Which future bird would be right for me?

Luvbirdlover

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Jul 1, 2021
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I'm looking at a bird to get sometime in the distant future, a few years away, but need to be prepared for a bird and there's no such thing as being too prepared!

Size : Not a big deal, but about medium. Nothing smaller than a cockatiel , and I'm slightly intimidated by huge birds.
Lifespan : Longer the better
Noise : Not a concern, thanks to living rurally in a large house no neighbours to be angry. I know how loud some birds can be, and don't mind it, too.
Owner is able to give a lot of time and will be very committed to the bird.

One very important thing is the bird will be a good candidate for free flight. This is what I want to do with this bird, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. I really love the idea of free flight and I think it is really good for the bird. I would work with a professional trainer, and would have a good quality GPS tracker on the bird at all times. I love the challenge of training with horses and dogs, and I love birds too, so I don't see myself not wanting to do the training. Thankfully, I own a large plot of land I could use for training, so I don't have to travel. And, birds of prey are really quite rare in New Zealand, so that is helpful.
I know how some birds are better suited to free flight than others, so I would like to have a bird that is better suited.

I would also like this bird to be able to be around it's own kind, as if the first bird works out perfectly, I would like a companion for it. Not in the same cage, just to be out with the other bird, supervised.
 
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Skarila

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✻RIP - 28 YO Zeleni the mischievous IRN
✻RIP -Sunny the budgie
When you mentioned middle sized bird, loudness is not an issue, free flight and future companions - my first through was an Alexandrine parrot. They are super friendly birds, work well with multiple people and I've seen them free flighted. While almost any bird could be free flighted (trained, I mean), I guess issue with smaller once is that they could get spooked and fly away. I did see people having conures and even quakers (Quakers was the very first thing that came to my mind until I read free flight) free flighted, but for some reason I wouldn't dare having a smaller bird completely free. If I'd choose, surely an Alexandrine. Especially if I'm planning getting a friend - bigger chance they will accept each other since they're simply cool like that, but it's not always a case, so it's a good thing to keep in mind. While I did not have an alexandrine, I did have his smaller cousin the ringneck parakeet - essentially they're almost the same, just the alexandrines are more like quieter gentle giants compared to the ringnecks. Also, they are far more independent birds compared to lets say conures or African greys. However, all birds need a high level of commitment and to work with them. Also keep in mind that when you get a new bird, always the main idea is for your self first - never for the bird, as you never know if they will get along or not. Good thinking that you are planning keeping them separate. Maybe after a time if they are really BFFs, you could house them together in a larger/double flight cage. One downside with the Psittacula genus is that they're known for their bluffing stage when young.

Another really awesome chonk of a bird would be the small but sturdy senegals. I just really love them but they are more of a solitary bird so getting companion for them is often a bad idea, especially when over 4 years of age. Only thing I do not like about them is how hard are they to read sometimes, and their bites hurt. Check out Kili the senegal parrot - she's awesome and her owner is the Parrot Wizard. Check him and his flock out!!


Another middle sized parrot that came to my mind are the amazons - there's quite a few members who could tell more about them.
 

chris-md

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The challenge with “independent birds” is that by their nature they make poor candidates for free flight. That’s why ekkies don’t make great starting candidates, amongst other reasons.

I really hope you’re planning to get professional training with free flight. So much is on the line that you really don’t want to leave your birds life in jeopardy over rookie mistakes. A trainer can show you how to avoid those mistakes without makin

For free flight, amazons and macaws are generally some of the best.

Red fronted macaw is the smallest of the Big Macs (or largest of the small. As macaws go they are smack in the middle. As an Ekkie owner having experienced a red front, it’s actuallly not a huge size difference) and are known to have about the sweetest temperament.

lilac crown amazons are smaller than the “hot three” (yellow nape, blue fronted, and double yellow headed), and are such sweet, mild tempered birds.
 
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Luvbirdlover

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The challenge with “independent birds” is that by their nature they make poor candidates for free flight. That’s why ekkies don’t make great starting candidates, amongst other reasons.

I really hope you’re planning to get professional training with free flight. So much is on the line that you really don’t want to leave your birds life in jeopardy over rookie mistakes. A trainer can show you how to avoid those mistakes without makin

For free flight, amazons and macaws are generally some of the best.

Red fronted macaw is the smallest of the Big Macs (or largest of the small. As macaws go they are smack in the middle. As an Ekkie owner having experienced a red front, it’s actuallly not a huge size difference) and are known to have about the sweetest temperament.

lilac crown amazons are smaller than the “hot three” (yellow nape, blue fronted, and double yellow headed), and are such sweet, mild tempered birds.
Yes, definitely will be working with a professional. I'm currently considering the Liberty Wings (Chris Brio) or Parrot Volancy (Phelan Velvel) courses.

Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find any breeders of the lilac crown amazons or Red fronts, nor have I ever seen someone here with one. In New Zealand we don't have all the domestic parrot species the USA has, I wonder if that is why. We have yellow headed and yellow naped amazons, they look like a size I could handle. Do they make good free flight birds?
 
