Can you smell as well? S.N.I.F.F.™
(Society of Nasal Investigation of Feathered Friends)

(Association for Researching Odors Manifest in Avian Species)

Birds have particular odors about them that are stronger at certain times due perhaps to either hormonal changes or physical changes such as illnesses. Researching this topic may help the novice bird owner who possesses a sensitive sniffer to discern the physical well-being of their pets. Your input on this subject is important. We'd like to know if you can detect the scent that your bird(s) emanates and have a description of what they smell like to you. Of interest also is what smells your bird can discern.

Most birds reportedly do not have a keen sense of smell. Until this is proven to me, I assert that they do indeed have an excellent naresy sense of smell. Your observations on this would be very much appreciated. You can either fill out the form below or e-mail your response. (Click here to send e-mail). Most responses are published right here on this page.



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Comments or Observations on Parrots' Sense of Smell:




06-19-20: COCKATIEL "SUNNY": PET=yes AGE=8 or 9 years. DOMESTIC=yes. DESCRIPTION=Maple syrup pancakes. DIET=Cockatiel seed feed blend. - Submitted by Bella.

04-04-20: CINNAMON COCKATIEL "MARLEY": PET=yes AGE=6 months. DOMESTIC=yes. GENDER=Male DESCRIPTION=He smells like popcorn when he's happy or sleepy. He smells spicy sometimes and he smells like cleaning supplies when he's upset. He recently started to smell a lot like strong rosewater. DIET=He eats mostly pellets with the occasional seeds as treats. He's very picky so he doesn't eat as much fruits/veggies as we'd like him to. He also eats oatmeal with us sometimes. - Submitted by Alyssa.

01-19-20: RED LORED AMAZON "GEORGIE": PET=yes AGE=17 years. DOMESTIC=yes. GENDER=Female DESCRIPTION=Very foul smelling. Seems to originate from her nostrils. This has always been the case and not just recently. She is not Ill and there's no discharge. I'm just wondering if this is normal? DIET=Variety of seeds and nuts, root vegetables, greens, fruit, boiled egg, pulses and beans. She has a good healthy diet. - Submitted by Suzie.

12-27-18: VIOLET INDIAN RINGNECK "BABA": PET=yes AGE=5 to 6 weeks. DOMESTIC=yes. DESCRIPTION=He had a bath because he had bird formula on his feathers and I had to get it off but he started smelling sort of like wet dog or something like that and I thought that it would go away after he dried but it hasnít gone away and itís sort of gotten worse. DIET=Babaís currently eating a baby bird formula that I got from a pet store. he seems to like it and I never had a problem with him smelling until I had to clean him. When I got him I was told to feed him around every 4 hours and he seems to be healthy itís just that he smells really bad. - Submitted by Emily.

12-20-18: QUAKER PARROT "NIBLET": PET=yes AGE=9 months. DOMESTIC=yes. GENDER=Male DESCRIPTION=Like fresh bread! Yeasty and maybe like seeds? He LOVES millet, he eats some daily. He came addicted to it. DIET=Millet, fruits and veggies, seeds and nuts, cereal COMMENTS="I love his smell! Slightly sweet and like bread. Smells like a wet dog a bit when wet, but not strong. I call him my little breadstick!" - Submitted by Debra.

11-29-18: PACIFIC PARROTLET "ARNIE": PET=yes AGE=3 years. DOMESTIC=yes. DESCRIPTION=Distinct smell like he is smuggling weed. If you have been around someone who is carrying a bag of weed in their pocket, then you will know what it smells like. He seems to smell stronger of weed when he is happy. COMMENTS="He washes often. Has a daily bath he can dip in when he wants. Makes no difference to smell. We had a female who smelled of weed when she was perched next to the male, but she sadly died." - Submitted by Michael.

11-08-18: YELLOWNAPED AMAZON "BETO": PET=yes AGE=15 years. DOMESTIC=yes. DESCRIPTION=Breath smells of sweet flowers. LOVE IT! Body just smells like feathers to me. No odor to cage/poop. DIET=Have only had him 3 weeks so we are at Nutriberries and pellets. Grapes and nuts as treats or bribes. - Submitted by Sharon.

12-09-16: GREENCHEEK CONURE "AURA": PET=yes AGE=4 years. DOMESTIC=yes. DESCRIPTION=Rotten smell coming from nostrils (not from mouth). DIET=Harrison's organic bird pellets, Nutriberries Cockatiel treats, and fruits/veggies. - Submitted by Cristina.

09-11-16: GREENCHEEK CONURE "SIGMUND": PET=yes AGE=1 year. DESCRIPTION=Musty general bird smell, but pungent and sour under wings. DIET=Millet twice a week. Pellets with unshelled nuts and dried fruit. Fresh fruit offered, but not eaten. - Submitted by Valerie.
*Editor's Note: A more varied diet could be a factor.

07-07-16: MUSTACHE PARAKEET "DEEDAA": PET=yes AGE=9 months. DOMESTIC=no. MALE. DESCRIPTION=My bird have a kind of smelly smell n its very strong. DIET=not listed. - Submitted by Jaja.

07-03-16: QUAKER PARAKEET "GUAVA": PET=yes AGE=2 years. DOMESTIC=yes FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=My two-year old smells like grass and burnt honey, however I have noticed that during spring she will smell faintly of garlic, which is odd because she doesn't ever have a chance to eat garlic. DIET=occasional Nutriberries, occasional fresh fish, occasional meat, pellets at all times, fresh fruit and a small amount of mixed nuts at breakfast time, carrots and beets at lunch time, boiled plain pasta at dinner time. all that whatever I'm eating (so long as its safe!) - Submitted by Mary Angela.

