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The Parrot/Human Bond by Sally Blanchard

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In an all-day programme I gave several years ago, I discussed the bond that parrots form with us. At lunch, I heard one woman say to another, “I hate that word bond.” I didn't understand what she meant, so I turned towards her table and asked her. Even though I had talked most of the morning about winning and keeping a parrot's trust to form a quality bond, she said that if they bonded with us, it meant that they were subservient to us. Sometimes I can give a programme or write an article and people find one part of it that, no matter how clear I try to make what I say, someone won't understand what I am saying and will misinterpret it, so that it fits what they believe.

It has always amazed me that a parrot-family bird, no matter how small or big, will actually form a loving mutual bond with us when we are so much larger than they are. It also has always amazed me that they don't see us as predators and that they learn to trust us. In my mind, this certainly doesn't imply that they are subservient to us. It does however, mean that they are dependent on us for their care and the stimulation needed to keep them interactive and curious. They also depend on us to keep them healthy and safe.

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