African Grey Parrots are very sociable and require a lot of attention and interaction. Thus it is important to make sure that their cage and environment is more than adequate for their housing needs. Although African Greys are very sociable, they do NOT adjust well to change. One must be careful to when making environmental changes such as the introduction of a new toy or moving their cage to a new location.

In relation to climate and weather conditions, African Grey originates from an area which is located on the equator. This means that these birds are not only acclimatized to warm weather but also having between 8-12 hours of sunlight all of the year round.

There is also concern in relation to African Greys and rain. The important factor is the combination of temperature and rain. On a hot sunny day, some contact with water can actually help cool down the grey. However, when the temperature is cooler, it is necessary to provide roofing that your grey can seek shelter from exposure to water as they will likely get ill.

Watch a video of African Grey bathing during a summer rainstorm below:


When selecting your African Grey cage keep in mind the following:
  • Quality
    The bars of the cage should be too thick for the African Grey to bend and where the bars join should be smooth. No sharp edges, flaky finish or easy to disassemble.

  • Material
    The cage should be made from noncorrosive metal. Powder-coated cages typically stand up best to the test of the African Grey Parrot's beak and are usually very safe. Other acceptable metals include steel, brass or chrome. Zinc, which is toxic to birds.

  • Bars
    The gap between the bars should not allow the bird’s head through. At the same time, it should not be too small and catch onto their toes. Typically, a good sized bar should be spaced about ¾ - 1 inch apart. It is best to get a cage that has horizontal side bars so that they can climb up and down easily, a good form of exercise.

  • Perches
    It is important to have perches for the bird to rest on. There are perches with rough surface that groom the claws and offers a better grip.

  • Trays and Grates
    Make sure the trays and grates are removable so they are easily cleanable.

  • Dishes
    Stainless steel or ceramic bowls are easier to keep clean and last longer.

The cage should be kept clean by wiping it down with detergent and water or a bird safe disinfectant solution. Newspaper seems to be the safest bedding as organic bedding can cause illness and death if ingested, also the dust associated with them can be harmful.


Prioritize width over height for African Greys. Tall cages are not suitable and may cause the bird to fall because when the bird is scared, curious or wanting to search for their owner, they will leap off in an effort to fly. If they have limited space to spread their wings, they fall.

It is encouraged to place your bird on a play stand that’s closer to the ground. Interact with your bird while sitting on the floor, too.

Greys require a cage big enough whereby they can flap their wings without hitting the bars and one that has lots of climbing and playing room.

A suitable cage for an African Grey Parrot is at least 2 feet deep by 3 feet wide by 4 feet high (61 x 91 x 122 cm) and has a playpen top with a tray.

African Grey Parrots are very active and need a lot of "out of cage" time. It's important to make sure that there are toys both inside the cage and outside in the playpen area to keep your African Grey busy.



African greys in the wild are usually foraging in the tree branches, hidden in dense leaves. They are rarely out in a clearing and are on high alert when they are.

Therefore, the location of the African Grey cage in your home is very important to their health and happiness. African Grey Parrots are flock members and like to be where the action is to fulfill their need for human interaction and their curiosity to know what is going on. Most African Greys' cages seem to live in dining and living rooms, but remember not to expose the cage on all sides so they will still have a secure feeling when in their home.

Sometimes, an owner might put their African grey’s cage next to a window, thinking that the bird wants to look out and see everything. Although some Greys are OK with this, others may feel insecure and stressed in this type of location.

To overcome this possible issue, move the cage so that the grey can either choose to look out or hide away from the windows. Some birds respond well to having a visual barrier over part of the cage (like a blanket or towel), so they can hide there when they want to. You can also arrange a line of hanging toys in front of a perch at the back of the cage to make a little hiding place for your grey. This is one way to provide a sense of visual security, as the hanging toys form a veil the bird can perch behind.

There are a few things you can do to help your grey relax. Although an African Grey is sociable, when he is experiencing anxiety caused by change, decrease activity around the cage. Place the cage where the grey isn’t constantly exposed to loud noises like children and other pets running by.

It is advised to locate your greys cage away from direct sunlight, drafts, air conditioning and any heat source. However, this is not a hard rule. In relation to the environment, an important guideline is to prevent drastic changes the sudden fall or rise in temperature, humidity and sun exposure. A corner of the living room is a good place for a grey so long as he can see you during your daily routine.

Talk to your grey and include him in some of your routine. Ours help us get ready in the morning, help with preparing their food cups, play games, cook a meal, etc.

Greys love to be outside of their cages and a play perch or small tree branch shaped perch located nearby will provide your bird with lots of exercise and a place to feel as if they are in their natural environment.


Temperature and humidity are also a consideration. The greys natural environment is a mild temperature with fairly high humidity. Temperatures in the 20s (degree C) are fine for a grey, but if you live in a drier climate, you will want to consider a humidifier to add moisture to the surrounding air.


When you house your grey indoor, be conscious if the room is hot. After making sure that your parrot safely caged, open a window to create circulation to cool down the room. The risk of overheating is certainly the most dangerous weather condition for a bird kept indoors, most especially by a sunny window.

Due to their origins African Grey’s response to sunlight is more positive than that of our avian species. An aviary caretaker observed from an outdoor aviary discovered that compared to birds like Macaws, Amazons and Pionus, the African Grey enjoys the sun much more. Macaws, Amazons and Pionus will spend some time in the sun, but will then rest in the shade when they nap. On the other hand, African Greys would actually sunbath.

There was a story from the same outdoors aviary as share by the caretaker above: “The African Greys are the only birds that truly bask in the sunlight. One day, I saw something I found astonishing.  I saw the Grey on the floor of the aviary, head down and wings spread out.  I was afraid that she was ill or hurt, but when I approached it became obvious that she had only been sunbathing.”

From: http://www.bestofbreeds.net/

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