|Common Name:||Green-cheeked conure, green-cheeked parakeet, green-cheeked parrot, yellow-sided conure|
|Scientific Name:||Pyrrhura molinae|
|Life Span:||More than 30 years (in captivity)|
|Size:||10 inches long|
|Habitat:||Forests and woodlands|
|Country of Origin:||Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina|
The green-cheeked conure is a type of small parrot that lives in the forests located in South America. It belongs to the genus Pyrrhura; the green-cheeked conure is a member of a parrot subfamily of Arinae, which are birds with long tails.
As one of the smaller conures, the green-cheeked conure measures about 10 inches long and weighs around 2-3 ounces. The wild green-cheeked conure comes in a variety of colors in its plumage. The feathers on its tail are bright red, just like those on its chest.
Also, it has bright green feathers on its back, olive-green feathers that surround the red patch on its chest, a white ring around its neck, and a black plumage on its head. The bird also has olive-green spots on its cheeks. Its blue and maroon tail is long and pointed. Its beak and feet are black. White rings surround the eyes.
Like lovebirds, the colorings for male and female green-cheeked conures are the same. They can be bred together with conures that are in other colorings. These include the cinnamon, pineapple, yellow-sided, and turquoise conures.
History and Origin
This bird is more common in South America, particularly in the woodlands and forests of Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina.
Sounds and Calls
The green-cheeked conure is a kind of parrot, so it can also talk. However, it is not as good as the parrot. Its ability to talk is always moderate. You can teach it to talk, but it can remember only very few words. It also has a grating voice, so it is hard to understand what it tries to say sometimes. However, there’s no assurance that the green-cheeked conure can learn to talk.
This bird stays quiet in the cage in most cases. However, it could be so noisy and loud for some time and may even bother your neighbors. The case is much less, though, unlike other conure parrots.
The green-cheeked conure often dwells in the woodlands and forests. The green coloring in its plumage helps the bird hide when it feels threatened. This camouflaging ability makes it hard for any animal, and even humans find the bird when it perches on the green treetops.
Moreover, this conure prefers living in a taller tree as it will make the predators struggling to kill and eat it. Also, this will make it harder for other animals to reach their eggs.
This bird has fewer predators for some natural reasons. In most cases, those animals that attempt to kill this conure end up struggling, causing them to give up and leave.
The false vampire, which is a kind of bat, occasionally poses a danger to the green-cheeked conure. This bird becomes vulnerable to this mammal only during nighttime. However, it remains a big challenge for the false vampire to catch this bird because it’s a diurnal creature. It is so rare to find hopping around at night.
Aside from the false vampire, the ornate hawk-eagle is also a widely known predator of the green-cheeked conure. This eagle is known for its extraordinary ability to hunt and kill birds. Unfortunately, it faces the same challenge as the false vampire.
Besides, this bird prefers to live together with other birds. Therefore, when the ornate hawk-eagle tries to catch the conure, all of the birds will disperse that distracts the predator. Eventually, it will find itself alone.
The green-cheeked conure can live for up to 3 decades in captivity. Poor husbandry, however, can shorten the bird’s lifespan to just 10 years.
This conure is somewhat funny as it comes loaded with antics. It loves to hang upside down and cry on the cage bar as it waits for the owner to play with his or her pet. The green-cheeked conure is a mischief-maker, so always check it inside the cage.
It is a good pet for kids because it’s tiny enough for those little hands. Likewise, this bird is usually good-natured, but even the green-cheeked conure can bite those little fingers. So, be extra careful when allowing your children to hold your pet.
The green-cheeked conure has been widely known for its admirable personality. It tends to be playful, sociable, and affectionate. Though it is quieter than other conure species, the green-cheeked conure can still be noisy, making it not a good pet of choice if you’re living in an apartment.
You can teach it with some simple words, but this bird is less likely to become a great talker. However, with a very interesting personality, the green-cheeked conure becomes a more adorable pet for most bird keepers.
Breeding and Nesting
In the forests, this bird lives and sleeps in its nest inside a trunk of the tree. However, a nest made of wood is not important for this species. In creating a nest for this bird, you can use a cardboard box measuring 15 inches long and 15 inches wide with taped opening flaps. Just one hole measuring 5 inches in diameter on the reverse tip of the cardboard box is enough.
Then, fix this cardboard box tightly by using strings within the cage to keep it stable. When a pair of birds start to mate, the female will then lay 4 to 6 eggs. The incubation period will last for 22 to 25 days.
The baby green-cheeked conure looks like the adults, except that its plumage is fader with a bit of burgundy shade in the chest section. Also, the eyes of a baby conure have darker irises. It will be physically mature at the age of 1 to 3.
Diet and Feeding
Avoid serving the same types of foods over and over again. To keep your pet fit and healthy, you must introduce a variety of foods like vegetables, fruits, healthy pellets, legumes, and many more.
When it comes to fruits, the green-cheeked conure is happy with raisins and bananas. You can also feed it with other fruits such as apples. Just dice or cut into cubes the fruits before giving them to your pet.
