African Grey Parrot Facts

The African grey parrot is one of the most intelligent species of bird that can mimic and copy human sounds. Read this article to know some more interesting facts about the African grey parrot.
Psittacus erithacus, the African Grey Parrot is a native of the West and Central African primary and secondary rainforests. The only recognized and known species of the Psittacus genus is the African Grey Parrot. The Congo African Parrot and Timneh African Grey Parrot are the two sub-species that are officially recognized.

This bird is clever-minded and has a very cool temperament. It has a unique capability to mimic sounds that even include human sounds.

Taxonomy

Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
PhylumChordata
ClassAves
FamilyPsittacidae
GenusPsittacus
TribePsittacini
SpeciesPsittacus erithacus

Behavior

This is a monogamous bird who nests alone in a tree and has a hole in it for keeping its eggs. One unique fact is that this bird fluffs up its feathers to appear larger for defending itself. This proves its intelligence as well as a strong instinctive behavior. When this bird is raised as a pet, it tends to mimic human sounds, but it does not show any sign of mimicking in the wild. Dr. Irene Pepperberg, a scientist who has made great contributions towards conservation of wildlife, particularly parrots, has a grey parrot named Alex who can identify materials, colors, shapes, and objects, and can count as well.

Food

In the wild, this bird is mainly dependent on seeds, fruits, leaves, and palm nuts. Sometimes, it feeds on snails to enrich its vegetarian diet with protein. To maintain good health of a pet parrot and keep it happy, it becomes essential to give it a variety of things to eat. For example, you can give it a diet full of fruits, leaves, and vegetables. It also needs occasional protein-rich supplements. It need not be snails, you can also give it eggs as they have an equal amount of protein content.

Care

This parrot is supposed to be the most intelligent of all bird species. To stay happy in captivity, it needs mental stimulation to a large extent. This pet demands a lot of attention and maintenance. You need to spend a lot of time with it as it is very social and always seeks company.

It is a must to let the parrot out of the cage every day for some time to let it explore its surroundings and exercise. For regular exercise, it is advisable to place the parrot in a large cage stuffed with many toys and give it a natural look. If proper attention is not given to this bird and if it runs short of mental stimulation, then it might get involved in feather plucking and screaming. The kind of environment it is provided with has a direct impact on the immunity of the bird. It is very noisy and so should not be placed where the neighbors would be bothered. It is not only efficient in mimicking human sound, but can imitate other appliances like a clock, bell, phone, etc. The amount of waste produced by it is also quite large, so it needs frequent cleaning and bathing as well.

Health

As mentioned earlier, it needs frequent mental inputs to be healthy and happy. If you fail to fulfill these requirements, it might result into feather pulling, slit eyes, sneezing, discharge from nostrils, reduced appetite, change in feces, or being tired and sleepy most of the time. Changes in plumage are also observed, like loss of luster, bare spots, and ruffled plumage. The average lifespan of this bird is nearly forty-five to fifty-five years.

These were some interesting facts about the African grey parrot. It is sold in the market and can also be searched through the Internet. The price varies according to the age of the bird. If you do choose to get one as a pet, make sure that you will be able to take good care of it.
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