- There are 16 species of macaws.
- From 12 to 40 inches in length ( 30cm to 1m. ), 150 grams to 1800 grams.
- Color varying from blue to red and green.
- Distribution: southern and central American continent.
- Warning: almost all species of macaw are in danger of extinction. The capture for resale in the pet market and the massive destruction of their nesting areas make the situation of this family very critical.
- Macaws nest exclusively high up in very large trees. Due to the destruction of the rainforest, there is a dire shortage of tall trees that are conducive to the formation of large cavities necessary for the reproduction of these giants. Large macaw species must therefore retreat to nesting sites much lower.
- Macaws and their broods now have to contend with new predators that previously did not have access to their nests.
- The macaw is a species that reproduces slowly in its natural environment, generally, 2 eggs, of which only one will survive, and this, in large species, every 2 years or until the complete independence of the young. Therefore, the loss of a baby still alive represents a big impact for the species without counting the very strong competition for the cavities which is another very limiting factor for the populations of macaws.
- Macaw is the common name given to this group of birds with slender bodies, very long tails, broadheads, and strong beaks.
- Very gregarious species that live in large flocks, often of 100 individuals and more. It is not uncommon to find more than one species of macaw in the same territory.
- Despite inter-species cohabitation, little hybridization is observed in nature.
- It is the largest of the parrots.
- The macaw has hairless ( bare ) facial skin ( except in the case of the hyacinth macaw ), which makes it very susceptible to sunburn. On the other hand, the skin on his face reddens when he is aroused.
- No sexual dimorphism.
TEMPERAMENT OF THE MOST COMMON SPECIES
blue and gold macaw – ara ararauna
Blue and gold macaw
( ara ararauna )
The most popular of the macaws because of their ease of reproduction in captivity. It is also the most adaptable macaw to new situations. Probably the most sociable of macaws loves the company of humans and is very accepting of strangers. Family bird. Even if it creates a bond of love with a particular human, the blue and gold will accept all members of the family. Good speaker.
ara chloroptera – ara chloroptera
( ara chloroptera )
Along with the hyacinth, it is the largest of the macaw family. Excessively intelligent and docile bird. Surely the kindest and tolerant of macaws as much towards children, other birds or animals of the house, as well as with strangers. Family bird. Childhood remains for a very long time. Very interactive and empathetic. Intimidating by its size and beak. Moderately good speaker.
military macaw – ara militaris
( Ara militaris )
Personality is very similar to the blue and gold macaw. Docile nature, but less active than other macaws. Mordilleux. It is not a family bird. Often the bird of one person. Kind and tolerant with children, other birds, and household animals. Good speaker.
( ara macao )
The most beautiful and spectacular of the macaws. This species of macaw is not for everyone. Lots of temperament. Very intelligent and very skilled at learning tricks. Exceptional to get into trouble. He is the best speaker of macaws. Very chewy and prone to biting hard when scared or upset. Prone to communicate a lot with its beak. Contrary to what is conveyed, the Macau macaw is not an aggressive bird, but rather defensive. He is more fearful and suspicious than other macaws. He is also more independent than other macaws. It is not a family bird.
hyacinth macaw – anodorhinchus hyacinthinus
( anodorhynchus hyacinthinus )
The largest of the parrots, over four feet long. Same temperament as the Chloroptera, but more aware of the power of its beak. It is not an aggressive bird, but it likes to impress those around it. Very wide range of voice. Very destructive. Good family bird. Middle speaker.
severe macaw- ara severa
( ara severa )
The largest of the mini-macaws. Although it has a reputation for being a stubborn bird, it is one of the best macaws to train for tricks. It is not a family bird. One-person bird, extremely loyal, devoted and steadfast. Good speaker.
noble macaw – ara Nobilis Nobilis
( ara nobilis cumanensis )
Very small macaw ( 12 inches, 30 cm ), ideal for lovers of macaws who lack space. Good temperament is quite similar to that of the conure. Cheerful and clownish. Can be loud. Moderately good speaker.
- The macaw is tied with the cockatoo in the art of comedy and manipulation. Only the means used to achieve this differ. You have to see once in your life, the look of an ara who has just been caught out to understand the full meaning of the word melodrama … Nothing is more miserable in the world than an ara who comes from arguing!
- The macaw is not an independent bird. He needs to be in constant interaction with his social group, human or bird. It is also among the most loyal of parrots, totally devoted to its partner.
- Unlike many species of parrots, the macaw is selfless and generous; its only purpose is to please. He is a parrot that gives a lot.
- When he is content and happy, can become very demonstrative and exuberant.
- Most macaws are classified as good talkers.
He is excessively relational and affectionate. The macaw loves and needs to communicate. If he has no ( human ) words, he will use his own language, which can be quite loud ( hoarse and powerful voice ). The important thing to remember here is that the macaw doesn’t scream to drive you crazy … it communicates! It is not a behavioral problem. This way of interacting is normal and natural for the macaw. Better to be advised before purchasing such a bird.
- Likewise, the macaw communicates a lot by biting or outright biting. The Macau macaw is particularly famous for this biting tendency. Here again, it is not abnormal behavior and it is up to humans to establish their limits. Even though it has a huge, very powerful bill ( intended to crack open very hard nuts ), the macaw generally does not bite to hurt and rarely pierces the skin. At least nothing compares to the devilish bite of the Lori.
- As he is very gregarious and he likes to communicate a lot, I classify this bird in the energy-intensive category, that is to say: poorly autonomous bird with a great need for attention and interaction with its human. Unless he has a bird companion, he needs to always be in touch with his human social group. Because of this, it is a bird that tends to have separation anxiety if it does not have eye or auditory contact with a family member.
- He is a bird with a great sense of humor and above all a sense of “punch”, he knows how to dramatically captivate his audience.
- The macaw enjoys physical contact with its partner. He appreciates the caresses like a kitten, but also likes bickering and tugging, turning, lying on his back, being twirled. Despite his large size, he is an excellent acrobat, he loves to play hard and he stands out when it comes to learning and performing tricks. The macaw is also a good walker and loves to walk on the ground. Be careful, on the other hand, if it is overstimulated, it can become nibble and can seriously injure.
- He also likes to simultaneously imitate the facial expressions of his human: the human sings … the macaw sings. The human dances … the macaw dances. Anything that he can imitate in synchronism he will do: chew food, make sounds, raise his hand/paw, scream, etc.
- The macaw is a big cabin!
- The macaw is certain that everything that exists is for the use of his personal amusement. In other words, “everything” is a toy for ara! It is important to provide a macaw with plenty of toys and wood to chew on because with its size and the power of its beak, the meaning of “everything” can become disastrous.
- The macaw has enormous potential for destruction. It is an intelligent and curious bird and by its size, it has the gift of getting into trouble … If it is well educated, the macaw is a very obedient bird who seeks to please. It is in my opinion an excellent companion.
- The macaw needs more fat than other parrots in its diet, especially the Hyacinth macaw. The blue and gold macaw, for its part, does not need as much fat as other macaws, but its requirements are still higher in fat than those of other parrot species. This need is easily met by adding nuts to your diet. The macaw loves macadamia nuts. There are now specially formulated farmed feeds and pâtés for the macaw.