Most Gentle Pet Bird Species

Different people look for different things in a pet bird—some want a flashy, beautiful companion, like a sun conure. Others might want a pet that will delight their ears with song, like a canary. Still, others may desire different characteristics in a feathered friend, such as the ability to learn to talk. Some people simply want a calm and gentle feathered friend with a sweet disposition, and that is exactly what this article is focused on. While all birds have the capability to bite and cause a ruckus, the species featured here have been noted as a whole to have a tendency to be more gentle and calm than others.

  • 01 of 05

    Pionus Parrots

    Blue-headed Parrot, Pionus menstruus, flying in Manu National Park, Peru.
    Glenn Bartley / Getty Images

    Beautiful and soft-spoken, the pionus parrots have gained a reputation for being some of the most gentle, quiet, and calm hookbills available. While they are highly intelligent and thrive in social settings, they tend to be more independent than some other species, and as a result, a little less moody. pionus parrots are very active birds, and will readily burn off a lot of their energy if they are provided plenty of safe bird toys and a safe area to exercise and play for several hours each day. These traits have helped them secure a loyal following of bird lovers who say they'll never own anything except a pionus!

  • 02 of 05


    Geopelia cuneata pet dove
    Mary Clark/ Getty Images

    It should come as no surprise that doves are listed among the most calm and gentle bird species—indeed, doves themselves are seen as symbols of peace and love around the world. These quiet, sweet-tempered birds make excellent pets for both young and old and are even a good choice for bird owners in apartments. They tolerate handling and make a wonderful first bird for younger or beginner bird owners.

  • 03 of 05


    Pet Budgies
    Jitin Rajput / EyeEm / Getty Images

    Listed among the most popular pet bird species for many years running, budgies are another great choice for those who would prefer a more gentle feathered friend to one who would be more boisterous. While they are capable of inflicting a bite when they are upset, their tiny beaks are hardly capable of doing much damage, and with proper training and handling, bites can become quite a rare occurrence indeed. These birds are also a wonderful choice for apartment dwellers, as they can be housed in a relatively small space. Far more quiet than other hookbills, they are still able to learn to talk, and delight bird owners around the world with their impressive vocabularies.

  • 04 of 05

    Hyacinth Macaws

    Hyacinth Macaws
    Getty Images

    While at first it may seem odd to list the largest of the macaws in an article on gentle bird species, it is worth noting that the hyacinth macaw's sweet and even personality has earned them the nickname "Gentle Giants" among bird experts everywhere. They have large, somewhat intimidating beaks that are capable of cracking coconut shells, but properly raised hyacinth macaws tend to not bite as often or as easily as many other types of hookbills, and those that were handfed as babies love to be cuddled and interacted with.

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  • 05 of 05


    Zebra finch
    Tom Stewart/ Getty Images

    The fact that finches are considered one of the more gentle types of birds should be a surprise—in fact, in most cases, finches do better as ornamental birds who are not handled at all! If holding a bird is not important to you, then it is highly recommended that you look into getting a small finch flock of your own. Watching and listening to these delightful little birds can offer the joy of bird ownership to those who would prefer a less "hands-on" experience with a feathered friend.