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The Excitement of Training a Freeflight Parrot

The following blog entry was done by a guest blogger and does not necessarily reflect the views of That Fish Place/That Pet Place. Please welcome Dave Womach, Professional Parrot Trainer at Birdtricks.comTABblogger

When you first hear the term, “freeflight parrot” you might expect to see a parrot flying through hoops in bird show at a theme park, or perhaps doing some stunt in a washed up Vegas showroom in a dingy hotel located in the wrong part of town, just north of the famous strip. Very few people are fully aware of the “no-limits” potential of what I refer to as, Freestyle Flying™.

dave-in-moabImagine for a moment what it would be like, if you took your clipped parrot outside, let go of his feet and a 25 mph wind gust took him out of your hands never to see him again. For many, that is unfortunately a very common story.

Now imagine going to some exotic location after 90 days of formal training and intentionally letting go of your parrot. Nothing beats the rush of a gust of wind taking your parrot 50 feet up into the air, as you watch that bird maneuver on an invisible wave of wind, as if he were a surfer riding on the great waves of Hawaii. He skillfully hovers in one spot until he gets enough confidence to surf the air and coast back and forth, only to land on your hand a couple of minutes later.

flying-in-moabFreestyle Flying™ isn’t for everyone, but it is for every bird. And if you’re the kind of person who is willing to put in a lot of time, energy, and research, this can be the best quality of life that you can offer your parrot.

Over the past year I have been fortunate enough to fly my flock at locations all across the U.S., and watch as they go from freshly weaned baby parrots, to fully skilled pro’s.

My favorite thing to watch them do, is a term called Jinking. (v. jinked, jink•ing, jinks

camflyingTo make a quick, evasive turn) As your parrots become more and more confident and skilled, they’ll start to experiment with evasive maneuvers that they use in the wild to evade predators such as hawks and eagles. They’ll actually flip upside down, flap, turn right side up, upside down, etc until they have successfully evaded the predator. Although I have seen this used twice to actually evade a hawk (or flock of seagulls), they also love just practicing it on their own.

If you ever have the opportunity to experience the freedom of flight, through Freestyle Flying™, make sure that you don’t miss out on the opportunity.

To see a brief video that will wet your appetite, click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O7CZsTiPiXw


  1. avatar

    Freeflying your birds is just the greatist and must exciting thing that you can do with your bird. I had the great luck to meet Dave and get into his program with one bird and now I have a 2nd one. Both of them just look forward to be able to go out and fly free. It is amazing to see how happy they are and that they just love being able to do it. As Dave says it is a lot hard work in the beginning teaching the bird as a baby, but the rewards are well worth it for you and your bird. I will say thou this is not something that you just do on a whim you need someone wo knows what they are doing to train you. Many thanks to Dave I have 2 really happy birds that love doing what they really bred to do!

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About Frank Indiviglio

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I believe that I was born with an intense interest in animals, as neither I nor any of my family can recall a time when I was not fascinated by creatures large and small. One might imagine this to be an unfortunate set of circumstances for a person born and raised in the Bronx, but, in actuality, quite the opposite was true. Most importantly, my family encouraged both my interest and the extensive menagerie that sprung from it. My mother and grandmother somehow found ways to cope with the skunks, flying squirrels, octopus, caimans and countless other odd creatures that routinely arrived un-announced at our front door. Assisting in hand-feeding hatchling praying mantises and in eradicating hoards of mosquitoes (I once thought I had discovered “fresh-water brine shrimp” and stocked my tanks with thousands of mosquito larvae!) became second nature to them. My mother went on to become a serious naturalist, and has helped thousands learn about wildlife in her 16 years as a volunteer at the Bronx Zoo. My grandfather actively conspired in my zoo-buildings efforts, regularly appearing with chipmunks, boa constrictors, turtles rescued from the Fulton Fish Market and, especially, unusual marine creatures. It was his passion for seahorses that led me to write a book about them years later. Thank you very much, for a complete biography of my experience click here.
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