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Conure (Pyrrhura)

Conure (Pyrrhura)
origin:South and Central America
life expectancy:15 to 30 years
family:Psittacidae
dimensions:21 to 26 cm
compatibility: goodsinging ability: not very melodiousloudiness: 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 17 species of Pyrrhura conures and other few sub-species, the second genus with more species among conures, behind the Arantigas. Although they are the ones with better fame amongst the conures, for being less noisy and less aggressive, they’re not found easily. Practically half of this species aren’t bred in captivity. 
editing: History [ close ]
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Temperament [ edit ]

The Pyrrhura Conures are one of the quieter Conures and one of the least aggressive of the group. They are good aviary birds, or even to keep in an apartment since they don´t make too much noise.

These gentle birds are active and they do need a lot of attention or at least bird companionship. They have a long life expectancy over 15 years and they will bond with the owner if properly nurtured.

They are able to mimic a small amount of human words however, that depends on the individual. Don´t expect them to be like Budgerigars or the Amazon Parrots, since they are more limited in this area.

Easy to train and to look after, these parrots are recommended for new breeders. 
editing: Temperament [ close ]
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General appearance [ edit ]

Pyrrhura conures can be recognized by their breast coloration. The feathers of this area are tipped with lighter colors which gives this conures a ruffled look. They have long gradated tails, a white eye-ring and are smaller than Arantigas. Their base color is green which is complemented with other colors - reds, blues and/or grays – depending on the specie.

Young birds have duller plumage than adults and have shorter tails. It is very difficult to identify the bird’s sex so for breeding purposes make a DNA test.  
editing: General appearance [ close ]
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Housing [ edit ]

All conures are best housed as pairs, and the Pyrrhuras are no exception. Males can be quite territorial and biting may occur when housed together.

A good size cage measures around 100 x 60 x 80 cm and it can house a pair of these conures. The cage should have horizontal bars and must be equipped with perches. Toys are a must to prevent boredom.

Pyrrhura conures aren´t as destroyers as their cousins, but they will thoroughly study their cage looking for any flaw that can give them their freedom back.   
editing: Housing [ close ]
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Diet [ edit ]

Parrot food with small cereal seeds, vegetables and a daily amount of fruit are a good diet. Try to vary the type of food you give them so they don´t get bored. You can swap between sweet apples, carrots, pears, figs, oranges, corn and brown rice, since they usually prefer this to greenfood.
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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 Pyrrhura Conures [ edit ]

  • Maroon-bellied Conure (Pyrrhura frontalis) – These common Pyrrhura Conures got their name from the red to brown band that they have in the belly area. This bird is mostly green, not brightly colored but with shades of dull blue or yellow to the green. The tail is also maroon on the underside. It measure 25 cm.
  • Crimson-bellied Conure (Pyrrhura perlata) – Native from a small part of the Brazilian territory, in the Northern part of the country, the Crimson-bellied Conure is one of the largest in the Pyrrhura genus, with 25 cm. This bird is mostly green, with a large crimson frontal band that gives it his name. Dull yellow, pale blue, brown and grey can also be observed in some specific areas.
  • Green-Cheeked Conure (Pyrrhura molinae) – This is probably one of the most popular conures of this group. Green-Cheeked Conures have 25 cm and dark green plumage, with narrow red to brown belly area and blue feathers at the end of the wings. There are some brightly colored variations of this bird.
  • Fiery-shouldered Conure (Pyrrhura egregia) – This parrot is mostly green, but it has bright yellow to red feathers on the shoulders and blue at the end of the wings. The Fiery-shouldered Conure has 25 cm and it´s not a hard chewer.
  • Painted Conure (Pyrrhura picta) - There are nine sub-species of Painted Conure but even so, they are quite rare. These 22 cm long conures are generally green but have some red to brown areas, as the belly and the shoulders and cheeks.
  • Black-capped Conure (Pyrrhura rupicola) – These 25 cm long conures have very prominent chest markings. Also generally green with dark brown forehead and red feathers on the wedge of the wings.
  • White-eared Conure (Pyrrhura leucotis)
  • Blue-throated Conure (Pyrrhura cruentata)
  • Maroon-tailed Conure (Pyrrhura melanura)
  • White-necked Conure (Pyrrhura albipectus)
  • Red-eared Conure (Pyrrhura hoematotis)
  • Brown-breasted Conure (Pyrrhura calliptera)
  • Rose-crowned Conure (Pyrrhura rhodocephala)
  • Hoffmann's Conure (Pyrrhura hoffmanni)
  • Santa Marta Conure (Pyrrhura viridicata)
  • El Oro Conure (Pyrrhura orcesi) 
editing: Species of Pyrrhura Conures [ close ]
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