Where Exactly Are Parrot’s Ears? (We’ve Got The Answer)

  • Time to read: 11 min.

Perhaps that’s why you’re wondering where the parrot’s ears are? Maybe you saw a cuddly bear scratching its ears while hunting or a dog’s ears flapping in alert, which is all adorable, by the way. Perhaps that is why you’re wondering about the exact location of a parrot’s ears. You may think this question is ridiculous and can be the butt of a joke in your family or friend’s conversation. 

It is a valid question that requires an answer. For a short glimpse, the parrot’s ears are somewhat non-existent. Parrots have different anatomy than other animals or mammals with a prominent ear structure. 

A parrot’s ear is a funnel that has a feather covering. It is not easy to find by if you look slightly behind their eyes, you can see it. By lifting some of its feathers, you can see its tunnel-structured ears. 

Where Exactly Are Parrot’s Ears?

A parrot’s ears are not as noticeable compared to mammals or humans. The parrot’s ears are under their colorful and bright plumage. As a parrot owner, you might have no chance to be curious about a parrot’s anatomy or somehow worried about looking for your parrot’s ears since they can be sensitive to touch. 

The parrot’s ears are funnels, and their feathers cover them. You can locate a parrot’s ears just slightly away behind their eyes. You can carefully lift some of the feathers and see a tunneled or whole structure behind their eyes. These holes are your parrot’s ears. 

Where Are A Parrot’s Ears? 

As weird as it sounds but parrots do have ears. However, its ears are entirely different from mammals that you see in real life or perhaps on your television. A parrot’s ears are in an unconventional funnel-shaped structure similar to a puncture. So, if you’re a new parrot owner and you catch a glimpse of some weird whole behind their eyes, it’s just your parrot’s ears. 

Now that you know how it looks, a parrot’s ears—without the external ear structure—still function similarly to a human’s ears. Just like us, a parrot’s inner ears have three systematic chambers that are called inner ear, middle ear, and outer ear. The outer and middle ear contains air, whereas the inner ear contains essential fluids. 

These funnel-shaped ears are structured behind and slightly below the eyes. These ears hide under their intricate small flap of skin and feathers. If, for instance, you see a parrot’s ears without feathers, it is because the parrot may have contracted an illness that caused feather loss in the ears’ areas. Usually, the ears appear when parrots come out of their bath time, and their feathers are wet. 

Fun Facts About A Parrot’s And Bird’s Ears!

In some parrots, the plumages covering the ears usually sport bright or unique colors, either entirely distinct or a saturated hue. Aside from the fact that a parrot’s ears are slightly similar to ours, a parrot can’t hear the same range of sounds as humans. Regardless, they do hear in greater detail. 

In an online article, Parrot Fun Zone enumerated a list of interesting facts about a bird’s auditory systems:  

  • Birds can hear a smaller range of sounds.
  • Birds have low sensitivity to high and low frequencies.
  • Birds can identify sporadic pitch changes. 

(source)

In the news article from CBC News posted on December 11, 2014, Schnyder’s team of researchers experimented on bird species like chickens, cows, and ducks. The researchers found out that the correlation between sight and sound helps species of birds escape from predators and threats. Researchers resolved that the shape of the bird’s head is vital in the auditory processes. (source)

Factors Affecting The Bird’s Hearing

Knowing that some types of parrots live in extreme and harsh environments, they have developed their ear anatomy throughout their life cycle to detect different distinct sounds that belong to their kind. Granted that external ears are necessary to filter sound waves, parrots, like other birds, can specify sounds without using external ears. Unfortunately, parrots can’t hear very high or low frequencies, unlike other birds. 

On another note, some say that a parrot’s feathers don’t affect their auditory functions much. But in some studies, their plumages can slightly impact the parrot’s hearing. Explain Birds posted on their blog last January 12, 2022, that an average range of hearing for humans is between 20Hz to 20kHz, whereas a parrot’s audible range is between 8 Hz to 10kHz. Our hearing capacity is more significant than a parrot’s auditory functions. Parrots have survived at a maximum survival rate despite this nuance due to their bodies’ systems. (source)

What About Parrot’s Ears? 

What About Parrot's Ears? 

We have already solved the mystery of a parrot’s ears and their location. This section will determine the nitty-gritty of a parrot’s ears and hearing. Even though their hearing is not at par with ours, a parrot can sustain their survival through essential auditory abilities. 

