How Do I Choose the Best Parrot Breeders?

Cindy Quarters

Choosing a reliable and reputable parrot breeder is an important part of getting a new pet. The breeder should be someone who is there for you when you have questions and who is willing to stand behind every bird sold. Despite the fact that it may seem like an overwhelming task because of all the choices, there are ways you can use that will help you to choose only the best parrot breeders to work with. Ask plenty of questions, talk to previous buyers, and inspect the breeding facility yourself for best results.

Certain species of parrot, such as the cockatoo, might best be adopted from a local breeder with a trusworthy reputation.
Certain species of parrot, such as the cockatoo, might best be adopted from a local breeder with a trusworthy reputation.

One of the most important things you can do when choosing among parrot breeders is to ask for references. Any good breeder should be able to provide you with a list of names of people that have purchased from him or her. Be very concerned if the breeder will not give you references. There may be a valid reason, such as being a new breeder, but as a general rule the best parrot breeders are more than happy to supply the names of previous customers.

Talk to some of the references and find out what the breeder is like after the sale. Ask if the breeder answers questions willingly and if the bird was healthy. One important thing to ask each person is if he or she would purchase from the same breeder again. Anyone can have a negative experience, but this should be the exception and not the rule. Avoid breeders whose past customers are generally unhappy.

Have an in-depth discussion with the breeder, and don't be afraid to ask questions. An experienced, knowledgeable breeder would rather not sell a parrot at all than to sell to someone who doesn’t take the time to learn about the needs of the bird. Try to get a feeling for how long the person has been raising birds and how problems are handled. Good parrot breeders can explain to you about quarantining of new birds or birds returning from shows.

It is important to ask what the birds are fed, since good parrot breeders know that parrots need more than just dry nuts and seeds. Avoid anyone who doesn’t supplement the parrots’ diets with fresh fruits and other necessary foods. Inquire as to whether or not the birds are hand-raised, and have the breeder demonstrate how easy the young parrots are to pick up. Feel the chest area of any bird you are considering buying. Good-quality parrot breeders will not try to sell thin, underweight birds.

Some breeders do not allow people into the aviary, but if you are able, check on the overall conditions in which the birds are kept. Cages should be clean, without a lot of droppings or old food waste on the floor. Dishes should also be clean, and there should not be any algae growing in the water.

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