EnrichmentEnrichment is anything that you do to improve your parrot's quality of life. This can include such things as making or buying toys, creating a new play area, visiting new places, varying his diet or playing music for him. If your parrot lived in the wild he'd have a constant stream of new experiences and challenges to keep him occupied. This isn't the case with a bird who just sits in his cage all day long. As his keeper it's up to you to provide stimulation and activities to keep his very intelligent mind busy. As far as your parrot is concerned, this is probably the most important subject for you to study!
Getting StartedIf "Parrot Enrichment" is a new concept for you, you're about to make your bird very happy! We couldn't think of a better place for you to start than to read the two FREE e-books written by Kris Porter on this very subject. You can download them by clicking on the links below. We recommend you read them from cover to cover and try as many of her recommendations as you can. We would encourage you to use her ideas as a starting point and develop as many new activities along these lines as you can think of. You'll notice a marked change in your bird's quality of life!
Enrichment Book Version 1
Enrichment Book Version 2
Visit her website
TrainingYour avian friend is probably far more intelligent than you imagine. One of the most rewarding ways to utilize this intelligence is to learn how to train your bird. It may be slow going at first because you'll need to learn how to communicate with your parrot in a way that he'll understand. Once you've established this communication he'll be delighted to learn anything you're willing (and patient enough) to teach him. You'll be surprised how much fun it is for both of you when you know you're actually in two way communication!
I've never met anyone more qualified to teach parrot training than Barbara Heidenreich. She's worked all around the world training animals of every kind, but she's taken a special interest in parrots and publishes extensive information on parrot care and training. Her website is www.goodbirdinc.com and it's definitely a place you want to explore.
Her website has a huge number of parrot training resources in the form of articles, videos, etc. that you can use. She also offers some full length DVDs that focus on specific areas of training that are fantastic! Here are links to several of them:
Parrot Training DVDs
She also offers training eBooks:
Parrot Training eBooks
As well as print books:
Parrot Training Books
If you're interested in learning to train your parrot you should definitely spend some time looking over Barbara's website. She's a professional who is able to teach very advanced methods in an easy to comprehend way. She also gives presentations all over the country. If you're able to attend one of them you absolutely should. I've seen four of them and I'd go again tomorrow!
Another expert in parrot training is Susan Friedman Ph.D. If you'd like to gain a very in-depth, intimate knowledge of your bird's intellectual inner workings (or take a good stab at it) she offers a fantastic course called "Living & Learning with Parrots". The course is very intensive and deals with Applied Behavior Analysis. You can expect to do a lot of work and communication with your online classmates in this course.
Graduates of this course come away with a different point of view of their pets and living beings in general. If you'd like to find out more please visit Susan's website at: