Black-headed Caiques. Pets held on hands.
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Caiques (pronounced khy-eeks) are brightly colored, energetic, and entertaining birds that are small when making comparisons in the parrot world, but have big personalities and a lot of love to give to their humans. Here are 5 reasons you can't go wrong when considering a Caique Parrot as a pet.
Colorful-The division of color on these birds is so striking it almost looks as if an artist used a paintbrush to execute it so perfectly. Black Headed Caiques (BHC) have black beaks and gray feet, shiny black heads, a festive and well-defined ban of orange around the neck area; their backs and tails are a velvety forest green, their legs, and feathers under the tail are orange, and their bellies are snowy white.
The White Bellied Caique (WBC) differs slightly in coloration with a light-colored beak, yellow head, green back, thighs, and wings with yellow coloring under the tail. It is slightly smaller and is not as common. There are no noticeable personality differences between species, and any differences are probably more attributable to the individuals.
Affordable-Prices for Caiques range between $500 and $1,000 USD with pet stores tending to be on the higher end of the scale. Check with an avian veterinarian or do a looking digging on the internet if you prefer to purchase from a breeder or adopt a slightly older bird. Learn as much as you can about the bird's history, spend time with it, and have it checked by a veterinarian before finalizing the adoption.
Great Personality-These are happy birds that, when healthy, are in constant motion. They love playing with their toys (and you should have a large variety) and with their humans. They are affectionate and tend to respond well to anyone who gives frequent attention. They need human interaction, and if you do not have the time to devote to them perhaps another pet would make a better choice. If you are thinking about having 2 to provide social interaction for each other, make sure they are compatible before bringing them home.
Whistle Happy Tunes-Even though they speech capability is not that of the African Grey, most are still able to speak with their high pitched voice and be understood. They also able to whistle and can learn songs that they hear. They tend to learn songs better if their human whistles the songs for them first.
Standard Diet-They love to eat and their food requirements are simple and uncomplicated. Daily offerings should include fresh fruits and vegetables, pasta, and table foods supplemented with a high-quality pellet mix; and fresh water should always be available. Avoid avocado, chocolate, alcohol, and caffeine as they are toxic to any bird. With proper care, these delightful little birds can live up to 30 years.