Green winged Macaw
PO  Box 126 Mitcham Vic 3132 ( Victoria, Australia )

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. green winged macaw
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  • Scientific Name:  Ara chloroptera
  • Sub Species in country / area of origin:  No
  • Origin / Distribution:  Most of the non coastal area north of Argentina,  South America.
  • 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 / Dimorphic
  • 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 macaws.
  1. Length: Approx. 840 - 900 mm (or approx. 33 - 36 inches)
  2. Colour ( "normal" colour ): Refer photo/s above if available.
  3. Weight: Approx. 980 - 1400 gms (or approx. 35 - 50 ozs)
Aviary Notes:

Level Of Knowledge Required: Beginner / Intermediate / Advanced / Specialist Breeders Only.

Government Regulations & By-LawsRefer 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:
    • Length / depth 900 - 1000 mm (or approx. 36 - 40 inches)
    • Log internal diameter approx. 600 mm. (or approx. 24 inches)
    • Nest-box internal dimensions approx. 550 - 600 mm square (or approx. 22 - 24 inches square)
    • Diameter of entrance 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 material/s.
  • 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.

General References:  Refer to references listed on "Book References" web page.

Specific References:

  • Australian Aviculture
  • A/A Vol 48 No. 1 Jan 1994 Page 1-2 (Inc photo)
  • Australian Birdkeeper

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