Teaching your bird to talk can be highly enjoyable. it is similar to teaching your small children to say there first words. It is similar simply because it takes a lot of patience and love. The new skill your pet bird will learn is also similar to teaching a child in that it is best done at an early age. What you are actually doing is the first programing of the birds brain so it mimicks what you are saying by constantly listening to your words. Birds learn by mimicking their parents. The best time to start is weaning age no later than four to six months. This is when the parents usually teach their young the calls and whistles related to the species they belong to.
The birds that can be taught to speak are the African Grey parrot who is one of the best to teach, the cockatiel, the green winged macaw, rose ringed parakeet, the amazon parrot, the peach fronted love bird, sulphur crested cockatoo which is very popular choice by bird lovers. There is also the crimsen rosella and eastern rosella, red-rumped parrot and budgies which will talk but are a little harder to teach. Interestingly enough the mynah birds from the starling family are very easy to teach. They have a large range of calls and whistles as you have probably heard them in your neighbour hood. When you have chosen the bird that you intend to teach don’t start the training the first week let your pet bird get use to you building up it’s trust.
This will make it easier to teach. Have some interaction with your bird don’t just feed it and clean its cage. Make sure the bird is in a safe place such as away from the heat and the cat if you have one. When you are about to do the training make sure you shut windows, turn off the radio or tv so there are no distractions. You want your bird to focus on you. So it does focus on you hold the bird in front of your face so it will get full on interaction. Start with a word or phrase and just keep repeating it. Say it clearly your word or phrase. You can record your voice and listen to how clearly you are saying it. Do this in another room so the bird cannot hear it. If you have a recording, you can improve so you can speak the clearest you possibly can, when training the bird. Birds find words with the letter r in them easy to say so you can start with these sort of words. Words like “cracker” “pretty bird”.
I used to have a pet shop with a talking corrella whose name was Percy. He use to say “Hello how are ya” with the letter r sounds at the end of the phrase. Some people believe that female birds can’t be trained to talk this is not true. They are just harder to train. Male birds are definitely a lot easier to teach to talk. When you do start training your favourite bird only do it for 15 minutes several times a day. That way you both won’t get bored and the bird will have a break to give it time to think about it has heard. Always give a special treat to the bird if it actually speaks even if it is not clear at first. When you think your bird has mastered the word or phrase you have so patiently taught it you can try another one. Sometimes they can be taught to react to a noise. My friend had a pink and grey parrot that said when the phone rang, “answer the phone”. Make sure the bird is saying the word or phrase clearly before you move to another one. Don’t teach your bird anything you don’t want it to repeat such as foul language. Also some birds will take longer than others to speak so don’t give up so easily. Remember patience and repetition just like you favourite child and also persistence. So have fun together whlie you are training your bird and you will have more success. Good luck.