History of Pet Parrots

Nowadays parrots have become very desired pets for bird lovers. There are more than 350 species of birds, however some of the species have become more popular pets than others because of their vibrant colours and talking abilities. Every bird owner knows that parrots need a lot of care and commitment. Many of the bird species come from a different habitat therefore buying the correct parrot supplies for the right bird is essential. For instance, parrot food must be chosen based on the type of parrot.

Now, let’s read about the history of these adorable creatures.

The History of Pet Parrots

indian ringneck parakeetParrots are one of the most ancient pets. Egyptian hieroglyphics show images of birds, including parrots. The ancient Greeks and Romans admired parrots, and rich families kept them in ornate cages and had their servants care for them and teach them to speak.

In the first century, Pliny the Elder described a bird similar to the Rose-ringed (or ring-necked) parakeet. The Alexandrine parakeet look like the larger cousin of the Indian Ringneck Parakeet. These parakeets are named after emperor Alexander The Great, who is said to have had numerous Alexandrine parrots exported to Europe and Mediterranean. The emperor introduced this type of parrots into Europe around 397 B.C.

In 1493, Christopher Columbus brought Queen Isabella of Spain a pair of Cuban Amazon parrots on his return from South America. King Henry VIII of England had an African Grey Parrot at Hampton Court. Portuguese sailors kept parrots as companions on their long sea voyages.

yellow headed parrotIn 1845, President Andrew Jackson’s pet parrot was removed from his funeral for swearing. William McKinley, who was elected president in 1897, had a parrot that could whistle “Yankee Doodle.”

Illegal capture and trade of wild birds for pet parrots has become a detriment to their survival in their natural habitat. The yellow-headed parrot is perhaps the most popular of the pet parrots and is the most severely affected by illegal trade.

According to Cornell University’s Lab of Ornithology website, “the wild population of this species plummeted from 70,000 birds in the mid-1970s to an estimated 2,000 today, though an exact number is still to be determined.”

Efforts are under way to protect the parrots and their environment.

Credits: ThePetWiki

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