It’s a well-known fact that parrots are capable of mimicking human speech, but what many bird owners don’t realize is that the same methods for teaching birds to talk can be used to teach them how to sing some of your favorite songs. Birds naturally try to duplicate the tones and notes of the sounds that they are learning, so teaching your parrot to sing can be a snap. Follow the instructions outlined below to turn your feathered friend into a singing sensation with a little bit of time, effort, and practice.
Know your bird and his abilities.
Teaching your feathered friend to perform bird tricks can be fun, but it is important that you don’t expect too much from your parrot. For example, some individual birds, even those whose species is known for talking, simply won’t mimic anything. Before you set out to teach your bird a song, it is best to know for sure whether or not your bird has the ability (and the will) to talk. If you bird is already saying a few words, then you’re good to go — if not, you should start with encouraging speech in your bird, and then move along to incorporating the musical aspect at a later date
Choose an appropriate training area.
The area that you choose to train your bird in can have a great influence on the success or failure of your training sessions. Choosing an appropriate training area isn’t as simple as it may sound — in fact, it can be rather challenging to get it just right. Keep in mind that your bird will be most agreeable in an area that is neither too foreign nor too familiar. Choose a room that is away from the bird’s cage and areas that he or she normally spends most of their time, but that is also free of major foot traffic. Make sure that the area is free of clutter and distractions, and that the room has secure doors and windows to eliminate the risk of a fly-away
Select a catchy and appropriate tune.
Birds that enjoy mimicking sounds are often drawn to certain noises more than others. If you are setting out to teach your bird to sing a song, it’s a good idea to pay attention to the sorts of sounds that your bird seems to like. Try putting on a radio to see how your bird responds to different types of music. You may even discover certain artists or genres that your bird seems to enjoy more than others — for example, Oliver, my Indian Ringneck Parakeet, is a huge Stevie Wonder fan. Choosing a fun, upbeat song to teach your bird is normally the best way to get your feathered friend singing quickly and accurately
Start slowly, then build up.
Teaching your bird to sing isn’t all that different from teaching your bird to talk. It’s important not to rush your pet. Start slowly, repeating just the first few words of a tune, and then incorporate more as your bird learns. It can help to use audio editing software to create a loop of the first line or two of a song that you can play over and over for your bird. This way, your pet will begin to recognize the way that the sounds and tones fit together and will be able to process exactly what types of vocalizations are needed in order to reproduce the sounds that they hear.
Practice, practice, practice!
As in all things, practice makes perfect. Don’t expect to be able to train your bird overnight — doing so will only lead to frustration for both you and your feathered friend. Instead, set aside 10 – 15 minutes each day to work with your bird. Doing so will have several benefits: for one, it will establish a routine that your bird will look forward to participating in. It will likely also produce quicker results for you and your pet, as setting up a training schedule will establish consistent patterns of practice.