The Horned Parakeet, also known as the crested parakeet, is pretty distinctive. A small, mostly green bird with two thin long black feathers coming off of the head. The “horns” of the male are a bit longer and thicker than the female. The tips of the “horns” are red to match the front portion of the head, which is also red. Black feathers color the rest of the face with red or orange eyes set in the middle, making for a wonderful contrast. The nape of the neck is yellow, the underside of the wings are blue, the tail is the same green as the rest of the body except it has a touch of blue mixed in. The bill is grey with a black tip. The bird is petite, at only half a pound and about a foot long from head to the tip of the tail.
The sounds the horned parakeet makes are actually quite cute. It’s typical “chirping” sounds like it’s almost laughing. Of course, like almost all parrots, it can also screech quite loudly and obnoxiously when it feels the need.
Native to New Caledonia, an island east of Australia, this bird loves humid forests and woodlands. The population has been declining over many years, most likely because of habitat destruction. It is on the vulnerable category of endangered species lists. In the wild, they enjoy a diet of fruits, nuts, seeds, flowers, and berries. They live either in pairs or small groups.
Horned Parakeets are very rare in captivity. They do make good pets, though. They are curious and intelligent. One thing that they love that is not very common with all birds is overhead misters in their enclosures. Being a bird from humid forests, they do enjoy some moisture in the air.
Size: The Horned Parakeet is about 12 inches in length.
Parakeets normally live between 15-20 years if on a well balanced diet, if given plenty of exercise and attention, and if kept in a clean enclosure.
They feed on a diet of seed mix, nutritious pellet, and plenty of fresh fruits and veggies, as well as sprouted seed.
Common Diseases and ailments:
- egg binding
- feather plucking
All of these ailments can be avoided with proper care