Australia enjoys the great luck of having a very wide fauna. Among the many of the specimens that are within its extensive bird catalog, is the Australian parakeet, for some known as the common parakeet.
Where do Australian parakeets live?
This bird endemic to Australia, and known by the scientific name of Melopsittacus undulatus, although it receives the name of “common parakeet”, the truth is that it is also known as the Australian parrot and is classified as a member of the parrot family, being the only representative specimen of its species.
It has been introduced with great success in other regions of the world, being very common as a pet bird, due to its small size and its song. In some places, it has even managed to outnumber cats and dogs.
How is your physical appearance?
It is a small bird measuring about 18 cm from head to tip of the tail, weighing about 35 grams. The wild variety is characterized by the underparts being a smooth light green color, with a yellow head and a black stripe on the back. Its throat and forehead are of a smooth yellow color, with some purple spots on the cheek and three black spots, framing each side of the base of the throat.
The tail is a cobalt color with yellow spots in the center of each of its lateral feathers. Besides, the flight wings are greenish-black, while the coverts are black with yellow edges and have yellow spots in the center, which are only seen when the wings have spread. Its beak is curved, downwards, of a grayish tone, tending more to green, while its legs have a bluish-gray tone.
Subspecies are not recognized, so the wide variety of specimens that can be found in stores have been the result of mutations that the species has suffered at the hands of man when trying to reproduce the species.
The sex of the bird can be determined by a slight sexual dimorphism that the species presents, especially in the wax (the upper part of the beak around the nostrils). In the case of males, when they are adults, they are completely bluish in tone, while females have another color, which varies based on their state of heat. When they are young, both sexes have a pinkish tone, tending to violet.
On the other hand, you can tell the age of the bird based on the lines on its forehead. Young people have it covered with lines, while adults have it smooth. Also, the youngest specimens have less intense feather tones, which gradually gain color as the feather changes.
What do you have to know to have it as a pet?
In fact, it is not a bird that gives many problems and it is ideal as a first pet for someone who has never cared for a bird. The average life of this bird is between 4 and 6 years in captivity, but some specimens have been seen that have lived to 14 years, but it is something that completely depends on the bird.
The Australian parakeet’s diet consists especially of seeds, among which millet and canary seed stand out, supplemented with other seeds such as hemp seed or corn. Also, it is good to give some vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, and carrots, which help to strengthen the bird. It is also good to give him some fruits such as apple, but always with caution.
You can have other types of food, such as bread or biscuit. However, avocado, chocolate, and parsley must be avoided at all costs, since they are toxic to this bird. In the water, it would be good to give him some vitamin complex to strengthen his immune system.
Placing its cage well is the most important part of getting this bird to live long. The biggest mistake that novice caregivers often make is placing it on the balcony or in the kitchen, in the gallery. Big mistake. If it is placed on the balcony, it will be stressed by the sound of the traffic, and if it is in the gallery of the kitchen, it is exposed to the fumes generated by cooking. It is best if your cage is in the living room or in an area of the house where there is a lot of family activity.
It can be trained to put it on your finger or hand, but be careful trying to get it out of the cage, since it will cost you a lot to return to it. If he escapes, don’t try to catch him or yell at him. Just open the cage, but his favorite treat in it, and he’ll end up coming back on his own.
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