07-03-16: QUAKER PARAKEET "MARLEY": PET=yes AGE=2 years. DOMESTIC=yes FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=My two-year old smells like grass and burnt honey, however I have noticed that during spring she will smell faintly of garlic, which is odd because she doesn't ever have a chance to eat garlic. DIET=My two-month old smells like baby bird and apples. COMMENTS="I noticed that they respond to the SOUNDS of cooking more than they do smell." - Submitted by Mary Angela.

06-08-16: QUAKER PARAKEET "RIO": PET=yes AGE=7 weeks. DOMESTIC=Unknown. MALE. DESCRIPTION=I can't really describe it. DIET=He eats a baby parrot formula provided by Petsmart. COMMENTS="I'm not sure if the smell is coming from my parrot because sometimes I go to pick him up and the bottom of him is wet and has a smell." - Submitted by Ivette.

05-14-16: GREENCHEEK CONURE "OLIVER": PET=yes AGE=5 years. DESCRIPTION=The bird smells of feces. The smell is not always present; I can smell him about once a day very strongly. I've not noticed it occurring at a specific time. After he bathed tonight, he smelled especially strong. DIET=Lafeber Classical Nutri-berries for conures, fresh offered but rarely eaten - Submitted by Dara.
*Editor's Note: The lack of a varied diet could be a factor.

01-02-11: SENEGAL: PET=yes AGE=11 years. FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Sharp, foul odor only as of a year or so ago. DIET=Zupreem, mixed vegetables and an almond daily. - Submitted by Ashley.
*Editor's Note: The odor is more than likely coming from an internal disorder that should be checked via blood workup. The diet could be a factor.

07-17-09: MITRED CONURE: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2 SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=Spicy, tannic, fruity. DIET=RoudyBush Rice Diet, fresh fruit and veggies. Supplement Volksman's Ekkie blend with milled flax seed. Manu block. COMMENTS= The WBC seems to use her eyes more than her sense of smell. I think visually, the orange, egg or plum means more to her than smelling it after she owns it! - Submitted by Chelle.

02-24-08: LILAC CROWNED AMAZON: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 years SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=Smells lovely. His beak smells strong ike a perfumed honey. His feathers smell gorgeous like that new kitten or new puppy smell. So clean and slightly perfumy, probably from where he's near me so much. DIET=Parrot pellets, lots of fruit and veggies. COMMENTS= Sense of smell: If someone walks in with food or drink and he can't see it, he still immediately makes a beeline for that person so he must be able to smell a sandwich, or tea. - Submitted by Sarah Marshadlam.

02-24-08: ECLECTUS: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=4 months SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=I have an accute sense of how each of my birds have a certain odor except I was recently startled by a fishy odor from Eddie, the american yellow male. I have a Hahns Macaw, Yellow Thigh Caique, Spectacled parrotlet as well. Sometimes they smell like what they eat and they usually have a pleasing scent. When they are hormonal they smell a little musky. When the parrotlets get frightened or agitated or jealous sometimes they smell a faint skunky. I am concerned with a fishy smell From the American Yellow. The birds get spring water baths daily and I am concerned this may be an infection. There are no visible signs and in fact he is the most beautiful American Yellow I have ever seen. DIET=All my birds are on Harrisons and Lafeber Nutri omega three cakes. They also have millet sprays, fresh veggies (broccoli, fresno chiles, jalepenos, various berrys, pear, celery, figs. They get a homemade organic people grade treat mix I make from from millet, oats, toasted oat groats, flax seeds, nine grain mix, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds COMMENTS= My spectacled parrotlet loves tortilla chips but I try to hide from him because they have salt in them. If I eat some in the kitchen and then sit down with him on my shoulder he practically jumps in my mouth. He seems to smell the toasted corn even though I finsished eating. Then he cries and cries until I go get some for him. - Submitted by Donna Matuszczak.

02-08-08: PARROTLET: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=13 years SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=On her head it smells almost like a ferret does, but the rest of her body has no odor at all. After having a shower, and dried, there is no odor anywhere, but it returns later in the day. DIET=Magnolia Bird Farm seed mix 3x daily and peanuts. Loves peanuts! COMMENTS= She can smell. She smells dinner cooking and starts a squawking! - Submitted by Candice.

02-08-08: BLUE & GOLD MACAW: PET=yes DOMESTIC=unknown AGE=about 8 years SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=Almost undetectible, if you stick your nose in his feathers he has an ever so slightly musky smell. DIET=Harrisons bird pellets plus supplimental food off our plates. COMMENTS= Our macaw can tell almost the second food has started to cook from five rooms away. It's not the sound as much as the smell. - Submitted by Leslie.

02-04-08: PEACHFACED LOVEBIRD: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=7 years SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=Smells like yeast. DIET=Harrisons pellets, cereals, breads, popcorn, nutri-berries, seed once a week. Right now I'm trying something called pluck no more and can only give him dry foods. My bird is a feather picker, but also picks his skin as well. But he normally also ate pastas. COMMENTS= As mentioned earlier, my cockatiel is a plucker. I've tried a number of things to get him to stop with no success, I'm now trying the pluck no more. I have has just about all tests ran on him that my avian doctor can think of including a skin graph. For some reason he smells of yeast, none of my other birds smell this way. - Submitted by Marla Powell.

10-14-06: COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=unknown AGE=about 8 years SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=On her head it smells almost like a ferret does, but the rest of her body has no odor at all. After having a shower, and dried, there is no odor anywhere, but it returns later in the day. DIET=Magnolia Bird Farm seed mix 3x daily and peanuts. Loves peanuts! COMMENTS= She can smell. She smells dinner cooking and starts a squawking! - Submitted by Candice.