Healthy seeds like safflower, sunflower, or hemp seeds are also delicious for a green-cheeked conure. Tropical fruits such as mangos, papaya, and figs are good for your pet as well.
This conure loves to eat with its family. It tends to share its food with its owner. You can eat together with your pet and give it veggies like potatoes, carrots, corn, pasta, popcorn, and bread.
Just keep in mind the portions. Too much of the high-fat food like the sunflower seeds can make your pet overweight. Fresh cuts of broccoli, spinach, kale, and dandelion are also good for your pet.
Moreover, protein-rich foods like chicken, turkey, scrambled eggs, and pork can also be introduced to a green-cheeked conure. However, once you do, take the bird out of the cage in an hour, or else it may get spoilt rapidly, making your pet sick.
Common Diseases Among the Green-Cheeked Conure
A conure like this could be susceptible to feather picking. If a comprehensive medical examination confirms that the problem is a result of a medical factor, then the lack of mental stimulation and boredom could be the causes.
Help your pet by giving it a better environment with more opportunities to forage and play. You can also add some items that are safe to chew. Likewise, conures of all forms are also prone to PDD or proventricular dilatation disease, psittacosis, psittacine beak and feather disease, aspergillosis, and beak malocclusion.
Regular checkups done by a certified avian veterinarian are important to ensure your pet’s health. These will help diagnose and relieve diseases before they worsen.
Where to Get One?
The green-cheeked conure is a widely popular pet, so you may easily find it locally and on the web. Visit the nearest pet stores in your area and look for a professional breeder near you. Buying this bird through the web is also a better option.
How to Care for a Green-Cheeked Conure?
A green-cheeked conure is a highly popular pet. It is so easy to tame and train. Also, you can turn it into a more affectionate creature with adequate attention and frequent interaction.
Exercise is important to a green-cheeked conure and other types of parrots. In the woods, this bird may fly and reach several miles every day when hunting, mating, and making a nest. It could be difficult to imitate this for a bird raised in captivity. However, if you can spend at least 2 hours every day to supervise your pet during playtime and exercising, then it will likely stay happy and healthy.
Since a caged conure does not get to fly several miles each day like its wild counterpart, your pet requires physical exercise that will keep it active, happy, and healthy. Some people give it 2 hours of their time every day for this special purpose.
The green-cheeked conure learns only fewer words. However, with extensive training, the bird will easily learn tricks. A conure can learn ringing the bells, turnaround, climbing up the ropes, flying and catching objects, and a lot more things that you’re teaching to it. Other simple techniques like opening the wings, dancing, waving, and self-defense, such as staying apart from objects that cause danger such as domestic animals like dogs and cats, are easy to teach on this animal.
The green-cheeked conure can easily adjust to household temperatures not less than 65 degrees Fahrenheit or more than 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep your pet away from high temperatures. Put the cage off the ground and within a well-lit and draft-free area.
The cage must be 24 inches in width, 24 inches in diameter, and 30 inches in height. It should have metal bars spaced between ½ to ¾ inches apart. The bigger the cage is, the better it will be for your pet.
The perches must be 9 inches long and ½ inches in diameter. Provide your pet with a range of perch sizes so that your pet can exercise its feet. This will make your pet less susceptible to arthritis.
Also, the cage should have a metallic grate through the droppings tray to keep the bird safe from droppings. Line the tray with a habitat paper or substrate for easy cleaning. Don’t put the food and water containers underneath the perches to prevent contamination.
The green-cheeked conure can be kept alone so that it can bond with its pet parent. You can also keep it in pairs so they can bond with one another. Different kinds of birds must never be caged together. You, as a pet parent, must consider socializing with the bird to keep it active and happy.
Poor husbandry can also lead your pet to different issues. You must clean and sanitize the habitat and its perches from time to time by using a 3 percent bleach solution. Replace the substrate or the habitat liner every week or as often as required.
Replace the dishes, perches, and toys once they get damaged or worn. Introduce new toys to your pet regularly. Make sure the toys don’t have lead-based paints or harmful chemicals like zinc and lead. Also, be sure they don’t have galvanized parts that can trigger several medical problems when your pet ingests them. Furthermore, make sure you don’t use cleaning agents all over your bird because the fumes could be dangerous to the animal. Use a natural cleaner instead.
How long does the green-cheeked conure grow?
The green-cheeked conure is a small parrot. It can grow for up to 10 inches.
Where did the green-cheeked conure come from?
This conure originated in Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay, and Argentina. It lives in the woodlands and forests located in these countries.
Can a green-cheeked conure talk?
Since it is a kind of parrot, the green-cheeked conure can talk. However, it can learn and speak fewer terms, so it is not as good as the parrots in talking.
What is the average lifespan of a green-cheeked conure?
Taking care of a green-cheeked conure is a long-term commitment. It can live for up to 3 decades or longer with proper care and nutrition.