Few birds catch the eye quite as effortlessly as bright blue parrots.
Many wild parrots have some blue feathers, but the hyacinth macaw is entirely blue. Many pionus breeds are also blue, and budgies and parrotlets have blue color mutations.
Blue feathers are comparatively common in parrots, but blue is seldom the dominant color of bird species. Parrots are primarily another color (usually green) with a hint of blue.
What Makes Parrots Blue?
Blue parrots get their color from beta-keratin, which reacts to short light wavelengths and air pockets.
Suppose parrots have tri-color feathers. Keratin forces red and yellow shades to cancel each other out, meaning the blue feathers dominate.
From deep to pale, the shade of blue depends on how much beta-keratin is in the feathers.
Where Do Blue Parrots Come From?
Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and New Guinea host blue parrots, but they’re most populace in South and Central American territories like Brazil. The Blue-and-Yellow Macaw is found in Florida.
The rainforest, home to many blue parrots, is being decimated. The Glaucous Macaw is critically endangered, as its terrain in Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, Brazil, and Paraguay is being destroyed.
This has a knock-on effect on the demand for blue parrots. Depending on your state, a blue parrot may be legal to keep as an exotic pet in the USA, but they’re more expensive due to scarcity.
Blue Parrot Species
Many parrot species boast traces of blue in their feathers, including the following:
1/ Blue-and-Gold Macaws
The blue hue of the blue-and-yellow macaw comes from the back and wings, while the chest is bright yellow. The contrast between the two colors is undeniably striking.
Only commit to caring for a blue-and-yellow macaw if you seek an avian pet with a strong and vocal personality.
The blue-and-yellow macaw is a loud bird. If you keep this parrot as a pet, it’ll regularly repeat words you teach it while making random bouts of squawking and screaming.
The blue-and-yellow macaw needs ample exercise and near-constant engagement and interaction. Bringing this parrot into your home means you’ll have a long-lived companion of 35+ years.
2/ Blue-Crowned Conures
The blue-crowned conure has a bright blue head that contrasts with the body. They’re 14.5 inches long and live for 30+ years.
While many species of conure are feisty, this parrot is comparatively calm. However, a bored or upset blue-crowned conure (like all birds) can be a difficult companion.
You can keep a blue-crowned conure happy by spending time together and providing out-of-cage time. This will enhance the owner-parrot bonding process.
Once you’ve gained the trust of a blue-crowned conure, it’ll become more playful. One bonus is that blue-crowned conures enjoy learning and performing new tricks.
3/ Blue-Headed Pionus
The blue-headed pionus hails from Costa Rica. A striking and unmissable blue head sits atop a proud, green body.
Once fully grown, this parrot will usually measure around 12 inches, weighing a maximum of 9 ounces. They live for 35-45 years.
The blue-headed pionus is curious and vocal. This bird must be allowed out of its cage for at least 2-3 hours.
The blue-headed pionus is a gentle species that enjoy playing and spending time with its owner.
4/ Budgerigars (Parakeets)
Due to selective breeding, the budgie can be sourced in various colors, including a blue mutation.
Budgies typically live in captivity for 7-15 years, with significant variances based on how well their care needs are met.
English budgies (show budgies) are much bigger than American budgies, so new owners sometimes confuse them.
Although you’ll notice the size disparity, they can live together. English budgies are quieter and more relaxed than Australian budgies, while the latter usually live longer.
Budgies are naturally social, so consider adopting them in pairs or groups. A budgie’s cage must be 18 inches high and 20 inches long, boasting various toys and at least 3 perches.
Budgies aren’t as loud as macaws because they’re much smaller birds, but they frequently vocalize, especially in the morning. With training, budgies can learn an extensive vocabulary.
Small (about 6-7 inches long) and comparatively undemanding, these birds make ideal first-time pets.
5/ Hyacinth Macaws
The hyacinth macaw grows to an intimidating 40 inches, weighs as much as 4 pounds, and can live for 50 years.
They have a long, sharp beak and a huge wingspan. However, the hyacinth macaw is a gentle giant.
Once domesticated and trained, the hyacinth macaw is a wonderful avian companion for experienced owners.
While not as eloquent as some parrots, hyacinth macaws love human company. However, they’re rarely found in captivity due to their diminishing numbers.
6/ Indian Ringneck Parakeets
The blue Indian ringneck parakeet is a medium-sized blue parrot that reaches 16 inches long.