Significance Of Hearing For Parrots 

  • A parrot can hear sounds that potential predators emit. In this case, they can secure themselves and their flock away from predators. 
  • A parrot can localize distinct sounds and find the predator’s location. 
  • A parrot can return to their owners by distinguishing the sound calls that a parrot recognizes. Parrots have a sharp mind to remember their owner’s call. 
  • A parrot uses their hearing senses to detect its flock’s sounds. Then communicate with them. 
  • A parrot can find its mate through unique mating calls.
  • A parrot can hear voices but struggle to hear deep bass notes or high-pitched cymbal crashes. 
  • A parrot is more sensitive to pitch, tone, and rhythm. 
  • A parrot can hear things much quicker than humans—enabling it to respond to potential threats or predators. 
  • A parrot can detect sounds from different directions from above and the ground below. 

In a nutshell, a parrot’s quick sound reception is faster than humans, allowing them to survive in harsh and drastic habitats. It is safe to conclude that a parrot’s hearing is reasonable and unique. Simply saying, a parrot has evolved their way to maintain its flock away from danger and sustain its survival. 

Do Parrots Like Loud Sounds? 

For some bird types, loud noises can be such a deterrence for them. Loud noises or sounds scare birds, specifically birds destroying crops and fields. Mainly because birds do have similar audible ranges as humans do. Therefore, they are sensitive to loud noises, but over time some bird types get used to loud noises. 

As for parrots, they can be selective with the sounds they receive. Despite their selectiveness, they are rather sensitive to loud noises. These noises can alarm and frighten them like any other bird. For example, parakeets get stressed when a sudden doorbell rings, or a cockatiel gets irritated when you amplify within the room. So, make sure to use soft music or sounds to keep your parrots calm and safe in their environment. 

What Music Do Parrots Prefer? 

Parrots have a huge personality. They are inherently entertaining and friendly, and just like us, they have their taste in music. Soft and moody music can be boring for us. That’s why we avoid playing these kinds of music when finishing a task or chore. Instead, we choose lively and energetic music so our motivation can follow. 

But it’s a different case for a parrot; a parrot’s choice of music is ambient or acoustic—something that is mellow and soft to the ears. As a parrot owner, you try introducing soft and mellow music and then examine how your parrot will respond to the sounds. Look at how they show their body language since they communicate more through nonverbal and a bird’s call. 

Just a reminder that when experimenting with this approach, you must be ready for the possible reaction. You can include this approach in your training so that your parrot can get used to music you can play at home. In any case, make your parrot feel like you are supporting them along the way. For sure, your parrot will enjoy and vibe with your music choices. 

Benefits of introducing music to your parrots

  1. Music Boosts A Parrot’s Good Mood

Science already proves that music boosts a good mood. This matter of fact also applies to parrots. Even if the music is mellow or soft, some parrots enjoy it and might bop their head even if the beats are not energetic. 

  1. Music Eases A Parrot’s Frantic Behavior

For us, listening to music can be an excellent way to ground ourselves from all our troubles. It is an escape from our exhaustion. It is also true for some parrots. If your parrot is experiencing sporadic frenzies, introducing it to music may potentially ease its worries. Make sure to find the best music for them.

  1. Music Entertains A Parrot

Several parrot owners often capture moments with their pets, dancing to music. For instance, a cockatiel is feeling the music. The same goes for some parrots who quickly get bored. No doubt, being cooped up in the cage can make your parrot uninterested, potentially leading to sadness. Therefore, turning up the music will entertain your parrot even while you’re away from it. 

  1. Music Relaxes A Parrot

Some people listen to music when they’re going to bed or before going to bed to relax. The same goes for parrots who have difficulty putting themselves to sleep. Turning up calm and ambient music aids these gaudy gliders to droop their eyes close. So, don’t hesitate to slightly volume up your stereo for a parrot’s night of relaxation. 

  1. Music Energizes A Parrot

Aside from music calming down a parrot, it also boosts energy in their daily activities. Exciting and slightly loud music can influence them to dance along to the beat. However, it’s essential to determine the best type of lively music for them. It is to prevent any stressful situation or conditions that may arise from playing loud music. 

Overall, these benefits may work for some parrots or not. Therefore, it’s best to always look for your parrot’s response and well-being. 

