Wow I've been gone for some time huh? Been busy settling into my home in the city and starting out at my new University. (It's my second time and as a 20 year old I'm a bit wiser so not so bad!) Had to move away from my budgies however, and I'm surprised how much I am missing them, even though they are aviary birds... Guess it was nice just to be able to go out and watch their antics.
Anyway, I managed to wrangle permission for a smaller, quiet bird here at my private boarding house, and after a long search for a suitable species I found the Grass Parakeets! Perfect quiet little darlings! The matter of finding a handraised one was harder but I did manage to find the one breeder up north who was doing it with her Turqoisines.
One of the wee bubs bellow will be coming to me in two weeks time! This is the only photo I have so far, they are older than this now. All three are Lutino boys, now they are older the male's signature red bar on the wings has appeared. They have been fully handraised and I am told are all extremely friendly and cuddly.
I've booked his overnight pet courier and have his nice large cage and all accessories and food. Now I just have to wait! Very excited to have him here. No idea on a name yet though!
A shame there is so little info about these guys as indoor pets out there, I have no idea what toys they like or anything so I got a few different ones to swap out. I will be using this thread as a journal once he's here to keep track of things, and so maybe one day it will be helpful to someone else looking to get one of these lovely birds...
Above image is an adult male and female of the natural colouration.
About Turq's as pets:
What I do know from the breeder so far, as well as general info found on the Internet (will be getting more info with next email from breeder and I will add the info here) is;
-They eat about the same stuff as a cockatiel or budgie, and enjoy seed mixes made up for both these species, as well as a range of fruit and veges. My baby is so far eating whole kernel corn, broccoli, apple and silverbeet, and enjoying the sunflower seeds in the cockatiel mix.
-When handraised they can be just as affectionate as a handraised budgie, maybe even more so, and can be quite cuddly.
-Considered one of the more aggressive of their genus, but not as aggressive as budgies, also more active than others species in the genus.
-They like spending time on the ground, as they would forage there in the wild, and can run pretty fast.
- These parakeets also mature slower than the other grass keets. Although they can breed as one-year olds, they are better parents by the age of two years old. It is best to separate fledglings from their parents as soon as they eat on their own, as males may show aggression towards their sons.
-They are usually kept solely as aviary birds, and like planted aviaries. There should only be one pair per aviary as they can show some aggression to each other during the breeding season. Peaceful with others but due to their grass parakeet natures may be targets for bulling.
-They are very quiet birds, with only a few vocalisations, none of which are particularly offensive to the ears. Calls made in flight are soft, metallic notes. Weaker, high-pitched twittering is made while feeding or at roost. A rapid, high-pitched series of short notes from male when alarmed, and lower, harsher sounds from female. As far as I know they are incapable of learning to mimic.
- They are not large birds, being about 20cms long, and weighing around 35-46 grams as adults.
-Several colour forms are seen in captivity, including a yellow, red-fronted and pied form (all recessive), and jade and Olive (dominant). Turquoisines can have red markings on their belly, which varies from bird to bird.
-Like all grass parakeets (expect Bourkes, which were recently moved to their own genus), Turqs are a part of the Neophema
genus. They are known as Neophema pulchella
. The birds in this genus can interbreed, and it has been done intentionally to introduce new colours.
- Their lifespan is around 10-15 years.
-The English Common Name of the Turquoise Parrot been known alternately as Chestnut-shouldered parakeet, Chestnut-shouldered grass-parakeet, Chestnut-shouldered Grass-parrot, Chestnut-winged Grass-parakeet, Chestnut-winged Grass-Parrot and Turquoisine Grass Parrot.
- If living as indoor pets they are best suited to be housed in a larger sized budgie cage or bigger so minimum of 50cm long x 50cm deep x 70cm high. (My cage is larger than this.) They do like to stretch their wings in their cages.
- They love sunbathing! See below!