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What Is a Rose-Ringed Parakeet?

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  • Written By: DM Gutierrez
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 26 November 2016
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The rose-ringed parakeet, or Psittacula krameri, is indigenous to Central Africa and parts of Asia, but has spread into Europe and North America, largely because of the exotic pet trade. These parakeets are usually as comfortable in cities as they are in their native habitats. The rose-ringed parakeet is a relatively large bird with an average length of 15.7 inches (40 cm) and weight of 4 ounces (118 grams). This bird has an average wingspan of 17 inches (45 cm) and a long tail, large round head, and hooked, broad bill.

The rose-ringed parakeet is vibrantly colored. Body feathers are typically lime green, while wing feathers are darker, closer to avocado. The male has black, pink, and blue on its face, along with a bright pink bill. Females are more muted as many sexually dimorphic birds are.

Young parakeets have some yellow feathers and a pale tip on the bill, but otherwise closely resemble grown females. They acquire their adult coloration and plumage at 1 1/2 years of age. Rose-ringed parakeets have an average life span of 30 years.

The species originated primarily in the Sudan and India. The exotic pet trade introduced the rose-ringed parakeet into most of Africa and Asia, as well as Europe and North America. This bird is highly adaptable and typically survives well in both urban and suburban settings. If pet birds escape or are set free, they quickly become wild and are often classified as an invasive species

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In the wild, rose-ringed parakeets live in jungles, semi-arid deserts, and bushy grasslands. In cities, they typically inhabit parks. In rural areas, rose-ringed parakeets live near cultivated fields or orchards.

In their native habitats, these birds nest in tree cavities, but typically adapt to their adopted habitats easily. They often build nests, lining them with rotten wood, in the eaves of roofs, crevices in walls, or other high, secluded locations. Sometimes they take over the abandoned nests of other sizable birds.

The average size of a rose-ringed parakeet’s clutch is three or four eggs. Both parents incubate the eggs, which hatch in about three weeks. Both females and males care for the chicks, which leave the nest at 18 months. Juveniles become adults between their second and third year.

The specific diet of the rose-ringed parakeet depends largely on where it lives, but in general, it eats berries, flowers, and fruit. They also consume seeds and nuts. In croplands and orchards, they cluster together to strip fields of various grains and stands of trees of their fruits, nuts, and buds.

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