I have three parrots. Two Red Fronted macaws who are 14 and 11 and my African Grey who is 13. I don't believe parrots make good pets. They can be very loud, aggressive and super messy. They also don't like to be alone, are never alone in the wild and because they are wild animals they really shouldn't be kept in our homes. I came to this conclusion after years of parrot keeping and fostering. That being said, I love my parrots, the red fronts have each other, no breeding boxes and the grey girl has us. I recommend adopting and yes you can have a wonderful close relationship with a parrot you don't get as a baby. My grey girl was over a year when I got her, she was a foster who stayed. She was given up the story goes because she was a biter and a screamer. She has never bitten any of us here. She is cuddly and very, very sweet. She can scream but probably wouldn't if she was an only bird, she mimics the red fronts.
I think Budgies make wonderful little pets and they can talk up a storm, also tiels are nice but larger parrots are such a huge responsibility as you must provide them with things to chew, things to play with, toys to interest them, keep them exercised, engaged and let's not forget the clean up! LOL If I had it to do all over again I would not have parrots. I feel guilty because I work and they are highly intelligent animals, much more so than dogs, they don't just mimic they learn our language and can use it appropriately. Put something that knows all the names of family members and dogs in a cage all day. I also don't believe in clipping them either but then that's me.
Zuni and Poppy in the same outdoor cage after Poppy was here for about 4 months.
Excellent post. Something else that many people either don't realize or refuse to believe is that our feathered friends have longevity, big time! An African Grey will easily live to be 60-80 years old or older, same with Macaws, Cockatoos and Amazons. Smaller birds such as Conures, Pionus, Senegals, etc. can easily live to be 40-50 years. More often than not the caretaker dies and the family doesn't want to deal with the bird, and it ends up in rescue, or passed from home to home and will often develop behavior issues or ocd behaviors.
They are loud, messy, often temperamental, difficult, needy, expensive and forever +. One definitely needs to make arrangements for the long term care of their birds, when the time comes that you can no longer care for them, or you pass away.
Most regular vets simply are not educated or equipped to handle birds, thus a board certified Avian Specialist is necessary..... and believe me they are expensive!
I have had birds literally all of my life, but I never, ever recommend a bird as a pet for anyone. They do not make good pets, they require specialized care, they require a large amount of interaction, they will out live you. Common, every day things can kill them in an instant; non-stick cookware, a new oven, new furniture, new carpet, new linoleum, candles, fireplaces, anything airborne such as perfume, hairspray, furniture polish, cat saliva, dog saliva, avocado seed, apple seeds, and the list goes on and on. It is also difficult to find a place or person to board them with, and they don't do well left alone, or even with somebody coming in once or twice a day to feed them.
Whenever we are going to be gone, we take Sara to a friend who runs a parrot rescue, 4 hours away for boarding. We have no bird savvy family or friends nearby that can adequately care for Sara while we are away. So, I pack her up and do the drive.
IMO, non bird owners should think twice before becoming bird owners, and if you really think you want to dedicate your life to a companion parrot, please volunteer at a local rescue first. This will show you first hand what parrot ownership is all about.