Have you ever heard of Edwards’ parakeets? They are indeed quite new, but in a short time, they have become one of the most popular species, as they are quite sociable.
Where is this bird from?
It is known with the scientific name of neophema pulchella, and it comes from Australia, being the result of a natural variation of the common Australian parakeet.
Despite the great fame they have achieved, this bird is more destined to be kept as a pet than to be bred, since attempts to get a couple to reproduce generally end up having lousy results.
And how is this bird?
It is a quite beautiful bird. Its size usually ranges from 20 – 23 cm, more or less the same as the Bourke’s parakeet. It presents a slight sexual dimorphism since the males have a red stripe on the back, which the females do not possess. Besides, females have less blue on the head. However, in some mutations of the species, it is difficult to distinguish the sexes, so a DNA test must be used.
It is a very colorful parakeet that is generally green in most of its body, except in the area of the face where it has a light blue mask and in the wings, which have the same color. In some areas, it may have some yellow feathers. Males also have a red stripe on their wings.
There are many mutations of this species, but the best known is the lutinous mutation, which results in completely yellow birds, but there have also been cases of birds with white feathers. The main difference in this mutation, with the original specimen, is that both the male and the female are the same color, and in this case, it is necessary to resort to a DNA test to differentiate them.
And how is it as a pet?
The first thing to know before thinking about having a specimen of Edwards parakeet in your home is that it is not a bird that everyone can get to have young. If a couple were able to reproduce, the female would lay 4 to 5 eggs and after 18 days the chicks would begin to hatch, leaving the nest after a month. Their main advantage is that they are very good breeders and are monogamous, so they are with the same couple all their lives. So they could be used as wet nurses for other chicks.
Their food is composed of a mix of normal and ordinary parakeets, to which a little fruit, egg, and gravel preparation must be added so that they receive all the necessary nutrients. Also, a little vitamin complex can be added to the water, for the care of their feathers and health.
The cage has to be longer than high, although it is best to keep this species in an aviary. It is quite peaceful and does not usually have problems living with other birds. However, it can present some problems in the mating season with birds of the same species, there are battles to prevent another bird from taking the couple, so in this aspect, you have to be very careful. But, if you have a bird in the aviary that is not a very good caretaker, it is always good to know that you can use this species to take care of the chicks.
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