The Joys of Conures in Aviculture


Laporoscopic sexing, however, has the advantage of allowing the avian veterinarian to observe other internal parts of the bird. It is often less expensive and one has immediate results. Housing Conures are most often maintained in suspended breeding cages. They range in size from 2' x 2' x 3' to 4' for small conures and 4' x 4' x 6' to 8' for the large conures. Most are bred in cages somewhere between these two suggested sizes. Although I have kept conures in much smaller cages, I personally have great reservations. Long-term reproduction on parrots in very small cages has not yet been researched completely. It is possible that this may promote muscle deterioration, increased infertility, abandonment of eggs and obesity in future generations.

How secure any bird feels inside its breeding cage is very important. Wildcaught conures need more security in the form of darkness and visual barri- ers than do domestic conures. Even though sexually mature, wild-caught conures often take several years to acclimatize and reproduce. Domestic conures, however, often reproduce successfully as early as 18 months to two years of age. Placing visual barriers on the cage sides, back, and most of the top is often very helpful. Shading the nest entrance and the immediate surrounding area is also very important.

The distance between the conures and their keepers should be maximized. Placing cages with the length facing away from human contact is better than width. All perches should be above human eye level.

Conures can be kept successfully in both indoor and outdoor situations. Although the main breeding season for outdoor conures is in the springtime, they will often produce at other times. Many Aratinga conures will first lay in December when it is still very cold in some areas. Many conures are triggered by natural rain. Artificial rain from sprinklers is often used to simulate natural rain, but this usually does not work as birds are triggered by the increased change in atmospheric pressure. Sprinklers are excellent, though, for cooling aviaries in hot weather.
Breeding conures indoors is often very successful. Manipulating artificial lighting can often trigger conures to breed throughout every month of the year. Average light cycles range from nine and a half to ten and a half hours in the off season and 14 and a half to 15 and a half hours during the breeding season.
Pair Bonding

As with all parrots, it is highly advisable to allow conures to choose their own mates. It is best to place several known sexed birds of the same species in a large cage or flight. This flight should not contain any nest boxes, but should be filled with plenty of perches. Whether wild-caught or domestic, it will not take long before some of the birds will begin to bond together. After bonding has occurred, the pair can then be placed in their own breeding cage that contains a nest box. Almost all conure species are kept in separate pairs for breeding. This is much....