What are the most suitable medium/large parrots to keep as pets?

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What are the most suitable medium/large parrots to keep as pets?

I suppose a bird that weighs more than 150g-200g is medium.
 

Saravp

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Could you maybe write a bit about your circumstances? Without nowing that we can't say anything of value.
 
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Could you maybe write a bit about your circumstances? Without nowing that we can't say anything of value.
Well I'm a single guy in Australia, in my 40s, i have a cockatiel, what else, iv grown up with budgies and tiels,
 

Saravp

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Well I'm a single guy in Australia, in my 40s, i have a cockatiel, what else, iv grown up with budgies and tiels,
Do your research, there are lots of options for you, and you know your circumstances best. What personality traits do you want in a bird, do you have time during the day, will the bird be home alone often, do you know what you will be doing 20 30 years down the road? things like that.
 
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Do your research, there are lots of options for you, and you know your circumstances best. What personality traits do you want in a bird, do you have time during the day, will the bird be home alone often, do you know what you will be doing 20 30 years down the road? things like that.
Do I know what I'll be doing in 30 years time... I dont know, does anyone, i cant see into the future...
I'm asking for peoples opinions as they often differ, it's part of research.
Thanks anyway
 

Saravp

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Do I know what I'll be doing in 30 years time... I dont know, does anyone, i cant see into the future...
I'm asking for peoples opinions as they often differ, it's part of research.
Thanks anyway
Haha fair point
True, good idea
Sorry im not much help, but im really not sure
 
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Haha fair point
True, good idea
Sorry im not much help, but im really not sure
With small birds I could recommend a budgie or tiel to anyone really. But it gets trickier with larger birds I think they all have their pros and cons and there are different characters within species, and availability of pet birds where you live, and one has to be diligent in doing their research and choosing one that suits them.
 
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I guess I'll start off the list with ringnecks.
I don't know much about them but they are popular pets,
they come in different species and sub species from Australasia.
I love how silky their plumage looks.
But again, I don't know much about their characters.
Maybe a bit too small to be considered medium.
 

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I don't know if they're available in Oz, but Pionus parrots are one of my faves! I had one years ago and he was an absolute delight! (MOstly) quiet and like to sit in one spot most of the time. Easy to train, too! :D.
 
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I don't know if they're available in Oz, but Pionus parrots are one of my faves! I had one years ago and he was an absolute delight! (MOstly) quiet and like to sit in one spot most of the time. Easy to train, too! :D.
Thanks for your thoughts
 

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WHen I get asked this question I always recommend the smaller Amazon species, Orange Wing, Lilac Crowned and of course the species I have, the Yellow Shoulder Amazon. YSA's in particular are noted for being "Amazon Lite" with all of the typical Amazon talking abilities, intelligence, out-going personalities and in particular a proclivity for liking human interaction and company, without the more aggressive behavior of the "Hot Three" Amazons (mostly - all Amazons can get nutty during puberty and sometimes during mating season, but any parrot, regardless of species, can exhibit this).
FWIW - Yellow Shoulder Amazons run from 280- 340 grams or so.
THey are somewhat rare in aviculture (which means a bit more expensive) but really well worth it.
 

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With the vast information available within and as part of ParrotForums, undertaking a knowledge development project is a simple undertaking.

Personally, I dislike the current term of 'research' as it tends to signal, that the individual simply wants someone else to provide an answer.

With good care, diet and active flight, a young, mid to larger Parrots can easily out life a 40 year old Human.

Since mid to larger Parrots are clearly better at choosing a Human, I would recommend that someone in search for such a Parrot, they allow the Parrot to chose.
 
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With the vast information available within and as part of ParrotForums, undertaking a knowledge development project is a simple undertaking.
Knowledge development project...
Uhhhhmmmm ok...
I'm just asking for peoples opinions as they can often differ from textbooks and other peoples opinions
 
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WHen I get asked this question I always recommend the smaller Amazon species, Orange Wing, Lilac Crowned and of course the species I have, the Yellow Shoulder Amazon. YSA's in particular are noted for being "Amazon Lite" with all of the typical Amazon talking abilities, intelligence, out-going personalities and in particular a proclivity for liking human interaction and company, without the more aggressive behavior of the "Hot Three" Amazons (mostly - all Amazons can get nutty during puberty and sometimes during mating season, but any parrot, regardless of species, can exhibit this).
FWIW - Yellow Shoulder Amazons run from 280- 340 grams or so.
THey are somewhat rare in aviculture (which means a bit more expensive) but really well worth it.

Great information, very much appreciated. Those parrots look adorable
I know a bit about Australian parrots but not so much about the rest.
One problem I have is that I live in a small Aussie town. I can't find any breeders here so I'm very much restricted to two bird shops and private sellers.
 
