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Dancing Senegal Parrot


Type: Senegal Parrot
Genus: Poicephalus
Species: Senegalus
Subspecies: Mesotypus
Sex: Female
Weight: 120 grams
Height: 9 inches
Age: 15 years, 8 months
Caped Cape Parrot


Type: Cape Parrot
Genus: Poicephalus
Subspecies: Fuscicollis
Sex: Male
Weight: 330 grams
Height: 13 inches
Age: 13 years, 11 months
Blue and Gold Macaw


Type: Blue & Gold Macaw
Genus: Ara
Sex: Female
Weight: 850 grams
Height: 26 inches
Age: 11 years, 8 months
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Additional Top Articles
Stop Parrot Biting
Getting Your First Parrot
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Evolution of Flight
Clipping Wings
How to Put Parrot In Cage
Kili's Stroller Trick
Camping Parrots
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Parrot Wizard Seminar
Kili on David Letterman
Cape Parrot Review
Roudybush Pellets

List of Common Parrots:

Budgerigar (Budgie)
Alexandrine Parakeet
African Ringneck
Indian Ringneck
Monk Parakeet (Quaker Parrot)

Mexican Parrotlet
Green Rumped Parrotlet
Blue Winged Parrotlet
Spectacled Parrotlet
Dusky Billed Parrotlet
Pacific Parrotlet
Yellow Faced Parrotlet

Peach Faced Lovebird
Masked Lovebird
Fischer's Lovebird
Lilian's (Nyasa) Lovebird
Black Cheeked Lovebird
Madagascar Lovebird
Abyssinian Lovebird
Red Faced Lovebird
Swindern's Lovebird

Lories and Lorikeets:
Rainbow Lorikeet

Sun Conure
Jenday Conure
Cherry Headed Conure
Blue Crowned Conure
Mitred Conure
Patagonian Conure
Green Cheeked Conure
Nanday Conure

Black Headed Caique
White Bellied Caique

Poicephalus Parrots:
Senegal Parrot
Meyer's Parrot
Red Bellied Parrot
Brown Headed Parrot
Jardine's Parrot
Cape Parrot
Ruppell's Parrot

Eclectus Parrot

African Greys:
Congo African Grey (CAG)
Timneh African Grey (TAG)

Blue Fronted Amazon
Yellow Naped Amazon
Yellow Headed Amazon
Orange Winged Amazon
Yellow Crowned Amazon

Galah (Rose Breasted) Cockatoo
Sulphur Crested Cockatoo
Umbrella Cockatoo
Moluccan Cockatoo
Bare Eyed Cockatoo
Goffin's Cockatoo

Red Shouldered (Hahn's) Macaw
Severe Macaw
Blue And Gold Macaw
Blue Throated Macaw
Military Macaw
Red Fronted Macaw
Scarlet Macaw
Green Winged Macaw
Hyacinth Macaw

Glossary of Common Parrot Terms

Parrots Fly at the Gym

Comments (8)

By Michael Sazhin

Thursday February 7th, 2013

Kili & Truman went back to school today to experience their biggest, freest flights to date. Two years since they began their flight training in the larger spaces at my old high school, they returned to fly in the enormous gymnasium. Pending some of Truman's - ehem - reliability problems during the earlier sessions, I did not want to take the chance of him landing and refusing to fly down from the unreachable rafters in the gym. Flying birds in this gym is the real deal. In the little gym we first used and then later the theater, it was possible to at least reach the birds with a long recovery perch. But in this gym there were many places that would be impossible to reach. I was putting my faith entirely in the birds' wings.

Having done two years of extensive flight training with Truman, I was ready to take this chance to further his flightducation. Just to be sure he'd come down to me if he did end up in an unreachable place, I brought his weight down to his training minimum weight. Kili on the other hand, I took down no further than typical training weight because I was comfortable and certain that she would do just fine. I've already taken chances flying her in irrecoverable indoor locations (such as TV studios) and knew what to expect from her.

What I mean by an irrecoverable indoor flying location is basically a location where the bird could land in such places that it would be impossible for the owner to recover the bird (except by the bird returning on its own). This is the closest thing to outdoor freeflight but without the risk of permanent loss or predation.

Note, I do not encourage anyone to attempt to fly their parrot (or for that matter have it unrestrained) in an irrecoverable indoor flying location without extensive flight training experience. Although it may not result in the death or escape of your parrot, it may cause extensive problems for the bird and disruptions to the facility. Instead, I encourage you to find recoverable large indoor flying locations first. This is not only to practice but also to test how your parrot would behave flying in a novel location. You don't want to be finding out that your parrot will fly right up to a 60ft ceiling, land, and be incapable or unwilling to come down the first time you are trying this! For the recoverable locations, I have designed a parrot recovery perch for getting parrots down from places up to 20ft high. If you are interested in one, please contact me directly. Only after you are confident that while flying in recoverable locations, your parrot has reliably returned to you even after landing in high places, then can you attempt flying the bird in a place with unreachable ceilings.

Parrot Flying in Gym

I started out with Kili & Truman on their training perches in the center of the gym. I had them fly short recalls to get the hang of flying in this new place and then progressively increased the distance until I was able to have them fly across hundreds of feet to reach me. I had them fly short boomerang flights to remind them how to return to me which proved useful when they would overshoot me. You see, parrots that are used to flying in confined spaces may develop too much speed flying in the open to slow down in time to land on you. Boomerang flying is a great skill to develop so that they would have the practice to turn around instead of just flying away.

