Questions about owning a macaw


Jan 11, 2007
Well it wouldn't be for quite a few years, since I am still in college, and would want a place of my own before owning one, but I am wondering what is it like?
I have owned parakeets and cockatails before, so I am familiar with owning a bird, but I know owning a parrot, specifically a macaw would be different. Would it be best to get two of them? I have heard that parrots can suffer from depression, especially if the owners are away for work, etc, a lot. Of course I would make sure that I am able to spend ample time with the bird, but would it be better for there to be two of them?
Do you have the option of clipping their wings like you do with parakeets? Obviously I would not want it to fly around the house and possibly get hurt.
Also, if you have one, how much time do you spend with it every day and what activities do they enjoy?
I know I can read books on this and search the internet, but just wanted to hear it from people with firsthand experience as well!


Feb 8, 2006
Chicago, IL
We had a few of them when I was growing up. Will your bird get lonely? It really depends on the bird. Some of them do just fine alone, some will do horrible things like pull out all of their feathers. Plenty of chew toys will help. I've never had two together, but my mother was always home with the birds.

They make a LOT of noise. Very loud shriekers. Your neighbors will likely be able to hear them if the houses are close together. They are also very messy, like to toss food EVERYWHERE.

Once again, depending on the bird, they can make wonderful companions. They are very smart, having the intellect of a 3YO child. They can mimic well, and can be very affectionate.

They love to eat, and will eat almost anything. I remember one that was particularly fond of chicken legs.

You can absolutely trim their flight feathers. That does not necessarily mean that they can't fly. We had a macaw with trimmed wings, my mother took him outside, and we never saw him again. I was heartbroken, he was a wonderful bird. The next macaw we got to replace him was not nearly as sweet, and became very aggressive after several months.

Birds are wonderful pets, right now I have a cockatiel and a Nanday Conure. The cockatiel is the sweetest little angel, and the conure has a quick temper, but is also a very loving bird.