Big, beautiful, loud and attention loving is the best way to describe Macaws.
These are not the birds for the feint of heart. They can play rough, they like to scream and they can live for 50 years or more.
If you have your heart set on one of these beautiful birds be prepared to spend a lot of time with it.
They thrive on attention and without it will quickly develop some bad habits, most notably even more screaming than is normal for these birds.
You don't want a large macaw to develop the habit of biting.
With the power they have in their beaks it can do far more than hurt. They use their beaks to crack open nuts and have enough power to remove a finger.
Fortunately it's pretty rare for them to bite that hard, and most just pinch instead.
Proper handling is the key to preventing any bad habits which is why you need to be prepared to spend time with them.
On the plus side Macaws are loyal and faithful friends provided that they are given freedom from the cage and are played with frequently.
Macaws will eat seeds and nut in exclusion to everything else, unfortunately they don't contain all the vitamins and minerals they need and they are too high in fat for any but the most active of parrots.
Sunflower seeds are especially high in fat.
You should feed your macaw unflavored pellets as the main food and supplement them with fresh vegetables and fruits
Use the seeds and nuts for training and special treats.
Make sure to always have fresh, clean water available for your pet parrot,
Macaws love to play and chew.
Get your pet some large blocks of untreated wood to chew on.
They also seem to like puzzles so some toys that need to be taken apart to get at treat are good choices, and well as things to hang on or climb.
Let your Macaw out of the cage as much as possible. Let it explore and be near you.
Just be careful when it is out, it can quickly destroy a room, or worse yet get itself in serious trouble by chewing on electrical cords or poisonous plants.
With the exception of the mini macaws you need a big cage for your parrot.
They need room to move around and play.
The minimum size should be 3 X 4 feet and 5 feet high with bars no more than 1.5 inches apart.
Avoid plastic and galvanized cages. Macaws will destroy a plastic cage, and galvanized cages could contain zinc which is poisonous.
The cage should have horizontal bars to allow your bird to climb.
You will need at least three different sized perches, various sturdy toys, watering and food dishes.
A cage that size is heavy so it is a good idea to get one with wheels.
Macaw birds make excellent pets, but take the responsibility to educate yourself before you rush out an get one. Be sure you are ready to spend the time and energy they need to be healthy, happy and well adjusted birds.
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