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Fids: Bird Term of the Day

Definitions of words used by pet bird enthusiasts with the pet bird slant.

By Angie Hendrickson

“Fids” is a term given by some bird lovers to their pet birds. It’s used by bird owners who feel their birds are not just pets but “feathered kids.”

It’s no secret that birds can be very high-maintenance pets. Dr. Irene Pepperberg of reported that Alex, her famous African grey parrot, had the intelligence of a 5-year-old and the emotional level of a 2-year-old. That means that having a pet bird is similar to living with a perpetual toddler. Because of this, the level of involvement and supervision birds require can be quite high, which can lead birds to seem more like children than pets.

Many species of pet parrots have impressive vocabularies, and, in some instances, the bird can verbally respond in a manner similar to a toddler. Some bird owners have to be careful what they say so their birds don’t learn any inappropriate language. In addition, birds often behave very much like toddlers; they can get into things they aren’t supposed to, throw tantrums when they are tired or don’t get their way, and they, too, often fling their food or can be stubborn eaters. Moreover, companion parrots need a bird-proofed environment, fun and exciting toys, and nurturing  guidance from their owners, much like toddlers need from their parents.

Fun Fact: While pet birds are sometimes referred to as “fids,” some bird owners refer to themselves as “parronts.”

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