08-31-06: MEYERS PARROT: PET=yes AGE=12 years SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=Rafiki, our adopted Meyers, often smells like maple syrup, so sweet and nice. Usually he emits this smell when he's feeling very lovey and tries to feed me. I discourage the behavior by distracting him with something else to do, but I love his smell! DIET=Rafiki always has a supply of Harrison's Course Organic Pellets, and TOP Totally Organic Pellets. He also eats fresh organic foods daily, depending on what is in season. He also gets a treat of table food once each day, and he loves almonds, so we give him one or two per day. He also gets a few dried cranberries from time to time when fresh ones are not in season. Approx 1x/week he gets a small piece of 100% whole wheat bread or pasta. He also gets fruit juice as a treat on weekends. COMMENTS=Each time I cook, even microwave, our 11 yr old female Congo African Grey starts asking for chicken. She is adopted, and we are vegetarian, so she continues to ask for it and we give her other things instead, but she only asks when I'm cooking. I believe she is able to smell that something is cooking, even though it is not chicken. - Submitted by April.

08-31-06: COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2½ years SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=She seems to have a more musky, more detectable smell when she's molting or hasn't had a bath for a while. At other times I can hardly detect a smell at all. Sometimes I can smell what she has been eating on her feathers, especially if it's something with a strong smell like coriander. DIET=We feed her Kaytees tropical flavoured pellets, as well as raw oats, broccoli, raw cabbage, brussel sprouts, beans and other assorted greens, all raw. Occasionally mixed seeds and also cooked egg. COMMENTS=She definitely has a good sense of smell. She knows when the eggs are cooking, and when I used to eat oat porridge she knew when that was cooking too. She seems to know when I'm drinking coffee and when I'm drinking hot milk - she loves tasting the hot milk. I don't think she can smell the cat, but I'm pretty sure she can smell seeds. - Submitted by Sandre.

08-29-06: BLUE % GOLD MACAWS: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=7 weeks. DESCRIPTION=I currently have 3 clutches of baby Blue & Gold Macaws. The slightly older bigger babies have a stronger odor. I have noticed this odor on adult scarlets, green wings and B&G's. Some people notice it and some do not at all. I do not have a particularly sensitive nose but to me it smells like a very strong, pungent, Citrusy & Musky scent. I did not smell this odor on either of the clutches until one day I took two of them outside and all of the sudden I smelled it. A few days later, I opened up the windows in the aviary to air it out and suddenly the smell was so strong, it blew me away. There was no smell at all prior to opening up the windows. Then it was so strong it gave me and my wife headaches and teary eyes. I cannot say for sure if it was activated by the fresh air or it was just stirred up by it but after that experience as well as taking the two birds outside, I am convinced that the mixture of fresh oxygen and whatever produces the scent makes it stronger. Someone else mentioned there is an oil gland just above the tail feathers. Maybe this is producing a secretion. I hope this input helps. If anyone can tell me anything more about this scent, I would love to hear it. DIET=The babies are on KayTee Handfeeding formula for macaws. - Submitted by Mike.

04-07-06: PARROTLET: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 - 5 years SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=Mildly Nutty... A faint distinct odor of nothing I can pinpoint. Mildly nutty is the best I can describe it. DIET=Harrison Organic Pellets 40%, Fruits/Veggies 15%, Varieties of Beak Apetite 20%, Parrotlet Seed Mix 25%. COMMENTS=Well he likes Beak Apetit which smells good, but I am not sure if that is why he likes it! - Submitted by Carissa Moreland.

04-01-06: GREENWING MACAW: PET=yes IMPORT=yes AGE=25 years SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=Feathers have a musky kind of smell. Not unpleasant. No bad breath. DIET=Diet consists of five to six different types of pasta - different colors, shapes. Food source i.e. spinach, wheat, tomato, brown rice, mixed vegetables, sweet potatoes. I mix and bag this mixture and place in freezer. She also eats a supplemental pellet such as Prettybird during the spring and summer. When we eat outside, we share various health people food. By the way, she lives outside year round in a huge aviary. I have had her 24 years and she is a happy girl. COMMENTS=Observed no sense of smell. She does recognize smell and shapes. - Submitted by Mark Plantz.

04-01-06: QUAKER: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=10 months SEX=male. DESCRIPTION=He has a slightly sweet musky smell. DIET=His main diet is Zupreem fruit mix. He does not eat the yellows. I give him a seed mix and millet spray as a treat. Sometimes he will eat fruit and seed balls. COMMENTS=The musk smell is stronger and slightly sour when he is wet. - Submitted by Kelly.

04-01-06: COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=6 months. DESCRIPTION=Rio mostly has a sweet smell. He smelled "musky" at times, just after we got him. At other times, he seems to not have an odor at all. After strawberries, or another naturally sweet fruit he smells WONDERFUL! This is even after the food has been removed from the cage-- and for up to 6 hours after. DIET=Rio has access to 2 fresh water sources at all times. He is on fruity pellets manufactured by Zupreem. He has fresh fruits , veggies, birdy breads, muffins, rice and legumes. We limit processed foods, an ocasional cracker bit or pretzel morsel. He also relishes a tidbit of cheddar cheese on rare occasions. His absolute favorites are broccoli, strawberries, scrambled egg, and peanut butter on toast! He has a bit of seed a few times a week. COMMENTS=From's pet bird site. - Submitted by Holly L.

03-18-06: COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2 years SEX=Female. DESCRIPTION=She has a slightly musky smell. It's only a slight smell. Not much at all. DIET="Trill" bird seed, Acacia branches, different grasses when they are in seed, "Trill" seed stick as a treat every now and then. She use to eat a bit of fruit and veggies but doesn't seem to want them anymore COMMENTS=She sneezes a bit when it is very windy or if there is a lot of dust around. - Submitted by Dawn Logan.