Breeders have increased the population of blue Indian ringneck parakeets due to the popular color mutation.
With the right care, they can live for 30-35 years.
Blue Indian ringneck parakeets are highly intelligent and gifted talkers. While learning to speak is never guaranteed, it’s likely to happen.
In the right home, blue Indian ringneck parakeets will be loving and affectionate pets. However, if they grow bored, they can sometimes become noisy and destructive.
7/ Lear’s Macaws (Indigo Macaws)
Hailing from Brazil, the Lear’s macaw boasts strikingly deep blue feathers. In many respects, they’re as beautiful as the hyacinth macaw but are slightly smaller (27.5-29.5 inches long).
Lear’s macaws are believed to have emigrated to South America from the U.K., hence their name. They were titled in tribute to the poet Edward Lear.
Like many birds native to the rainforest, they’re increasingly endangered due to habitat loss. Although they have a life expectancy of up to 60 years, they’re rarely found in captivity.
8/ Pacific Parrotlets
Pacific parrotlets are 4.3-5.5 inch, 1-ounce micro-parrots. They’re slightly smaller than budgies but live longer (15-20 years).
Although parrotlets are a fraction of the size of other parrots, they’re strong-willed birds that can be difficult.
Pacific parrotlets have just as much personality as their larger brethren. However, they have fun and affectionate personalities.
Their diminutive size means a smaller larynx, so they’re quieter than many parrots. They can learn simple words and phrases but will never accrue a vast vocabulary.
9/ Quaker Parrots (Monk Parakeets)
Blue quaker parakeets have a pale blue back and wings extending to the tail, while their breast, forehead, and underwings are blue-grey. They reach 12 inches long and live for 20-30 years.
Quaker parakeets are easy-going, effortlessly entertaining pets that love chatting and bonding with their owners.
You’ll be adopting the clown of the parrot world. This is among the most intelligent breeds, capable of a wide vocabulary and speaking in sentences.
This parrot is also loyal and can bond strongly with the right owner.
Unfortunately, owning a Quaker parrot in some U.S. territories is illegal. Check this table to determine the legality of owning this bird in your state:
|Illegal to Own||Legal to Own|
|Idaho||District of Columbia|
|Nebraska (permit required)|
|New York (parrot must be banded and never released)|
|Ohio (parrot’s wings must be clipped)|
|Rhode Island (permit required)|
|Vermont (permit required, the breeder must be licensed)|
|Virginia (parrot must be banded and never released, sold, or bred)|
10/ White-capped Pionus
The white-capped pionus is instantly recognizable due to its white markings at the tip of its skull. Also, it has a deep blue head on top of a green-and-blue body.
They reach 9-10 inches long and live for around 30 years.
The white-capped pionus is among the most affectionate species. This bird is willing to learn and loves to please its owner.
As the smallest pionus species, this parrot is as quiet as its brethren.
A cage of 4 square feet is ideal. As always, regular free-flying exercise is essential.
Only a vet can help sex white-capped pionus, as males and females have no aesthetic differences.
How Much Do Blue Parrots Cost?
The rarity of blue parrots can lead to a higher price tag than a first-time bird owner may expect. Let’s look at how much you should expect to pay for a blue parrot:
|Blue-and-gold macaws||$1,200 to $1,500|
|Blue-crowned conures||$800 to $2,000|
|Blue-headed pionus||$850 to $1,500|
|Blue budgerigars||$20 to $40.|
|Hyacinth macaws||$5,000 to $22,000|
|Blue Indian ringneck parakeets||$600 to $800|
|Lear’s macaws||$3,000 to $6,000|
|Blue pacific parrotlets||$100 to $300|
|Blue Quaker parrots||$300 to $600|
|White-capped pionus||$800 to $1,750|
How Long Do Blue Parrots Live?
As per The Atrium, species plays a significant role in the expected lifespan of parrots.
If you’re considering getting a blue parrot, you should expect them to live long lives. This table summarizes the average lifespans of the birds we’ve profiled:
|Blue-and-gold macaws||35+ years|
|Blue-crowned conures||25 to 30 years|
|Blue-headed pionus||35-45 years|
|Hyacinth macaws||50+ years|
|Indian ringneck parakeets||30-35 years|
|Lear’s macaws||60 years|
|Pacific parrotlets||15 to 20 years|
|Quaker parrots||20 to 30 years|
|White-capped pionus||30+ years|
Blue parrots are among the most aesthetically striking companion birds.