Barney is normally a very content and friendly bird, but all birds will bite. Parrots have very strong beaks that they use for cracking nuts and chewing wood to make a nest cavity, so a bite from a large parrot can be painful and will break the skin. Therefore, when you visit Barney you will note that for his safety and yours he will stay in his cage. Please do not put your fingers or other objects into his cage.
A parrot may bite as instinct tells them to defend their nest environment, and their cage fills that role. They may also bite if they are frightened, or to defend others in their flock. There are documented incidents of a parrot attacking and driving an intruder from a home if they feel threatened. These reports are almost always about an Amazon Parrot.
To date the only person who Barney has bitten is Herb himself. This can happen if Barney is out of his cage and too excited, or feels that his relationship is threatened by another person. This is normal parrot behavior, and he will give clues that he is getting too excited or worried, and then we just let him settle down for a bit. Sometimes when we do have to move him from one place to another we will use “The Stick of Power” which is just a perch that he will step on and off of.
Posted in: Barney FAQs