Is it necessary to cover a bird's cage at night?

Bird in cage

Is it necessary to cover at night? It depends on the circumstances. Some birds like to sleep uncovered, while others require a "security blanket" to sleep.

To stay in top condition, birds require roughly 12 hours of good, quality sleep each night. Noise and intense light can disrupt their relaxation cycles, much like us. As a result, many owners opt to keep their birds covered at night.

Why Should You Cover the Cage?

In the wild, parrots sleep or roost in tree holes. A nest cavity is the common name for these openings. Nest cavities are used by over 85 different species of birds in North America. However, the degradation of habitat where birds locate or make nest cavities has become a dilemma for many species of birds. Snags are ecosystems made up largely of rotting or dead trees, and they are what they are seeking for.

These nest chambers can occasionally form in trees when a limb dies and breaks off owing to deterioration from within the tree. Other critters have dug holes in trees that have been abandoned for a variety of reasons. Birds will either take over an abandoned nest cavity and personalize it by gnawing through decaying wood to make it larger, or they will just take up residence in an abandoned hole that appears to suit them. These nest chambers are dark and provide a safe spot for the bird to sit on eggs and rear their young at night. This compartment keeps the bird family dry and protects them from the elements. It's as black as a nest perched on a limb.

When you think about it, a bird's cage or enclosure isn't merely a safe place that keeps it from getting into any perilous circumstances when it's left alone. It is a secure area in which to rest, relax, and play and entertain itself.

At night, a cage cover simulates the nest cavity. It also protects the bird from any ambient light in your house, as well as allowing your bird to sleep without being disturbed by drafts created by air conditioning or an air purifier. Night frights may be avoided by covering your bird at night.

How to Determine If You Should Cover Your Bird's Cage

If noise and light aren't an issue, leave your bird alone for a few nights to see how it reacts. It is fine to let the bird exposed at night if the bird looks to like it. If the bird seems anxious or begins to show indications of stress, crankiness, or its behavior alters in an unusual way, the best thing to do is keep it covered at night to ensure it gets a good night's rest.

Most birds will be alright without being covered at night as long as they have a dark, calm, and relatively secluded spot to sleep in. However, keep in mind that sleep is essential for a bird's health. If you're not sure how your pet will respond to being exposed, go ahead and cover the cage again at night.


"Providing a Home for a Pet Bird. Merck Veterinary Manual." ;