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LoveMyFids

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There are various species, BUT they all have different traits, dispositions, levels of care, & within that, they (of course) all are individually different. Blanket statements like "all Pionus are mellow & not as loud as other parrots" is not something to be taken as a concrete fact. I've seen various people who own a Pionus (just an example) which they claim are loud & scream at certain times. All birds can be that way though & some are just more mellow. You never know what you're gonna' get honestly. Questions: what are your expectations, how much time do you have daily to tend to a parrot, how much time can you provide outside the cage daily (3 hrs. min. is the recommendation). Will it have room to fly around? What is your noise level tolerance & can you easily provide 12-13hrs. of uninterrupted sleep each night for the bird? Are you prepared for daily cleaning of the cage, floor around the cage & the absolute mess they make from throwing food all over the place-including food sticking to your walls & it being an ant attractor if not cleaned daily with dilligence? Do you travel often or vacation & if so, do you have someone who can care for them while you are gone or a place to board them? Do you have a nearby avian vet in town, an emergency vet who takes birds & are you prepared to pay upwards of $800-$1k + for their needed healthcare? The bird will need nail trimming & wing trimming (if you choose to do that) every few months. All these aspects are something to seriously consider before purchasing a parrot as a pet. Obviously purchasing toys, organic fruits & veggies all the time & proper pelleted food as well. None of it is inexpensive. They are a huge commitment & tons of work. I'm mentioning all of this because it's the TRUTH about owning a parrot-it's NOT for everyone. I've owned them for decades & I honestly can say my daily life totally revolves around THEM, because that's how it has to be to care for them properly. I know people love birds, but PLEASE really do research & seriously think about what it will take & how much freedom you will compromise in your daily life to own one for many years. To be completely candid, they really are best suited for those who work at home, don't have full time jobs or are retired. That's the honest truth IMO. Some may not agree, but from my own experience if you really want to keep them healthy (esp. mentally healthy), that's what it takes.
 
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There are various species, BUT they all have different traits, dispositions, levels of care, & within that, they (of course) all are individually different. Blanket statements like "all Pionus are mellow & not as loud as other parrots" is not something to be taken as a concrete fact. I've seen various people who own a Pionus (just an example) which they claim are loud & scream at certain times. All birds can be that way though & some are just more mellow. You never know what you're gonna' get honestly. Questions: what are your expectations, how much time do you have daily to tend to a parrot, how much time can you provide outside the cage daily (3 hrs. min. is the recommendation). Will it have room to fly around? What is your noise level tolerance & can you easily provide 12-13hrs. of uninterrupted sleep each night for the bird? Are you prepared for daily cleaning of the cage, floor around the cage & the absolute mess they make from throwing food all over the place-including food sticking to your walls & it being an ant attractor if not cleaned daily with dilligence? Do you travel often or vacation & if so, do you have someone who can care for them while you are gone or a place to board them? Do you have a nearby avian vet in town, an emergency vet who takes birds & are you prepared to pay upwards of $800-$1k + for their needed healthcare? The bird will need nail trimming & wing trimming (if you choose to do that) every few months. All these aspects are something to seriously consider before purchasing a parrot as a pet. Obviously purchasing toys, organic fruits & veggies all the time & proper pelleted food as well. None of it is inexpensive. They are a huge commitment & tons of work. I'm mentioning all of this because it's the TRUTH about owning a parrot-it's NOT for everyone. I've owned them for decades & I honestly can say my daily life totally revolves around THEM, because that's how it has to be to care for them properly. I know people love birds, but PLEASE really do research & seriously think about what it will take & how much freedom you will compromise in your daily life to own one for many years. To be completely candid, they really are best suited for those who work at home, don't have full time jobs or are retired. That's the honest truth IMO. Some may not agree, but from my own experience if you really want to keep them healthy (esp. mentally healthy), that's what it takes.
Thanks for your input you made some really good points. Much of the stuff you brought up I already do cos I own 2 birds. I think that mentioning the avian vet availability and cost is a good point, bigger birds will be more expensive.

I agree that birds are best suited for people who don't work, especially for some species that need a lot of attention but I wouldn't say that working people cannot own birds. We deserve some bird love too lol and there are birds that suit us and our lives.

Some need more attention than others. My tiel clings to me as soon as I come home from work, my budgie prefers to chill in/on the cage. It's hard to blanket a whole species with a specific attribute like you said.

Cos I live in a small town my options are limited. Instead of choosing a species snd searching for it I'm best to see what hand reared birds are available here and choose from that
 
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LoveMyFids

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Thanks for your input you made some really good points. Much of the stuff you brought up I already do cos I own 2 birds. I think that mentioning the avian vet availability and cost is a good point, bigger birds will be more expensive.

