home Birds What to do if a parrot pulls out feathers

What to do if a parrot pulls out feathers

Parrot plucking feathers: what to do

One of the reasons why a parrot pulls out its feathers purposefully (not to be confused with a regular molt) may be the wrong conditions of its keeping. Even small wavy parrots need a spacious cage, and any of them must be regularly released to fly freely around the house. A cramped cage will cause stress in the bird, the consequences of which can be very disastrous.

Parrots pull their feathers out due to the stress of loneliness. Domesticated individuals are very sociable pets, therefore they do not tolerate loneliness and lack of attention from the owner. You need to spend time with a parrot every day, talk to him in an affectionate tone, teach him to use his hands, etc. That is why if a bird began purposefully plucking feathers for itself, first of all, exclude these two reasons. close conditions of detention and lack of communication.

Parrots are very emotional creatures, so feather plucking can be part of their hysterical state. Such a strong excitement in a bird can be caused by separation from the owner, lack of sleep due to an irritant (children, other birds, loud and harsh sounds, constant background noise, etc.), loss of a partner or inappropriate pair, lack of toys, change of scenery (rearrangement of the cage or transportation), lack of attention or increased intrusive attention from children who tease the bird. In this state, your pet can do a lot of harm to itself, not only plucking feathers, but also pecking the skin to wounds. It is important to provide the bird with comfort and rest as soon as possible, as well as immediately contact the veterinarian.

Improper feeding can provoke metabolic disorders in the bird, and this in turn will cause itching on the skin and cause the parrot to pluck out feathers to scratch the skin with its beak. To avoid this, never feed your pet food from your table and adhere to the rules for feeding parrots. Even seemingly harmless sunflower seeds, which you decide to treat to your pet, will cause metabolic disorders in him due to their fat content.

Another cause of severe itching, which will cause the bird to pluck feathers, is dry air in the house. This is especially true for city apartments during the heating season. Parrots are tropical birds and naturally live in an environment where humidity is high all year round. The best way out in this situation is to install a humidifier and constantly monitor the humidity level in the room where the parrot is kept. Never install a pet’s cage near heating appliances, because this will not only dry out its skin, but also mucous membranes. Due to the dry and warm air, microcracks will form on them, which will become an excellent environment for the development of pathogens.

To avoid drying out your parrot’s skin, bathe it often by placing a container of water either in the cage or bathing your pet outside the cage. When bathing a parrot, it is important to observe a number of measures so that it does not catch a cold, including avoiding drafts, and in no case should it dry with a hairdryer. You can also lightly spray the parrot with a spray bottle, which will create a playful moment for him.

Another common reason why a parrot loses feathers of its own accord, plucking them out, lies in the presence of some kind of parasitic or fungal disease (downy eater, tick, etc.). Dermatitis may also be the cause. developing as a result of disruption of the internal organs, lack of vitamins, allergies and other things. It so happens that the parrot begins to pluck its feathers in a certain place, for example, under the wings. A veterinarian will be able to pinpoint the cause of the disease.

All of the above reasons for such a problem in parrots are given for information and to exclude possible risk factors. For any change in the behavior and condition of the parrot, we recommend that you immediately contact an ornithologist.

The parrot plucks out feathers. What to do?

Parrots, like no other birds, are prone to self-plucking, it is sad to watch how your beloved pet pulls out its feathers one by one. What is the reason for this behavior and what to do about it? let’s figure it out.

Active molting occurs twice a year. in spring and autumn, but there should not be completely naked areas on the skin of a parrot. The only exception is young individuals, in which the molt is the first, it is more difficult, and may be accompanied by bald patches. New growing feathers, cutting through the skin, can itch and itch, so the bird tends to pluck out old ones that prevent the growth of new feathers. If the bird does not peck itself to blood and does not tear out healthy feathers, this is a completely normal process.

Another thing is gnawed and broken off feathers, as well as erupting “hemp” that do not open for a long time. This indicates a metabolic disorder or disease of the bird, you need to show it to the ornithologist and make the necessary tests.

Yes, boredom is the main reason why a parrot plucks or chews its feathers. Parrots are emotional creatures, stressful conditions are not uncommon for them. There are many reasons for self-plucking in parrots:

  • Lack of sleep, being near irritants (children or other pets;
  • Separation from the previous owners;
  • Inappropriate partner or loss of a previous pair;
  • Lack of attention from the owner;
  • Lack of toys in the cage;
  • Change of location or relocation;
  • Puberty.

A bird can show aggression not only towards itself, but also begin to pluck feathers from relatives. The bird needs to be provided with comfortable conditions: there should be toys, perches, mirrors, beads and other interesting little things in the cage. Try to regularly engage with the bird, find time to caress and feed it.

Parrots in an apartment with dry air can dry out their skin (which is surprising, because birds are tropical), scales like dandruff form on the skin, which itch a lot. Do not place the cage near heating devices and radiators. they dry the skin of the bird and mucous membranes, it is recommended to use humidifiers to increase the humidity, do not allow drafts. There should always be clean water and a bath in the cage. Against the background of dry air, bronchitis, rhinitis, conjunctivitis and other diseases can also develop.

