In real life, Blu is a Spix’s Macaw, which really is an endangered species. It was a great and gentle way of showing how species conservation is important. When smugglers steal baby chicks, they are robbing the future population by leaving only older birds to mate.
My big fear with a movie like this though is that people will suddenly want a parrot or other companion bird. This is where I have to put on my PSA hat and warn against anyone thinking of impulse buying a parrot, whether it’s a budgie or a cockatoo. Domestication is a relatively new thing for parrots and one is essentially still living with a wild animal, even if it's a little budgie!
First and foremost, you must love the bird personality. This means that you must love and tolerate their curious and expressive natures. Birds are extremely social and parrots moreso; if you want a pet that is going to be a decoration, please get a pet rock! A pet bird will want to be with you a great deal of time.
Then there's also:
- Birds are messy and loud. This is just a fact and the way that they are!
- Birds need specialized care. It’s important to budget for vet care as well as live near a vet. This website can help you find an avian vet.
- Parrots live a long time. A budgie can live past 10 with good care and a macaw up to 80 or 90 years.
- Birds need the biggest cage you can afford. Many bird cages are really birdie prisons and will literally drive a bird crazy. Find out the minimum dimensions for a species and then double or triple it.
- Parrots are highly intelligent and need room and stimulation or else they’ll get bored
Lastly, birds are fragile and there are risks to keeping a flighted creature in your home. Open doors and windows are the best way to lose a bird, as are toxic fumes and sprays, candles and stoves.
Entire books have been devoted to parrot care, and there are many excellent online communities where one can ask questions, such as Parrot Lovers and Tailfeathers Network. Please for the love of the birds, prepare yourself before you purchase one. And don’t forget to check out free to good home ads or the SPCA. Many wonderful birds, like Muffin, are awaiting a forever home out there!