In the wild, the Yellow Headed Amazon parrot is now becoming extremely rare, because its natural habitats are continuously being destroyed by humans. They originally came from Mexico, but they also live in other locations where there are mangroves and tropical forests – locations such as Guatemala and Honduras. They are medium sized parrots, which grow up to around 16 inches tall (including the full length of the tail). They have a typical parrot beak (ie hooked, powerful and stout), which they use to crack open nuts and seeds, and to help them to explore and climb things. They cleverly use their beaks in combination with their feet to climb things, and to eat – their feet are the parrot equivalent of human hands!
Yellow Headed parrots have been very successfully bred in captivity, which means they are widely available to purchase as pets. The fact that they are so wide available, coupled with the fact that they are a very attractive looking bird (ie a mainly green body; a yellow head; and a red patch on both wings), has made them a very popular pet parrot. Another reason for their popularity is the fact that they are very capable talkers – in fact, they are deemed to be the second best talker of all parrot species (only the African Gray is a better talker).
Yellow Headed Amazons are easy to train, but they are also known to be fairly destructive parrots, because they spend a large majority of their time chewing and biting anything within their reach. An easy way to prevent this from becoming a major problem, is to make sure that they have lots of toys to chew on, rather than you or your furniture! They are really smart birds, but be aware that they are often really noisy. Their natural voice is a loud screech, which can very quickly get on your nerves. Therefore, if you decide that a Yellow Head is the parrot for you, make sure you invest some time into teaching him to talk.
They are really playful birds, and they like to be very active. Therefore, the best environment for them is one that enables them to fly around as and when they feel like it, which makes an aviary ideal. If you have not got the space for an aviary, they will happily live in a normal parrot cage, providing they are given lots of flying time outside the cage.
Their diet in the wild is very varied. They eat lots of berries, nuts, fruits, leaf buds, and crops like maize. This means that you will need to ensure that they have an equally varied diet while in your care. Without this amount of variety, their health and well being will very quickly deteriorate.
One final point worth considering, before you buy a Yellow Headed Amazon Parrot, is how long they live. It is not uncommon for them to live for more than 65 years, so they really are a long-term commitment – they might even outlive you!
If none of the above has put you off owning a Yellow Head, then go ahead and buy one, because they are a really fantastic, and amusing parrot, and they will provide you with hours of fun and enjoyment.