Also accompanied by combing and plucking of feathers. As a result, pathogens can get into the formed wounds, and a secondary infection will begin. Dermatitis can develop against the background of stress, chronic diseases, allergies, parasite bites, lack of vitamins, hormonal disorders. Only an ornithologist can pinpoint the reason, so do not delay visiting him.

Ticks, chewing lice and feather eaters can be found in a healthy bird, but if its immune system is in order, they do not do much harm to it. As soon as the immunity fails, the parasites begin to multiply actively, affecting the beak, legs and skin of the bird. Timely prevention is a must: do not allow contact with wild individuals, disinfect the cage, select a complete diet, and regularly examine the parrot. If parasites are found in the bird, treatment should be started. Your veterinarian will recommend the optimal regimen.

Molting and hygiene

The natural causes of feather loss in wavy parrots include molting, which usually occurs once a year. in the spring (sometimes twice). Feathers begin to pluck feathers on themselves, which do not fall out on their own.

Wavy birds are generally very clean birds, they very often scratch themselves, preening their feathers. for them this is a natural need for daily hygiene. In addition, it is a pleasant and exciting activity, like a game with which they entertain themselves. Of course, in this case, a couple of feathers may fall out, but this rarely happens, therefore it should not cause concern.

During the molting period, parrots take care of their plumage even more often, especially since during this period they already itch. Therefore, if the first rays of the spring sun began to look into your window, do not be surprised that the pet itches a lot and plucks its feathers.

Important! If during molting or daily hygiene your budgerigar itches a lot and pulls out feathers, this is normal until bald spots appear on its body.

Incorrect containment conditions

A big problem arises during the heating season: too dry warm air dries out the skin and mucous membranes. To avoid this, the room where the budgerigar is kept must be frequently ventilated and constantly humidified. You can install special humidifiers, or you can simply hang wet towels near the cage with your pet.

The optimum level of humidity in the room is 70-80%, the air temperature is 20-25 ° С.

Distressed Parrot Plucks Out Feathers Before Being Rescued

To moisturize the bird itself, regular water treatments are needed. The fact is that their skin is naturally dry. there are no sweat and sebaceous glands in it, therefore budgerigars need moisturizing.

Bathing is of great importance in the life of birds, therefore, you need to install a bath with warm water in the cage, in which the bird can splash from time to time. There is another option: regularly spray it with water from a spray bottle. This will protect the skin from drying out, will remove keratinized (dead) particles, the parrot will not scratch once again, which means it will not lose feathers.

Attention! The parrot cage should not be placed in drafts, in direct sunlight and near heating appliances. Do not smoke, spray aerosols and keep poisonous plants indoors with your pet.

During the heating season, another problem arises: the daylight hours are reduced. For budgies, the optimal daylight hours are 12-14 hours, therefore it will be necessary to install special lighting near the cage. lamps for birds. Best of all with a timer. this device will clearly control daylight hours, turning the lights on and off at the right time.

It is necessary to ensure proper sleep for the parrot. If you go to bed after midnight, cover the bird with a dark cloth in the evening.

It is also important to give your pet the opportunity to fly around the room. this is a great opportunity to spread its wings, improve the condition of plumage. This means that he will not have another reason to itch and pull out his feathers. In addition, regular flights are an excellent prevention of hypodynamia.

Unbalanced diet

The more varied the diet, the more active and cheerful the budgie is. The higher the quality of his feed, the healthier he is.

  • Cereals are an excellent source of nutrients and are the mainstay of the diet for most parrot species. However, it would be a mistake to give the pet always the same thing. Each component of the food saturates with its useful substances, therefore it is important not to make Accent on any one type of feed. Give wheat, oats, millet, corn, canary grass, grass seeds, and occasionally nuts and seeds.
  • Fresh vegetables, herbs, fruits should also be in the diet of the feathered, even if he is not accustomed to them. If you persistently put fresh food in the feeder, the parrot’s natural curiosity will prevail and he will taste unfamiliar food.
  • Protein food occupies a special place in the diet of birds. Animal proteins (and with them amino acids) are vital for birds. If in the wild they can feed on insects and their larvae, then at home they need to be given a piece of boiled egg, low-fat cottage cheese, minced meat, natural yogurt once a week. For budgerigars, a sufficient weekly dose of protein food. the size of a cherry berry. is sufficient. For larger birds, the dose is increased.

Infection or parasites

For budgerigars, the most common symptom of many diseases is itching. It can be so painful that the feathered one, scratching, pulls out its feathers with force. Bald patches begin to form all over the body. This process is only paused when the parrot wants to drink or eat. The rest of the time he itches.

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Bird infected with chewing lice (chewing lice):

  • becomes irritable and aggressive;
  • refuses feed;
  • itches violently and pulls out feathers, while pecking at the skin;
  • often the wavy parrot loses all plumage on the back;
  • his eyes are inflamed;
  • holes appear on the feathers, the tips begin to curl and deform.

