Checking your parrot’s droppings can reveal a great deal about your parrot’s health, diet, and well-being. Red, yellow, or white droppings may all seem normal until you understand their meanings.
Parrot poop should remain green in color with specs or streaks of white and be accompanied by colorless urine. This indicates that the bird is properly digesting its food and has no obvious health issues. However, if the parrot’s droppings are red, pea-green, yellow, or otherwise discolored, this could be problematic.
The texture of your parrot’s droppings matters. If the feces are watery, dry, mushy, or stiff, this can signify health issues. The same is true if your parrot doesn’t poop, poops too much, or poops too little. Pay attention if the feces lacks urine or urates or smells. If abnormal droppings continue for more than 1-2 days, contact an avian vet.
Healthy Parrot Poop Color
There are three different aspects to a bird’s poop:
- Green: Feces
- White: Urates from the kidneys
- Liquid: Colorless urine
The green and white portions should be equal. There should be enough urine to make a wet ring around the poop. You don’t need to spend hours a day examining the droppings. Instead, peek in once a week to check the:
This can enable you to spot any issues before they get out of hand.
What Does Parrot Poop Look Like?
If your parrot has healthy droppings, you can tell this at a glance. Healthy parrot poop will be:
- An even green color. This may be lighter or darker, ranging from grass-green to olive-green
- Surrounded by liquid. A parrot pees and poops at the same time, so the consistency may be watery
- Tube-like in shape. The poop itself will be short and tubular
- Firm in texture. You can tell if the poop looks firm and well packed
- Urine should be clear: It should account for 30-50% of the droppings
- Urates should be white/chalky in appearance. Other colors may indicate problems
Of course, there are exceptions. For example, if a parrot’s staple diet is seed, its feces will be dark green. If the staple diet is pelleted food, it will take on the color of the pellets.
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop Loose?
Your bird’s poop may lack firmness if it’s recently eaten watery food. This includes:
This will be healthy for your parrot, and watery poop isn’t a bad sign. It just reflects a mild change in the parrot’s diet. Stools will always be firmer when the parrot has eaten seeds, nuts, or other fiber-heavy foods.
If your parrot’s droppings are consistently loose or discolored, this can mean that your parrot has diarrhea or another health issue causing loose stools.
What Should Parrot Poop Smell Like?
In terms of odor, your parrot’s healthy droppings should have no smell whatsoever. If the cage isn’t cleaned for a long time and the poop builds up, that will obviously change.
The area will have a dry, musty smell. More than anything, this is an unhealthy environment for the parrot to live in. The problem isn’t the poop – it’s the amount.
If your parrot’s cage is well cleaned and the poop still has a strong smell, this is problematic. It proves that your parrot has a health issue, such as an infection or digestive problems.
What Texture Should Parrot Droppings Have?
The right texture and consistency are connected to your parrot’s diet. It may change from day to day or week to week while still being within normal variants.
Overall, a parrot’s dropping shouldn’t be too wet or too dry. Too dry can indicate that your parrot is dehydrated or improperly digesting food. Too wet can indicate diarrhea or stomach infection.
Instead, healthy poop will have the consistency of toothpaste. It will be firm enough to keep its form but not so stiff that it remains intact when pressed. If the droppings are so wet that they can’t stay in one distinct shape, there is an issue with your parrot’s digestion.
What Size Should Parrot Poop Be?
The size of the poop all depends on the size of the parrot. For example, a large macaw will have poop that’s much bigger than a parakeet’s.
Check for sudden changes in size. If your parrot is passing too-large droppings, it may be passing something it cannot digest. If the droppings are small, they may have impaction or another digestive issue.
How Often Should I Check My Parrot’s Droppings?
You should check over the poop when:
- Taking the parrot out of its cage
- Cleaning the cage
- You’ve changed the parrot’s diet
- The parrot is showing signs of illness or lethargy
This routine is important, as warning signs may not show up in a day. Aside from that, your parrot may have slightly different poop than other birds. Once you become familiar with the appearance of normal parrot poop, you can more accurately identify a worrying change.
Keep in mind that parrot droppings, as they dry, may harden and change color slightly. If you wait too long to check, this will make it more difficult to identify anything from the poop.
How Should I Check Parrot Poop?
Clean your parrot’s cage at least once a week because parrot droppings can be hazardous if left unattended. People have been admitted to the hospital due to parrot droppings in their homes.
You want to observe them but also dispose of them quickly. Otherwise, bacteria will accumulate and may lead to harmful diseases, trigger asthma, or cause short-term illnesses.
- Don’t touch the poop with your bare hands
- As you collect them with newspaper, be careful not to breathe, wear a face mask
- Wash your hands after cleaning a cage
Line the bottom of your parrot’s cage with newspaper. This makes it easier to clean and examine the poop. Wood chips or shavings can distort or hide the poop.
Abnormal Parrot Droppings
Once you understand what healthy poop looks like in parrots, you can spot dangerous changes. In general, abnormal signs that are a reason for concern will include:
- Feces that are very light in color
- Poop that’s mustard yellow
- Poop that’s rusty-brown or bloody
- Large feces
- Poop with a coarse texture
- Poop that’s watery and mushy
- Droppings that contain undigested food
- Poop that has a strong, offensive smell
- Urine with any color at all
- A parrot with worms may have bits of dead worm with its poop
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop Red?
