Macaws are colourful, beautiful, and giant birds belonging to the parrot family. They are intelligent social birds.
They can vocalize to communicate within the flock. And some of them can even mimic human speech.
Macaws’ average lifespan in the wild is up to 60 years, making them a perfect mate for life. They are, however, on the endangered species list.
Macaw’s vibrant colour patterns on the feather and charming personality have made them a popular species in the illegal trade. Many of them are illegally trapped in their native rainforest, where they are sold at high rates.
How much does a macaw parrot cost in India?
The price of a Macaw parrot in India can range from Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 3,00,000, with the average being Rs. 1,20,000. The price of a Macaw parrot can vary depending upon several factors like the colouration, quality of feathers, quality of breed, breeder reputation, whether the bird is parent-raised or hand-fed, and demand of the bird.
The word macaw comes from the Arabic word “makawk,” which translates to mean “large bird.” These colorful birds are some of the biggest parrots in terms of natural size, and they have a long lifespan.
They are often considered a pet because they have a relatively docile temperament with a high level of intelligence. They are very intelligent, social, and playful creatures.
These magnificent creatures come in over several different color variations, which makes them highly desired as pets.
While macaw parrots are beautiful creatures, they are not the best option for inexperienced owners who cannot provide an appropriate habitat.
Housing these birds requires a significant amount of space and many people are unable to afford renovations for their home. The cost of feeding these birds is also expensive, costing about $10-15 per day for just enough food.
With so many expenses that come with owning a macaw parrot, it might not be the best pet choice for everyone.
Factors that Affect the Macaw Parrot Price in India
Breeding: Hybrid and Hyacinth Macaws are exotic pets and cost more. They are difficult to breed. Most of them are easy to train and make a popular pet.
Blue and Gold Macaws, however, will cost less as they are bred in captivity.
Breeder Reputation: A Macaw bought from a high-profile bird breeder will also cost more. Reputable breeders have good pet quality Macaws as compared to private bird breeders.
Trained vs non-trained Birds: A trained Macaw will cost more than a non-trained bird. Previously owned Macaws or non-trained birds and cost less.
Some Macaws are sold on consignment, which means they were previously owned but could not establish a bond with their owners.
Most previously owned birds are non-trained and may be neglected by their respective owners. They have low human interaction and can be difficult to train.
Hand-Fed vs Parent Raised Birds:
Hand-fed birds are preferred as pets for they quickly establish a bond with their owner. They respond well to training and cost more.
Hand-fed birds are removed from their parents at an early stage. Birds are hand-fed until they are ready to be weaned onto solid food.
Parent-raised birds don’t bond well with their owners and are difficult to train. These birds receive nourishment from their parent and cost less.
Macaws with Health Certificate:
Another factor that plays a crucial role in determining the price of a Macaw is a health certification.
Reputable breeders often provide a health guarantee of the Macaw being examined by an avian veterinarian for illness or disease. A Macaw with a health certificate costs more.
Is the Macaw parrot bird legal in India?
All exotic species of parrots, including the Macaw parrots that are not native to India, can be kept as pets. As per the Wildlife Protection Act (1972), parrot species native to India are illegal to be kept as pets and in captivity. Since most Macaws are exotic birds, they can be kept as pets.
Types of Macaw Parrots
Blue & Gold Macaw
They are pretty large, measuring about three feet from the beak to the tail’s tip. They are intelligent and social birds. They can be very loud and make a screaming sound.
These high-maintained birds bond well with humans, but they are not for novice bird owners. Their huge size may drain your energy in keeping them secure and comfortable at home.
Hahn’s macaws are a beautiful birds that can be found in the forests of Peru and Brazil. These are the smallest of Macaws and very social.
They can be easily trained and can make good talkers. Hahn’s Macaw bonds quickly with their owners.
Hahn’s Macaws eat fruit and nuts like other macaws, but also consume insects such as termites and grasshoppers which they find on the ground or on trees.
The Greenwing Macaw is the only member of the genus Ara ambigua, found in humid forests in Central and South America. They are approximately 40 inches long and weigh 2-3 pounds.
This species has a light blue face with a red crown and neck. The wings and tail feathers show green and dark blue colors. It also has yellow thighs and under-wings.
These birds like to live in groups of 3-5 individuals, mainly consisting of family members. They crave social attention and may not like to be left alone for a long time.
The Greenwing Macaw birds respond well to training. But, they may take time to bond with the owner.
These birds love to eat nuts, berries, seeds and fruits. You may find them eating the clay to neutralize the toxins since clay contain salt and minerals.
These Macaw breeds are of mixed heritage. They are preferred for their colours and pet quality.
The Hybrid Macaw is a beautiful bird that is the result of closely related species cross-breeding.
The Hybrid Macaw is often confused with the Greenwing Macaw, which was developed by mating a Scarlet and Blue and Gold macaw. However, the Hybrid Macaw is larger than the Greenwing Macaw.
