Friendly lovebirds eating seeds off of a person's hand

12 Friendliest Parrot Species That Make Great Pets

Although parrots are intelligent and sociable companions, they are not the easiest pets to deal with, especially if you are a beginner.

Certain species naturally have friendlier personalities, while some tend to be more aggressive and prone to bad behaviors.

A parrot’s behavior depends on its species and early socialization efforts by the owner. Generally, parrots with a calm and friendly disposition are easier to tame and bond with.

Friendliest Parrot Species 

Here are the friendliest parrots you can keep:


Cockatiel sitting near the window

Cockatiels are as friendly and affectionate as parrots can be. Tiels love some good head scratches and allow petting from everyone. 

Young cockatiels can be easily hand-tamed and make well-behaved birds. They have a cheerful disposition and an outgoing nature, which makes them get along with everyone so well. However, you need to spend enough quality time with them daily in order to maintain that sunny attitude. 

When it comes to vocalizing, cockatiels mostly communicate in chirps and whistles, which are sweet-sounding. They also express themselves through their crest, which is useful in reading their body language.


Budgerigar perched on a wooden branch

Most of the qualities you look for in a parrot can be found in everyone’s favorite pet bird – the budgerigar. Budgies are the most popular species of pet parrots around the world and it’s not hard to see why. 

Budgies are affectionate and highly intelligent species that know how to express their love for their owners in many ways. They are not the cuddliest parrots but they have their own way of showing love.

Some budgies will gently rub their beak against your hand or groom your hair with their beak, while others may climb on your head for a safe space. 

Budgies are a bundle of entertainment and it is rewarding to spend time with them. These birds bond deeply with people and can be loving companions. 

They are also amazing talkers and can garner a massive vocabulary with regular training. These playful birds require a few hours of time commitment, but they are still relatively easy to care for.


Pacific Parrotlet

Affectionate and energetic, parrotlets are amiable parrots who love people and aren’t shy about showing it. 

They have been given the moniker pocket parrots because they are small and often crawl inside their owner’s pockets or under the shirt.  

Parrotlets have a big personality for their incredibly small size and bring enthusiasm into everything they do. 

They are especially excited when it is time for their play session. These busybodies need a ton of socialization and regular handling to keep them tame. 

Being the hyperactive ball of feathers that they are, these birds require a sizable cage with a variety of toys for enrichment and exercise. 


Black-cheeked lovebird

Lovebirds are a small, energetic, and outgoing species. They thrive on social interaction and are known to form deep and lasting bonds with their owners. 

There is a common misconception that lovebirds should only be kept in pairs. While lovebirds can easily form pairs, if you intend to keep one as a pet, it is best to house it as a single bird. Paired lovebirds can bond closely with each other and often ignore human interaction.

Tamed lovebirds can make delightful pets and loving companions. They are active birds wanting play and mental stimulation frequently. Toys and other forms of enrichment can also be an outlet for their energy.

Lovebirds may not be as loud as larger parrots, but they are fairly vocal. They vocalize in chirps, squawks, peeps, and whistles to communicate with their flock or human companion. 

Peach-faced lovebirds, masked lovebirds, and Fischer’s lovebirds are the most commonly kept lovebird species.

Pionus Parrots 

Pionus parrot

If you are looking for a parrot that is friendly by nature but not clingy, Pionus parrots might be the right bird for you. Unlike some parrot species that can become overly dependent or demand constant attention, Pionus parrots tend to be more relaxed and content.

They are happy staying by your side while you do your daily chores. They do not overtly seek attention, but they will be happy with all the time you can give them. 

Pionus parrots are very easy-going and gentle birds and are ideal for apartments. They are relatively quiet and even when they vocalize, their sound is not too loud. 

Green-Cheeked Conures

Green-cheeked conure

The Green-Cheeked Conure shows an abundant display of affection and enthusiasm when it comes to hanging out with people. Conures are generally known to be one of the cuddliest parrots and the green-cheeked conure is no different. 

