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Free-Flight Training for Conservation

Spreads for web Parrots 278 4

by Megan Myers

The methods described here are based on birds following basic commands, and will help when releasing parrots into the wild.

A training technique that has been practised by parrot owners for decades is now being applied by Texas A&M University researchers in establishing new bird flocks in the wild.
While many parrot owners clip their birds’ wings to reduce their flight abilities, free-flight involves training an intact parrot to come when called, follow basic commands, recognise natural dangers, and otherwise safely fly in open areas.

In a recently published paper in Diversity 2021, Constance Woodman, a doctoral graduate student of the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVMBS), and Donald Brightsmith, a CVMBS associate professor, shared their findings from a project with Chris Biro, a globally recognised free-flight trainer. This project included documenting Biro’s training process step by step so that conservationists can apply his methods when releasing birds into the wild.

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