03-18-06: UMBRELLA COCKATOO: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=5 years SEX=Female. DESCRIPTION=Not unpleasant, like a baby animal, even a little sweet. DIET=Zupreem, Pretty Bird pellets, homemade birdie bread, basic seed/pellet mix, fruit including but not limited to: apples, ananas, cranberries, peach, grapes, oranges, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries. Fresh vegetables include broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, sweet potatoes, squash, etc. Small amounts of cooked whole eggs, chicken, and other well cooked meats. COMMENTS=When placing cooked foods still warm into bowl, she does seem to smell the food. - Submitted by Terry Flowers.

03-18-06: GOFFIN COCKATOO: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 year, 4 months. DESCRIPTION=We've always joked that Coco smells like a turkey - as in , a butterball that's come out of the oven. Especially after a bath when the bird is wet. DIET=Very varied. Harrison's pellets, Kaytee organic pellets, fresh fruits, veggies, chicken and beef, eggs, etc. COMMENTS=Coco's never done anything to indicate sense of smell in one way or another. - Submitted by Annette.

03-18-06: MOLUCCAN COCKATOO: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=15 years SEX=Female. DESCRIPTION=She smells like powder...a very pleasant odor! DIET=Her diet consists of a mixed pasta/veggie/fruit i.e. macaroni, rice, cooked beans, sweet potatoes, apples, oranges which is fed five days a week. After two hours this is emptied and she gets ZuPreem Fruit Blend. The other two days of the week she gets a vitamin fortified seed diet. COMMENTS=I've never really noticed her ability to smell but her and the other birds I have seem to have a color preference. They like the red and yellow pellets better than the other colors. They prefer the sweet potatoes, carrots, and oranges in their veggie/pasta mix. They seem to like the orangish/reddish colored items I offer to them.. - Submitted by Donna Givens.

03-17-06: COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=Hatched May 1999 SEX=Male. DESCRIPTION=He smells like a garden when it's hot out. sometimes when he's molting or hasn't had a bath in a while he smells a little stinky like moldy bread. DIET=Whatever I'm eating plus wet food made out of beans, noodles, corn, and different grains. He also likes noodles, most green vegetables, oatmeal and apples. He loves orange peelings, especially the white underskin. He tries to get coffee but doesn't get to have it. He hates bananas. He's moody in that he won't eat some stuff one day but will the next time it's offered. COMMENTS=When I'm cooking he smells it and wants to check it out. If it's something he likes like a grain or noodle he sometimes has to be banned from the room becauce I'm afraid he'll jump into the pot. - Submitted by Deborah.

07-27-05: DOUBLE YELLOW HEADED AMAZON: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2 years, 3 months SEX=female. DESCRIPTION=Normally not any particular odor. However, when aroused she produces an musk/honey odor. DIET=She eats a mash consisting of all different types of beans, lentils, corn, potatoes, yams, mustard greens, parsley, cranberries, pumpkin & sesame seeds, alfalfa & kelp powder. Fresh fruits and vegetables and a variety of seeds and nuts. COMMENTS=Of the 7 parrots that we have I haven't noticed what I would call them smelling something and the other parrots don't seem to be affected by the Amazon's smell when she produces it. - Submitted by Tom Beard.

COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=Under 1 year. FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Slight, musky, spicy and fruity. Delicately unpleasant. DIET=Pellets with 20% Hartz seeds. Fresh fruit and veggies. Green beans and pears are her favorites. Occasional honey stick treat and daily millet. She would sell her mother for a stick of millet. COMMENTS=She smells all her foods before eating them. Cockatiels have a keen sense of smell. - Submitted by Scott Abrams.

QUAKERS: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=7 months, over 1 year, and one unknown. DESCRIPTION=My three quakers all have this smell. Its kind of musky? It doesn't smell good but I wouldn't say it stinks either. Oh! I got it! They smell like a attic! An old attic! DIET=Roudybush. No supplements since Roudybush is already loaded with vitamins and minerals. They also get fresh fruit and veggies daily and the occasional peanut or millet spray. - Submitted by Tammy of NC.

RED-TAILED GREYS: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=12 months (siblings). DESCRIPTION=Their feathers have a faint musky smell to them. It can only be smelled if I actually sniff the feathers. They seem to smell a bit more after a good fight with a "rival toy". Their cage and feces do not have any smell. They shower every day and do not smell more when wet. DIET=Hagen Tropican Sticks (Lifetime Formula)- free fed. Prestige Premium Parrot Seed (fruit mix)- 1/4 cup a day. Daily Mix of Veggies/Fruits: carrots, yams, kale, beans, bananas, oranges, grapes, peas, apples, sweet potatoe, corn, etc. Varied (cooked, fresh, mashed) "Treats": Almonds, Nutriberries. If Available: plain boiled chicken breast, little bit of plain yogurt/cheese, rice, pasta. COMMENTS: DO THEY SEEM TO SMELL: I don't know if it is due to smell or taste (or both or neither), but they will not eat their pellets once they begin to lose their fruity smell (about half a day in the bowl). I have to buy 1.5 pound bags that last about a week. I tried buying in bigger but even though the bag is sealed they will not eat it after awhile. As for fresh foods, they will eat anything. Bananas are their favorite. Maybe they can smell them because every time I open a banana out of sight, they go nuts and run to the kitchen, hopping and skipping like a couple of vultures. Though they might just know the sound of peeling a banana. - Submitted by Steph of QUEBEC CA.

CONGO AFRICAN GREY: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=4½. FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=She has a very clean smell. She smells like baby powder. DIET=she eats 90% Harrisons Hi Potency pellets and the other 10% of her daily diet is composed of green/yellow vegetables, fruit, chicken, nuts, eggs, pasta and once in a while pizza :( She gets a little of the above foods approx. 3-4x a day so she can join us at mealtimes. And, of course her portions are small to keep her in the 10% range for the day. The 90/10 ratio was given to me couple of years ago by her avian vet and she does really well on it. - Submitted by Joyce.

