Join or renew
Hall of Fame
Products For Sale
The Avicultural Journal
Exotic Bird Species
First Breeding Awards
Parrot Association of Canada
Avian Preservation Foundatn
Band Size Chart
Trace a Band
Current Ring Codes
Copyright & Privacy Policies
Species: There are many different species of conures. The majority fall into the genus Aratinga, along with several in the genus Pyrhurra. The others are Nandayus, which is only a single species, the Nanday conure, Enicognathus, which includes the Slender-billed and Austral conures, and Cyanoliensis, the Patagonian conure. Some sources feel that some other well-known conures (including the Half Moon, Blue Crowned, and others) may also fall into genuses of their own. All conures have long tails and originate from South and Central America; also Mexico. There was one Conure, the Carolina Parakeet, that actually lived in North American as far north as New York and Chicago; however this bird went extinct due to hunting and habitat destruction in the early 1900's. Conures range in size from as tiny as 8 1/2" to up to 21"!
Life span: Most conures live around 15 to 35 years.
Price: $100-$500 or higher for rare species. The majority of species fall in the $200 to $400 range.
Diet: Conures aren't picky about their foods. Being enormously curious and playful, they like a very varied diet and should be provided with foods that offer a wide variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and textures. Pellets that come in different shapes and colors are often preffered over "plain" pellets. Conures are prone to "Conure Bleeding Sydrone", which is thought to be caused by a lack of Vitamin K, which is found in foods like broccoli.
Cages/supplies: Conures are active and playful birds, who need a large cage to clamber around in. A large cockatiel cage will do for the small conures, the others will need a good-sized parrot cage. Be careful where you place those perches; if those long conure tails rub against the bars the tail feathers will become very ragged. Give your conure lots of toys, it will use them with gusto. They like toys they can destoy, but make sure there's no small parts they can swallow or openings where they could catch a claw or beak. Your conure will also appreciate a large playstand, again, equipped with lots of toys.
General care: Conures are fairly easy to care for. Clean his cage often, and his food and water dish. Many conures like to dip their pellets and other foods in their water dish before eating, which means a very dirty water dish. Try moving the water dish to the other side of the cage, and if that doesn't work, try converting him to a water bottle. Otherwise, plan on cleaning that dish several times a day. Switch his toys around often, they'll keep him more entertained. Clip those wings; conures are curious birds who get in enough trouble when they *can't* fly, much less when they can. And don't forget to take him out to play everyday!
Noise level: What can I say? Conures are *noisy*! Almost all have loud voices, and like to use them. The exceptions are the small Pyrhurra conures, whose voices, while not unnoticible, are far from the ear-splitting screeches of their cousins. If you live in an apartment, you may want to think about the Pyrhurras.
Talking ability: Conures aren't notable talkers, but almost all will speak a word or two. Some species are better than others, but it mostly depends on the indivdual.
Personality: Conures are active, playful, bold, and affectionate. One minute they'll be acting the clown, climbing on their toys and screaching in mock anger, the next minute they'll be curled next to you, begging for a scratch. Hand-fed conures are real sweethearts, always begging for attention. They're great at learning tricks; many will lie on their back and "play dead", and hanging upside-down from a finger is an easy one. Some conures are are one-person birds, others more out-going. Regardless, he'll probably pick a favorite person, and they'll be some liberties he'll allow only that person. They can be moody, but in a good way. Some conures can be nippy, especially with people they don't know, but a little careful training can rid most of the problem. Overall, conures are affectionate clowns who are a whole lot of fun to own.
Compared with other birds: Conures are more rambuctious than cockatiels, and demand more attention than a parakeet. They're more "happy-go-lucky" and babyish than Poicephalus. They're not as prone to behavior problems as the larger parrots.
People suitable as conure owners: If you're thinking about one of the Aratinga conures, or one of the other louder conures, you may want to think twice if live in an apartment or have close nieghbors. Other than that, you need to be able to put up with a rambuctious, sometimes pugnacious, bird who knows it's mind and isn't afraid to show it. You'll need to be able to put up with the occasional ear-splitting screech (especially painful when the bird's sitting on your should!), and possibly the occasional nip. Many conures make fine family pets, as they do well with kids (with supervision); however, this is individual and some conures will not tolerate children and may bite. If you want a sweet, adorable, affectionate bird and don't mind noise, take a closer look at conures.
