. green winged macaw
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- Scientific Name: Ara chloroptera
- Common Name/s:
GREEN WINGED MACAW, CRIMSON MACAW, RED AND BLUE MACAW,
RED AND GREEN MACAW.
- Sub Species in country / area of origin:
- Origin / Distribution: Most
of the non coastal area north of Argentina, South
- Habitat In Wild: Tropical
forests, swamps and surrounding secondary vegetation.
- Status In Wild: Secure in
some parts of its range, but declining in areas subject to
deforestation and/ or trapping. Has not adapted to the
intrusion of people into its natural habitat range.
- Status In (Australian) Captivity:
Rare and expensive.
- Age To Sexual Maturity: About 4 years
- Adult plumage: Attained
prior to leaving the nest.
- Best breeding years (estimate):
About 6th year onwards. Can breed for about 25 years.
- Lifespan (estimate):
Very long lived birds, 50 plus years has been achieved.
- Sexing: Monomorphic
- Colour mutations: None
- Availability: Specialist breeders.
- Temperament: More docile than
other macaws such as Scarlet Macaws. Can be noisy birds.
Often kept as a pet or companion bird.
- Cost (Victoria) Per Pair: -
Normal colour (Approx.) $17,500 but can vary widely.
- Description Of Adults: Large
multi-coloured Macaw. Probably the second largest of the
- Length: Approx. 840 - 900 mm (or approx. 33
- 36 inches)
- Colour ( "normal" colour ): Refer
photo/s above if available.
- Weight: Approx. 980 - 1400 gms (or approx. 35
- 50 ozs)
Level Of Knowledge Required: Beginner / Intermediate / Advanced /
Government Regulations & By-Laws: Refer to " Government Laws " web page.
Housing Requirements: Refer to "
Macaws " web page for general
details on the housing of Macaws or read on for specific
details for this parrot.
Need plenty of branches to chew on and
will chew perches into splinters.
They are large birds and prefer a large aviary of up to 8 metres
long. Often housed and bred in a large strong suspended cage.
Diet / Feeding: Refer to "
Macaws " web page for general
details on the feeding of Macaws or read on for specific
details for this parrot.
In the wild these birds visit the clay
banks to consume the mineral rich soil. The clays are thought to
neutralize some toxic compounds in their natural diet.
Natural diet include seeds, fruits, nuts
and other vegetable matter.
Nesting: A basic overview only. Dimensions
are typical / average and can vary widely, influenced by the owner's
preferences and the birds preferences. Parent bird's preferences can
also be influenced by the size and type of nest-box / log in which the
bird was hatched and reared. If space allows, offering a choice of
sizes and types of logs or nest-boxes, and placed in various locations
within the aviary, can allow the parent birds to make their own choice.
Once a pair has chosen a specific nest-box/log and been successful in
it, offer that one to them each breeding season. Try and keep that one
for their exclusive use. Once a pair has chosen its log or nest-box,
the other ones can generally be removed. If the "spare" boxes are to be
removed and moved to another flight, ensure the log / nest-box is
cleaned to ensure the receptacle has the minimal contamination of mites,
parasites and pathogens.
- Nesting months:
- Log / Nest-box:
/ depth 900 - 1000 mm (or approx. 36 - 40 inches)
- Log internal
diameter approx. 600 mm. (or approx. 24
- Nest-box internal dimensions approx. 550 - 600
mm square (or approx. 22 - 24 inches square)
- Diameter of
hole approx. 225 mm (or approx. 9 inches)
- Inspection hole (square or round)
100 - 150 mm
(or approx 4 - 6 inches)
- A removable top / lid can be a
useful access point for inspections and for cleaning.
- Location and height
of log / nest-box = Usually at mid height under the sheltered
portion of the aviary, but may be higher but not too close to
the roof to cause heat problems in the hotter months.
- Angle of log or nest box = Usually vertical or near
vertical but can be on
any angle through to horizontal.
- Nesting log / nest-box material:
Decomposed non-toxic saw dust, wood shavings or other suitable
- Who incubates the egg/s:
Hen / cock / both share.
It is important to have a strong "chew proof"
ladder (10 gauge wire mesh is often used ) on the inside of the nest box, below the
entry hole to allow the birds to climb down to the floor of the nest instead of
jumping. The internal ladder is essential in nest boxes that are in
a vertical or near vertical position. The ladder also allows the birds to
easily and safely exit the nest. With nests placed in a horizontal or near
horizontal position a ladder may not be required.
Nest boxes/logs should be placed middle height to high up in the
aviary under cover. Many prefer the nest box / log opening to be in a darker /
shaded part of the aviary that provides a degree of privacy. At least one perch should be at each end of the aviary
and one perch should be close to the nest and be about the same height as the
nest opening. The perch closest to the nest opening is the perch most
often used during the breeding season. The cock bird will use the closest
perch to the nest so he can protect the nest, the hen and their offspring. The same
perch configuration applies to suspended cages.
More details on
parrot nestboxes/logs and a selection of
parrot nestbox/log photos
can be found on the "nests", "parrot nests"
and "parrot nestbox photos"
web pages. Click on "Up" then "Nests" then "parrot nests"
and "parrot nestbox photos" in
the navigation bars.
Breeding: Egg Colour
White. Clutch/s per year 1. Eggs per
nest 2 - 3. Incubation
approx. 26 - 28 days. Fledge approx. 12 - 14 weeks.
Independent .. Usually by 20 weeks of age.
A second clutch of eggs can be laid if
the first clutch is removed for artificial incubation and hand rearing.
Macaws in the wild will generally lay a second clutch if the first
clutch is destroyed by predators or environmental causes.
Adult birds can become aggressive at
breeding season and may attack the keeper. Nest boxes are best
positioned so the nest inspection can be carried out from outside the
aviary. Nest inspection is best done when the adult birds are out
of the nest.
In the wild Green Winged Macaws do not
breed each year and have low reproductive rates.
Artificial incubation and hand
rearing or fostering will not be covered on this web site. It is
too complex and diverse in nature to be attempted here.
Health Issues: Refer to "Avian
Health Issues" web page for information and references.
- Worming and parasite control
and Quarantine requirements of new bird/s or sick bird/s are
considered to require veterinary advice and therefore not covered on
this web site. Refer "Avian Health Issues"
web page option.
- Avian medicine is advancing
at a rapid pace. Keep updating your knowledge and skills.
References: Refer to references listed on "Book References"
- Australian Aviculture
- A/A Vol 48 No. 1 Jan 1994 Page 1-2 (Inc photo)
- Australian Birdkeeper
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