Parrot Wings: to trim or not to trim?

Since the arrival of the beautiful Natural Encounters macaws at the Indianapolis Zoo, we’ve had some inquiries on whether or not our pet birds should be given the opportunity to fly. Firstly, flying free like the zoo bird is not safe for pet birds, and requires skilled trainers and many, many hours of flight training. We do not recommend allowing your pet to free fly outdoors at all.

However, many of our pets can benefit from limited free flight in a safe indoor environment, like a special large flight cage, or a room devoted to flight.  The flight area must be safe and free of moving obstacles, sources of toxins and large windows that might look like a place to fly if the bird gets spooked.

It’s also important to remember that not all birds are good fliers. Some did not get the opportunity to learn while young, and may be fearful at the prospect.  Some can be gradually taught, but some are never comfortable.

And of course, birds whose wings are not trimmed are always a ‘flight risk” should they accidentally escape outdoors, so special vigilance is required.

If there is not a safe place for your bird to fly, the bird is safer with a wing trim.

Want to find out more about safe limited flight for pet birds, and whether a wing trim is the best choice for your bird?  Give us a call. Another excellent resource is here: