Indian Ringneck, Alexandrine Parrots, Plumhead and other Asiatic Parrots are popular and delightful pets. They were brought back to Europe when Alexander the Great invaded Asia and talking parrots were mentioned in Aristotle's works. There are now numerous mutations available, especially for ringneck parrots. Adult birds of most mutations can be reliably visually sexed at 2.5-3 years, when the neck ring appears in the male, before this DNA or surgical sexing may be required.
Housing and husbandry
Asiatic Parrots can be kept in a large cage or aviary:
* Perches should be natural wood of varied diameters. Place at opposite ends of the cage to encourage flight.
* Place feed and water dishes so that your bird will not contaminate them with droppings.
* Asiatic Parrots are great chewers, native Australian tree branches; gum nuts, grasses and greenery are excellent for behavioural enrichment & beak care. Change regularly.
* Avoid metallic objects such as toys, feeding dishes or wire ties (except for stainless steel).
Parrot diets - Dr Phil Recommennds to Feed each of the "five" food groups every SINGLE day.
- Seed - limited to 30% or less of the bird's diet. ( Gradually decrease the amount of seed over 6- 8 weeks - see below )
- Vet recommended parrot-pellets - Like Pretty Bird, Harrison's, Vetafarm or Passwells - These parrot pellets can be purchased from our Melbourne-bird-vet clinic and posted out country wide.
- Dark green vegetables like Silver beet, spinach, etc usually raw but can be cooked.( Light greens like lettuce are not nutritious)
- Low fat , low sugar, Low salt human food eg oats, rice, wheat bix, whole grain bread, fruit, pasta are fine for pet parrots.
- Fruit as well should be offered daily (So 5 items/day)
* Psittacosis (also called chlamydiosis), a disease humans can catch from birds;
* Heavy metal toxicity from chewing metallic objects;
* Feather mites, worm parasites & coccidiosis;
* Bacterial infections;
* Psychological problems and feather picking associated with close pair bonding with humans.
* We recommend a health check (with testing as appropriate), when you acquire your new pet bird and each year thereafter, to check for and prevent common illnesses listed above.
Birds often hide signs of illness and may only appear unwell when they are very sick. It is important to seek advice early if your bird looks unwell. .