The majestic macaw
Without a doubt, the macaw is one of the most beautiful animals to inhabit our planet. From the striking blue of the hyacinth, to the vibrant red of the scarlet, to the rich green of the military, they bring to us nearly every color of the rainbow.
Who wouldn’t want to share their life with a creature so stunning it makes your eyes water? On one end of the macaw is a long and sweeping tail, and on the other a formidable beak that is gentle enough to feed chicks in the nest yet strong enough to crack a Brazil nut.
The hyacinth, who holds the title as the largest parrot of any species, can break a broom handle in half effortlessly. With a bite force of hundreds of pounds of pressure per square inch, the macaw is not a bird to trifle with.
It is often their powerful beaks that cause people to shy away from macaw ownership. And it’s a good thing, too, because macaws will sense, and take advantage of, the fear they strike in a timid human.
The macaw is famous for the “lunge”, a maneuver that looks like an attempted attack with a “near miss” outcome. In fact, it is the macaw’s way of testing the mettle of the humans around it – rest assured that if a macaw intended to bite, the result would not have been a “miss”!
When that human shrinks away in terror, not only does the bird find it amusing, but it also learns that this human can be manipulated by fear. Clever bird.
If you are afraid of that oversized beak, a macaw is certainly not for you! Even an experienced macaw owner will maintain a healthy respect for its capabilities.
How to keep your macaw from biting you
It is reasonable to assume that you brought your macaw home to be more than just a colorful ornament in your living room. We all want to share our lives with our birds. It is a crime to think of the macaw that languishes in its cage because it is unmanageable. Does your macaw’s aggression keep you from having meaningful interaction – or perhaps any interaction at all?
If the enormous beak is the first thing you see when you look at your bird, the solution will require that you make some changes to YOUR thinking…the beak is not a weapon, it’s a tool.