Scabies mite (knemidocoptosis) is another dangerous disease of parrots. Parasites provoke the appearance of flaking on the skin and severe itching. Growths form on the wax and paws, the bird tries to gnaw them in order to get itchy skin. Due to the growths, the beak is gradually deformed, the parrot, trying to get rid of the itching, violently pluck out its feathers until it bleeds. When the disease reaches a severe stage, severe inflammation of the joints begins, the bird completely loses its plumage. A parrot that has lost its limbs dies.

  • becomes lethargic, weak, breathing heavily;
  • beak, legs are covered with gray, very itchy scales;
  • combing these spots and plucking feathers, trying to get rid of the itching;
  • refuses food, suffers from an intestinal disorder;
  • white cheesy discharge appears from the goiter, which dries up on the plumage of the head.

Important! To accurately determine the infection of the budgerigar with parasites or fungi, you need to contact a veterinary clinic. Often, the external manifestations of the disease make themselves felt only at serious stages and it happens that it becomes too late to treat the disease.

Dangerous causes of feather plucking

When a parrot pulls out old feathers that interfere with the growth of new plumage, this is normal. The alarm needs to be beaten when he does it too zealously and pecks himself to blood. There are several good reasons why budgerigars pluck their feathers.

Cause Symptoms
Stress Feathers fall out in the tail and wings
Skin parasites Feathers become “broken”, begin to exfoliate and twist
Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, manifested by loose stools In the area of ​​the cloaca (on the pope), the feathers are dirty
Skin diseases (eczema) Feathers plucked from the neck and from the wings
Gastrointestinal infections with vomiting Under the wings, in the area of ​​the breast and goiter, the plumage is dirty

Psychological disorders

The most common mental disorder in poultry is self-plucking syndrome. Previously, it was believed that parrots of large breeds suffer from it, however, small budgerigars can pluck their feathers. Self-plucking syndrome is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • there is a lot of fluff and feathers at the bottom of the pet’s dwelling;
  • plucked feathers of irregular shape (not round, but crooked, dangling, bitten);
  • the parrot itches almost all the time;
  • pulling out feathers, he may scream, as he feels pain, but still continues to itch;
  • bald patches appear in the chest area, under the wings and on the neck.

Most often, the bird reacts to stress by self-plucking. It is important to understand the reasons why this is happening. A plucked parrot’s skin becomes susceptible to infections, which can lead to serious illness.

Feathered stress can be due to loneliness. To prevent this from happening, it is important to pay a lot of attention to him, to provide him with a variety of toys with which he can entertain himself during your absence. The appearance of a feathered friend can still save a parrot from a feeling of loneliness.

Birds are very sensitive to the attitude of the owners towards themselves. They acutely feel their uselessness, suffer from this, get sick and pull out their plumage from grief.

Did you know? Budgerigars kept in pairs are less likely to have nervous disorders.

A change of scenery can also be stressful for birds. Try to spend a lot of time with the parrot at this time, play with it, indulge in treats. Letting him hear your voice will help him feel safe. If the budgerigar feels lonely in a new place, he will be afraid of everything and react to it by self-plucking.

It’s another matter if you have a new pet in your house. He, too, will react sharply to a change of scenery, but here you, on the contrary, should not annoy him with your attention. Read about how to behave with a bird in this situation in the article “Adaptation of parrots after purchase”.

There is also a stress molt: feathers begin to actively fall out in birds that have undergone rough catch, poor transportation conditions, cage tightness, poor nutrition, lack of hygiene.

Why does a budgerigar pluck feathers

There are several reasons why a parrot pulls out feathers for itself: natural, not associated with any violations, and pathological, when the owner needs to urgently take action. It is important to understand the peculiarities of your pet’s behavior in order to notice in time when his condition deviates from the norm. It happens that the budgerigar is so addicted to the process of pulling out feathers that it can completely lose its plumage.

Scratching the cloaca

If your budgerigar itches on the perches or twigs of the cage cage, this may indicate such problems and diseases:

  • improper housing conditions. too much sand or gravel that the budgie swallows can lead to blockage of the rectum. In this case, the cloaca becomes inflamed, which provokes itching and irritation;
  • diarrhea, which can occur due to improper diet, poor quality feed and toxin poisoning. Permanent liquid droppings irritate the mucous membranes, leading to itching and constant scratching of the anus by the birds;
  • worms also lead to irritation of the cloaca and provoke severe itching.

Attention! The natural reason why a parrot itches with a cloaca is puberty and the onset of the nesting period.

Dry air

One of the causes of itching in parrots is the low humidity in the room. This phenomenon often occurs during the heating season. heating devices dry the air excessively. It is important to keep the humidity at 60-70%. From too dry air, the skin and mucous membranes of the budgerigar dry out, it begins to itch, feathers fall out. You can notice that the pet itches due to dry air by its behavior: it drinks a lot of water and tries to swim in wet greenery, which you put in its feeder.

To increase and maintain humidity, you can install special air humidifiers or hang wet towels near the cage with a parrot. It will also be good to spray the bird with water from a spray bottle or install a bath where it will bathe itself.


If the parrot begins to itch strongly, this may indicate one of three types of molt:

  • juvenile;
  • seasonal;
  • french.

Juvenile. the first molt, which begins in young parrots at about 3 months. The chick loses its newborn fluff and acquires the bright and expressive plumage of an adult. It lasts quite a long time. two to three months, after which the bird is already considered sexually mature.

