“Mean,” “Crazy” Bird Parents

Wildlife rehabilitators get a lot of calls in the late spring and early summer about birds described with words like “mean,” “crazy,” and “dangerous.” Blue jays, mockingbirds, geese, and robins are the ones most commonly considered aggressive— and it’s no coincidence that they’re the ones most likely to be nesting near our homes and businesses.

In most cases, a seemingly aggressive bird isn’t actually aggressive, but defensive. It’s scary to raise helpless babies in a world filled with people, cars, pets, and wild predators. Any good parent wants to defend their young. Because this behavior is seasonal and baby birds grow quickly, these protective moms and dads will calm down within a few weeks when their youngsters leave the nest.

In the meantime, please respect your bird neighbors by giving them the space they need to keep their families safe. Take the longer path or the back door and have your kids play somewhere else. Keep your cats inside and supervise your dogs. We can all coexist with our bird neighbors!

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