TIMNEH AFRICAN GREY: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=8 years old. MALE. DESCRIPTION=Back and wing feathers are oily, fragrant, reminiscent of an egg roll (i.e., deep fried food). Stronger when nervous or upset. Top of head has little to no smell. DIET=Omnivore: mixed seeds and pellets, fruit, and people food. Particularly loves soft, creamy things like custard, scrambled egg, and anything he can chugalug (soups, oatmeal). COMMENTS=Have never noticed him having an aversion to any food due to its smell. (He is only afraid of food that's larger than himself, such as a slice of pizza.) Doesn't seem to care what I smell like. To me, his odor is delightful. - Submitted by Andrea of FL.

QUAKER: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2½. MALE. DESCRIPTION=Wet grass hay, very slightly soured. Not unpleasant, but wafty. Tones of a light gardenia. I have a Nanday conure, 8 yr-old who has no odor whatsoever. DIET=Sole diet of Roudybush Mini for both birds. 1x week I'll give peanuts, millet spray, or other seed treat. The Nanday loves peanuts and they both want to nibble whatever I'm eating, makes no matter. COMMENTS=I have not assessed any reactions to smells yet I'm confident the lack of perception is mine. - Submitted by Kevin Poe of MO.

BLUEFRONT AMAZON: PET=yes AGE=20. DESCRIPTION=Jammers smells like an eclectus. Fruity and sweet, almost like the sweet is going bad in a musty sort of way. DIET=Jammers eats ONLY frozen peas with a little seed and 1 avi cake in the morning. The rest of the day she eats basically what we eat. (we eat healthy). - Submitted by April Templeton of IA.

TIMNEH AFRICAN GREY: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2. MALE. DESCRIPTION=Smells like the bird vomits, but the smell is only present when he baths in his water dish. The bird is healthy by appearance and no change in his personality. Can you help, or offer any ideas to this smell...? DIET=Parrot seed only, the bird is a very picky eater and will not eat just anything. COMMENTS=I'm guessing he smells it because he is always bathing when the smell is present. - Submitted by Michael of CA.

AMAZON YELLOWNAPE: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=28 years old approx. DESCRIPTION=Smells like a bird - stinky. DIET=Seed & pellets, fruits & raw veggies - Human food - creamed potatos, lima beans, peas, spaghetti, whatever we are having for dinner. His diet is better than mine! COMMENTS=Rocky doesn't really have a problem smelling things, sniffing or coughing. He has an odor that is getting stronger - he is molting - don't know if that is the reason for his odor. We have only had him a couple of months and never noticed the smell - we give him weekly baths with a spray bottle. - Submitted by Kerry Irvin of KY.

QUAKER PARROT: PET=yes IMPORT=unknown AGE=17 years approx. FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Smells like bad breath or something moldy. DIET=Seeds mostly some pellets. - Submitted by S. Archuletta.

COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=5 or 6. MALE. DESCRIPTION=Strong and pungent garlicky odor. DIET=Kaytee Forti-diet for cockatiels. COMMENTS=My nephew jsut received the bird today from his neighbor. She's had him his entire life. Thanks for your input. - Submitted by Jacob Summerville of TX.

MUSTACHE PARAKEET: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=6 Months. DESCRIPTION=Very pungent distinct dirty animal smell - smells oily. DIET=Cockatiel diet and a lot of fruit and pasta. - Submitted by Charles J. Dinsmore of FL.

LILAC CROWNED AMAZON: PET=yes IMPORT=yes AGE=37+ years ago was wild caught...could be a hundred or more. FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=She smells like sweet honey flowers. DIET=She is on seed 4x weekly and Zupreem 3x weekly. She has fruits, vegetables, pasta, beans, rice and meat. She sometimes has cheese, but has eggs at least 3 times weekly. COMMENTS=She smells great. She doesn't seem to smell my breath but she can smell her eggs cooking a mile away and will toot until it is delivered. - Submitted by Renee of CA.

CONGO AFRICAN GREY: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 MALE. DESCRIPTION=I would describe his odor as a musky feather smell. Escpecially after being outside or when frightened. DIET=Was on Zupreem Natural then switched to Harrison High Potency. He began feather snapping on Harrisons, so now I am looking to find a new pellet. Possibly Scenic. Also he is fed broccoli, kale, carrots, sweet potatoes and anything healthy that we eat. - Submitted by Andrea of MI.

GREY CHEEKED PARAKEET: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=6 SEX UNKNOWN. DESCRIPTION=Hank smells like roasted peanuts. DIET=Apples, grapes, peaches, pineapple, pasta, corn, some nuts, beans, bread, and cereal. He has vitamin A supplement in water. - Submitted by A'isha of MD.

QUAKER: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 MALE. DESCRIPTION=Fruity...all my quakers still have this smell. My CAG {2years} smells different and she has the same diet with the addition of chicken and bones a few times a week. she has a mild flowery smell. I don't feed pellets everyday. Sometimes I miss a few weeks. DIET=Seed and Zupreem fruity pellets along with carrots, broccoli, orange, watermelon, cantalope, peas, green beans, wheat bread and assorted table food. COMMENTS=I am not at all aware of parrots smelling. I know their sense of taste is very different from ours, so I would not be at all surprised that the smell is different also - Submitted by A'isha of MD.

COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=U FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=I at first thought the smell was coming from the seeds and honey stick but now it seems the SMELL is coming from the head area of one of my two. DIET=Seeds, honey stick, broccoli, crackers, banana chips, millett, grass, popcorn, water. - Submitted by Heather Taylor.