Seasonal molt occurs in all wavy birds twice a year, lasts about one and a half months. the old plumage changes to a new one.

At this time, the parrot sheds and actively itches, experiencing severe itching. At the same time, many feathers appear in and around the cage. Some owners notice the appearance of dandruff-like scales in their pet. However, as such, dandruff does not exist in parrots. These white scales are particles left over from the tubules of growing feathers.

How To Stop My Bird From Feather Plucking? | Ask Bondi Vet

Watch a shedding parrot if it itches all the time, but otherwise feels fine, don’t worry. Natural molting processes end sooner or later.

Of course, there are some changes in behavior during this period:

  • the bird becomes nervous and irritable, does not make contact;
  • does not respond to familiar games, but remains active;
  • may occasionally suffer from poor appetite.

How the molting process proceeds in budgies and what the owner needs to do at this time, see this

During this period, it is important to provide the bird with peace and sufficient rest, it is already difficult for it: unpleasant itching and rather painful sensations are tormented due to the germination of feather rudiments.

Worse, if your pet has a French molt. this is already a disease. It is characterized by the loss of feathers and feathers. The feathered one plucks out feathers from the wings and under the tail. Often this condition leads to the fact that the parrot can never fly again. He becomes apathetic, takes no interest in anything. Severe disease leads to complete loss of plumage.

Incorrect lighting

Lighting plays a big role in the life of birds. Properly organized lighting will ensure the physical and mental health of the parrot.

Ultraviolet light promotes the production of vitamin D in the body, which is necessary for the growth of the skeletal system and feathers. With a deficiency of nutrients, the bird constantly itches and loses feathers.

Many owners believe that the light from the window is sufficient for the parrot. However, ultraviolet rays do not penetrate through the glass, therefore it is necessary to attend to additional lighting: in the summer open the windows so that the ultraviolet light penetrates the room, in the winter turn on the pet special lamps.

In addition, a clear daylight regime is the key to the mental health of a pet. With a lack of sleep, birds get sick. Read more about how and how much parrots sleep in the article.

Attention! In the winter months, the optimal daylight hours for birds are 10 hours, in the summer months. 14 hours.


It’s one thing when a parrot scratches itself from time to time, and quite another when it itches constantly, while also starting to pluck feathers. This may indicate a serious illness. In addition to itching, the pet is disturbed by other symptoms:

  • peeling, growths, various formations appear on the beak and skin;
  • feathers look brittle, “torn”, at the base of the feathers you can see droplets of blood;
  • the bird is irritable, restless;
  • refuses food.

From this video you will find out in which cases frequent pet scratching is the norm, and in which cases it is already a problem:

Nutrition and vitamin deficiencies

A monotonous diet and the use of poor-quality feed are often the reason that the parrot often itches. If a pet does not have enough fresh greens, vegetables, fruits, twig food in its diet, it is not surprising that gradually its feather cover becomes dull and brittle, crusts appear on its beak and skin, severe itching begins. its body lacks vitamins.

The bird regularly needs to be given mineral supplements and courses of vitamins. If you notice that your pet has begun to itch frequently, consult with a specialist how to enrich its diet.

Important! The biggest mistake that parrot owners make is feeding human food: pasta; sandwiches; cereals seasoned with oil, salt or sugar, and other.

Pets gladly absorb such food, which leads to disruption of metabolic processes in their bodies and the appearance of severe itching.


Budgerigars often itch due to external parasites:

  • downy eaters,
  • fleas,
  • bedbugs,
  • lice-eaters,
  • ticks.
  • scabies. found in the upper skin;
  • quake. in feather rods;
  • tracheal. in the respiratory system.

Downy eaters are often called bird lice, they move through the body of the bird, irritating the skin. The feathered one begins to itch, trying to get rid of parasites with its paws and beak. The disease is accompanied by loss of appetite, poor sleep, nervousness, parrot aggressiveness and feather loss.

At home, the presence of parasites (fleas, ticks) can be detected quite simply: it is enough to cover the bottom of the cage with clean white paper. After a while, dark particles will appear on it, which indicate infection with parasites.

It is quite difficult to get rid of pests, especially since relapses often occur. However, if you start treatment on time, the positive results will not take long.

Stress and loneliness

They are fearful, easily losing their balance, painfully reacting to sudden movements and loud unexpected sounds of creation. There are many cases when budgies died from heart rupture, having experienced severe fright.

In addition, they are extremely social, need communication, and react very sharply to loneliness, change of environment, owner, death of a partner, the appearance of a new person in the family or a pet. Stress is one of the common reasons why parrots often scratch and pluck their feathers. Managing stress for these little birds is incredibly difficult. A frightened parrot may never become tame and react in panic to any of your actions. Therefore, it is best to secure him in advance from experiences:

  • adhere to the recommendations for adapting a parrot if it has recently entered your home;
  • to properly care for and educate him;
  • regularly release from the cage to spread its wings (free flights, even within the room, have a good effect on the mental and physical health of the bird);
  • carefully protect him from the encroachment of other pets and the inept treatment of small children;
    pay a lot of attention, play and communicate.
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Most parrots (not only wavy, but also larger ones: cockatiels, gray, macaws) react to loneliness by self-plucking. They scratch with their paws and beak and pull out feathers. Not all pets can be weaned from this habit later.