I agree that birds are best suited for people who don't work, especially for some species that need a lot of attention but I wouldn't say that working people cannot own birds. We deserve some bird love too lol and there are birds that suit us and our lives.

Some need more attention than others. My tiel clings to me as soon as I come home from work, my budgie prefers to chill in/on the cage. It's hard to blanket a whole species with a specific attribute like you said.

Cos I live in a small town my options are limited. Instead of choosing a species snd searching for it I'm best to see what hand reared birds are available here and choose from that
To be totally honest, having a larger parrot is waaay more work & a totally different ball game than owning a cockatiel & esp. a parakeet. It's really not the same at all & I say this from experience, as I've owned several different species & fostered a couple rescues as well of all sizes (blue & gold macaw, african grey, barraband, rock pebbler, meyers, bourkes parakeet, nanday conure, etc.). Owning a med. or larger parrot is nothing like owning a cockatiel. It's not even a comparison. We're talking waay more space, expense, mess, time, patience & one on one attention. They don't do well being left alone for long & with intellect like toddlers, they need constant mental stimulation or they will start to have a lot of behavior problems. Little birds are easy. Larger birds not so much & if you're not in the mood, they WILL get on your nerves. There's a real good reason why the majority of birds you see being relinquished to rescues are the larger parrots. People assume they can handle owning a larger bird, but then after awhile the reality sinks in & they regret their decision & start to resent the bird. I would HIGHLY suggest that if you are very serious about it, to look into volunteering at a bird rescue or become a foster for a rescue. That way you can really get the experience of what it's like to own one over time. It is absolutely not a decision to make on a whim. I've been caring for them for decades & even for me, I know my limitations as a result. For example, there have been 2 times when I fostered (the macaw was one of them), that I actually had to give the bird to a different foster home after a couple of months until he got rehomed finally because it was just too much for me. I thought-sure, I can take in a macaw as a favor, since I have so much bird experience & was already caring for 3 other parrots. Not the case! I learned my lesson pretty quickly as it became very clear he had needs that were much more than I could easily provide for him. It's very important to know your limitations when it comes to owning them before you take the plunge to really make that commitment. You may not even be aware of all of your limitations until you are put to the test. That's why fostering is a good idea. You're not committed to it forever (unless you fall in love with the bird & decide to adopt it for yourself) & you get the experience of owning one & then can decide for yourself if it's truly for you or not. If more people did this, there would be less birds in rescues. So many realize after the fact, thet it's really not for them, but by that point it's too late because they went & bought a parrot. I would say to anyone-don't go big, go medium or small/med. Like a conure, a senegal, a princess of wales, or a ringneck. You'll have an easier time dealing with a bird that you can still handle easily.
 

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Lots of comments.
I can only give personal info on the two species (multiple Amazon’s and CAG) that I have had

Amazon’s are a better choice if you are a normal 9 to 5 worker.
I give my Amazons out of cage time, twice a day for the Twins and they seem happy with the schedule.
Bingo my YNA is very bonded to me and wants out of cage and to be with me any time my wife is not around.
He gets angry when I dress to go out and run errands.
even still he doesn’t panic when left alone.

Bella my CAG would not do well with a 9 to 5er.
She is a rescue and a plucker and I try to give her 6 hours of out of cage time every day.

The fact that you have other birds is mostly a plus.
it will give whatever medium bird you get company even though not in the same cage.

Bella learned to imitate my Cockatiels call but at 3x the volume, not pleasant. I guess I should be glad she doesn’t imitate my Amazons screaming.
 

DonnaBudgie

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Lots of comments.
I can only give personal info on the two species (multiple Amazon’s and CAG) that I have had

Amazon’s are a better choice if you are a normal 9 to 5 worker.
I give my Amazons out of cage time, twice a day for the Twins and they seem happy with the schedule.
Bingo my YNA is very bonded to me and wants out of cage and to be with me any time my wife is not around.
He gets angry when I dress to go out and run errands.
even still he doesn’t panic when left alone.

Bella my CAG would not do well with a 9 to 5er.
She is a rescue and a plucker and I try to give her 6 hours of out of cage time every day.

The fact that you have other birds is mostly a plus.
it will give whatever medium bird you get company even though not in the same cage.

Bella learned to imitate my Cockatiels call but at 3x the volume, not pleasant. I guess I should be glad she doesn’t imitate my Amazons screaming.





Adopting a young larger parrot (vs a budgie or a cockatiel requires) requires a much longer commitment than adopting almost any other animal AND requires far more care and attention. Having a larger parrot is a longer hands-on commitment than even having a baby! A human baby grows up and (hopefully) becomes independent and self sufficient in about 20 years. Adopting a young parrot is like having a toddler for 30, 40 or more years that never grows up! Many parents would not have children if they knew the "terrible twos" would last that long! Even adopting a baby cockatiel is like having a toddler for 20 years!