GOULDIAN FINCHES: BREEDERS=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 TO 2 SEX UNKNOWN. DESCRIPTION=Musty stench - very repulsive. DIET=Smell started after birds were switched to Zupreen pellets. When I went back to Abba seed smell ceased in a week. - Submitted by Michael Molnar of NJ.

CHERRYHEAD CONURE: BREEDER=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 SEX UNKNOWN. DESCRIPTION=Smells like fruit and socks. Incidentally, her favorite toy is a sock. DIET=Her dry diet is: Pretty Bird African, Zupreme, dried fruit, and seed as a treat. She eats every kind of people food she can get her little beak on. COMMENTS=Kiwi likes fruit scented things, her favorite being banana. She doesn't like how I smell when I come back from the barn, or the smell of my saddle, leather cleaner (I don't let her near it), or coffee. - Submitted by Niamh.

ENGLISH BUDGIE: BREEDER=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=I'm not sure excactly- stinky, sick fruit. It's worse when she is wet, but my vet says she is heathly. Just smells like a dirty bird. DIET=She eats mostly people food, along with Pretty Bird, Zupreme, and Sunseed Small Hook. COMMENTS=She has no sense of smell at all. - Submitted by Niamh.

QUAKER PARROT: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2 SEX UNKNOWN. DESCRIPTION=Her breath odor smells sour. Sometime with this smell she will vomit up the content of her crop. I have had her to the vet with no luck. One time they noticed higher than normal yeast. She is still doing this and it does worry me. DIET=Roudybush, table food, corn, pasta and bean mash mix. Some seed. - Submitted by Gina of MA.

LOVEBIRD: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 MALE. DESCRIPTION=When wet, reminiscent of a wet dog. Once put vitamins in water instead of on food, had extremely runny, discolored droppings that smelled very strongly of the vitamins, but with a much worse overtone. Perhaps the fruit flavor made him drink more water than he was used to. DIET=Kaytee conure seed, variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and cereal. Powdered Vitaflight. - Submitted by Gina of MA.

SUN CONURE, SENEGAL, MYERS, AMAZON, COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 SEX UNKNOWN AGES=1, 1, 8, 13, 4. DESCRIPTION=My sun conure has almost a rotten reak of his cage. None of the others bird have this. The Amazon has a sour smell also. But the sun conure is so bad. IT smells worse then anything I've ever smelled. DIET=Zupreem fruit mix, pellets, seed. - Submitted by Jillian G. of NY.

YELLOW COLLARED MACAW: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3 MALE. DESCRIPTION=When he regurgitates food for me (awww), he always smells just like buttered popcorn. DIET=Fruits, oatmeal, soy milk, nuts, yams with Smart Balance margerine. Trying to get him on some pellets. COMMENTS=When I offer new food, both parrots seem to move their tongues against their beaks, as if tasting the food--even though it is nowhere within reach yet. Is this them "smelling" the food? I don't know, but they do use this to either refuse or accept a first taste, as if they can tell before hand whether they will like it. - Submitted by Morgan.

MAXMILLIAN PIONUS: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 SEX UNKNOWN. DESCRIPTION=She smells like fruit punch. Cherries with a touch of citrus. DIET=Cricket eats zupreem and occasional fruits and veggies such as nectarines, apples and corn. COMMENTS=Cricket avoids fresh bananas as though they were the plague, has never tried them and will not come near them until they have dried. She will eat them once they are dry. She refuses to approach the food bowl if there are bananas in it, she doesn't even look in, she knows when they are there. She also doesn't seem to like fresh strong citrus scents either as she won't approch these fruits until they are dried out either. - Submitted by Amy Phillips of GA.

DUSKY HEADED CONURE: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2½ FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=She has a puke-like smell that seems to be coming from her back. I've bathed her several times, and changed the blankets she sleeps with in her box. Still has the smell though. DIET=Her diet hasn't changed recently. She eats a staple of Zupreme Parrot pellets. She also gets fresh grapes each day, Kaytee yogurt dipped fruits, whole grains, bread, vegetables, and on occasion - oats and seed. COMMENTS=She seems to have a keen sense of smell. She can tell what things are before I show them to her. - Submitted by Christopher Parr of ON.

MEXICAN REDHEAD AMAZON: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=n/a FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Very musky when excited. I think it resembles the odor of broccoli that is on the verge of turning bad. My husband likes the odor. We also have a male Mexican red-head and he gives off the same odor. They aren't a pair, as they are in separate rooms and don't tolerate each other. DIET=No supplements given. Diet consists of Goldenfeast South American Blend and Hookbill legume. We have also fed one of the Tropican blends. Lola won't eat people food and even seems scared of it. COMMENTS=I don't know if birds can smell or how well, but they sure have good eyesight. They can spot people food a mile away! - Submitted by Holly Estey of NH.

BLUE AND GOLD MACAW: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=1 FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Sweet, "nutty". DIET=Various fresh fruits, veggies, pellets, nuts, whole grains. COMMENTS=My cockatiel has the same, sweet, "nutty" scent, to a bit lesser degree than the blue & gold macaw; however, my severe macaw isn't nearly as noticeable as either of them. - Submitted by The Reverend1 of CA.

NORMAL GREY COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=9 to 10 MALE. DESCRIPTION=The only time I smell an odor from my tiel is when he needs a bath. It's not a strong odor and I don't know how to describe it. Almost sulphery, I guess. I stick him in the bathroom sink and rinse him off with lukewarm water and he's smell free afterwards. DIET=ZuPreem fruit blend cockatiel pellets, Hartz cockatiel seed, millet spray or fruit & seed honey bar once a week, various veggies--carrots & broccoli mostly, Cheerios and once in a while, popcorn for treats. He also gets the crunchy parts of my morning english muffins--dry, of course. He also gets chicken and scrambled or hard-boiled eggs on occasion. COMMENTS=Buddy has an excellent sense of smell. He can always smell fresh baked rolls, toast, & popcorn being made. He lets you know not to forget to give him some. If you're fixing something that he likes, he can smell it and will always tell you he wants some too. - Submitted by Maryanne Geiss of NY.

