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How Long Do Quaker Parrots Live: Pictures, Average Lifespan & Care Guide

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By Misty Layne

quaker parrot perching indoors

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The Quaker parrot (also known as the Monk parrot or parakeet) is native to South America and one of the more popular parrots around. Due to the low cost of these birds, as well as their phenomenal ability to mimic, they’re a hit with bird owners. The Quaker parrot (Myiopsitta monachus) is bright, charming, and absolutely lovely. They are also illegal to own in a few states in the U.S. due to being labeled invasive pests1.

If you live somewhere it’s legal to own one, you will want to know how long these birds live so you know how long you’ll be caring for one. These birds have the potential to live for a long time (20 to 30 years!), but many factors can affect their lifespan. This article will go over those factors.

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Quaker Parrot Average Lifespan

You can expect your Quaker parrot to be around for a while, considering these birds can live from 20 to 30 years. Of course, some factors will affect where your bird falls in that range, like their health and the environment they’re kept in. Below, we’ll take a closer look at how you can keep your Quaker parrot healthy and happy!

How Long Do Quaker Parrots Live in the Wild?

It seems that Quaker parrots who live in the wild don’t generally live over 15 years, and many don’t live even that long. This is due to the unique dangers these birds face, such as disease, loss of habitat, extreme weather, lack of food, and natural predators. Luckily, Quaker parrots kept as pets won’t face these obstacles.

Quaker Parrot
Image Credit: Light and Vision, Shutterstock

How to Help Increase the Life Expectancy of Your Quaker Parrot

You can help your Quaker parrot live their longest, healthiest life by providing proper care.

Feeding & Diet

Quaker parrots in the wild tend to eat a lot of whatever they can get their beaks on, but they need that sort of caloric intake to keep up with their near-constant movement. Quaker parrots are considered generalist granivores meaning that they eat seeds and grains as well as some fruits. A pet Quaker parrot won’t need nearly the same calories as a wild one but will eat similar foods. A good diet for these birds will include:

  • A seed mix (in moderation)
  • Pellet food
  • Fresh veggies
  • Fresh fruit (in moderation)

You also need to ensure your bird has access to plenty of fresh water and a mineral block.

Environment

The environment your Quaker parrot is in can greatly affect how long they live. Your pet will need a cage that should be large enough for the bird to safely move around in. Your bird will also need plenty of toys, perches or ladders to keep them entertained.

Another important aspect of your bird’s environment that new bird keepers sometimes overlook is the quality of the air. Birds’ lungs are very sensitive, so things you might not think of, like perfume, air fresheners, and smoke from cigarettes or cooking can do damage. Also be sure to keep temperatures regular with no extreme swings. Keep the cage away from windows or heat sources to help with this.

Quaker Parrots on a man's hand
Image Credit: VH-studio, Shutterstock

Care

One of the most important parts of caring for a Quaker parrot is ensuring you spend time with them daily. These birds are big on socializing and love spending most of their time with their families. But if they aren’t getting enough attention from their people, these birds can become depressed or bored and begin exhibiting unwanted behaviors.

You should also keep their cages, food, and water bowls clean and take your pet for all required vet visits.

Healthcare

A healthy bird will live longer than a sick bird, so you should know the health conditions that Quaker parrots are most prone to experiencing. This way, you can be aware of signs that may appear and get your pet to the vet sooner rather than later so they can receive care promptly.

veterinarian examining green quaker parrot
Image Credit: VH-studio, Shutterstock

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The Life Stages of a Quaker Parrot

The Quaker parrot has several life stages which resemble those of humans.

Baby Parrot

Baby Quaker parrots are born blind and naked, so they depend on their parents for food. Parent birds will feed babies with regurgitated food, but if you’re dealing with a baby, you’ll need to provide them with baby formula designed for them via a syringe in the mouth.

Quaker Parrot
Image Credit: Pixabay

Imprinting Parrot

When Quaker parrots reach this stage, they open their eyes and look around them. Typically, the first thing they’ll see will be one of their parents, whom they become very attached to. If you have a parrot in this life stage, you will be the thing they imprint on.

Fledgling Parrot

This life stage is when young birds first start to try out flying. They will learn how to do that during this phase but still depend on their parents for food.

Weaning Parrot

The weaning life stage is exactly what it sounds like—at this point, young birds are being weaned off feedings from their parents and learning how to get their own food. If your bird is in this phase, it’s time to begin introducing solid foods.

Juvenile Parrot

By the juvenile stage, Quaker parrots should be able to fly and feed themselves. This is usually the life stage when breeders sell their birds, and it’s an excellent time to get one if you’re considering adopting one of these parrots.

Parrot Puberty

Parrot puberty is when your bird will reach sexual maturity, which should be around 2 years of age. Your pet may start displaying some unusual behaviors around this time, like trying to push their back against you to convince you to mate with them. It’s a good idea to keep your pet active during puberty to avoid these sorts of behaviors. You’ll need a lot of patience during this life stage!

Adult Parrot

After puberty, your Quaker parrot will reach adulthood. At this point, they should be much calmer and settled.

How to Tell Your Quaker Parrot’s Age

If you have a Quaker parrot but aren’t sure how old it is, you may have difficulty figuring out their exact age. If you purchased your pet through a reputable breeder, they should be able to tell you how old your bird is. But if you got your pet via a pet store or adoption, you likely won’t know.

Quaker Parrots train
Image Credit: VH-studio, Shuttertock

It’s challenging to figure out how old a bird is, but there are a few things you can look for to get an approximate age:

  • Feathers: Younger birds will often have smoother, brighter feathers. You’ll also find that young birds may have plumage that is incomplete.
  • The beak: Beaks may darken as the bird ages.
  • Eyes: There may be some age-related changes to the eyes as birds age, such as lightening of the iris.

Your vet might be able to figure out an approximate age, too.

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Conclusion

Quaker parrots can live 20–30 years if cared for properly, but how long they live can depend on many factors. Luckily, several of those factors you can control so your pet lives their longest, healthiest life. If you aren’t sure how old your parrot is when you get it, you can try looking at their feathers, beaks, and eyes to figure out an approximate age, but you probably won’t be able to get an exact age.


Featured Image Credit: V.S.Anandhakrishna, Shutterstock

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