Some birds begin to scratch themselves out of boredom, entertaining themselves in this way. By similar behavior, they signal the absence of toys and entertainment. Be sure to equip the bird with a cage with rings or ladders, swings and any toys that will be of interest to him.

Possible reasons for a parrot to pull out feathers

Violation of the conditions of detention, namely

  • Dry air in the apartment, especially during the heating season, when the rooms are not ventilated and the batteries are hot.
  • Due to the anatomical peculiarities, the skin of parrots is dry, since there are no sebaceous and sweat glands in it, with the exception of the coccygeal (and some species of parrots. gray, macaw, Amazons. do not have a coccygeal gland). Accordingly, the birds must be bathed, which the owners often forget about.
  • For the prevention of hypodynamia, parrots contained in cages should be given the opportunity to fly around the apartment. Do not forget to check the apartment for sources of danger for birds before doing this.
  • It is important that the perches are made of natural material. The tannins of the perch bark stimulate digestion so birds do not have problems such as diarrhea or constipation.

Violation of the rules and norms of feeding, namely

  • Lack of amino acids such as cystine, methionine, lysine in the diet due to the lack of a protein component in it. Owners often forget to give their birds protein foods, and some are not even aware of their need. Once a week, parrots should receive protein in the form of a boiled egg, low-fat cottage cheese, yogurt, minced meat. The amount of protein feed depends on the type of parrot. So, for a budgerigar, it can be with a cherry, and for a larger one. accordingly more. During the molting period, the protein should enter the parrot’s body 2 times more often, during laying and incubation of eggs, as well as when feeding chicks. daily.
  • For a pet to be healthy, fresh food must be present in its diet. fruits, vegetables, herbs. It often happens that the owners, once seeing that a parrot refuses an apple, carrot or pear, stop giving them. But this is the case when you need to be persistent and offer fresh food again and again every day. The parrot is by nature very curious, and after a while he will begin to taste the offered fruits and vegetables, and then eat them fully.
  • No bird’s diet can do without grain feed, and parrots are no exception. However, mistakes are encountered here too: the food is constantly given the same. For poultry, the composition of the grain mixture is very important, since different seeds contain correspondingly different nutrients. For example, wheat contains sulfur, which is essential during molting; oats. the most important amino acids lysine and cystine; corn, millet, canary seed, grass seeds are rich in carbohydrates; oil seeds and nuts. unsaturated fatty acids.
  • There are also such owners who unknowingly try to feed the parrot with food from their table: cutlets, fried meat, sausage, etc. This leads to a perversion of the bird’s appetite and, as a result, to metabolic disorders, and often to death pet.
  • Some experts believe that the reason for plucking feathers is the pathology of the thyroid gland, and advises to include beets, carrots, cabbage, lettuce in the diet of sick birds: they stimulate the activity of the thyroid gland. At the same time, it is necessary to exclude oats from the diet of parrots, because it suppresses the activity of the thyroid gland, as well as oilseeds and walnuts containing fatty oils.

Skin irritation is observed in the presence of ectoparasites (mites, downy eaters), endoparasites (lamblia, ascaridia), fungi (aspergillus).

Itchy skin can also cause liver and kidney disease.

Often the reason for pulling out feathers is the treatment of pet’s skin diseases with ointments. The ointment on the feather makes it sticky, and the bird begins to tidy it up. But she, as a rule, does not succeed, and you have to remove such a pen. The larger the surface treated with the ointment, the more extensive the area of ​​skin thinned from feathers.

This is the most common and most difficult to determine cause of self-pinching. Parrots live in large flocks and are endowed with a highly developed psyche. Frustration is the most common type of psychogenic disorder; it is a strong emotional experience that is a reaction to an insurmountable obstacle on the way to satisfying one’s needs, both physiological and psychological. That is, any violation of both the conditions of keeping and feeding, and communication (with other birds or humans), causes frustration in the parrot. Prolonged presence of a bird in a state of frustration can lead to serious disturbances in its mental state. depression, neurosis. The reaction to frustration can be aggressiveness or depression, depending on the type of the bird’s nervous system, but in any case, it begins to pull out its feathers.

The reasons for frustration in a parrot can be:

  • boredom (the owner is absent from home for a long time, and when he returns, he does not pay attention to the pet);
  • the presence of other pets or small children that do not give the bird rest;
  • obsessive attention from strangers;
  • loneliness with the loss of a partner or owner;
  • the emergence of a new partner who did not like the parrot;
  • low position in a group of birds, when the majority rejects the parrot; lack of sleep when the cage is overpopulated or when the daily rhythm of the bird is not observed (it needs 15 hours of light and 9 hours of sleep);
  • fear of separation from a person when he goes on vacation and gives the pet to an unfamiliar house, to strangers (this is especially important for a parrot in the first year of life with the owner).
  • often a state of frustration is observed after the parrot, along with the cage, is moved somewhere in a corner where there is not enough light, the air is drier and there is less attention. That is, when they forgot about it, when no one needed it. The bird feels good about it, suffers and begins to pull out feathers from grief.