RED LORED AMAZON: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=16 FEMALE. DESCRIPTION=Now and then during the day she smells very strongly to me. We haven't had her long so I haven't really noticed a pattern as to when she smells and when she doesn't. The odor smells like cat pee. Sounds terrible but there it is. My husband claims he can't smell it ever. The rest of the time she just smells like a bird. DIET=pasta, mixed seed, Harrison's pellets, cereal, oatmeal cookies, eggs. COMMENTS=I haven't noticed that any of our 3 birds smell very well. They all have to taste something to see if they like it. If they don't, they shake their head and try something else. - Submitted by Leslie Sowden of CA.

COCKATIEL: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=2 MALE. DESCRIPTION=has almost a coconut smell to him at most times, scent sometimes reminds me of a soft fuzzy towel if that makes any sense to anyone! DIET=no- sun parrot food for small hookbills (consists of many seeds like safflower) supplemented with protein 25, packaged dried bugs, cuttle bone powder, Nekton S for essential vitamins and minerals. also given fresh fruit and veggies, an occasional treat of safe birdy treats like dried papaya, crackers etc. COMMENTS=can smell toast in the toaster from another room, and loves Mexican food. - Submitted by Colleem Turner.

MOUSTACHE PARAKEET: PET=yes DOMESTIC=yes AGE=3. DESCRIPTION=Slightly sweet, semi vanilla-rosey odor. Stronger after he has rubbed his scent wick. DIET=Fresh fruits, vegetables, seed, pellet - Submitted by Lance.

RED LORED AMAZON: PET=yes IMPORT=yes AGE=~17 years old. DESCRIPTION=musky sweet odor more prevelent in the Spring. Sometimes "her" breath smells like dried fish food. DIET=Kaytee Bird pellets. Vitamin drops in water. Seed mixture for breakfast 1tsp. Almonds in the shell 5-10 per day "she" really likes them. 15% people food i.e. pizza, spaghetti, potatoes, and other such items. "she" really doesn't like fresh fruit or vegetables. They get thrown out of her cage. - Submitted by Sherri.

MOUSTACHE PARAKEET: Domestic 6-month old pet hen. Her name is Dharma-Xena. DESCRIPTION=Her breath has a strong, sweet, honey-like scent that was noticable the first time I handled her. It can be masked by some human foods but is consistent otherwise. DIET=Mix of pellets including Kaytee,Roudybush and Zupreem with a daily "garnish" of dried fruits, nuts and seeds. Fresh fruits, vegetables or sprouts most days - favorite is jalapenos. And of course - whatever I'm eating that's reasonably bird friendly - especially rice chex and mexican food. Drinks Evian exclusively. - Submitted by Randal Melton.

BLUEFRONT AMAZON: I think it is a sweet/musky scent..which to me is pleasing. Seems stronger when she is scared or excited. My sister thinks she smells like dirty laundry. I guess scent is in the nose of the beholder. DIET=Kelli eats Scenic pellets and a very wide variety of "people food". She has some sort of fresh fruits and vegetables every day. Also is given small amounts of meat a few times a week. She does not get any vitamin supplements other than a once or twice a month dusting of spirulina on her soft foods. - Submitted by Janice Granai.

SUN CONURE: Domestic bred pet, AGE=about 4 months, DESCRIPTION=Has the faint smell of bulk seeds, DIET=Kaytee Exact Fortified Diet, with occassional seeds as treats. Daily liquid vitamin supplements added to food. - Submitted by Spencer.

DOUBLE YELLOWHEAD AMAZON: Pet male, AGE=9-10 years, DESCRIPTION=Sweet, kind like hay, seems to be concentrated in the area of his cere, DIET=Harrison's, bean/rice mix, bird bread- cornmeal base with carrots,spirulina,broccoli, carrots, sweet potato, corn, broccoli, nutriberries, pasta - Submitted by Lark.

CONGO AFRICAN GREY: Domestic Pet: AGE=1 ½, Female. DESCRIPTION=Our CAG smells sweet most of the time. Like a baby, like warm baby cereal or baby food. She did smell funny when she was eating Zupreem. She smells best after her shower. DIET=She is on Lafebers pellet food...but not for much longer! We are switching to a human grade non toxic food. - Submitted by Roxi Doll of NY.

BLUECROWNED CONURE: Domestic Pet: AGE=2 DESCRIPTION=He has an odor that I love and my husband doesn't! It smells to me like a grainy, feathery smell. My husband thinks it smells like dust, I disagree!! His smell does change based on his diet. He stunk when he was eating Lafeber pellets, he also peed a lot! DIET=Trying a variety of pellets to see what makes him pee the less, right now it is Roudybush, Katyee and Hagen. Fresh broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, yams, corn, frozen mixed veggies, peas, beans, etc. Birdy bread, which I make fresh for him, lots of good stuff in it which he may pick out otherwise! - Submitted by Angela Aspeslet of WI.

TIMNEH AFRICAN GREY: Domestic Hen: AGE=3 DESCRIPTION=When she is outside during the day, she smells like zoo animals. It is difficult to describe, but the smell makes me think of the zoo. It is a very exotic smell, I think it is a little sulfur-ish. It is most pronounced when she has been outside. Very rarely, she will develop an odor when she has been inside the house. DIET=Harrison's pellets. Apples, carrots, broccoli, oranges and people food i.e. pasta, peas, fruit sticks, lettuce, bok choy, (whatever we are having for dinner that is low fat and fairly healthy). - Submitted by Mona Delgado.

