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Enrichment looks different for every bird.

We’re often talking about the importance of enrichment with parrots (and it genuinely is so important), but one thing to keep in mind is that the types of enrichment we offer may differ depending on the bird. Here’s a few things to keep in mind:

First, consider what your bird’s species naturally does in the wild.

For example, are they a parakeet or other grassland bird foraging on the ground for dropped seeds, or are they a tropical parrot foraging for fruit in the treetops?

In that example, if your bird is naturally a ground forager, they may benefit from a foraging tray with treats and toy parts so they have to search the tray for food. If they are naturally a canopy forager, they may prefer fruit and vegetable skewers and puzzles over foraging on the ground. Experiment with different types of enrichment and see what your bird prefers!

Next, think of your bird on an individual level. What is their behavior telling you that they could benefit from?

Is your bird a people-person that thrives with socialization and attention? Invite friends over to play with your bird, and go on outings to pet friendly places to give your bird the attention they crave. For example, my Alexandrian LOVES meeting new people, so I’ve started bringing him to work with me once a week to get all the attention and stimulation he wants.

Is your bird mechanically minded and loves figuring things out? They may benefit from puzzle toys and more cognitive games. Toys where they have to pull a lever and turn it on its side to get the treat out, etc. One of my budgies takes puzzle toys as a personal challenge and enjoys toys she has to figure out.

Or would they benefit from more one-on-one training with you? One of my cockatiels loves her training time and looks forward to learning and practicing new skills with me. She enjoys the mental challenge combined with spending time with me.

Or does your bird love shredding everything? They may enjoy more shreddable toys to keep their mind and bodies busy.

What is your bird’s behavior telling you?

Here's a few examples of enrichment that goes beyond just offering toys. These are a few activities that my birds enjoy, but remember, enrichment looks different for every bird!

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