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Basic, General Facts about Conures

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Basic, General Facts about Conures

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 30, 2017 12:05 pm

Family: Psittacidae

Origin: Aratinga - South and Central America, Mexico

Pyrrhura - throughout South America


Nandayus - south-central regions of South America


Leptosittica - isolated regions of Columbia, Ecuador, and Peru


Ognorhynchus - northern Ecuador


Cyanoliseus - Chile, Argentina, and perhaps Uruguay


Enthusiastic - Chile, Argentina, and Tierra del Fuego (Austral); central Chili (Slender-billed)


Guaruba - restricted to small range of northeast Brazil


Size: 8.5-18 inches

Colouration :  

Aratinga: (Noisier species) small to medium size; long tail; broad, heavy bill; naked or partially feathered periophthalmic ring; lores and cheeks fully feathered; cere either naked or hidden by feathers with only the nares exposed; general plumage green except for the Sun Conure subspecies, which is predominantly yellow.

Pyrrhura (Quieter species)  small to medium size; long tail; broad bill with notch in upper mandible; prominent naked cere; general plumage green with the exception of the Maroon-bellied Conure and the Yellow-sided Conure, which show a good deal of brown.

Nandayus: medium size; long tail; bill longer than wider with upper mandibular notch; cere partially feathered with nares exposed; general plumage green.

Leptosittaca: medium size; long tail; partially feathered cere; conspicuous tuft of feathers extends beyond ear coverts; general plumage green.

Ognorhynchus: medium size; large, heavy, bill with upper mandibular notch; elongated ear coverts; general plumage green.

Cyanoliseus: large size; long tail; small bill in proportion to size, often partially covered by cheek feathers; feathered cere; general plumage olive brown.

Enicognathus: medium size; long tail; disproportionately small bill; feathered cere; characteristic edging to feathers; Slender-billed Conure has remarkable elongated upper mandible; general plumage dull green.

Guaruba: medium size; long tail; disproportionately large bill; general plumage a rich yellow; wing coverts dark green; bill tan; legs pink.

Diet: 65-80% quality Pelleted diet is recommended if they will eat it. Also, they like Peanuts, Hemp, Oat meal, Paddy Rice, Buckwheat, Safflower, Small Pine Nuts, Groats, and a small amount of Niger, Small Sunflower and white sunflower seeds.
Remember: sunflower seeds can be addictive!
15-30% vegetables (e.g., greens, carrots, corn-on-the-cob), 5% fruits, and an occasional nut, mealworm, or cricket.
Use many varieties of fruits and vegetables, washed thoroughly.

Conures are prone to "Conure Bleeding Syndrome", which is thought to be caused by a lack of Vitamin K,
(see below) which is found in foods like Broccoli.
Vit K. is the anti-dote to Warfarin (Rat Poison) which works by thinning the blood. So Vit K helps blood clot.

No Avocados or fruit pips for any bird ~ Poisonous!
Iceberg lettuce, cabbage or parsley should also be avoided.

In the wild they eat ~ Grass seeds, Fruits, Cactus, Berries, Nuts, Flowers, Insects, and Grains.

Cage Size: The cage should be a minimum of
18" H x 18" L x 18" W for the smaller species  
up to a minimum of 36" x 36" x 36" for the larger species.

Compatibility/Disposition ~ Conures are generally compatible with other Conures; however, aggression may be a problem during the mating season.
Some differences in the degree of aggression exist between genera (notably, Aratinga is reportedly more aggressive as well as more boisterous and noisy - Pyrrhura much quieter and more amenable).
However, disposition is generally affectionate, peaceful and playful, especially when socialized and handled at an early age.

Vocalization: Conures have a harsh and shrill screech.
Louder in the Aratinga genus!  The Patagonian is reported to have the loudest call of all Conures.
They will pick up human speech with relative ease, especially when exposed at an early age. Some owners and breeders report the Aratinga genus will have better enunciation while the Pyrrhura genus will develop larger vocabularies.

Playfulness: Highly intelligent and curious; love to cuddle; Pyrrhura genus noted to be the consummate escape artist.
So, make sure you have secure locks on cages/Aviaries.

Life Span: Up to 35 years

Age at Maturity: 1-3 years
(the smaller Conures mature more quickly)

Sexing: Reliable only via DNA/Surgical Sexing ~  not visually.

Love to bathe and will use their water bowl if nothing else is available. Also enjoy showers.
Clever escape artists and acrobats.
Avid chewers (especially the Aratingas) and need to be provided with plenty of toys/wood for this purpose or behaviour will become destructive.
In general, the Aratinga genus is louder, larger and more aggressive, while the Pyrrhura genus is preferred as a good "first time" Conure due to its quieter and more peaceful disposition.
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