Eclectus parrots make the perfect pet not only because they are colorful and active, but because of their intelligence. Their talking ability, distinct personalities, and beautiful colors have raised the bar for Eclectus parrots, making them must-have birds.
They are one of the larger species of parrots, and they require regular attention from their owners.
- Common names: Red-sided Eclectus parrot, dusky Eclectus parrot, Vosmaeri Eclectus parrot, blue-bellied Eclectus parrot, Grand Eclectus parrot, Eclectus parrot, yellow-sided Eclectus parrot, Solomon Island Eclectus parrot.
- Scientific Name: Eclectus roratus
- Life Expectancy: 30 to 50 years
- Adult Size: 17 and 20 inches, and can weigh 13 to 18 ounces
History and origin of the Eclectus parrots
These fantastic birds originated from the Solomon Islands and can be found in tropical rainforests. A wild population of these birds has been seen in Indonesian, Moluccas, northeastern Australia, and New Guinea.
Eclectus parrots have been known to nest high up in trees, most especially in their local monsoon forests. They also raise their family and lay eggs in nest holes in trees. Eclectus parrots are not like other parrots when it comes to raising their young.
They allow extended family members to help with caring for their chicks. They are considered ever-ready because they breed year-round. They are not restricted to any breeding seasons and would mate breed, and care for their chicks at any time of the year.
Their many common names could simply be as a result of many subspecies of the Eclectus parrots. The most often found Eclectus parrot in the pet stores is the Solomon Island Eclectus.
The Eclectus parrot is a very social bird and isn’t shy to show its friendly side. They are tranquil, gentle, and caring both to others of their kind and people. Many of them develop quicker when their owners spend quality time with them and even faster when socialization is incorporated into their day-to-day routine. This bird practically looks forward to routines.
Eclectus parrots catch on quickly to house activities, and they know what to expect as they grow to become part of it. Be careful not to make the breaking of patterns a habit.
Although they exhibit jealousy, most Eclectus parrots can be kept in several bird households. Be sure to spend quality time and attention with your pet parrots, especially when you are introducing new birds or birds to your aviary.
While both sexes of the Eclectus parrots make remarkable pets, many pet owners say that the males are a bit more open to training than the females. Here is the catch; however, females may show less dependency on their owners, and is able to handle stressful situations even better than males.
The female Eclectus parrot is an interesting character because they can be bossy and in most cases, even more, aggressive than the male. This part of her is more noticeable when she’s breeding. Her nesting instincts cause her to be extremely protective, even when in captivity.
Eclectus parrots markings and colors
Eclectus are referred to as sexually dimorphic. This means that by looking at the colors of their feathers, you can tell the sex of the parrot.
Male Eclectus comes in a brilliant shade of emerald green, a pinch of red and blue painting their wings, and their beaks are brightly orange. The females, however, come in a contrast of bright red, their tails and chests have purple markings on them, while their beaks are black. Colorful birds aren’t they?
Before the 20th century, the Eclectus were thought to be a different species entirely. This confusion caused breeders to couple two hens or two cocks together. I’m sure they’d be having a laugh now thinking about it. This could be because the Eclectus remains one of the very few dimorphic parrots.
The appearance of the feathers of both male and female Eclectus makes them stand out among other parrots. The feathers of these birds blend perfectly together, unlike the recognizable lines that many other birds have.
The Eclectus parrots give the appearance of fine for being painted on their feathers. Amazingly, the bird’s coloring acts as camouflage for them in their natural habitat. You could easily hear them before you can actually spot them.
Caring for an Eclectus parrot
These affectionate and social birds cherish the time their owners spend with them or the time they get to spend with their families.
It is imperative that you have enough time on your hands to spend with Eclectus before considering adopting one. This bird is very intelligent and sensitive and can quickly become stressed if they start feeling like they aren’t getting enough attention.
Even though people find them to be quiet compared to other parrots, they can, however, be very loud as they let out a loud starling honk and different sounds that you can’t just ignore. Also, with proper training, these birds can learn to speak a few words and can catch in on almost anything you try to teach them.
Note! This bird’s gentility doesn’t mean you should let your children pet it. They can get aggressive, especially if they are startled. They remain calm and gentle in a peaceful environment. This is why it’s essential to consider the environmental factors you are exposing your Eclectus parrots into.
They begin to reach sexual maturity around one year and six months. This urge is sometimes accompanied with some aggression or the need to feed on whatever is close by. Owners often notice some unusual behavior around times like this, but it is advisable to ignore it altogether. This phase passes with time, and they learn what’s normal and acceptable.
They are also in the habit of wing-flipping and toe-tapping. This is similar to what most parrots do when they are depressed due to negligence. It’s best to see a vet immediately if you notice your Eclectus parrot displaying all of the above actions. It could be an indication of severe health complications.
Potential owners should take the time to study different birds to know best which suits their personality, before settling for one. It doesn’t help to pick a bird because your guts told you to. Eclectus parrots aren’t as commonly seen as other parrots, so you may need to reach out to breeder or specialty pet shops.
Eclectus parrots and feeding
It’s been discovered that Eclectus parrots’ digestive tract is totally different from many bird species. This is why it’s essential to feed them with high-fiber and a low-fat diet. It’s even more helpful to avoid too much mineral and vitamin supplements, which could cause abnormal behaviors or digestive issues like tumors.
Eclectus in their native habitat would prefer papaya, pomegranate, and fig. They also eat some seeds, buds in trees, and flowers. It is essential to maintain a diet rich in vegetables, fresh fruits, and carbohydrates when in captivity. Feeding your pet gain bake or cooked pasta guarantees your bird all the carbs it needs.
Pellets and seeds can be moderately given to your bird. Still, it’s best to do this with causing, especially when it involves feeding mixes that have artificial dyes, preservatives, or flavorings. These combinations could cause your pets to lose their vibrant color.
To be candid, artificial foods are typically not considered edibles; you should even give your pets. These foods can be very toxic, most notably to sensitive bird species like the Eclectus parrots.
Plenty of space is needed for Eclectus in captivity because of how active they are. It would do well for owners to provide them with a wide-enough play stand, and a bird-safe area where they can easily explore.
The bird needs enough exercise to help it maintain a stable mental and physical health. It is also a good recipe for a happy and healthy pet. Ample space is should be provided, especially if you are keeping more than one Eclectus.
A measurement of about 11 and 3 ft and enough height to allow for climbing, flying, and moving around. You would also need to provide them with plenty of different materials and sizes of perches. This is, so their feet stay healthy.
A swing, a climbing ladder, and some toys to chew on would give you a very happy and active Eclectus parrot.
These amazing parrots do a great job than many other parrots at staying occupied if provided with enough distractions. They would go on and play when their owners are not around.
The fun part is, these birds love to be challenged. The more challenges you throw at them, the better for them to show how smart they are.
Do you have an Eclectus parrot? How have you been handling them? What does their diet comprise of? Share with us in the comments.