How To Know A Parrot Loves The Song? 

It’s easy to play music but challenging to spot if your parrot even loves or will vibe to the music you’re playing. This section provides practical steps that you can utilize when introducing music to your parrots. 

No doubt you love music but does your parrot even like the same songs? Here are the best steps you can execute for your parrot’s music preference. 

Examine A Parrot’s Body Language

When playing different beats, it’s crucial to look for your parrot’s body language. To give you an idea, when a parrot starts to dance through head bopping or just showing entertaining action, it’s possible that your parrots like the music you’re playing. Some parrots enjoy listening to pop, rock, or folk music. Therefore, keep an eye on your parrot’s reaction. 

Check If A Parrot Is Singing Along

If your gaudy glider is singing along without showing signs of stress or feather-plucking, your parrot likes the music. When a parrot likes music, it also whistles or chatters the song you’re playing. On the other hand, turn the music off when your parrot becomes aggressive by screeching or shrieking in distress. Your music is not at par with their interest. 

Choose Music With Your Parrot

You can train your parrot to choose the music it likes by placing two to three locks of different colors. The best way to do this is by playing other songs associated with the blocks you presented. You can play that specific song when your parrot picks or touches the blocks. 

Parrots are intelligent and can pick colors. So, this approach may help allow your parrot to select the music of its choice. Keep in mind that this can be a little bit tedious. Hence, patience is essential. Well, you know what they say, “Patience is a virtue.”

How To Clean A Parrot’s Ears? 

There’s no denying that the best way to keep a parrot healthy is to bathe them appropriately. Bathing a parrot prevents any infections or harmful organisms that lead to chronic illnesses. On the other hand, overbathing yields negative results as well. So, what’s the best way to clean a parrot’s ears? 

Do Not Use Q-Tips

Remember never to use Q-tips when cleaning your parrot’s ears. Because first, it’s completely impossible to use a Q-tip on your parrot. And second, it may damage your parrot’s ears. So, do not attempt to use Q-tips or any stick to clean your parrot’s ears. 

Parrots Usually Bathe Themselves

They are self-sufficient, but it’s still crucial to be with your parrot while cleaning for cautionary purposes. Ensure that the water you have is warm and the room is not crisp or cold. Cold temperatures impact your parrot’s well-being. 

Keep Your Hands Away From Their Ears

Parrots have funnel-shaped ears, unlike other animals with external structures, have noticed. In this case, excessive water may enter their ear chambers, damaging their hearing. If this happens, go to your avian veterinarian or any local vets you trust to ensure nothing wrong will affect your parrot’s ears. 

Don’t bathe your parrots every day

Overbathing can result in drying and itchiness. Therefore, parrots will pluck their feathers away, which is not a good sign. It is best to bathe them twice a month, depending on your home’s environment and condition. Parrots can self-bathe, so there is no need to clean their ears unless there’s expert advice! 

Final Thoughts

Indeed, a parrot’s ear structure is unique and quite weird for those who haven’t seen it before. But one thing is for sure; parrots are self-sufficient buddies who can do something in times of survival and entertain themselves. Like us, hearing is vital as a form of listening and looking out for danger. Thus, knowing what’s suitable for your parrot’s hearing is vital to avoid internal damage or stress. Lastly, allow them to do their thing and be an observer in cleaning themselves. 

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  1. Bird Cages Now. “Parrot Bath – 3 Different Ways To Bird Bathing: When & How.” Bird Cages Now. www.birdcagesnow.com, August 3, 2020.
  2. White, Deb. “External Anatomy.” Parrot Fun Zone. www.parrotfunzone.com. Accessed June 16, 2022.
  3. CBC. “How Birds Get by without External Ears” www.cbc.ca, December 11, 2014.
  4. Explain Birds. “Do Parrots Have Ears? | Significance and Anatomy” Explainbirds. explainbirds.com, January 12, 2022.
  5. Krakow, Deborah. “How Well Do Parrots Hear? All About Parrot’s Ear Health!” Kelleys Island Nature. kelleysislandnature.com, June 10, 2022.
  6. Stephens, Carrie. “How Well Do Parrots Hear?” All About Parrots. www.allaboutparrots.com, January 6, 2022.
  7. Pets – The Nest. “Should Cockatiels Have Glass Mirrors in Their Cages?” pets.thenest.com. Accessed June 16, 2022.