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Conure (Aratinga)

Conure (Aratinga)
origin:South and Central America
life expectancy:15 to 30 years
family:Psittacidae
dimensions:25 to 35 cm
compatibility: goodsinging ability: not very melodiousloudiness: very loud
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History [ edit ]

The Conure is a bird from the New World loved by their beauty. It is a very popular pet, especially because there are 8 genera of Conures: Aratinga, Nandayus, Ognorhynchus, Leptosittaca, Cyanoliseus, Pyrrhura, Enicognathus, Myiopsitta, which is a lot of variety to choose from. Conure means “cone tail” and it is a term used mostly in aviculture and applied to long tailed parrots, native from South and Central America. Carolina Parakeet (Conuropsis specie) is a conure as well but it is already extinct. There is still some controversy about the classification of this genus not only in the classification of the species of the group but as well with the inclusion of other birds, for example, some defend that Brotogeris should be part of this group.

There are about 19 species of Aritanga conures, “small macaws”. The number of species isn’t precise since there is some controversy among experts about the classification as specie or variety of some birds of this genus. 
editing: History [ close ]
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Housing [ edit ]

In this group, conures have different sizes. Amongst the smaller is the Peach-fronted Conure, with 25 cm, and one of the biggest is the Blue-Crowned Conure, with 35.

However the cage should be 80 x 80 cm to give them enough space to open both wings. In this case, the bird need to be frequently taken outside the cage, and this should be only for resting purposes. A good size cage would be 120 x 70 x 120 cm or something close.

They need perches and they like them thick, about 2 to 2,5 cm, so that they can have a good support. Cages should have horizontal bars for them to climb. They also like their morning bath so provide them with a tub with fresh water so that they can bathe themselves in.

Conures like specially to vocalize at sunrise and sundown so if you want to sleep until later, cover the cage with a dark cloth and take it off when you wake up. They will only vocalize when you take the cloth. Make sure the cloth is thick enough to prevent the sunrays to pass through.

Place the cage in a place with indirect natural light but far away from drafts.  
editing: Housing [ close ]
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Diet [ edit ]

Quality pelleted seeds or parrot seed mix with vegetables and a daily amount of fruit. Don´t forget to wash very well the greenfood. Nuts are a great treat. 
editing: Diet [ close ]
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Temperament [ edit ]

The Arantiga Conures are one of the louder Conures, only surpassed probably by the Patagonian Conure. Arantigas have a high pitched voice that may get you in to trouble when it comes to the relationship with your neighbors. They are sweet, somewhat stubborn but they will bond with the owner. Their not especially good in mimicry, but that depends on the individual. However don´t expect them to “speak” like Budgerigars or the Amazon Parrots.

They can be good with children, but they don´t like the abuse and may bite.

The Arantiga Conures aren´t shy, they are very sociable and easy to train. Arantigas are said to be more aggressive among the Conures, but the general disposition is of a calm and gentle bird.

Of all the Conures they are the most avid chewers and need to have lots of toys to keep them stimulated. Their intelligence and curiosity will surprise you. 
editing: Temperament [ close ]
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General appearance [ edit ]

Conures from the genus Arantiga are medium-sized bird, with a characteristic long tail, which set this bird apart from the other parrots. Hooked bill, bright colors that range from a vivid green to the reds, yellows and oranges, found in some parts of the body like in the Peach-fronted Conure or in almost the entire body, like in the very popular Sun Conure.

Young birds have duller plumage than adults. It is very difficult to identify the bird’s sex so for breeding purposes make a DNA test.  
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Health [ edit ]

The most common diseases among the conures are: Aspergillosis, feather plucking and Psittacosis.
editing: Health [ close ]
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Species of Aratinga Conures [ edit ]

  • Sun Conure (Aratinga solstitialis) – This is probably the most popular conure of this group with it´s striking yellow and orange plumage, and vivid green on wings and tail. Their size is around 30 cm and they are expected to life at least 20 years.
  • Mitred Conure (Aratinga mitrata) – Close resembles with the Sun Conure in length and shape, although with quite different colors. The Mitred Conure is mostly green with forehead and eye area of vivid red.
  • Blue-crowned Conure (Aratinga acuticaudata) – This is one of the larger birds of this genus. With 35 cm, it is expected to be loud. The Blue-crowned is easily recognized by the blue mask that presents on the head with the rest of the body of a large variety of greens. The young birds are less blue on the heads. This bird it´s quite popular as well.
  • Peach-fronted or Golden-Crowned Conure (Aratinga aurea) – There´s nothing easier than to identify this little bird. One of the smallest of the Arantigas Conures, with 25 cm, the Peach-fronted has the forehead brightly colored in orange, near the beak, yellow, on top of the head and blue, almost at the back of the head. The back of this bird is green and the underpants are yellow. There are all sorts of green and yellow shades on the body.
  • White-eyed Conure (Aratinga leucophthalmus) – With 33 cm, this white-eyed conure is quite common throughout South America. Mostly green, this conure has the particularity of having red feathers spread though some body areas.
  • Green Conure (Aratinga holochlora) – 32 cm of bright green. The underpants are usually yellowish. Some birds have red feathers in the head
  • Finsch's or Crimson-fronted Conure (Aratinga finschi) – This conure of 28 cm has a grren plumage with some red feathers, like the White-eyed Conure. However, this specie has a red crown placed on the forehaed.
  • Scarlet-fronted Conure (Aratinga wagleri) – This conure is similar to the Finch’s in color: green body with red crown and red feathers through the body. However this is bigger reaching up to 36 cm in length and it has several shades of green, almost yellow in the belly. It can also have a red breast band.
  • Jamaican or Olive-throated Conure (Aratinga nana) – This conure is found in Jamaica, as it name indicates. It is one of the smallest of this group with 26 cm, but with proportionately longer wings than average Aratingas. Also mostly green, the throat of this little conure is olive or a little bit brownish.
  • Pacific Conure (Aratinga strenua) 
  • Socorro Conure (Aratinga brevipes)
  • Red-throated Conure (Aratinga rubritorquis)
  • Chapman's Mitred Conure (Aratinga alticola)
  • Hocking's Conure (Aratinga hockingi)
  • Red-masked Conure (Aratinga erythrogenys)
  • Cuban Conure (Aratinga euops)
  • Hispaniolan Conure (Aratinga chloroptera)
  • Sulphur-breasted Conure (Aratinga pintoi)
  • Jandaya Conure (Aratinga jandaya)
  • Golden-capped Conure (Aratinga auricapilla)
  • Dusky-headed Conure (Aratinga weddellii)
  • Brown-throated Conure (Aratinga pertinax)
  • Orange-fronted Conure (Aratinga canicularis)
  • Caatinga Conure (Aratinga cactorum) 
editing: Species of Aratinga Conures [ close ]
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