But it also happens that after a change of owner, a parrot may stop pulling out feathers: with a new owner, the bird is more comfortable, and aggression or sadness passes away.

Why does a parrot pluck feathers?

Bright luxurious plumage is the decoration of the parrot and the pride of its owner. But often the owners notice that the parrot begins to pluck feathers for itself. The concern about this is not without foundation. Self-plucking is a serious disease and can occur under the influence of factors of various nature. Even a specialist sometimes finds it difficult to determine the true cause of the development of pathology.

Previously, it was believed that plucking feathers are mainly large parrots, such as gray, macaw. Now the owners of budgies, lovebirds, necklace parrots, etc., face this problem.

Self-pinching symptoms

  • The parrot sits ruffled, indifferent to everything that happens around, most often there are no feathers on the lower part of the wings, belly and chest. In severe cases, the entire body, with the exception of the head, becomes naked.
  • Plucked feathers, bitten, torn, frayed. First, the bird pulls out feathers during daily grooming, then it does it more and more and loses feathers more and more. If they are “alive”, then bleeding may appear.
  • The bird also plucks out newly growing feathers. Sometimes a parrot, furiously pulling out feathers, can peck at the skin, then extensive wounds with exposed blood vessels appear, and bleeding begins.

How can I help a parrot? Self-plucking treatment

You can apply the bitter spray “Beafar spray”, “Aloe-Vera”. The action of Beafar spray is based on the use of bitter substances that are harmless to humans and animals. Spray Aloe-Vera. a natural antiseptic, is an analgesic and hemostatic agent, softens and moisturizes the irritated area on the skin of a bird.

parrot, pulls, feathers

For home remedies, try a 1: 1 baking soda solution. Applied to the feathers of a parrot, because of bitterness, it discourages the bird from plucking.

But without finding out the reason for pulling out feathers, these funds will not help.

You can put on a protective collar on the parrot, but this is also not a way out, since the physiology of this bird is such that it must clean the feathers and put them in order for 2-3 hours every day. The collar will not allow this, because of which the painful condition of the parrot can only worsen. If you take off the collar, the parrot will take over the old.

To reduce itching, the pet needs to be given 1 / 8-1 / 2 tablets of calcium pangamate, vitamin B15 every day. If the feathers do not grow, the parrot must be constantly fed with iodine. To bring the pet’s nervous system to a stable state, he is given an infusion of valerian (with sugar or honey) or valerian extract (1/2 dragee per day for large birds). Eleutherococcus extract, pollen will also help reduce itching. In addition, the ward should be bathed frequently. And don’t forget that he needs ultraviolet radiation.

And finally, we note that the treatment will be effective and successful if the exact cause of the pathology is identified and eliminated. As you can see, there are a lot of reasons for plucking feathers, and in case of difficulties, you need to look for a good specialist ornithologist. He will conduct the necessary examinations to exclude diseases of the liver, kidneys, parasitic and fungal pathologies, if necessary, adjust the diet, prescribe the necessary treatment.

Why does a parrot pluck feathers

Parrots constantly molt, and so often that, sometimes, this phenomenon is not noticeable. However, the peak of feather loss in parrots is in spring and autumn, and often due to a lack of vitamins and a balanced diet. New feathers in these cute birds grow quickly, erupt, and, accordingly, can cause itching. The bird begins to itch, pluck out old feathers, which scatter throughout the cage. Old feathers interfere with the growth of new feathers, so the parrot carefully pulls them out. The terrible thing is that your parrot watches its plumage, carefully plucking it out, no, unless, of course, you did not notice behind it that the bird is somehow too zealous, abruptly and begins to peck itself until it bleeds. In this case, sound the alarm.

Immediately take the parrot to an ornithologist, who examines the bird and whether or not it reveals a complex pathology. Because of her, your house feathered friend behaves so “inappropriately”. If the suspicions about the disease in the parrot are confirmed, then after a thorough examination and analysis, the ornithologist will prescribe a course of medication. In addition to medicinal substances, minerals and vitamins can be prescribed, which are necessary for the speedy recovery of the pet. If the problem reveals itself in the skin and feathers of the parrot, then the ornithologist will prescribe local, antiparasitic ointments.

Keeping clean or “depressed” in talking parrots

Talking parrots are overly emotional and vulnerable birds. They are very acutely experiencing any conflicts that occur in the family where they live, and are also prone to frequent breakdowns and stress. For a long time, parrots may not show themselves in any way, be in a state of extreme oppression. If a parrot is on the verge of hysteria, is in a panic state, then, under the influence of emotions, it begins to very strongly and quickly pluck out all the down and feathers from itself, peck at them until a wound forms in them and blood flows.

Try not to bring your beloved feathered friend to such a state that he, every now and then, pluck out his feathers as unnecessary. If you nevertheless caught your talking parrot doing this, distract him with something, talk heart to heart, tell something funny so that the bird calms down.

The main reasons for self-plucking in budgerigars are:

Unfortunately, budgerigars also often pluck their own feathers. For parrots of this breed, self-plucking is not uncommon. There are many symptoms of this behavior, so it is often difficult to identify the cause in these feathered beauties. Lovers of parrots do not always manage to help their pet in some miraculous way, so you cannot do without the help of a specialist.

