|A pair of Eclectus Parrots (Eclectus roratus), the male (right - green color) and female (left - red color) of the same species at Singapore Zoo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
What is the average size?
They vary in size from 12 to 14 inches in length with a wingspan of 2 to 2 1/2 feet. The male has a sleeker body build, and the female is more full-figured.
How much do they cost?
In the United States, they cost between $500 and $2500. Since the female is more colorful, they are often more expensive. The males are still beautiful but have fewer colors, and also tend to be more laid back personality wise. Male or female, not to worry, you'll come away with a stunningly beautiful bird.
How much noise do they make?
They are thought of as quiet birds when compared to the African Grey or the Macaw. But they do scream when frightened or threatened. And since each bird is different, the best way to determine how much noise it makes is to spend some time with it during different times of the day and in different situations, if possible-feeding time, play time, rest time.
Where should I go to adopt one?
There are many shelters for birds in need of a good home. Be careful to find out all you can before taking a bird so that you can be fully aware of any emotional or medical problems before you commit. And unless you are an experienced bird owner this may not be the way to go. Taking a bird home and then finding out it is not the right fit for you and your family is devastating for all. There are probably also breeders in your area that can be found with a little searching on the internet. Make sure they are reliable and ask for references before you make the final decision to buy.
What kind of diet do they require?
They require a diet loaded with fresh fruit and vegetables, even more so than other parrots. They tend to have a Vitamin A deficiency so feeding them cooked carrots and sweet potatoes, peppers, and dark leafy vegetables provide a great natural source of Vitamin A. Fresh fruits should include apples, bananas, mango, watermelon, cantaloupe, pomegranate, and grapes. Go light on fats and proteins as this tends to make them gain weight, raise cholesterol levels, develop arterial sclerosis, and lower their lifespan. Avoid colored pellets as this makes it difficult for them to produce proper colors in their feathers and beaks. Sprouted and soaked seeds, as well as small amount of a quality pellet mix, will provide the nutrients your bird needs.
How long do they live? When they first came to the United States it was thought that these parrots only lived for 8 years or so. And many died prematurely because they were fed an incorrect diet. Now that there has been more research done, and a proper diet has been determined, these birds can live upwards of 50 years, even though there are still very few that are much older than this in the United States today.
How can I keep it healthy?
An Eclectus is a lifetime investment in time, love, and hard work so taking daily steps to protect your bird's health is one of the best things you can give your bird in return for the unselfish love and devotion you will receive through the years. Feeding a healthy diet, giving it human attention and affection, visiting an avian vet for regular check-ups, noticing any changes from your bird's norms, seeking professional help immediately when there is any question about its well-being, and keeping its air clean with a high efficiency particle air purifier are all steps that you can take that will go a long way towards having your bird live long and well.