Your parrot’s droppings may:
- Contain streaks of red
- Be tinted red
- Be surrounded by a watery, red liquid
In this case, you may have a serious or mild issue. If your parrot has recently eaten red-colored food, this could reflect in its droppings. Beetroot, for example, is known to tint feces with a pinkish-red color. However, red coloring may also be a sign of bleeding.
Why Is My Parrot Pooping Blood?
If the red in your parrot’s poop is blood, the bleeding may be due to:
- Internal damage to the stomach lining
- A rip in the intestinal tract
- A tear around the parrot’s anus
If that’s true, then the droppings will contain streaks of red, the urine will be slightly red, and there may be flecks of black. In more severe cases, the parrot may not pass any healthy feces and will have diarrhea that’s bloody.
TIt may be a simple tear around their anus that requires time to heal with supervision. However, it could also indicate fatal internal bleeding.
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop Brown?
Brown poop can have benign or serious implications. If the poop is rusty-brown, tar-like, or black, it could indicate that your parrot is bleeding internally. This injury will be high within the digestive tract.
The blood will then have dried slightly as it was processed. It will come out darkly colored. These droppings will appear in black or rusty-brown immediately after your bird poops.
However, black-ish or brown poop can also mean the parrot’s healthy droppings have sat for too long. Poop will naturally darken as it dries. If your parrot has darker green droppings, this minor difference could fool a new owner into thinking it’s dried blood.
If your parrot is otherwise fine, keep an eye on the poop. If its next droppings are an even green color, then don’t worry. The darker poop has just sat for too long. If the dark droppings cease altogether, it may be a mild stomach upset that your parrot overcame. If they remain or come out that color, consult your vet.
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop Light Green?
While green is a healthy color, your parrot’s feces should lean toward a dark green. If the poop is very light in color, even pea-green, this could indicate liver damage. This will be accompanied by other signs of illness, such as:
- Fluffed feathers
- Refusal to eat
- Wet droppings
- Yellow urates
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop White?
Your parrot’s feces may come out white or be clay-like in their texture. There may also be too much water or not enough. In this case, your parrot may have issues with its pancreas or other digestive organs.
Why Is My Parrot’s Poop Yellow?
Parrots droppings will be yellow and watery in texture, there will be extra urine, and it will have a grayish hue. This indicates they may have chlamydophila psittaci (pneumonia). Pneumonia is very dangerous for birds, and some may never recover, even with thorough treatment.
Parrot Has Lumpy Poop
If the droppings are thick, lumpy, or unevenly textured, this may be undigested food. In some cases, you will even clearly identify the pieces of food themselves. This could mean your parrot has:
- Issues with its digestive system
- PDD, which affects the nerves and the digestive tract
- Giardia, which is a parasite that causes diarrhea in parrots
Why Is My Parrot Pooping Less?
If your parrot is pooping less than normal, this could mean it:
- Has stopped eating
- Is eating less than normal
- Is constipated
- It has impaction
Parrots don’t stop eating or lose their appetite for no reason. If this continues for several days, you have a severe issue. However, if your parrot does not poop or poops less for a day or two, it could be benign. Your parrot may be holding it in. A common reason is when a parrot is about to lay eggs.
Why Is My Parrot Pooping So Much?
If your parrot is pooping more than normal, it can also mean that it’s having internal problems, such as:
- Pancreatic disease
- Kidney disease
It all depends on what the parrot is producing when it goes to the bathroom. You can also tell by the ratio of the poop – whether it’s more feces, urine, or urate.
Why Has My Parrot Stopped Pooping?
If your parrot is not pooping or has a hard time pooping, it may have a blockage due to an egg (if it’s a female) or something in its gastrointestinal tract. These cases may have dangerous long-term effects.
Parrot Has Watery Poop
If there is more urine than normal, that could mean that your parrot:
- Is drinking excessively
- Has a bacterial disease
According to Veterinary Clinics of North America, parasitic and bacterial diseases are common in parrots. Watery poop is one way to discover if your parrot has this issue.
Parrot Has Dry Poop
On the other end of the spectrum, your parrot’s feces may be dry. This could mean it’s dehydrated or has kidney issues.
Abnormal Urine Or Urates In Parrots
The color of urine and urates is as important as the poop itself. If you notice a change, here are the possible meanings:
- Green or yellow urine: This color indicates potential liver disease
- Red urine: If you see red urine, this usually means internal bleeding in the lower half of the digestive tract. This can also mean lead poisoning or kidney disease
- Green or yellow urates: This usually means liver disease or anorexia
- Brown urates: Brown urates can mean possible lead poisoning
- Red urates: Red urates can either mean kidney disease or fresh internal bleeding
No Urates In Bird Poop
If your parrot’s poop has no urates, this indicates a kidney problem. You will need to consult with your vet for further testing to determine the exact cause.
Can You Ignore Abnormal Parrot Poop?
Not every warning sign is a reason to panic. Your parrot may have a mild stomach issue that will pass on its own. Harmless changes in diet may also cause certain changes to a parrot’s feces. However, you shouldn’t ignore the warning signs as they come. To tell when it’s serious, monitor your parrot for other signs or symptoms:
- Has your parrot stopped eating?
- Is your parrot sitting at the bottom of its cage?
- Is your parrot breathing with its mouth open or wheezing?
- Does your parrot have less energy than usual?
These factors should be taken into account, alongside the parrot’s droppings. If abnormal poop continues or your parrot shows other adverse health symptoms, then seek the opinion of an avian veterinarian.