If you’re on the lookout for a feathered companion that adds some color to your life, you can’t do much better than a scarlet macaw.
Scarlet macaws are big, beautiful, and bold – and their colorful personalities aren’t limited to their red, blue, yellow, and green plumage.
Scarlet macaws also happen to make excellent pets – and that’s precisely why we’ve compiled five mindblowing facts about these birds that’ll help you appreciate them better!
1. Scarlet Macaws Are Also Known as Ara Macao
Ara Macao is the scientific name for the scarlet macaw, and the bird also happens to a member of a group of Neotropical parrots. Scarlet macaws are also native to the forest of Central and South America. Not to mention, this eye-catching bird is also the national bird of Honduras.
2. They Can Grow to Be Big
If you already own or plan to get a scarlet macaw as your next pet, it’ll interest you to know that these gorgeous birdies can grow to around 32-inches (from beak to tail) and weigh 2 pounds as adults.
And, compared to other large macaws – scarlet macaws tend to have a larger tail. As the name suggests, scarlet macaws can boast of bright red plumage, but their tails are mostly blue.
But, here’s a color detail that most people miss – if you look closely, the undersides of a scarlet macaw’s tail and wings also feature slight metallic gold radiance.
These birds are a truly inspiring sight to behold in flight.
3. Scarlet Macaws Are Strictly Monogamous
Scarlet macaws are monogamous, much like penguins.
That means these parrots choose one mate for life, and even though their eyes can clock almost 360 degrees – they’re not the kind to have roving eyes.
You can tell your macaw is getting romantically attached quite easily. If you see your pet staring at its companion with dilated eyes or preening – then your scarlet macaw is likely in love.
Another sure-shot sign of telling your bird has found its mate is if they start feeding each other. A word of warning, though – scarlet macaws can tend to get a bit testy during breeding periods.
A juvenile macaw reaches the age of sexual maturity by five years of age, and a female macaw will incubate the eggs for around five weeks.
Once the eggs have been laid, you can expect the pitter-patter of tiny scarlet macaw feet in about 90 days.
4. They Need a Varied Diet to Remain Healthy and Happy
When not in captivity, scarlet macaws tend to forage seeds, nuts, berries, and leaves for sustenance.
Their strong beaks are perfect for cracking into hard shells of dry fruit like Brazil nuts.
During the breeding season, scarlet macaws also add larvae and insects to their diets as a protein source – for the mom-to-be and her growing babies.
The good news is, you’re not expected to provide your macaw with all those nutrient sources in captivity.
Since you probably won’t have access to a tropical diet’s exotic ingredients, it’s enough for you to feed your macaw high-quality pellet food.
However, remember that scarlet macaws like variety in their diet.
That’s why it’s a good idea to add some vegetables, beans, fruit, or even rice to change things up a bit. You can also give your macaw the occasional cracker (unsalted) as a treat.
5. Scarlet Macaws Are Highly Intelligent
Intelligence is a sought-after trait in the animal world. That’s why you should be happy to know that your scarlet macaw is smart enough to rings around most other birds.
However, because macaws are such brainiacs, they require plenty of attention and activities to keep them occupied. A bored scarlet macaw is prone to becoming super-noisy.
You can keep your pet busy by giving it toys or teaching it to talk or mimic sounds.