Why are birds the forth most popular pet?

Small to Medium size Birds. Hawks, Owls, Chicken, Ducks, Finches, Parrots Etc.

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Why are birds the forth most popular pet?

Postby 0011 » Thu Aug 24, 2017 2:17 pm

So Primates as pets are usually frowned upon so why are parrots more excitable?
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Re: Why are birds the forth most popular pet?

Postby Ash » Thu Aug 24, 2017 2:34 pm

Good question, isn't it? They both have similar care requirements, yet one is okay to keep, and the other is "horrible" to keep.

I think it has to do with people believing they can "read" a primate's expression when they in fact can't.

Whereas most people just think birds are happy as long as they get food and water. This is why I think birds are popular as pets--people think they're EASY when they in fact are a lot more complicated than that and require a lot more mental stimulation than the average owner gives them. Birds are not meant to be caged 24/7. They need to be out, flapping their wings around the house on a perch or a play area. If you can't provide mental stimulation for your bird and spend time with it, then a bird should not be a pet for you.

My parents got a cockatiel from my aunt... who got it from her son... who got it from a pet store. For a long time we did not know that birds needed more enrichment than just having a cage and a few toys inside. But now that we know, the bird "Ailey" gets let out daily to be with her people, to fly around the house, and to walk along the furniture. She is a much happier bird now that she has that stimulation.

Yet most people with cockatiels never pull them out of the cage. I bet cockatiels get swapped and traded around more than foxes do--and that's saying a lot.
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Re: Why are birds the forth most popular pet?

Postby Peacefulward » Thu Aug 24, 2017 4:53 pm

As Ash has said, birds have a lot in common with primates.
They're both:
- Socially and emotionally complex
- Require lots of interaction and enrichment
- Bond strongly to one person
- Can spread disease, and the larger birds can cause injuries on par with smaller primates
- CANNOT be caged and require enclosures

And probably even more, if I wanted to go on.

People only hate the idea of pet primates because of all the "they're our closest living relatives" mumbo jumbo... Which isn't even true for monkeys and other primates, except for great apes.
And the animal rights movement pushing for human rights for primates doesn't help the perception of pet ones either.

Overall monkeys and other primates are sensationalized more by both the media (pet monkey attacks) and the anti-exotic pet folk with their whole "monkeys are too complex to be kept as pets!" propaganda— very similar to the situation with large carnivores kept as pets.
And monkeys are popular animals due to the animal right movement chugging out videos, articles, books, and documentaries about them and how magical and intelligent they are, whereas nobody really cares about birds.
5 Dogs, 2 cats, 1 leopard gecko, 1 guinea pig, 1 axolotl, and a coatimundi currently in my family. :)

Exotic "wishlist": red fox, mink, bat eared fox, jerboa, lemur (brown or white ruffed), egyptian fruit bat.
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Re: Why are birds the forth most popular pet?

Postby Nìmwey » Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:45 am

Monkeys look like furry little humans. So obviously it's slavery. Or something.
While parrots are "just stupid birds". No matter how much science proves their intelligence, they are still too different from us, and not as cool as elephants or dolphins, to receive that status from the general public.
My main interest is in parrots, dogs, toothed whales and snakes.
Future animals I want to have when we have land are camels, wolfdogs/wolves, coyotes or jackals, striped hyena or aardwolf. Also poultry, rabbits water buffalo and/or yak for livestock.

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