Plucking feathers from budgies has no general recommendations for self-medication. Each bird has its own, purely individual reason for plucking feathers.

Most of the doctors. ornithologists and veterinarians are inclined to argue that budgerigars only pluck out their feathers when they are given the wrong food. If there are a lot of sunflower seeds in the food that is poured on budgerigars, then the birds cannot stop, but peck at it and peck until they are satisfied. The fact is that these birds cannot eat a lot of seeds, they have a lot of vegetable fat. By nature, parrots fly a lot, which means they move a lot. Sitting in a cage, parrots do not have the opportunity to fly a lot and spend their allotted amount of energy. And after eating a lot of food with seeds in the heat, the parrot may become ill.

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In winter, food with seeds will not harm, but will only give an opportunity to add energy to the bird, but in summer the parrot should be given seeds in limited quantities. Better make sure you have enough minerals, amino acids and vitamin supplements for your favorite feathered friend. During the moulting period, and especially when the parrot is intensively plucking feathers, feed him food that contains a sufficient amount of protein. Protein speeds up the formation of new feathers.

Don’t forget the psychological aspects as well. Small, funny budgerigars are the most social, peaceful and romantic pets. They do not like to be bored, so out of grief and longing they can do such an activity as plucking feathers.

This behavior is very common in lonely budgerigars, which is why these birds should not live alone in a cage. Add a girlfriend or friend to him, then the parrot will calm down and it will be much calmer and more fun. Do not offend your pet, take care of him, or better, buy him a pair. a heartfelt friend, so that the parrot feels good. Budgerigars also begin to pluck themselves intensively if his friend or girlfriend is sick or died. Always keep this in mind and watch out for the feathered family pet.

Another reason why budgerigars often itch is real skin dermatitis. The causes of this disease in parrots are very different:

  • a stressful condition in which the bird “angrily” pecks at the skin under the feathers, after which deep, sometimes lacerated wounds form on it. These wounds are gateways for any infection;
  • diseases of the internal organs of poultry;
  • kidney disease. there is an increased uric acid, and it causes itching and itching in the parrot;
  • allergy;
  • a parasite bite, after which the parrot’s skin is combed and severe itching is noted;
  • avitaminosis;
  • violations of the hormonal background of the bird;

With all these and many other pathologies, budgerigars have a pronounced itching of the skin, which greatly worries the bird and the bird itches for a long time, begins to eat little and the immunity decreases, the body’s resistance to other diseases.

In order to avoid all this, ornithologists veterinarians advise owners of parrots of any breed to comply with all the necessary sanitary standards for keeping poultry, proper care for them. It is forbidden to allow contact of domestic parrots with individuals from the wild.

If you find parasites or itching in parrots, immediately contact your doctor. ornithologist or veterinarian for help.

Indoor air too dry

Every breeder knows that most species of parrots are native to some countries located in the tropical climatic zone. All of them are characterized by high air humidity.

When it comes to your apartment, its atmosphere is clearly drier and less comfortable for any kind of parrots. In this connection, your pet’s skin will most likely constantly dry out, peel off and thereby cause irritation. Usually in such cases, the parrot is constantly itching.

To somehow alleviate his suffering, you can purchase a special air humidifier and spray water on it from time to time. In addition, the bird should be able to swim when it wants to.


Elementary depression is another common reason why parrots pull out feathers.

Domesticated parrots are often acquired not only because of their great appearance, but also because of their funny behavior and cheerful disposition. These birds can have fun all day long and fly around the room, attracting your attention, and responding to your reciprocity.

However, if you stop paying attention to them, they will immediately start to feel sad. Surely you could more than once observe a picture when a lonely bird retires in its cage and is constantly dozing.

However, other factors can also cause depression. Such as. the death of a couple, change of place of residence, chronic lack of sleep and even food that is unsuitable for the pet. All of this can cause your parrot to scratch and rip out its plumage.

And if a caring owner immediately pays attention to this, then he will certainly correct the current situation. An experienced breeder will not even need to explain what to do and how to act if his pet is depressed.

The first step is to immediately find time to be around the parrot more often. In this case, it is imperative not only to play with your pet, but also just to communicate.

Be sure to place some interesting toys next to the bird house and inside it, with which the pet could play in your absence. In addition, it will be necessary to check the poultry feed and, if necessary, replace it with another grain composition.


Every self-respecting bird breeder should know what molting is and when it takes place. It is during the moulting periods that the old feathers of parrots are replaced by new ones.

This process usually occurs a couple of times a year, in the spring and autumn. At such times, your feathered fidget loses feathers evenly. This means that the loss of old feathers occurs as if imperceptibly, without leaving noticeable bald spots and places devoid of plumage on the pet’s body. The fact that the molting process is already underway can be understood by the increased number of feathers that have fallen to the floor of the cell.

Usually, when your parrots begin to molt, they become more irritable due to the itching caused by the growing stumps of new plumage. In such cases, it often happens that the pet can pull out its own feathers.

