parrot & parakeets head bobbing

      • No, not when they walk.
      • I mean, like when they’re (I guess) playful or excited. I recall many different parakeets that did it, and the neighbors have 3 parrots that do it also. I don’t know that other “pet” birds do it, but I can only recall one or two people that owned birds that weren’t one of these two types. I ain’t seen any wild birds do it, that I’d recognize as such. -And it seems like the birds that do it, only will do it for people; not other birds.
  • I knew some people who had a pigeon coop years ago; I don’t remember ever seeing any of the pigeons do this, but they generally didn’t seem to pay as much attention or be as friendly as parrots/parakeets usually are.
    (I think I hear Cecil coming . . .) - MC

Good question. I don’t know the answer but it leads me to wonder if wolves wag their tails or if tigers would play with string if given the chance.

Do animals kept as pets evolve endearing traits; the cuter they act the more they are cared for and chosen for breeding?

Parakeet (and presumably parrot, although I’ve never kept larger birds) head-bobbing is a form of mating behavior. They will and do do this to other birds, too, but it should be remembered that part of the socialization process for a bird it to get it to associate itself with humans. Wild-caught birds make terrible pets. Even birds that are parent-raised in captivity make rather poor pets; with anything larger than a parakeet, it is common to take the chicks away from the parents a few minutes to a few days after hatching, and hand-rear and feed them.

Conversely, hand-reared birds don’t make very good breeders (“I’m supposed to mate with that? But it’s a bird!”). This is why the condor chicks in the captive-breeding program at the San Diego Zoo are reared by hidden people with condor head-and-neck puppets on their hands; so that the chicks will continue to think of themselves as condors, not people.

“I don’t just want you to feel envy. I want you to suffer, I want you to bleed, I want you to die a little bit each day. And I want you to thank me for it.” – What “Let’s just be friends” really means

From bird’s eyes

"The next time you see a bird taking a close look at something, notice how it turns its head sideways. This is because eyes in most bird species lie at the sides of their heads, and bird eyeballs can’t be rolled like human ones. Therefore, when most birds look closely at something, they use only one eye at a time, and they must turn their heads. This means that most birds have little or no binocular vision, which makes judging distances difficult.

This often accounts for why many birds bob their heads. They look at something from below, then from above; if the object’s perceived position changes a lot, it’s close up, but if there’s little or no change, it’s far away."

There is a difference between head bobbing so a bird can see…MC made it clear this is not the type of bobbing he was talking about…and head bobbing as a mating or affectionate behavior.

This was recently discussed in another thread. My African Grey is bonded to me and looks at me as his mate. When I take him from his cage sometimes he will get excited, begin to head bob, and regurgitate for me. Birds in the wild DO do this for one another. Pet birds have no other birds to do this for, so they do it for their owners.