People also need to take a long hard look at how they have personally changed over the past 5, 10 or more years and how their interests have changed. Have you ever been very passionate about a hobby or an activity only to lose interest in it after a while and move on to something new? If so, that's totally normal, but not great for getting a parrot. How long have you had birds? How long have you wanted a bigger parrot? More than five years? Although you may be passionate now about the idea of getting a parrot, based on your past history, how certain are you that you will feel the same way in 10, 20, 30 or more years? I realize you don't have a crystal ball but past experiences may reveal that your interests change too quickly to commit to a parrot.

Even if you have the attention span, are you young enough to ensure you are going to be capable of caring for this parrot in 30 years? If you will be over 80 in 30 years you should probably do all parrots a favor and adopt an older bird- God knows there are enough homeless parrots to choose from!

To all you young people (tweens and teens) out there who are passionate about getting a larger parrot- I don't doubt your passion but please wait at least a few years before even considering it. Make sure your passion survives this period of rapid change and personal growth. Try to get all your educational goals accomplished before making this kind of commitment. Parrots and dorm/shared apartment living don't mix well. If then you still want a big parrot GO FOR IT! In the meantime adopt a budgie- they are parrots, too!

For all of you who want a big parrot but realize can't make a long term commitment you really should consider fostering.
 

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As stated above, this depends a LOT on your circumstance. Large parrots are a huge commitment and definitely a challenge-- almost all species are needy, attention-craving, and EXTREMELY messy, expensive, and time-consuming to own... not to mention how long-lived they are. You'll be giving up a TON of time, money, and energy on this bird, and if you can't provide that, then you might want to reconsider because parrots (especially bigger ones) are usually a very challenging undertaking.

With that said, here's my experience with the medium-to-large species I've owned:

AMAZON: I currently own two amazons, and they are delightful but also incredibly challenging to keep up with. I've noticed that zons tend to be portrayed as super intelligent and silly, especially on social media-- and while they are VERY smart and fun, they're also noisy. SO noisy. And loud. Mine spend most of the day screaming, although I would imagine this is down to the individual bird.

They are also incredibly destructive, and, unfortunately, there's nothing you can do about it, because chewing is a natural parrot behavior. My YNA chewed up my sofa, table, chairs, bed frame, walls, floors, and everything else in my home, and I've spent thousands of dollars on repairing the things he's destroyed.

I am currently in a pretty great position in terms of bird ownership, because I work from home and hardly ever go out. This means my birds spent all day out of their cages, playing with toys and hanging out with me while I work on the computer. It's been like this for years, and I'm unsure as to whether I would have gotten an amazon if I worked a normal 9-5 job because of how much attention they demand.

They are individuals, however. My amazons, while both loud and needy, are polar opposites in several regards. You never know what you're getting into with these guys. Keep that in mind while considering this.

PIONUS: I adopted a bronze-winged pionus a decade ago. He was a rescue with an incredibly traumatic past-- it took me 3 months just to get him out of the (tiny) cage that I got him in, and he never really came to trust me. This means I'm not entirely familiar with the personality of an "average" pi, but my bird was, while extremely timid, a pretty gentle and playful little dude (especially towards the end of his life). I've done a lot of research on pionus and most owners describe them as relatively laid-back and gentle.

CAIQUE: Owning a caique was, for me, a mixture of pure joy and absolute hell-on-earth. She was so quirky and silly and loved to bounce around, roll on her back, carry random objects all around the house, etc. There's never a dull moment with a caique. They are, however, VERY difficult to keep up with, and their personalities are so incredibly active and clownish to the point where it often became overwhelming trying to give her the attention she needed. It also didn't help that I was in college during that time and often went completely sleepless trying to balance homework and caique motherhood.

Looking back, I probably wouldn't do that again. Adopting a caique was a very impulsive move on my part. If you work a typical 9-5 job, I honestly wouldn't recommend one at all, because they crave attention 24/7 and there's really no break from them. It was really hard to come home, exhausted after a long day, and then have to entertain a hyperactive, mischievous bird. Still, caiques are delightful, and I'm glad to have experienced the joy of loving one.

Also, caiques bite very frequently and hard. I don't recall ever having a bandaid-free hand when I had mine lol. A lot of the time, it wasn't her trying to be aggressive- they're just hilarious little birds who bite to let you know how amazingly hilarious they are. Bites are, obviously, just a part of owning any parrot, but for such a small bird, my caique's bites were pretty painful and could draw a lot of blood.
 

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