Some conures species: I can't list very many here, but I'll try to get the more common ones down.
The "golden" group - I include Suns, Jendays, and Gold-caps in this group. They're a very colorful group; the Suns and Jendays are mainly brilliant shades of yellow or orange, with green highlights. Gold-caps are slightly less colorful, being mainly green, but have a beautiful wash of orange over their head and down their breast. In size, they're around 11", with gold-caps being slightly larger than the others. They range in price from around $250-$400. Suns tend be higher, because of their brighter colors, Jendays and Goldcaps somewhat less. They all have loud voices. Suns and Jendays, especially, are noted for their high-pitched, screechy voices. Gold-caps are comparitively quiet. All these birds are the epitome of conure, being great clowns.
Nanday Conures - Nandays often get a bad rap. Yes, they are loud, even for conures, but that doesn't stop them from being great pets. And they're not that much louder than most other conures, and, in fact, have a somewhat less high-pitched voice than conures like Suns and Jendays. They're beautiful birds, mostly green with a jet black head, red "socks", a blue tail and light blue wash on their breast. They're around 12", and they're often priced quite cheaply, around $100-$250. They make just as excellant pets as the other conures, are large, beautiful and intelligent.
The Pyrhurra group - The Pyrhurras are small (8-11 inch) birds. They're quiet, and the more common ones are often quite fairly priced in the $100 to $200 dollar range. Usually, the only species you'll encounter for sale are Maroon Bellies and Greencheek conures. Both are 10", and look quite similar, being mainly green. If you get stuck, which isn't hard to do, you can easily tell the two apart by the color of the tail. In Maroon-bellies, only the underside of the tail is maroon. In Green-cheeks, the entire thing is that dark maroon color. Greencheeks also have a darker, almost black, head. They're sweet little pets who act quite a bit larger than they are. Some other Pyrhurra species are Painteds, Pearlies, Blackcaps, Souances, and White Ears, along with the endangered Blue Throated, which is the largest of the Pyrhurras at 11". Some are rarer than others, but none come close to the popularity of Maroon-bellies and Green-cheeks. There's a Fallow mutation of the Greencheek conure. It's quite beautiful, and fairly inexpensive for a mutation, at around $400 for visuals (birds that are Fallow) or $250 for splits (normally colored birds that carry the gene for Fallow that they may pass on to their babies).
The "red n' green" group - I'm including in this group Cherry-heads, Mitreds, Greens, White-eyes, and all those other conures that are mainly green with various amounts of red on their heads. They range in size from 12" to 15" (the Mitred), and in price from $200 to $450. All make exellant pets, being very typical for conures (loud voice included!). If you like the general conure profile, consider one of these birds.
Peach Fronts and Half Moons (or Orange-fronted) - These two birds are quite a bit alike. The big difference is in the beak color; Peach-fronts have an entirely black beak, whereas Half-moons have a black and horn-colored beak. They're both 10", mainly green but with a small amount of light orange and blue on the forehead. Both cost around $150-$250. They make sweet little pets, and are pretty typical of the conure group. They can be fairly loud, however they're considerably quieter than Suns or Nandays. They also often make among the best talkers among the conures, although they can be hard to understand.
Blue Crowned Conures - Blue-crowns have been becoming more and more popular on the pet market. They're large (14") conures, mainly green with a wash of blue over the head. They cost $200-$300. They make wonderful pets, full of personality and affection. They also are among the best talking conures.
Patagonian Conures - The largest conure, larger than some smaller macaws. There's two subspecies; the Lessor, at 18", and the Greator, at up to 21"! The Lessor is the only one really available as pets, and usually cost around $250 to $350. They do make spectacular pets, and have a "large" personality to fit with their size. They're a great bird for someone looking for something between a conure and a macaw; they also cost less than most mini macaws. However, bear in mind their voice also matches their size, and they're probably the loudest conure of them all!
Dusky Conures - Not particularly popular, Duskies deserve special mention. They're mainly green, with a light grey-blue head, light colored eyes and a wide white eye-ring. They run around $200-$300. That's all pretty typical of conures. Where they excel is personality. They're known as being exceptionally sweet, cuddly, and affectionate, making wonderful pets. They're also somewhat quieter than the other Aratingas.