Actually, I hesitate to call my parrotlet a pet. He’s more like a little bird friend — a tiny little feathered dinosaur who talks.
He’s a comical little guy: he knows how to play peek-a-boo, he loves shredding tissues, and he’s learned to imitate my laughter with near-perfect pitch.
But when he gets angry — when he doesn’t want to be touched or bothered, for example — you know it.
And how do you know it? Well, he fans out his tail feathers if I try to touch him. He also fluffs up the feathers on his back.
This birdie non-verbal language lets me know my little featherbutt doesn’t want to play. The feather fanning and fluffing makes his pint-sized, hollow-boned bird body look bigger and stronger, as if to say, “Hey! I’m big and powerful, mom! Go away. We play by my rules because I’m the boss around here.”
FLUFFING UP: IT’S NOT JUST FOR THE BIRDS
I don’t think it’s any secret that adopting a “power posture” (say, standing with your hands on your hips or reclining on a chair with your arms behind your head) can communicate a nonverbal message to someone else.
Using a power posture tells others that you’re the boss. You’re in charge. You’re the alpha.
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