So, you want a parrot, but you’re concerned about all of the stories you’ve heard about aggressive, moody birds. Isn’t there a mild mannered, quiet parrot out there? Well, while each bird is an individual, overall the Pionus parrot is a sweet natured bird. Some Pionus species are a bit loud, but even those birds are quieter than many other parrot species. Of course, since they are less vocal, Pionus parrots aren’t the best talkers. The Maximilian and blue headed Pionus species will be more likely to talk than other Pionus varieties.
Pionus parrots have several unusual traits. Unlike other parrots, they’re a bit ‘sloppy’ in their appearance. When your Pionus is feeling relaxed, he will let his fuzzy down feathers show through his sleek outer feathers. Pionus parrots also have a distinctive odor. It is not strong and few people find it unpleasant, but Pionus parrots definitely do not smell like other birds. Also, when they are scared, Pionus parrots make an odd wheezing noise. While it may sound like your bird is having difficulty breathing, he is just nervous. Remove whatever is scaring him and he will calm down and return to normal.
The white capped Pionus is probably the most commonly available. This mellow charmer is a petite 9 and 1/2 inches (24 cm) tall. This bird has muted green, blue, red and bronze coloring and a white cap. White caps are a bit on the shy side, but don’t let your bird’s shyness fool you into thinking it is a pushover. They tend to be quietly determined to get their way and a bit stubborn.
Maximilian Pionus parrots are a bit larger than white caps, measuring 11 and 3/4 inches (30 cm) long. These birds are mostly in a dull green color, with a bluish green throat. Many people overlook these wonderful birds because of their dull appearance, but they make great pets. Maxis are loyal, playful and affectionate companions and love to hang out with their families. Of course, since they are shy around strangers and in new situations, your bird may not be very active or personable for the first few days.
If having a colorful bird is important to you, you may want to take a close look at the blue headed Pionus. This striking bird has a bright blue head and a green body and is 11 inches (28 cm) long. Because of its beauty, this bird is the most expensive Pionus, often costing a thousand dollars or more. The blue head makes a sweet and loving family pet, although some of these birds can become a bit demanding and obnoxious if they are spoiled rotten when they are young.
Dusky and bronze wing Pionus parrots are the other two Pionus species available as pet birds. Dusky parrots have an attractive gray blue color with a pinkish chest. These little parrots are 9 and 3/4 inches (24 cm) long. This parrot is known for its intelligence and its curious nature.
Bronze wing Pionus parrots have a bluish body and bronze colored wings. If you are looking at a bronze wing in dim lighting, you may think that the bird isn’t very attractive. However, if you take it into a well lit area, you will see that the bronze wing is actually quite striking. These birds are 11 inches (28 cm) long and are very sweet natured. Bronze wings tend to be shyer than other Pionus parrots, but they still make wonderful pets.
If you want a sweet parrot and are not overly concerned with talking ability, the Pionus parrot may be the perfect choice for you.