However, molting can be accompanied by some complications. In particular, if your pet begins to tear its skin to blood, and the new plumage still cannot grow back, then this is already a cause for concern.

Most likely, your parrot has a metabolic disorder or you are faced with some other reason for the loss of plumage. Only doctors will be able to give you the exact answer, and then only after they have done all the necessary tests.


At the moments when your tamed pets pluck out their feathers and comb their skin until they bleed, they can pick up some kind of disease that significantly complicates an already difficult situation.

Many factors can cause this condition. Such as. lack of vitamins, dry air, etc.

Once in such an unpleasant situation, your pet cannot do without the timely help of specialists. Therefore, do not hesitate with your trip to the vet. Surely he will immediately advise you to do a series of tests on his domesticated parrot.

Why does a parrot pluck out its feathers

There are many reasons why your domesticated parrot plucks feathers. In the article below, we will try to consider each of them and give some recommendations on how to bring your pet’s behavior back to normal.

If a parrot has feathers falling out or plucking them out on its own, then you should immediately pay attention to this. It is possible that you are observing the natural process of changing the pet’s feather cover, but in some cases this may not be the case at all.

Note that a parrot without feathers is like a person without arms. That is why plumage plays a very important role in the life of every parrot. However, let’s not run far ahead and consider each of the possible reasons in more detail.

Infection with parasites

Another reason why a parrot’s feathers fall out may be parasites. Any birdwatcher can tell you that there are many varieties of different parasites that your pet can pick up.

Sometimes the fallen feather cover of a parrot may indicate that something is wrong with it. Take a closer look at each feather dropped. You may be able to find traces of the vital activity of parasites on it.

If this happened, and you found on the fallen plumage corresponding signs of the presence of parasites in the pet, then it will immediately become clear to you why the parrot pluck out its feathers. Treatment in this case will need to be started immediately.


Tropical inhabitants molt in autumn and spring. New “clothes” begin to cut through the skin, causing itching. Parrots diligently get rid of “old clothes” and clean up. But when molting, they do not peck the skin to wounds.


There are several factors that can trigger a parrot to pluck feathers:

  • In nature, these bright birds live in the subtropics, and in poor lighting they can get sick.
  • It is wrong to place the cage near the batteries, often change the location of the “home”. all this will have a detrimental effect on the physical and mental state of the bird.
  • These small creatures can get sick in a cold room, if they overheat. The optimum temperature for keeping is 22-25 C.
  • You cannot keep a feathered pet constantly in its “house”.
  • You should not feed the same monotonous food. feathered individuals in different periods need certain vitamins and microelements.
  • Small, cramped cage with no toys will cause mental health problems in birds.


Frustration is the hardest to define. Having a highly developed psyche, with a strong emotional experience and lack of satisfaction, “tropical winged inhabitants” are able to get rid of plumage, show aggression and depression. Usually frustration appears due to a sharp change in conditions of detention and a lack of familiar communication. A long period in a state of frustration leads to neuroses and depression in a parrot.

Other reasons

A stressful situation can be a factor in why a parrot pulls out feathers. They are susceptible to stress easily. this is facilitated by changes in the environment. You should take a closer look: perhaps the cage is in a different place, a new mirror or “dwelling” has been purchased to replace the old ones, a new pet has appeared, which the bird is afraid of, or the actions of young children make him worry.

Given that these creatures are vulnerable and emotional, the cause of stress can be conflicts in the family, jealousy and longing for the owner, lack of sleep, puberty, the wrong partner. Stress can be caused by the loss of a “second half”.

If the bird lives in his house alone, be sure to purchase toys, perches, twigs, various bells, and install a mirror in his “home”. In it, the bird will see the “friend” and communicate with him. The birds are very fond of communication, so the owner should often talk and play with his pet, let him fly around the room, because in their natural habitat, parrots do not sit very much.


Why does a parrot pluck feathers while living in captivity? The reason is often trivial. In modern apartments, the cover of animals often dries up. Scales appear, itching, causing it to itch a lot, as a result of which the parrot pulls out feathers. In their natural environment, birds bathe in dew, rainwater.

Why does a parrot constantly pluck out its feathers and how to prevent it

Parrots are sensitive, gentle, funny, beautiful creatures. If a parrot began to pull out feathers, lose its splendor, then something in his life went wrong, and various factors could be the reason for this. It is important to figure out why a parrot pluck out feathers for itself, what danger it poses to its health and beauty, how to deal with this problem.


The culprits why parrots pluck out their feathers are parasites. With a strong immune system, the parasites living on the winged body do not cause much discomfort. But when immunity is weakened, they actively multiply, parasitizing on the skin, beak and legs of the bird.

If a feather-eating infection has occurred, the animal will worry and actively scratch. Malofagov (downy eaters) are easy to spot upon examination.

Self-plucking is provoked by quill, ixodid, gamasid mites, which parasitize feathers and cause inflammation. Inflammation is accompanied by pain, itching, but the appearance of exposed areas on the body is unlikely.

Feathered creatures are susceptible to infection by numerous “pests” inside the body. Giardia often parasitizes, causing the development of giardiasis. Plucking under the wings is a characteristic feature. Corella is prone to this most often.