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The Ultimate Guide to Purchasing a Baby Parrot

By Charlie Plaza, CPbirds.com

Are you considering adding a baby parrot to your family? Discover the essential steps to finding the perfect feathered companion. Explore tips on choosing the right breed, understanding their needs, and locating reputable sellers near you. Find out how to ensure a happy and healthy transition for your new pet bird. Let's embark on this exciting journey together!

 

Note: Below you’ll see an outline of what will be discussed in this article.

Baby Lorikeet with flowers
Baby Lorikeet

 

Factors to Consider Before Buying a Baby Parrot

 

  • Type of Parrot

  • Understanding Species-Specific Needs

  • Size and Lifespan Considerations

  • Noise and Socialization

  • Budget

 

Top Sources for Purchasing Baby Parrots and Things to Consider

 

  • Local Breeders: Breeder Reputation, Health and Socialization, After-Sale Support

  • Pet Stores: Selection and Variety, Store Environment and Store Policies

  • Bird Rescues: Adoption Process, Bird Background, The Reward of Rescue  

www.cpbirds.com

What to Look for When Buying a Baby Parrot

 

  • Physical Appearance and Behavior

  • Signs of Good Health

  • Warning Signs

  • Environmental Clues

  • Interaction with People

  • Response to Human Contact

  • Handling and Training

  • Observing Behavior

  • History and Age

  • Hand-Reared vs. Parent-Reared

  • Age-Related Needs

  • Health Records

 

Factors to Consider Before Buying a Baby Parrot

 

Embarking on the journey of parrot parenthood is thrilling, but before you do, it's critical to ponder several key factors. These considerations will ensure that your decision to buy a baby parrot is well-informed and that you're prepared for the responsibilities that come with caring for these complex animals.


Baby Parakeet for Sale at CPbirds.com
Baby Parakeet

Type of Parrot

Parrots are an incredibly diverse group, with over 350 species, each with its own unique traits and requirements. Knowing which type is the right match for your lifestyle is the first step in responsible parrot ownership.


Understanding Species-Specific Needs

Some parrots, like African Greys, are known for their intelligence and may require mental stimulation through toys and puzzles. Others, such as the Cockatoo, form deep bonds with their owners and need substantial emotional interaction. This is why it is important to research each bird that you are considering prior to purchase to ensure you can meet the birds needs.


Size and Lifespan Considerations

Larger parrots typically have longer lifespans, sometimes outliving their owners, while smaller species may have shorter lifespans but still require a considerable commitment. Small parrots and parakeets live between 7-15 years. Medium parrots like conures can live 25+ years and large macaws can live 45+ years.


Cockatoo at CPbirds.com
Sulfur Crested Cockatoo

Noise and Socialization

Certain parrots are naturally more vocal, which might be a problem in noise-sensitive living environments.  For example, a Moluccan Cockatoo is not suitable for an apartment. Additionally, social species will require more of your time and attention to thrive.


Budget

The financial aspect of parrot ownership extends far beyond the initial purchase price. It encompasses ongoing costs such as food, healthcare, and enrichment. Depending on the bird you are purchasing, budget between several hundred dollars to several thousands.


Initial Costs

Prices for baby parrots vary widely, influenced by species rarity, availability, demand, coloration and breeder reputation. Remember, not all birds are created equal. Ensure you obtain a baby bird from a reputable breeder that stands behind their birds. This may cost you a bit more but you will ensure you are getting a quality bird. Also, factor in the initial investment needed for a proper cage, accessories, and initial veterinary visits.


Long-Term Care Expenses

Veterinarians caring for a bird
Avian Veterinarian

Ongoing costs include a nutritious diet, routine vet check-ups, and replacing toys and perches. These can add up, so ensure you're ready for the financial commitment. These things can add up quickly and although birds rarely get sick, it is important to note that we are prepared for these unexpected large expenses.



Experience with Birds

Your level of experience with avian pets can greatly influence the type of parrot that is best for you. There are species such as Indian Ringnecks and Macaws who require an experienced bird handler to manage them. This is why it is important to know what type of bird you are getting before you actually purchase one. At CPbirds.com we are more than happy to help you in this journey.


Beginner-Friendly Species

If you're new to bird ownership, consider species known for being easier to care for, such as budgerigars or Parakeets, lovebirds, cockatiels and small conures which are a great beginner bird, more forgiving and less demanding. Don’t get me wrong, these smaller birds still require work, handling, training and dedication. But, they are easier to maintain than let’s say, a macaw or a Congo African Gray. Out of all the domestic birds that www.CPbirds.com carries, hand fed baby cockatiels are my number one recommendation for beginner bird owners.


Umbrella Cockatoo Baby
Umbrella Cockatoo being fed

Training and Handling

Some parrots require more experience to handle and train properly, especially larger species that can develop behavioral issues if not managed correctly. There was a study made by the University of Pennsylvania and Charleston Animal Society where researchers looked at over 24,000 adoption records and the study showed that behavior problems were the leading cause of why pets end up in the shelters or rescues. Although most of these were dogs and cats, the same is true for exotic birds. Conclusion to this; a well-trained bird is the best way to ensure you enjoy your new feathered pet for years to come.


Support and Resources

Identify local avian veterinaries is extremely important to do before you obtain the bird. You do not want an emergency to happen to then start searching for that avian vet. Remember, not all vets are bird specialists. Bird clubs offer an immense area of support with other experienced bird people. Some online resources can offer support and advice as you navigate the world of parrot care however, it is imperative that you vet them well because some online sources are not reliable sources of information. Sometimes, advice given online contradicts what avian experts recommend. This is why it is strongly recommended that you only seek advice from reputable online sources.

 

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About the Author

Charlie Plaza founder of CPbirds.com
Charlie Plaza, Founder of CPbirds.com

At the age of 14, Charlie Plaza began his avian collection in the United States. His first acquisition was an Indian Ringneck Parakeet, bought for $175 from Critter's Corner Pet Store in Casselberry, FL. It was there he met Jeff, the store manager, who introduced him to Linda Norris, the breeder of his Ringneck. As a youngster, Charlie worked for Linda, cleaning cages and aiding in the breeding of her exotic birds. His passion for birds grew as he witnessed the happiness they brought to their owners. Pursuing this passion, Charlie embarked on a career in the pet industry, eventually reaching upper management positions at Pet Supermarket and PetSmart, two of the largest pet specialty stores. What began as a hobby, CPbirds.com, has now become a nationally recognized name in aviculture, known for providing hand-fed, sociable birds to pet enthusiasts. Charlie has become a renowned expert in aviculture, serving as a keynote speaker at numerous bird-related events, clubs, and conventions, and has imparted knowledge to many aviculturists on the care, husbandry, and breeding of exotic birds.


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