Fostering a B&G macaw


Duck Obsessed
14 Years
Jan 17, 2009
North Eastern PA
Her name is Babe. For people that don't know what fostering is it's basically when the rescue runs out of room they look for trustable people to watch their birds and give them attention so they don't become mean. She will bite people she doesn't know but for me the worst I've got is a nick here and there she usually just tries to scare me and doesn't actually bite down hard. She tries to throw up on me but then doesn't actually. She will even flip on her back and play with my hand with her feet and beak gently (Well mostly gentle). She seems to really like me...should I consider adoption? I already have a bunch of birds and she won't have a cage for a while just a stand but do you think she'll stay this way and not get mean? I'm afraid that after I pay for her she's going to go nuts and start biting or something. Here's a picture.


I feel like if I bond with her enough she can be part of my family.
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Birds choose who they will like and accept. It's somewhat rare that a foster bird will take a liking to you and I would consider it an honor that she did so. I would DEFINITELY keep her. Her behavior (regurgitating) and playing on her back tells me she has begun to consider you her mate which is AWESOME! For the mental health of the bird, and a lifelong friend for you, make her a valued part of your family. It doesn't matter if she doesn't have a cage for now. Many Macaws never live in a cage in their homes. They LOVE being part of the family activities and the cage inhibits that. God bless you for your open heart and generous spirit! I took a rescue Eclectus a couple of years ago and she has turned out to be the best of best friends for me!
It depends on so many things, nobody can make this big of a decision for you. I'm sure not everyone will agree to this, but trying to keep any bird on a stand, not safely confined in a cage, seems like a disaster waiting to happen. Yes, birds need plenty of out time, no I don't think they should be caged all the time. With that being said. Unless you plan on being home, in the same room, and never sleeping ~ there are major risks to the bird's safety not to mention the potential destruction to your home. A bird that size can and will chew through furniture, walls and electrical wiring, which could result in anything from poisoning to death by shock. If you're serious about wanting to keep her, do yourself a favor and research a lot more than just posting on a chicken forum. If the bird is in a rescue and in foster care now, hasn't she been through enough change and/or trauma already?

Also keep in mind that in the majority of the time, adopted or fostered birds go through a honeymoon phase, where they are likely to be on their best behavior and once they feel safe and secure in their new environment then the true behaviors come out. So it is a valid fear that she may start biting/screaming but not because you paid for her, but because that could be her true nature.

What is her background? How old is she, how well socialized was she? Is she DNA sexed or is someone just getting a female vibe from her? Chances are usually slim that birds end up in a rescue because they played nicely with others and sang sweet songs. Sure, it could be the result of the economy and previous owners forced to give her up...but that's not the norm.

I'm not trying to be rude or mean. I'm just trying to be realistic. This is a bird who if properly fed (which that in and of itself is a whole other topic) will be willed on to future children and that has already experienced major life changes. Are you fully prepared to commit to the noise, destructiveness, potential biting or screaming, the demands of a strong willed creature who takes almost as much time as a child? When, not if but when, that first major bite happens and you're dripping blood, will you react appropriately or will she suddenly get less and less handling and time out of the cage? Hormones happen, a sweet bird normally can turn into a raging lunatic during breeding season.

Good luck, its not a decision to be made lightly. Give her some time to settle in and see where things go. Its great that you have taken her in, but don't be in a hurry to make the decision.

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