BLUE & GOLD MACAW: AGE=3 years old DESCRIPTION=zues has a mildew odor about him from time to time. its nothing that a good shower doesn't seem to stop. it only last about a week or so every 5 to 6 months. it's not terrible but can be annoying. fortunately for him i love him so much that i manage to tolerate the unenjoyable odor while it last. DIET=zues eats everything under the sun. he has parrot food, meats vegtables nuts fruits. he eats practically everything i eat and then some. oh yeah he loves pasta noodles. - Submitted by Virginia Thompson of MD.

BLUEFRONTED AMAZON (Amazona aestiva aestiva): Imported Female Pet. AGE=approx. 20 yrs. old. DESCRIPTION= Normal: just a little "dusky" as feathers do. Excited: something like honey combined with a little musk. - this also appears when the bird is scratching the lores. Smell gets stronger when "in the mood". This smell is NOT emitted from the beak or other part of the body than the lores. Also is independent from what the bird fed before. DIET=1/3 Pellets (Harrison's), 1/3 common parrot seed mix, 1/3 a variety of fruits and veggies. COMMENTS=From this observation, I expected that at least Amazons do have a special gland at the lores for this smell, but checking all those clever books (Ritchie et al.) gave no hints. - Submitted by H.J. Pfeffer of Germany.

PIONUS: Male & Female Pets.AGE=2 to 5 yrs. old. DESCRIPTION= Musky baby powder. DIET=Harrisons, Roudybush and Zupreem pellets--Sprouted lentils and Sunflower, Parrot-Deli, carrots, cantaloupe, broccoli--almond for treats. COMMENTS= I think pheromones or this birdy smell is part of what we term "hooked on birds" or birdaholic. - Submitted by Sandy Bortnick

DOMESTIC PETS: U'Too, Bronze Wing Pionus, & Dbl.Yellow Amazon AGE=1 year, 2 years, & 1 year, respectively. DESCRIPTION= BWP(F) & Amazon(?)...strong, musky smell...similar in both parrots, but much stronger with Amazon...U'Too(M)...beak area has a "milky" smell to it...with a sour edge to it...DIET=Weekly sprinkling of Lafeber 13 Avi-Vitamins...2-3 times/week sprinkling of Spirulina...Ornabac sprinkling used daily during heavy molting. - Submitted by Brian S.

WHITE CAP PIONUS: AGE=2, 2 & 1, breeders and pets, domestically bred, both male & female represented. COMMENTS=Wonderful ... like musty hay in a hay barn. Love the smell of Pionus. Can't ever get enough. Scent is especially strong right now with my hormonal almost two year old Male... oh dear .... love that smell!!! Almost as wonderful as those deep beautiful brown PIONUS eyes!!! DIET=Varied diet ... veggies/fruits/grains/pasta/seeds/nuts/some pellets..... anything they'll eat in moderation. VERY limited on table foods... mostly fresh, organic...also sprouts, spirulina, calcium magnesium liquid, blue green algae..... lots of variety! - Submitted by Roxanne Frost

ORANGE WING AMAZON: AGE=7 years, COMMENTS=Her body has a light rose/cinnamon odor, and her breath is just a bit sour. She smells the same before and after bathing, and a change in diet does NOT affect her odor.(I tried by taking her off Exact and fruits and giving her breeder kibble without flavors and veggies with no fruits). DIET=Kaytee Exact, weekly meat (chicken or beef,@15 gms)3x weekly raw produce in season or frozen veggie mix, whole grain dry toast (1 square) daily, pasta when we have it, table veggies, tap water (high Ca content). - Submitted by Kathy Hudson

SUN CONURE: AGE=approx. 2 years, COMMENTS=It is hard to say what my bird smells like, other than a bird. But there is a definite odor, and I like it. Just like a clean cat or dog has a good animal smell, so does my bird. I have not noticed any change in the 2 years I have had her. Sometimes when we cuddle, I bury my nose in her feathers and breath deeply, she smells very good to me. DIET=Seed/pellet mix available all day - along with alot of apples, wheat breads, peanuts, banana, pasta. oh, yeah, and caffeine free coke! - Submitted by Tiffany Cady

CARRIKER'S (Red-fronted) CONURE: AGE=9 months, COMMENTS=When I feed add Pretty Bird Pellets, he emits a pungent odor. This appears to increase proportionally to the amount of these pellets in his diet. For what it's worth, however, other brands make his poop more watery and strange-colored. They are the most normal looking with Pretty Bird." - Submitted by Linda Miller

MOLUCCAN COCKATOO: AGE=15-16 years old, DESCRIPTION=Breath smells very sweet, almost fruity. Very distinctive and the odor is much stronger when he is frightened or upset. DIET=RoudyBush Pellets (just learning to eat pellets after life long diet of seeds). Occasionally tries Harrisons but doesn't really like it. Almonds in the shell, peanuts when I give them, grapefruit, bananas, greenbeans, blueberries, grapes, beet tops, parsley, swiss chard, and of course sunflower seeds which I have phased out completly within the last two weeks. So far he refuses any pastas, legumes, cereals or table food and will not eat any veggies if they have been cooked. - Submitted by Georgia

TIMNEH GREYS: Breeders. ODOR DESCRIPTION: Smell a bit like cauliflower when they're ready. - Submitted by Carol Brasaemle

DOMESTIC NANDAY CONURE: Pet, 4 years old. ODOR DESCRIPTION: Somewhat smoky, yeasty odor (barely discernable). Not keyed to anything I can tell. Not always present. DIET: Pretty Bird, Nutriberries, (healthy) table scraps. Raw pecans and peanuts. Iodized avian vitamins (ARC Labs.)12 drops/day in 1 of 2 water dishes. - Submitted by Larry Drown



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