Illeger’s Macaws are playful and social. They like to interact with humans. They respond to training and bond well with their owners.
It is also known as the “Blue winged Macaw”.
The blue winged macaw’s are extremely social birds so need to be family and ask for constant attention. When they live in forest, they generally found in pairs or small flocks.
These are the largest type of Macaw. They seek the attention of their owners and are quite difficult to care for. Hyacinth Macaw makes a perfect pet for experienced bird owners.
Scarlet Macaws are beautiful, intelligent, and social birds. They like to play and engage with humans but get bored quickly.
Scarlet Macaw, as a pet, seeks the constant attention of their owners. These birds, when hand-fed, can establish a strong bond with their owners.
Scarlet Macaw needs more living space as compared to other birds.
These are curious birds. Military Macaws are full of energy and may need their owners to play with them. They can be quite vocal and are pleasant to be around.
Severe Macaws are comical and vocal. These birds are quite friendly and bond quickly with their owners.
Yellow Collared Macaw
Just like other Macaw birds, Yellow Collared Macaws are intelligent and friendly. They are demanding and seek the attention of their owners.
They can be mischievous and may find ways to escape. It is always better to have them in a cage or aviary.
Natural Habitat of Macaw
Mexico, Central America, and South America are home to Macaw. These colourful birds are most commonly found in rainforests, grasslands, and grassy woodland-type regions.
Macaws and other parrot species eat clay at exposed river banks to neutralize toxins consumed when eating in the wild. Some Macaw species are now extinct.
The Caribbean was once a habitat of Cuban Macaw and Saint Macaw, both extinct species. According to IUCN Red List, nine Macaw species are endangered.
The endangered Macaw birds include Glaucous Macaw, Blue-throated Macaw, Spix’s Macaw, Lear’s Macaw, Great Green Macaw, Red-fronted Macaw, Hyacinth Macaw, Military Macaw, and Blue-headed Macaw.
Macaw parrots are full of energy, playful, and very active. When fed a nutrient-rich diet and provided with space for enough physical exercise, they can make long-lived companions.
These birds are affectionate and loving. Once they develop a bond with their owner, they may crave their attention.
When left alone or not properly cared they may, however, turn aggressive and destructive. Drastic environmental changes, such as putting them into an enclosed space, may also trigger aggression.
Macaw parrots seek mental and physical stimulation to stay active. They can be trained to socialize from an early stage of life.
Most Macaw parrots have vocal skills. They can be taught to mimic the human speech.
Colours & Markings
There are 17 species of Macaw parrots found in the wild. But, only large and colourful Macaws are traded as pets. Mini Macaws are rare to find. Yellow-collared macaws, Illiger’s, and Hahn’s are the small-sized parrots.
The most common Macaw pet parrots are Scarlet, Blue and Gold, Military, and Hyacinth. Rainbow macaw or Catalina is the most colourful bird of the Macaw species.
It is hard to determine the sexes of Macaws by just looking at them. They are dimorphic, and only genetic testing could reveal their sex.
Vocalization & Speech
Macaw parrots have vocal skills. They can be very loud and screaming if not trained.
These birds can mimic human speech. But, their voice is not clear as some other birds.
Among all the large Macaws, Blue and Gold Macaws is best at voice training. Hahn’s Macaw vocalizes better than the rest of mini Macaws.
Care & Feeding
The diet and care of Macaw species differ from other parrots. Macaws living in their natural habitat or the wild need more fat as they fly across rainforests, nesting and finding food.
Macaws, in the wild, feed on figs, leaves, nectar, native fruits, seeds, flowers, and clay from river banks.
Planning to have Macaw as a pet, you may use the following tips for feeding and caring:
Give Macaws natural nuts, seeds, fruits, and veggies to eat. Peas, carrot, apple, corn, broccoli, beans, and spinach makes a healthy food option for captive Macaws.
Macaws have an aversion to avocado, lettuce, and apple seeds. Moreover, they may fall sick from consuming rotten food. It is best to remove any leftover food from the aviary.
Freshwater supply keeps the Macaws healthy. You can also add vitamin supplements to their water. But, vitamins should not be given more than twice a week.
Giving calcium in their first year and vitamin supplements can also help keep macaws in good health. Macaw parrots should also be given bird warmers once in three months.
Exercise & Activity
Macaws in the wild are more physically active as compared to captive birds. They hunt for food and water that provides them with enough physical exercise and use their energy.
For captive Macaws, foraging toys can help keep them physically active. Foraging toys can be bought online.
These toys include natural branches and more. Different shapes and sizes of branches can help Macaws exercise their feet for gripping and beak for chewing the bark.
Is Macaw a good pet?
It is not easy to keep Macaws as pets, especially when you do not know what you are getting into. Macaws are only physically affectionate with people they know and trust, unlike cockatoos, who show affection to strangers too.
It takes a lot of time to gain Macaw’s trust and when you have crossed that path, they are one of the most loving and affectionate pets ever.