They are another of the friendliest small parrots because of their gentle nature toward those who take care of them. They are relatively easy to handle and train than other conure species. Even though these birds vocalize frequently, their voices do not penetrate walls. 

Hahn’s Macaws 

Hahn’s Macaw

Hahn’s Macaws are the smallest of the macaw species. It has the same charm and qualities as the larger macaws but in a smaller body. 

Like all macaws, these birds are highly intelligent, vocal, and have boisterous personalities. Their antics are entertaining and they can be trained to perform tricks. Because of their manageable size, they are a lot easier to handle than other macaws. 

Hahn’s macaws, although small, are still extremely loud birds and therefore not suitable for apartments. These birds are highly social, affectionate, and loyal companions. Taking care of them is not particularly easy as they require hours of one-on-one time.     


Caique parrot hopping

Caiques are the biggest attention seekers and cannot go long without being handled or played with. They are also very affectionate and cuddly species that like to be around their owners constantly. 

Their amusing behaviors are entertaining and often surprising. But it is important to keep an eye on them as they can get themselves into trouble because of their inquisitive nature. 

Caiques are very cute birds with moderately loud voices. They whistle, squawk, and make other sounds they learn from their surroundings.   

Caiques are quite beaky and have a tendency to destroy home furniture. To deal with this problem, their cage should always have a ready supply of new toys and it should be large enough so these birds can fly around to spend their energy. 

Eclectus Parrots

Male and female Eclectus Parrots

Eclectus parrots are one of the most visually stunning parrot species. They are a sexually dimorphic species, which means the males and females look different from each other. 

The males are bright green with an orange beak while the females are striking red with purple bellies and a black beak. 

Eclectus parrots are often described as tranquil and even-tempered. They are friendly birds but not overly fond of being handled or cuddled. These birds mostly prefer to perch and spend their time in a relaxed manner.  

However, they are not particularly low maintenance as they have different care needs to other parrots. Eclectus parrot’s diet consists primarily of fruit and vegetable diet and should include foods that are high in Vitamin A. They also require a large cage and regular interaction.

Hyacinth Macaws

Hyacinth Macaw

The Hyacinth Macaw earns its nickname – “gentle giant” for being affectionate and big. These macaws are the largest parrots in the world measuring a whopping 39 – 40 inches in length. 

Make sure you have enough room in your house and an aviary to accommodate their large bodies. Hyacinth macaws are only for experienced bird owners to own. Along with a hefty price tag, these birds are high maintenance and have complex care needs. 

Hyacinth macaws eat a high-fat diet comprising various types of nuts, preferably palm nuts as well as fruits and vegetables. Their large bodies can metabolize fats easily, which prevents them from becoming obese despite their high-fat diet. 

African Greys

African Grey Parrot

African greys make excellent pets for experienced bird owners. They are among the smartest parrots and have complex social and emotional needs. They have excellent mimicking skills and can be trained to perform a variety of tricks.

These birds demand a significant time commitment every day, otherwise, they may get bored and stressed. 

African greys are social birds and are very loving towards people they are close to. However, if they only have one caretaker, they might become a one-person bird. 


Philippine Cockatoo

Cockatoos are often referred to as “velcro” birds because of their tendency to become extremely attached to their caretakers and their borderline obsessive need to be around them. Cockatoos are affectionate birds but they are also very clingy. 

These large parrots crave attention from their favorite people and do not like being left alone even for short periods. Cockatoos need a lot of socialization and care. They are prone to developing behavioral problems like feather plucking if their social needs are not met. 

Dorson Joseph
Dorson Joseph

I'm Dorson, a bird enthusiast who's had a lifelong fascination for the avian world. I am a parent to my beloved Senegal parrot and budgie, which has deepened my love for avian creatures and taught me a lot over the years. I co-run a bird store and care center with my friends, where we work with experienced professionals to care for our flock. Now, I find great joy in sharing my knowledge with others, hoping to assist fellow bird keepers and enthusiasts in understanding birds and helping them live happy lives.

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