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Luvbirdlover

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When you mentioned middle sized bird, loudness is not an issue, free flight and future companions - my first through was an Alexandrine parrot. They are super friendly birds, work well with multiple people and I've seen them free flighted. While almost any bird could be free flighted (trained, I mean), I guess issue with smaller once is that they could get spooked and fly away. I did see people having conures and even quakers (Quakers was the very first thing that came to my mind until I read free flight) free flighted, but for some reason I wouldn't dare having a smaller bird completely free. If I'd choose, surely an Alexandrine. Especially if I'm planning getting a friend - bigger chance they will accept each other since they're simply cool like that, but it's not always a case, so it's a good thing to keep in mind. While I did not have an alexandrine, I did have his smaller cousin the ringneck parakeet - essentially they're almost the same, just the alexandrines are more like quieter gentle giants compared to the ringnecks. Also, they are far more independent birds compared to lets say conures or African greys. However, all birds need a high level of commitment and to work with them. Also keep in mind that when you get a new bird, always the main idea is for your self first - never for the bird, as you never know if they will get along or not. Good thinking that you are planning keeping them separate. Maybe after a time if they are really BFFs, you could house them together in a larger/double flight cage. One downside with the Psittacula genus is that they're known for their bluffing stage when young.

Another really awesome chonk of a bird would be the small but sturdy senegals. I just really love them but they are more of a solitary bird so getting companion for them is often a bad idea, especially when over 4 years of age. Only thing I do not like about them is how hard are they to read sometimes, and their bites hurt. Check out Kili the senegal parrot - she's awesome and her owner is the Parrot Wizard. Check him and his flock out!!


Another middle sized parrot that came to my mind are the amazons - there's quite a few members who could tell more about them.
I was looking at Alexandrines too. They sound like something I will consider , being multiple people birds is a big bonus for me. I have seen many Alex free flighted too, I know Kaya Klaw (licensed free flight trainer from Feathers for Flight) has one she flys.
I'd feel uncomfortable flying a small bird too, which is the reason I said nothing smaller than a cockatiel.
 

Tikitiel

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The first thing that came into my mind is a sun conure
I had a free flighted sun conure we will always take her outside with us
Never ignored a recall!
They make absolutely great fliers in my opnion
They are meduim-ish (atleast for me)
But an alex would be great as well!
Pretty much all birds (expect for budgies since they are spookes very easily) can free fly so it comes to what you pick!
 

foxgloveparrot

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Maybe an amazon? Here's what I have to say to you about 'zons, at least my 'zon. Definitely affectionate. He loves to be with me and will play with anybody he meets. Not HUGE, but large, but all right size for you. He is boisterous and is such a ham, but you don't seem to have a huge problem with that. As for the free flight part...maybe? I don't really know. I'm pretty sure some birds are fit for free flight and some are not, it's just the individual. None of my birds free fly though, because my area is too dangerous. A popular suggestion for you is an alexandrine, and I agree. They seem good for you!
No budgies, as they are rather skittish and you said nothing smaller than a 'tiel.
Virtually any bird with the right personality is a candidate for free flight. So do your research and make the right choice for you!
 

Skarila

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Apr 19, 2021
541
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75
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Parrots
✻Csillam the rescued budgie
✻Pascal the Emma's (Venezuelan) Conure

Previous owned:
✻Archibald the cockatiel (fostered 6 months)
✻RIP - 28 YO Zeleni the mischievous IRN
✻RIP -Sunny the budgie
I just wanted to add - why not check in with the free flight trainers which bird would be suitable for it, which ones they like working with? I mean, they have the first hand experience! :D
 
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Luvbirdlover

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I just wanted to add - why not check in with the free flight trainers which bird would be suitable for it, which ones they like working with? I mean, they have the first hand experience! :D
9/10 of the free flight trainers I have researched have large macaws, too much beak for my liking! :LOL:
 
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Luvbirdlover

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Maybe an amazon? Here's what I have to say to you about 'zons, at least my 'zon. Definitely affectionate. He loves to be with me and will play with anybody he meets. Not HUGE, but large, but all right size for you. He is boisterous and is such a ham, but you don't seem to have a huge problem with that. As for the free flight part...maybe? I don't really know. I'm pretty sure some birds are fit for free flight and some are not, it's just the individual. None of my birds free fly though, because my area is too dangerous. A popular suggestion for you is an alexandrine, and I agree. They seem good for you!
No budgies, as they are rather skittish and you said nothing smaller than a 'tiel.
Virtually any bird with the right personality is a candidate for free flight. So do your research and make the right choice for you!
Yeah, I've been researching the amazons, they sound like nice birds!
I found 10+ that go free flying by one youtube search and they all flew pretty well, so I think they are more than capable of being taught.
Boisterous is more than fine, I like birds with personality :)
 
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Luvbirdlover

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The first thing that came into my mind is a sun conure
I had a free flighted sun conure we will always take her outside with us
Never ignored a recall!
They make absolutely great fliers in my opnion
They are meduim-ish (atleast for me)
But an alex would be great as well!
Pretty much all birds (expect for budgies since they are spookes very easily) can free fly so it comes to what you pick!
I also considered sun conures, very intelligent, good little birds that I think are quite commonly free flied. They are just a tiny bit to small for me to feel comfortable flying alone, do you think they would fly well in a flock?
Edit : I just found out Chris Biro (Liberty Wings) flies a flock of 11 sun conures. Since I really like the birds personalities form the research I have done and they are able to fly well in a flock according to a free flight expert, I'll be putting them on my list of birds to consider
 
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