It definitely helps to have two birds instead of one. One motivates the other. When Truman would recall first, Kili would eagerly follow when called. And vice versa. If one bird were to land and not come down from somewhere, giving a lot of attention, recalls, and treats to the other bird can sometimes drive it out and back to you. So while on one hand flying two parrots is more work and more to keep track of, it also helps improve the motivation of both birds at the same time!

Finally, when I was comfortable that Kili & Truman had no trouble finding me to land on, I sent them off to freefly around the gym to their hearts' content. I was curious if they would end up flock flying together or independently and it appeared to be more of the latter but really they were just all over the place. Kili enjoyed flying extensive figure eights around the gym at high speed and I was surprised to find that her stamina was better than Truman's! Don't forget that Kili is permanently missing some flight feathers, was not fledged as a baby, and has always been the weaker flyer. This made me realize that I had always worked her harder to compensate for this and as a result she ended up outflying Truman who is the natural born flyer!

In the span of over an hour the birds flew over a mile of heart pumping exercise flights both on command and of their will. They stayed on their perches until called and flew around when I offered them to. Overall I was very pleased with the session and my brother helped me record some of the highlights to share with you.

This is the 2nd video with footage of the birds' 3rd gym flight training session which also features Kili's newest trick.

Part of: Parrot Trick Training, Blog Announcements, Cape Parrots, Senegal Parrots
Kili Senegal Parrot Truman Cape Parrot Indoor Freeflight Gym High School Flying Recall Training
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Posted on February 7, 2013 07:51AM

Thats awesome seeing them fly like that. Bet they were quiet once you got them home though


Posted on February 7, 2013 02:37PM

Yes! That was the best part. They still had an hour till bedtime when we got back and they were both dead silent. I wanted to make a recording of it so I could listen to it and enjoy it every night instead of Truman's usual screaming! They were absolutely spent!


Posted on February 7, 2013 07:44PM

Hi Michael: I just got a chance to see your video although I couldn't have the sound on here. That does look like a great fly space! It should be alot of fun. How often do you get to use of it? The only caveat that I would consider IF you ever have others join you...I'm not worried about your birds because they look very window savvy, but other birds might hit those large windows. We had a pionus that used to fly with us that was an incredible flyer. She would fly dozens of flyabouts around the building but she just didn't seem able to learn windows. She always tried to fly through windows. We had one very frightening and close call but fortunately, she was in such good physical shape she recovered fine. A bird that is in good physical shape is much more likely to survive a collision than one that is not....still not something you ever want to go through. Other than that, it's a great space for big flyabouts. Higher ceilings can be inconvenient if a bird flies up there, but like you wrote, it can be worked around. If we had a bird that wouldn't come down in the time we needed to have them down (some we used to let just hang until they decided to come down) we would resort to using helium balloons (we didn't have a long perch like you described) We would use the balloons as an aversive. Not recommended but sometimes, you have to be creative and resourceful. It didn't happen often in the 10 years we flew. Most of the time, they were new birds that weren't as well socialized and just preferred to sit high up and watch what was going on. Greys were particularly prone to that. They aren't very "touchy, feely" birds. As you know, we did this for 10 years, in early years three times a week and later years, twice a month. It is definitely worthwhile and wholly recommended. It is after all, what the birds were born to do. Very exciting and have fun! Mona


Posted on February 7, 2013 09:30PM

it was delightful to watch Kili and Truman flying around everywhere like that. They looked like they were having so much fun.


Posted on February 10, 2013 08:54PM

That looks like so much fun for them. I noticed that Truman does some zigzaging like Jupiter does too. Kili looks like a little green missle!


Posted on February 10, 2013 11:23PM

Have you ever flown Jupiter outside or in a large space?


Posted on February 13, 2013 01:56AM

Wonderful video! Got any plans for writing up a training guide for boomerang and at-will flights? I've got my GCC flying to me and to a stand on cue easily, but she doesn't seem take flight on her own unless she gets a fright, would love to get some suggestions for how to teach those.


Posted on February 13, 2013 02:23AM

I talked a bit about how I taught Boomerang to each of my parrots on my [url=]Parrot Wizard Seminar DVDs[/url:1vtzfeli]. I'm gonna leave it at that cause I think it's a tougher trick that out of the right context will make people create problems with their parrot. As for "freeflight" it's something the birds choose to engage in. I would say the best thing you can do is to teach your parrot to recall and boomerang to you. Then in a large enough of a space, instinct and curiosity might take over and the bird goes and flies around. The first time it happens your heart will sink and you will panic. But then you'll realize your bird has it under control, is doing it on purpose, and is even enjoying it. I realized this for the first time when I was flying Kili in the school theater. There are numerous articles and videos about that. If you go through those (I highly recommend seeing all of them to see the progress), I think there is footage of her just flying around. As long as that "flying around" culminates with coming to me, it's all good! My birds are so well trained that they stay on their perches until called and wouldn't just go freefly on their own. However, if I give them permission, they go and fly around and come back to me when I call or they feel like it. Basically I just toss them off my hand into the abyss saying "go fly" and they go enjoy themselves for a bit.

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Trained Parrot is a blog about how to train tricks to all parrots and parakeets. Read about how I teach tricks to Truman the Brown Necked Cape Parrot including flight recall, shake, wave, nod, turn around, fetch, wings, and play dead. Learn how you can train tricks to your Parrot, Parrotlet, Parakeet, Lovebird, Cockatiel, Conure, African Grey, Amazon, Cockatoo or Macaw. This blog is better than books or DVDs because the information is real, live, and completely free of charge. If you want to know how to teach your parrot tricks then you will enjoy this free parrot training tutorial.
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