Why is My Bird Suddenly Aggressive?

Many factors can cause your bird to suddenly become aggressive. It could be because of something that you have unknowingly done or the result of a mood swing in your bird. Your bird may try to bite you or make loud noises. 

Bird owners may find it difficult to figure out exactly what is causing their birds aggression. Observing your bird’s behavior and your interactions with them can help you find out the cause. Eliminating the causes one by one can help pinpoint the exact reason for sudden aggressive behavior.

A few common reasons for aggression are:


While birds are usually not mean, they can be fearful and this can cause aggressiveness. There can be several reasons that can cause fear in your bird. Some common reasons include handling them in a way they don’t like, change in their environment or loud noises. Birds who have not been hand-fed from a young age tend to be fearful of being handled.


Like most pets, birds need to be given socialization training to make them comfortable around people or other animals. Lack of socialization training can leave them afraid of humans, other birds, pets or new experiences. Exposing your bird to different people and situations can help minimize aggressive behavior and overcome their fears.

Adopting an Older Bird

For the most part, young birds who are trained properly will grow up to be calm and non-aggressive pets. If you adopted an older bird, they could be aggressive because they had been mistreated earlier in their life. Their earlier abuse can lead to biting, handling problems or attacks when their owners try to interact with them. 

If you plan to get an older bird, find out about their behavior and how they have been treated by their earlier owners or breeders. If you think there is something wrong, It might be best not to adopt them. It can be difficult to correct the aggressive behaviors of a grown-up bird.

Hormonal Change

Birds reaching their adolescence age experience hormonal changes. Adolescence can sometimes make your bird become aggressive and this is natural. This type of aggression will usually end once they pass this stage of their life. Depending on the bird species it can take between 6 months to 3 years for a bird to reach adolescence.


Birds are emotional pets and one of the emotions they are known for is jealousy. If they see their owners interacting with other people or pets, they can get jealous over the attention others receive. Birds form strong bonds with other birds in the wild. In captivity they see you as their pair or partner. If you don’t give them enough time and attention, or interact with others they can feel jealous and may become aggressive.

Territorial Behavior

Birds tend to be territorial about their space. If they feel their space is being invaded your bird may become angry or aggressive. A stranger or another pet coming close to their cage, bird stand or bird feeder can make them feel threatened. To protect their territory and keep others away, they may become aggressive.


Lack of physical activity or human interactions can cause your bird to become bored. Leaving them alone for a long time or not exercising them properly can have them feeling bored or anxious. Physical activity is very important to keep your bird mentally stimulated. Playing with your bird everyday can help keep them mentally stimulated and reduce aggression.

Birds like to chew and should be given lots of chew toys to give them something to do. Their toys should be rotated every few weeks to keep them from getting bored. Another thing that works extremely well for overcoming boredom is to give your bird puzzle toys. Birds are incredibly intelligent animals and love solving puzzles. If you know that you will be away from them and want to minimize boredom, puzzle toys are the answer!


Birds can become aggressive if they feel stressed. The stress can be caused by unpleasant experiences like seeing a wild animal through the window or hearing loud noises. It can also be caused by health issues or overcrowding of their cage. Observing your bird for visible signs of health issues could help identify the reason for stress. If you have many birds in a cage, think about getting them a larger cage or move some of them into a different cage.