• Bird
  • How To Trim A Bird's Wings

How To Trim A Bird's Wings

By John DoeLast update: 2024-06-13

The fact that you clip the bird's wings to prevent it from flying out of the house, this ensures the bird's safety. But there's still a lot of debate about whether it's ethical to clip wings because it deprives the bird of its right to fly, increases the likelihood of an accident, and can lead to behavioral problems.

Be sure to do your due diligence, and especially consult your veterinarian before proceeding. To get started, determine the right blades for clamping. Clip the wings one by one while confining the bird. So how to trim a bird's wings.

1. Beginning the clipping crocess

Veterinarian opinion

If you haven't tried cutting bird wings before, you need to pay attention. Your veterinarian or veterinary technician should guide you through the process.

Usually the first wing cutting of a bird is always done by a veterinarian. Take your bird to your local vet and show you the correct procedure for trimming.

After the first cut, you can manually trim the bird's wings again. However, if you feel uncomfortable or uncertain, ask your veterinarian to clip your bird's wings.

Find the right environment

When trimming your bird's feathers, it's important to be able to see what you're doing. Furthermore, you should also have a quiet room to keep the bird calm. A room in the house should be well-lit and quiet.

It is very good for the safety and comfort of the bird.

In particular, choose a room that can be closed, without any open windows or doors.

Check the power supply

Have your supplies ready before you start cutting. This process is stressful for the bird:

  • Small and sharp scissors
  • Thick towels
  • Or another person to assist you during the cutting process.

Constrain the bird

To combat wing cutting. You should wrap the bird in a towel to keep it still during the clipping process.

Then you use the scarf like a baseball glove to grab the bird. This will not put pressure on the bird's chest. Furthermore, birds will not have diaphragms, so any pressure on the chest will prevent breathing.

Therefore, ask the other person holding the bird, using one hand to hold the body of the bird. He or she should use the other hand to gently hold the bird's head between thumb and index finger. This will prevent biting.

Identification of primary flight feathers

At this point you have to know which feather to clip. When trimming birds' wings, only the main flight feathers should be cut. Gently spread out the bird's wings and position the feathers.

The bird must have two overlapping feathers on its wings. The smaller hairs should not be cut on top of the larger ones.

Large feathers derived from small feathers are called "main flight feathers". At this point you will trim the first six main flying feathers.

2. Clipping the bird's wings

Starting from the tip of the wing

When cutting, trim the feather closest to the tip of the wing. Then clip the main flight feathers about a quarter inch below the shorter, overlapping feathers.

Cut the feathers one by one

Continue trimming the first six main flight feathers, moving from the tips of the wings towards the body of the bird. Make sure to trim the quarter inch below the overlapping short bristles. Do not trim these feathers, as this can be harmful to the bird.

You only clip one feather at a time. Cutting bird wings requires concentration and precision. If you try to cut all six feathers at once, you may go too fast and harm the bird.

Beware of blood feathers

Blood feathers are newly formed hairs. If cut, they will bleed. They are usually waxy and pinkish, and have a visible blood vessel running through them. Check each feather to make sure you didn't cut it by mistake. Furthermore, blood vessels need to be protected.

If there are a lot of blood feathers, it is too early to cut the bird's wings. Try pausing cutting for a few days.

Cut an equal amount of feathers from each wing

Let the bird maintain equilibrium. Make sure the same amount of hair is trimmed on each side. Although the bird cannot fly, it can still glide and sit on the perch. Pruning uneven wings can interfere with balance.

3. Avoiding accidents for bird wing

Make sure that there are two people

Alone you can clip the bird's wings by yourself. However, it might be very difficult. For safety's sake, try to have someone else present to assist.

Act quickly if the bird escapes

In rare cases, a bird can escape during nail clipping. You can prevent this by closing all doors and windows and working in a closed room.

Immediately place the birdcage in the yard. Open the cage and place a food bowl inside.

Post flyers around town.

You should call your local veterinary clinics and animal shelters to report that you have lost your bird. Please provide ID information such as microchip or leg strap.

Cut off the blood hair if you cut it

Bleeding feathers will not stop bleeding on their own if you cut them by mistake. This affects the life of the bird.

Blood feathers should be removed with pliers and this should be done by a professional to avoid further harm to the bird such as a veterinarian.


When the wing cutting stages are complete, place the bird back inside the cage and let it rest for a few hours. Wing pruning can be very stressful for birds, so they have time to relax and recharge before any interaction is required.

Moreover, you can trim the bird's wings again anytime needed when the bird has fully flown back. In general, every 6 months to 1 year when the old fur sheds its hair and new hair grows in. However, keep safety first and ensure that you and your bird have more time to recover.

4. When to cut the bird's wings?

You may choose to trim feathers if your bird is exposed to potential hazards, such as windows and doors, mirrors, ceiling fans, heavy furniture, or rear equipment that the bird could easily get trapped or burned. fireplace, candle, stove, or other hot liquid container, such as in the kitchen or dining room. As a result, other birders trim their pets' wings to prevent them from flying around the house leaving a messy pile of droppings when waking them or letting them perch on curtains, carpets, or furniture that they can chew on and destroy. .

Wing pruning is initiated when the bird is young and unaccustomed to flight; Accordingly, the bird does not automatically take off during training and land on the floor. Wing pruning can also be done in older birds, when they are used to flying, but it is advisable to trim one or two feathers at a time in these birds, so that wing trimming is done. gradually and birds have time to realize they can't fly anymore.

5. Why cut the bird's wings?

Like us, pet and bird feathers often fall out and regrow. Birds shed their feathers in an orderly, sequential process, so that in the wild they never fly and are hunted.

Usually birds have the feathers needed for flight, called "flying feathers," consisting of 10 outermost, or primary, and 9 to 25 (depending on species) innermost wing feathers, called accessory feathers. All the feathers are anchored in the bone.

When new feathers grow, they initially contain blood in the shaft, like a blood-filled straw called a blood feather. The blood drains towards the base of the feather as the feather matures, so the shaft eventually looks like an empty straw. There are nerves at the base of the hair, near their attachment point to the bone, but no nerve endings along the hair shaft.

In this case, the wing feathers are cut or damaged, the bird's ability to fly is often impaired. Some bird trainers choose to use primary feather clipping to inhibit flight. Either way, the trimming of the wings is only temporary, and when new feathers grow to replace those that have been cut, like feathers grow back after a haircut, the bird's ability to fly is restored.


How to trim a bird's wings? This is a meticulous, gentle job, but there is no shortage of assurance that the bird is still alive. If you do it incorrectly, trimming the wings can be risky, can cause the bird to fall to the floor and be injured, or it can lead to bleeding of the feathers, requiring emergency care.

Related Articles