Parrots are highly intelligent, psychologically complex, social, vocal, emotional and very long-lived. Many are unaware of the issues surrounding such animals in captivity. The aforementioned factors can cause owners difficulty when they provide care.

Parrots are generally subcategorised into three distinctions to reflect size. These are small, medium and large. The smallest parrots, namely the budgerigar and Parrotlet can live between 10 and 20 years. To provide a sense of size, a budgie is generally no larger than a 10-year-old’s hand. Relative to their size, budgies and Parrotlets live very long if sufficiently cared for.

Medium-sized parrots in the likes of the African grey, Amazon and Eclectus live a lot longer, the general average being between 25 and 60 years. The largest species include Macaws and Cockatoos whose life expectancy may exceed 80 and even 100 years.

A Budgerigar

Unlike a dog or cat, parrots are likely to show affection to humans by means of a mate bond. The majority of parrots in the wild mate for life, meaning they chose one partner and stay committed to him/her for a very long time. The prospect is not dissimilar to a marriage!

In captivity, this natural behaviour can manifest itself as a negative trait and may form paths upon which unwanted behavioural, emotional and psychological issues can develop. Furthermore, parrots crave attention, are opportunistic and require a great deal of mental stimulation. It comes as no surprise to know some people find it difficult to keep parrots as pets! They may resort to rehoming their animal/animals; a common and typical practice.

Problem Parrots is a national parrot rescue group that enables this rehoming process. Furthermore, they help educate and provide behavioural advice to prospective and/or existing owners in order to negate the possibility of rehoming inquiries forming in the first instance.

In their own characterful words, they constitute “a free support group for people who just need extra help or personalised help with their birds to ensure they stay off the rescue merry go round and remain happy and loved at home with the families they know”.

Considering this, the organisation works to prevent and resolve issues for the mutual well-being of both parrots and people.  The charity was established in 2008 by three directors who had by then accumulated thirty years of experience assisting other similar charities.

The organisation has highlighted they are not vets to ensure readers do not confuse the nature of their services. A list of avian vets are listed on their website for reader’s reference.

A Sulphur Crested Cockatoo. Cockatoos generally crave attention

There are a variety of ways through which one can assist the charity. Fundraising and donating are financial routes. Efforts to publicise and educate are others. One can even become a welfare officer and/or safe house.

A safe house refers to a place of residence where birds stays temporarily until an appropriate long-term home and associated people are found. The bird will undergo a behavioural examination in order for them to be associated to a particular household/carer. A welfare officer is expected to manage volunteers in their locality. They may be dealing with the managing and transportation of birds and are likely to accompany other officers nearby.

 Problem parrots are a highly effective and well-intentioned rescue charity. They attempt to solve the rehoming issue directly and causally. Such an organisation deserves support, respect and admiration. Feel free to visit their website for more info.