Scientific Name: Agapornis Taranta
Origin: Abyssinian Lovebird species are from African origin specifically in the highland regions of the Southern Eritrea and the mountainous parts of Ethiopia.
Average Lifespan: 10 to 20 years
Size: 6 to 6.5 inches (15-17 cm)
Color: Male specie has emerald green body and a lighter green on the head and face area. The forehead has a prominent red color that sometimes extend around the eye circles. They have prominently black underwings. The female specie’s body is covered in green feather with a darker shade on the back area. Compared to the male lovebird of its kind, the female ones don’t have the red color on the forehead which makes them easier to differentiate.Both kinds have dark brown eyes and coral red beak. They also both have grey legs and claws.
Sounds: They normally have high-pitched, shrill or shriek notes. Loud contact calls but twittering sound is harmonic.
Interaction: They are highly social and active. Though a silent type, these birds can learn how to mimic sounds especially if trained at a young age. They love to play and interact with people.
Physical Characteristics of Abyssinian lovebird
The Abyssinian lovebird are also called as the Black-winged lovebirds because of the prominent black color of their underwing. They are one of the small to medium sized bird specie of the parrot family. The male ones are smaller and lighter (up to 44 grams) than the female specie (up to 53 grams) and it has striking red feathers on the forehead area and commonly around the eyes. The female are all green in color but lighter on the head area going darker on the back. Juveniles have similar color so it’s difficult to recognize their gender. Some breeders would remove few feathers by pullings from the forehead of the bird and will wait for several days to grow back to check if the color will change to red. This red color markings on the male is one of the things that distinguishes its sex from the female aside from the male being smaller. It would take several months after birth before this red marking appears that is why the gender of the bird is not known yet until they reach this certain stage where they molt and grow their actual feather color.
Personality and Temperament
Aside from being social and active birds, another favorite characteristic of Abyssinian lovebirds is its pleasant behavior towards other birds. Since these birds love companionship, they can tolerate other birds in one cage as long as there is enough space for all of them to move around. They love to move from one place to another and climb on the cage that is why the bird cage size is important to them. When they cannot move around comfortably with other birds in the cage, that’s the time they could get a little aggressive. When hand-raised, they can become very affectionate with their human. Pet owners who prefer the silent type birds will get fond of these lovebirds because they don’t create too much noise and are mostly quiet. They can easily be amused by toys in their cage. Another thing that makes this bird type special is that it has the ability to mimic human sounds particularly when trained at a younger age.
Health and Care
These birds are easy to maintain and care for. Having them as pets require that their diet should be similar to their diet in their natural habitat as much as possible but they are not picky eaters and would feed on almost any type of bird seeds. You can give them mixed bird seeds to add variations on their food. Millet, canary, buckwheat, niger, safflower, peanuts, sweetcorn, are some of the seed you can give them to name a few. Sunflower seeds are also recommended as these birds may need certain amount of fat that they could get from sunflower seeds. They can also be fed with fruits and berries but their favorites are the savannah grass and sycamore fig fruit. Small amounts of juniper berries are okay because it contains the recommended amount of Vitamin B but too much of it could be poisonous for them. You may opt to give them vitamins and minerals supplement for added nourishment. As much as possible, just like with any other pets, giving them fresh food is important as bird pellets contain chemical contents. Fruits like apple, kiwi, oranges as well as vegetables can be fed to them. It is important to keep their cage clean for hygienic purposes. Do a weekly routine to clean their cage from waste and food remnants. Always make sure that they are left with clean water everyday as these birds are very active and can easily get thirsty and dehydrated.
History and Background
The Abyssinian lovebirds specie originated from the mountains of Ethiopia and South Eritrea. They are from African bird descents and were named “Taranta” after the “Pass of Taranta” where the specie exactly originated. The female bird can carry and hatch up to 4 eggs. The eggs are white in color and the mother incubates them for 23 days. After 45 days from being hatched, the bird starts to fledge from their nest.