Learn more about budgies and other small birds.

The Australian king parrot is a bigger alternative for every parrot lover that desired something more than the normal small-sized parrots.

The brightly colored bird is not only quiet and beautiful, but it is also intelligent and have amazing mimicking and talking abilities. But as lovely as this bird is, it requires great knowledge to be able to care for it.

Many people have been asking such questions as “will the Australian King parakeet makes a good pet”, “what can I feed my Australian king parakeets with?” and because of that we have created post.

It will provide you with some useful information you need to know about the Australian king parakeet and why it is just a perfect parrot for bird lovers looking for an unusual specimen.

Quick information about Australian King Parakeet

The Australian King Parakeet is the most popular parakeet in Australia, especially in the eastern part of the continent. It lives mostly in humid and heavily forested areas such as the eucalyptus dominated areas where there are lots of trees.

But because of the calm personality, unique look, and amazing intelligence of this brightly colored parrot, the Australian King parakeet is gradually extending its popularity to other areas of the world.

  • Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis
  • Common names: Australian king parakeet, Australian king parrot, Queensland king parrot, green-winged king parrot, scarlet parrot, eastern king parrot, and king Lorie.
  • Average life span: 25-30 years with proper care
  • Relative size: 16-18 inches (40-45cm)
  • Weight: 250 grams
  • Egg clutch: 3-6 eggs
  • Color: The adult male of the Australian king parrot has a red breast, head, and lower undersides, and at the back of the neck it has a blue band. The wings are green and each of the wings has a pale green shoulder band with its rump blue and tail green. The female has a completely different plumage with a green breast and head, grey beak, and a small pale shoulder band.

Interesting facts about Australian king Parakeet

  • Male Australian king parakeets are the only parakeets that have a completely red head.
  • It is docile and sociable, and so easily creates strong bonds with its owner.
  • They are quite fun and enjoys playing with toys.
  • It is a parrot that does well where there is enough space
  • It acquires its adult plumage by slowly molting, beginning from when the parakeet is over 15 months old.
  • Although they can learn to talk, they are not especially noted for speaking abilities like other parakeets. Read about some parakeets that have an excellent and better speaking ability.

Varieties of Australian King Parakeets

Although the Australian king parakeet is the most popular in the genus Alisterus, there are other two species that make up the genius together with the Australian king parakeets. The other two species are also known as king parrots. This includes the Moluccan king parrot and the Papuan king parrot.

What type of food does the Australian king parakeet love to eat?

When in the wild, these parrots feed on a diet of nuts, seeds, fruits, berries, flowers, and insects. To recreate such a diet and provide your little parakeet a balanced intake of proteins and nutrients, you can arrange a small seed mix and start off from there. Also include some green leafy vegetables to help your bird stay healthy.

Australian king parakeets will enjoy such foods as:

  • Corn
  • Canary
  • Mango
  • Oats
  • Sunflower seeds (limited amount)
  • Banana
  • Spinach
  • Hemp seeds
  • Apples
  • Oranges
  • Pears
  • Cooked beans and pulses
  • Lettuce
  • Dandelion
  • Celery
  • Zucchini
  • Roasted peanuts

These birds exceptionally like treats like peanuts and almonds even though they are high in fat. They also enjoy whole grains like millet, oats, and quinoa. To know more about budgies’ diet and what food you should avoid giving your parrot pets, you should read our previous post about Budgies diets.

Taking care of your parakeet

Although the Australian king parakeets are highly sought after birds because of their beautiful color and quiet nature, they are still not the type of parrot that is easy to come by. So if you are looking to own one as a pet, try to contact your local bird club or use such tools like Search & Adopt Pets to find one nearby.

Once you are able to get one, you will need to ask plenty of questions and try to schedule an appointment to go see the birds. Ask the aviculture society around if an Australian king parakeet can do well in your area. It is very important that you understand what it exactly feels like to live with an Australian king parakeet before bringing one home.

Most Australian king parakeets prefer minimal handling but when owned by a patient individual, they can be hand-tamed. Australian king parrots are reported to be among the most gentle large parrots you can ever have but just like other parrots, they still bite. They generally prefer more peaceful methods of interaction with their human owners.

