Scarlet Macaw


Scarlet macaws are cuddly and playful. They need positive interaction and plenty of hard toys to chew on. Owners who favor scarlet macaws express the importance of hugging and showing affection toward this often misunderstood pet bird. A scarlet macaw’s attention easily changes from one thing to another, so it is important to offer plenty of interaction, stimulatio and entertainment. They are known as more sensitive to their surroundings than other macaws. A nuturing environment is ideal for this bird.

Behavior / Health Concerns

Scarlet macaws can be nippy without the proper socialization, but if raised from a young age in a caring household and gently taught early on positive behavior, the nipping can be greatly reduced. Because the scarlet macaw is cuddly and inquisitive, it may come toward its owner and give a little pinch with the tip of its beak. This affectionate action is often mistaken for a bad biting habit. Keeping scarlet macaw engage with interacation, playtime, toys, out-of-cage time and proper training will help in many behavioral areas. Scarlet macaws require more fat in their diet than other birds do, so provide a healthy diet that consists of pellete, fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and the occasional nut. They are susceptible to overgrown beaks, so offer plenty of wooden and other hard toys to give their beaks a work out. They are also susceptibel to papillomas, proventricular dilatation disease (PDD, also known as “macaw wasting” disease), polyomavirus, psittacosis and vitamin-A sensitivity.

Expert Advice

“Harder to handle than most other macaw species, but excellent companions for truly experienced parrot people. Use clear controls and consistent handling to decrease nippiness.”

Liz Wilson, CVT, CPBC

“Little dainty macaws and very beautiful, but very sneaky about biting you! No particular health concerns come to mind.”

Samuel Vaughn, DVM, Dip. ABVP – Avian Practice

Breed Details

Scientific Name:
Native Region:
Central and South America
Up to 38 inches
Life Expectancy:
60 to 80 years
Noise Level:
Loud Talk
Talk / Trick Ability:
Very good