Australian King Parrot

Australian King Parrot

Scientific Name: Alisterus scapularis

Origin: East Coast and ranges of Australia

Average Lifespan: up to 25 years

Size: large parrot, up to 17 inches

Color:  Mainly red and green

Sounds: Relatively quiet

Interaction: Social

 

Australian King Parrot eating

Photo: Daniela Parra | Flickr

 

Physical Characteristics of Australian King Parrot

The adult male of this specie have striking red head and breast down to the lower body. The back plumage is green as well as the shoulders, wings, and tail but the lower back or the rump is blue. The upper beak has a reddish orange shade while the lower beak is black.  The difference of the female specie is that the head and breast have the same shade of green as the back. The upper beak has the same black shade as the lower beak and that the iris color is a paler yellow compared to the iris of the male Australian King parrot.

Personality and Temperament

They are generally described as gentle parrots and quieter compared to the other parrot species. They can entertain themselves and are intelligent pets. Breeders suggest to avoid them being handheld as they don’t like to be touched or have skin contact with humans unless they are hand-reared in a very young age. If you want them to become accustomed to humans, hand-rearing and frequent interaction as they grow is recommended.

When they are cared for as pets, they can build a special relationship with human based on trust which makes them loyal and obedient pets. Some Australian King parrot owners would attest that the loyalty of this parrot specie to their humans is exceptional as they will not talk to other people as well as come out of the cage unless their human is the one handling them.

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They are excellent talkers and would copy human sounds and even the sounds of objects that they frequently hear. A pet owner once told that his pet parrot even mimics the sound of the microwave oven.  They are also fast learners and their ability to learn tricks is excellent.

Health and Care

The Australian King parrot loves to climb, and swing in their cage. They need extra large cage because of their size and they need certain amount of freedom to fly and exercise their wings.  This specie is known to amuse themselves that is why it is important to put colorful and safe bird toys to enhance and stimulate their thinking ability.

Furthermore, they need free time out of their cage so they have larger area to roam around and explore. This is also beneficial for their well-being so make sure to bird-proof your home before allowing your pet parrot to explore every corner of your home. These birds can easily acquire lung disease from the air that they breathe, that is why it is important to place them in an area where they can inhale air with good quality.

For their diet, offer them high quality bird seeds and pellet mix. Also include in some fresh fruits and vegetables for the completion of their nutritional requirements. Fruits and vegetables that you can give them are banana, mango, corn, carrots, some leafy greens, berries, seeds, and edible flowers. Their favorites are peanuts and almonds so make sure to offer them these as treats but make sure they are fresh and not moldy looking.

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History and Background

The Australian King parrot is not normally sold as pets and would sometimes require a recommendation from exotic bird clubs or aviculture organizations to be able to acquire one. These birds are better off in aviaries where they can get the fresh air they need and have much more freedom to fly and be with their similar specie.

The fact that these birds are easy to maintain, has very pleasant disposition, and are very intelligent make them a pet bird material to many bird lovers. When breeding, expect that a female Australian King parrot can lay minimum of 3 eggs to a maximum of 6 eggs per clutch. They incubate these eggs for up to 20 days.

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