was trying to do this but you could tell she was because even when people were standing in the isle she still effortlessly missed them with her wings. She would also do this low flying between people standing further back from the stage away from the benches. It was so graceful and smooth that it was one of the most wonderful displays of skill I had ever seen. Then she bumped her chest on the corner of one of the benches and flew to a tree to pout – that was her first time flying to a tree at a fair. If she had not hit it so hard, it would have been kind of funny. But she stopped playing that game after this incident.

The mitreds used to circle the yard and house at full speed and occasionally fly past me standing in the yard watching and gently graze my cheek or nose with the tip of their wings. Many times they did this at full speed, sometimes one would fly in front of my face and the other would fly right behind my head. The sound of the wind through their feathers was such a delightful sound as they zipped past.

So they can have amazing control if they want to. Why they bump into each other in flight is a mystery to me.

Parrots: more than pets, friends for life.
Chris Biro

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