Parrots are perhaps one of the most intelligent birds, and therefore they constantly need some interesting and exciting activity. We can’t spend all of our time with them, so toys serve the valuable function of keeping captive birds happy and less likely to develop unwanted behaviors such as pinching, screaming, or repetitive movements.
Unfortunately, for most parrots, the usual way to play is to chew on any favorite item, and if you buy the toys they need, the costs become global. With a little ingenuity and a lot of fun, you can create toys from household items, natural materials, and local materials without spending any money.
Interesting ideas for creating toys with your own hands
Wire hanger for climbing
Your pet will love this toy the most. Most of the cages are not large enough, and such a toy, without taking up much space, will allow the parrot to increase the territory for climbing.
- Hang a hook from the ceiling of the cage.
- Next, three loops are made that cling to each other.
- You can attach some treats for your pet along the entire length of such a creeper. And you can focus only on the bottom of such a hanger and tie a treat only at the bottom.
Ropes in the house, aviary and poultry house
In a room where birds can move outside the cage, handrails must be installed on hooks attached to the wall. Ropes are attached on both sides. Thus, the cable installed in a suspended state can be removed when your bird has played enough and is back in the cage.
Domestic budgerigars will be happy to play on the ropes for hours, swinging merrily. Once they stop climbing up and down the rope and swinging, it’s time to let them rest. Parrots can be closed in a cage, and the ropes can be removed until the next bird walk. The same, but smaller, ropes can be hung in an aviary.
Before choosing some kind of swing rope for parrots, you should carefully inspect the rope for fraying, because the bird can catch on its leg and injure its neck.
Homemade toys for walking
Wrap a treat or toy in wicker and hang it in the cage. Instead of wicker material, you can use the leaves of harmless plants or pine cones, small boxes that are used to store pills and other similar household items.
Pet parrots will love to play with treats wrapped in a wicker rug and hung from the ceiling of the cage, like babies with Christmas presents.
Parrots often prefer the package to the toy or treat inside.
Balsam wood toys are sold and expensive, but parrots are very fond of walnut, they also like the soft type of wood very much. By the way, you can buy balsa wood in a store that sells materials for craftsmen.
- Make a circle of stiff wire and make sure the ends are securely tied. You can also use a hoop if there is enough space in the cage to hang it. You will need from 20 to 50 willow twigs to form a soft and beautiful wreath from 30 cm to 2 m.
- You can remove the willow leaves from the twigs, or you can leave them. Willow branches need to be wound on a wire circle or hoop. This is an easy activity that will take about 40 minutes of your time. The ends of the twigs can be tied with a thin wire. The next day, the wire attachments can be untwisted, the willow branches will retain their shape.
- You can hang treats, flowers or small toys on such a ready-made wreath made of natural materials. If you hang roses, your parrots will be happy to tear off and eat flower petals.
The willow wreath itself will last more than three months if a lot of threads are woven into it. Smaller wreaths can be made for cages.
Any tube with a hole through which you can thread a wire or rope is suitable for making a swing, where your parrots will happily swing or just sit. For hanging, you can use a rope, chain or plastic chain, which can always be purchased at a hardware store. Birds love to swing. Wild birds swing in trees, a behavior that is considered natural for pet parrots.
Birds love to chew on flowers. In the diet of many wild birds are only flowers. If you are using purchased plants, not from your own garden, it is advisable to rinse them thoroughly to wash away any existing preservative or insecticide.
Some flowers are poisonous, such as datura, laburnum, and foxglove.
Holly and poinsettia are also not recommended for parrots. In fact, by treating your pet with flowers, you will soon understand which of the flowers is his favorite.
If your house is located outside the city and surrounded by its own garden, your parrot is very lucky, because it will not be difficult for you to collect dandelions, cut young willow branches, or collect fresh acorns for birds. Compared to urban greenery, the foliage outside the city does not contain dangerous insecticides and is not saturated with exhaust fumes.
In aviaries, shy birds are clearly happier when they have the opportunity to hide in the green foliage. For urban dwellers, there is such great advice as growing your parrot’s favorite greens at home on the balcony, in clay pots. If it is not known where the foliage that you are going to add to the parrot’s cage is from, then it is best to rinse it first.
Never use chemicals, household cleaners or bleach, for example, to disinfect bird toys.
Birds love branches. Disinfect twigs if they have any insects or herbicides on them. By the way, snags, once brought into the house from the beach, for example, will not only become an excellent decoration element for an aviary or a large cage – birds will gladly climb on them.
Small cardboard boxes will be a great toy for a parrot. Birds love to play with them. You can make a small birdhouse out of a cardboard box and you will see with what pleasure your parrot will climb on it and stay there during the day. Birds will not only hide in such a cardboard box, but will also chew and tear paper with pleasure.
Toys with tiny parts should be avoided, unless they are made of wood, of course. Some parrot owners, considering the stuffing of soft toys dangerous, do not give them to their winged pets. In fact, even soft toys can be given to parrots to play with, you just need to be careful: when the toy is torn and the inner filler comes out, the toy will need to be removed from the cage.
Young parrots really like to snuggle up to a soft toy, maybe because it reminds them of a brother or sister with whom they grew up in the nest.
If you want to keep your birds safe, don’t buy items that don’t have a “Safe” label or logo.
Some pet birds that are not familiar with toys because they are still very young will be afraid of everything new and strange.
Older individuals already have experience and therefore can teach younger ones how to play with toys easily and with pleasure.
Fear of toys is overcome with patience. Put the toy in the cage so your bird can see it. At the same time, you need to observe the behavior of the parrot, which, with its body language, will tell you that you put the toy too close, and because of this, it is not very comfortable for it.
Every day the toy can be moved closer and closer. Eventually, most birds will accept the strange item. Just don’t rush.
You can also play with a new toy in front of your parrot. It may take a few days before your bird starts playing with the toy.
Finally, know that your bird’s favorite toy is yourself. Therefore, communicate with your feathered friend more often and give him more of your attention and time.
How to make toys for a parrot with your own hands, see below.