King parakeet needs

The Australian king parakeet is a type of parrot that requires a large cage or aviary – because of their acrobatic nature. An ideal environment will be a cage of about 3-6 feet (7-15cm) wide and 12-15 feet (30-38cm) long. If you do not provide enough space for the bird in its cage, then you will need to provide lots of out-of-cage exercises every day. Australian king parrot sitting on a fence.

Australian king parakeets are also fun-loving pets, so they will need plenty of toys in their cage to keep them regularly engaged. Remember they are intelligent birds, and so you need to make sure you regularly keep their minds busy. That is the essence of the toys. Boredom can do a lot of damage to your lovely bird if you did not do the right thing.

Common health conditions of Australian king parrot

Thanks to the large size of the Australian king parakeet, it rarely gets sick. The bird only needs a good diet, enough space, and several hours of free flight daily outside the cage and around the home. These parrots can live as long as 25 years, so with good care, you definitely will have plenty of time to spend with your pet.

However, these lovely parrots are very susceptible to Bacillus infection and are usually fatal on them – sometimes very difficult to treat. So when buying your Australian king parakeet, make sure it is well quarantined.

It can also be prone to intestinal worms, especially when kept in a traditional aviary with earthen floors. When this happens, ensure you call your veterinarian to come check it out.

Australian king parrot as a pet

Australian king parakeets are lovely parrots to own as pets. They are beautiful, intelligent, and have talking ability like every other parrot. However, as earlier highlighted, these parakeets require minimal handling. So you need to learn how to deal with them before keeping one as a pet.

Australian king parakeets in wildness

In the wild, these parakeets are found in a variety of habitat, ranging from high forested areas to lower and more open spaces. During the breeding time, they are found in pairs or small groups in a more dense forest such as gullies, sclerophyll forest, savanna woodland, Eucalyptus woodland, and riverine forest.

Post-breeding season, they are found in groups of up to 50 individuals in cultivated lands, orchards, parks, and sometimes in gardens. They are usually very quiet when eating.

Training your parrot

Compared to other species of parrot, the Australian king parrots are quieter and less destructive. But the major challenge their owners do have with them is their poor socialization. And in that case, being patient and spending enough time taming them will help the bird gain your trust and become free with you.

This bird is not only quiet and beautiful, but it also has some mimicking ability and could learn to talk if properly trained. It has a sweet soft voice that everyone will love to hear. But the basic truth is that it needs enough training and behavioral guidance before it can become that lovely companion you have always wanted it to be.

If you are not sure how to get started with training your Australian king parrot, you can read our post about how to train your parakeet. It will surely help.

Quick information about breeding

Australian king parrots usually lay their eggs using a decay wood-dust as the bedding. This is often at the bottom of a deep hollow trunk of a tree.

  • Breeding season: September to January
  • Clutch size: 3-6 eggs
  • Incubation time: 20 days
  • Time in the nest: 35 days

How much does an Australian king parrot cost?

The price of the Australian king parakeet varies just as it is for most other parakeets too. The price varies depending on some factors like the location, time of the year, the breeder, and some other factors. However, the price is usually between $600 and $750.

Adopting an Australian king parakeet

If you are looking to adopt this lovely bird, check out RescueParrots.org or on some adoption sites like Petfinder.

Though not common like other parrot pets, the Australian king parakeets are gradually extending their popularity from east Australia to other parts of the world. They are lovely parrots with unique features and personalities. They can live for more than 25 years, so you are sure to have your bird around for a long time.

However, Australian king parakeets are gentle parrots and require that their owners treat them gently. They require great care, and you must be ready to provide that before thinking of bringing one into your home.

With plenty of time and training dedicated to an Australian king parrot, you can be sure of taming your bird to become that amazing and lovely companion you have always desired from it.

Nevertheless, if you are not a fan of large parrot pets, you can consider some other lovely species of parrots that are not only smaller but also have great features and characteristics like the Australian king parakeets. Some of them include the Monk parakeet, Alexandrine parrots, Australian budgies, and the Macaw parrots.