Should parrots' wings be clipped?

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Having parrots at home is very common. They are small, colorful and very funny pets to see in their day to day. However, with the popularity they gain as human housemates, so does the number of people who choose to clip their wings to prevent them from escaping..

This practice that may seem common, has its detractors when it comes to thinking about what is most beneficial for the bird. ¿You want to know if parrots must have their wings clipped? ¡Keep reading this AnimalWised article!

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  1. How do you cut the wings of parrots?
  2. Should parrots' wings be clipped?
  3. What if the parrot is sick?

How do you cut the wings of parrots?

Before telling you whether or not it is advisable to cut the wings of your parrot, it is necessary to explain a little about how the process is carried out and the modifications that it implies in these limbs of the birds..

When we talk about wing cutting, there are two main procedures and some levels in each. The first of these processes is the alectomy, which consists of removing the distal phalanges of the wing and removing the primary feathers, which are the most necessary for flight; that is, the joint is mutilated. This intervention is irreversible and the bird can never fly again, so it is considered animal cruelty.

The other procedure is usually called clipping or clipping. The cutout consists of cut only the feathers, not the joint, and has different levels:

  • Aesthetic trim- Some of the outer feathers are cut off without touching the primaries, so the bird is still able to fly, but to a limited extent. Some people use this to help the bird shed its shedding feathers..
  • Full cutout: consists of cutting the primary and secondary feathers, so the bird is unable to glide or fly.
  • Intermediate or standard cutout: it is a cut between the previous two, the primary feathers are pruned, but not the secondary ones. Because of this, the bird is able to glide if it faces a fall, but it will not have much freedom to fly..

The three trimming methods they are reversible.

Image: infoexoticos.com

Should parrots' wings be clipped?

The answer to this question is no. Although it is a common practice, the truth is that there are more arguments to consider it as something negative for domestic parrots.

  • First of all, keep in mind that, like many other birds, parrots are made to fly, so restricting something that is inherent in their nature is not only selfish, but can also unleash strong stress attacks that lead them to bite their bodies or even self-mutilate.
  • Second, the main reason given for clipping parrots' wings is to prevent them from escaping from homes, but the truth is that if you find yourself in danger or fall from somewhere, you don't you will have to avoid impact with the ground, which can mean death in most cases. In this sense, a parrot that is not able to fly he is helpless inside the home, and this can many times be more dangerous than the risk of it going out the window.
  • In addition to the component psychologically traumatic which means not being able to fly, parrots with clipped wings lose their main exercise activity, with which it is possible that they develop health problems and anxiety due to the accumulated energy.
  • Apart from this, you should keep in mind that flying is also a way to protect yourself, since parrots, and in general all birds, move away when they find themselves in situations that seem dangerous, intimidating or with which they do not feel comfortable. In this sense, if your parrot cannot fly and is in such a situation, it will have no way of taking shelter, so it will end up being a scary bird that will never feel calm or comfortable with its surroundings..

Simply put, both alectomy and wing clipping are not recommended practices that do not benefit your parrot at all. You will not be safer at home, as you will encounter new obstacles that you will not know how to overcome, at the risk of hurting yourself, and you will develop negative attitudes as a result of the stress and trauma that it means to see your natural capacities restricted.

If what you want is to "protect " your parrot from external dangers for fear that it will escape, from AnimalWised we encourage you to find out about the education of these incredible animals, since they are extremely intelligent. In all cases it is infinitely better opt for positive reinforcement and education through techniques beneficial to animals.

What if the parrot is sick?

¿Is there a situation that justifies trimming the wings? The truth is that yes, but only in those cases in which the veterinary professional has recommended rest or immobility for the parrot to recover from an injury or illness. In these same cases, the vet will do the trimming feathering (not joint mutilation, this is never justified), so doing it at home is not advised.

When this occurs, the veterinarian will be in charge of making a cut to prevent the bird from flying while the rest period lasts, returning to normal when the wings grow again; that is, it is about something temporary and for medical purposes only.

As we say, this wing clipping should be done by the veterinarian, never at home, as it requires instruments designed for such a task.. Never try to do it at home, Well, you could cause your parrot a lot of pain and fatal injuries.

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