The 5 Smartest Birds for Pets

A Jenday Conure (Aratinga jandaya) perched in a tree, also known as jandaya parakeet is a small Neotropical bird found in northeastern Brazil.

Birds are frequently at the top of the list of intelligent creatures, which has been examined for years. However, some birds, such as parrots that are commonly kept as pets, have been demonstrated to be smarter than others.

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    African Grey Parrot (Psittacus erithacus) captive

    African Grey parrots are the most researched pet bird species, and they have shown to have a high degree of intelligence. Alex was one of the most well-known African Greys, however he died in 2007 at the early age of 31. Dr. Pepperberg, a PhD student at the time, bought him from a pet store when he was one year old and raised him and studied him for the rest of his life.

    Until Alex, the majority of avian intelligence studies was conducted with pigeons, which was unsatisfactory to say the least. Alex revolutionized people's perceptions of what a bird might learn. Alex learnt over 100 English words throughout the course of his life and was regarded to have the IQ of a five-year-old when he died.

    Some critics of Alex's research say that he was only a product of operant training rather than actual comprehension, but even if it was just a conditioned reaction, Alex's talents considerably beyond those of most pet birds. Because of Alex, African Grey parrots are now known to be intelligent birds who require continual mental stimulation.

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    Macaws

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    Macaws, like the African Grey, are classified as parrots and come in a variety of sizes, including the Hyacinth macaw, the world's longest parrot. All parrots, including macaws, are regarded to have equal intelligence levels.

    Some macaws have been compared to a human child in terms of intelligence. They can solve problems, utilize tools, and communicate with other birds using noises and even physical changes like flushing on their faces.

    According to a Canadian study released in 2018, there is a distinct variation in the size of one specific area of a parrot's brain after evaluating 98 different bird brains. The cortex and cerebellum communicate through this region of the parrot's brain, which is comparable to that of a monkey, another highly intelligent animal. It's known as the spiriform nucleus, and it's two to five times bigger in parrots than it is in chickens. This area of the brain is regarded to be important for sophisticated behavior planning and execution.

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    The first bird to be spotted constructing musical instruments was the cockatoo, which is also a sort of parrot. Palm cockatoos have been seen in Australia utilizing twigs and seed pods to build drumsticks, while other cockatoos can sway to a musical beat, showing that they have a sense of rhythm.

    Goffin cockatoos, a tiny kind of cockatoo, were used in a 2014 study to illustrate their knowledge of item permanence. Thing permanence is just the concept of someone understanding that an object exists even if it isn't visible. Object persistence studies in birds are sometimes described using the analogy of a nut in a pocket that is out of sight. Solving an object permanence puzzle is often not possible in human newborns until they are 18 to 24 months old. The study found that wild Goffin cockatoos had spatial thinking ability equivalent to primates and human newborns, which is unsurprising.

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    Budgerigars

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    The budgerigar, often known as a budgie or a common parakeet, is one of the smallest members of the parrot family (with the parrotlet being the actual smallest parrot). But just because the budgie is little doesn't imply it isn't intelligent.

    Budgies were the first non-mammal animal to show that they understood human language, although their abilities are only comparable to that of a seven-month-old human kid. Budgies were shown to be able to recognize a certain pattern of meaningless words in one research, demonstrating the capacity to understand an abstract pattern. This is significant since, prior to this research, only humans, rats, monkeys, and other intelligent creatures had demonstrated that they could do so.

    Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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    Conures, like the other sorts of birds on this list, come in a variety of shapes and sizes, and they are all parrots. Conures, as a result, require a great deal of cerebral stimulation and enrichment to keep their sharp minds occupied. A conure requires a lot of exercise, toys, and social activities. Whether it's a Green-cheeked, Jenday, or Sun conure, all conures will demonstrate their intelligence.

CITATION

"Pepperberg, Irene M. The Comparative Psychology of Intelligence: Some Thirty Years LaterFrontiers in psychology vol. 11 973. 19 May. 2020, doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00973", "Gutiérrez-Ibáñez, C., Iwaniuk, A.N. & Wylie, D.R. Parrots have evolved a primate-like telencephalic-midbrain-cerebellar circuitSci Rep 8, 9960 (2018). doi:10.1038/s41598-018-28301-4", "Auersperg AM, Szabo B, von Bayern AM, Bugnyar T. Object permanence in the Goffin cockatoo (Cacatua goffini). J Comp Psychol. 2014 Feb;128(1):88-98. doi:10.1037/a0033272", "Moore, M. K., & Meltzoff, A. N. (1999). New findings on object permanence: A developmental difference between two types of occlusionThe British journal of developmental psychology17(4), 623–644. doi:10.1348/026151099165410", "Hoeschele, Marisa, and W Tecumseh Fitch. Phonological perception by birds: budgerigars can perceive lexical stress. Animal cognition vol. 19,3 (2016): 643-54. doi:10.1007/s10071-016-0968-3" ;

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