Last Updated on April 25, 2022 by Ali Shahid
In general, lovebirds are known to be one of the most popular pet parrot species, and if you’ve ever had a lovebird, you understand why. This beautiful and intelligent bird has been a favorite parrot for more than 100 years. This bird belongs to the group of African parrots that are remarkably popular.
Despite this, there are many myths out there, especially when it comes to lovebird behavior and keeping one as a pet. I would like to share with you some basic facts about lovebirds, in case you are interested in learning more about such a clever little animal.
Facts About Lovebirds
- Lovebirds mate for life
In about ten months from the time they are born, the monogamous birds reach sexual maturity. Courtship behavior is one of the earliest forms of mate selection, and it remains unchanged throughout their approximate 15-year lifespans. A flock’s social stability depends heavily on its monogamy, and much of its behavior can be attributed to it.
2. Considered as talkative birds
Even though lovebirds are parrots that mimic human speech, they are not commonly viewed as an animal that humans would consider talking to. Because of this, they don’t tend to choose to speak, and if they do make a sound, it’s usually simple sounds like whistles and household noises like doorbells and microwaves.
There is no known reason why some lovebirds imitate speech more easily than others, and it is commonly believed that those who are taught from a very young age are more likely to be able to speak properly when they are older.
Lovebirds are primarily found in Africa and Madagascar, being almost exclusively native to these two continents. A significant number of lovebirds can be found in Zambia, South Africa, and Tanzania, which are countries that have significant populations of lovebirds.
It should be noted that the gray-headed lovebird, which is a native of Madagascar, is the only exception to these rules.
It is difficult to determine the extent of distribution of such species of birds outside of their wild populations since these species are very common in aviculture, which makes their distribution difficult to estimate.
4. Nine Lovebird Subspecies
It’s common to refer to lovebirds as a singular group or as “pocket pets,” but there are nine subspecies of the bird. Apart from the lovebird native to Madagascar, all lovebirds are native to Africa. There are nine types of lovebirds, with three of them deemed ideal pets due to their charming personalities. Among them are
- Fischer’s lovebird
- Peach-faced lovebird
- Black-masked lovebird
The size of all three of these subspecies is diminutive, as is the case with all lovebird subspecies. These parrots are quite small, usually measuring between 5 and 6.5 inches (12.7 to 15.2 centimeters), which is quite different from the larger parrots that reach a height of up to 40 inches (100 centimeters).
5. Lovebirds live in holes
It is known that lovebirds build cavities. The animals build their homes by digging holes in plants, rocks, and shrubs in the wild. Breeding in groups is the norm for some species, but others nest by themselves away from their flock. You can find them in almost any nook or crevice in an urban area. Phoenix, Arizona, is home to peach-faced lovebirds that live in cacti.
6. Some lovebirds are androgynous
When you observe three species of lovebirds, you can tell the two sexes apart by focusing on the features that distinguish them. A typical example would be the Black-winged lovebird, in which the male has a crown of red feathers while its female counterpart has entirely green plumage.
In the case of other species, however, their sex can be difficult to deduce by looking at them, since they do not have the same level of sexual dimorphism. There may be a slight size difference between males and females in some species, but DNA testing will provide conclusive confirmation.
7. Transfer Zoonotic Disease
Humans are at risk of contracting zoonotic diseases transmitted by lovebirds. Love birds are found to have the ability to carry yeast bacteria capable of causing human infections. Nevertheless, they may contract diseases when they are exposed to pigeon feces. In addition, there is also other evidence to support that lovebirds carry various bacteria that are dreadful to humans as well.
8. Lovebirds feed each other
A lovebird meeting after a long time or after a long separation is like a human couple meeting after a long separation and feeding each other affectionately. It is a unique method of feeding birds in which one bird transfers food from its mouth into the mouth of another bird.
9. Lovebirds Are Not Always Best Kept in Pairs
There is a widespread belief that you should never keep a solitary lovebird and that if you do not keep them in pairs that they will suffer from depression if you do not keep them together.
Even though lovebirds are extremely social birds that thrive when they are interacting and they need to be socially stimulated, many owners should keep only one lovebird at a time.
These birds are incredibly easy to breed in captivity, and this can be a problem for most bird owners, who are not able to provide a home for a family of parrots of their own. In addition, it is important to note that birds kept in pairs are likely to bond with one another and avoid interacting with humans.
In general, it is advised that owners who want their birds to be affectionate and tolerant of being handled by humans leave them alone most of the time so they can socialize with and play with them.
They are known as lovebirds because of their courting rituals as well as their behavior. As the breeding season begins, the male lovebird will give the female a feeding, in an attempt to impress the female.
Approximately three to five days after mating, the females start building nests and begin to lay eggs. Once the eggs are laid, they will hatch about 23 days later. The habits of lovebirds in captivity differ greatly from those of their wild counterparts.
The birds can breed at any time of the year if kept in captivity, in contrast to the wild, where each species breeds at a different time of the year.
Peach-faced lovebirds, which breed between April and October; or Fisher’s lovebirds, which breed between January and July, breed at different times.
11. Like Being Cuddled
We all appreciate a bedtime routine that is relaxing and that is beneficial to our loved ones. The best way to make a lovebird feel at home is to provide him or her with a tiny tent or a cover for his or her bed.
As for lovebirds in the wild, they rest in the nooks and crannies of trees and cacti where they find cozy caves to get some shuteye in.
The majority of people who keep lovebirds have a separate nighttime cage and move the birds to that cage when they are ready to sleep. Covering the cage can assist in calming down the birds while they sleep.
12. Can Be Potty Trained
Several studies have shown that lovebirds are intelligent, affectionate, and self-motivated, so they represent an ideal candidate for training to relieve themselves on command – although this can be difficult in some instances.
It is still possible for lovebirds to go potty when and where they want, but training them to go potty on command will lessen the chances of them going unexpectedly. Your pet will go to the washroom every ten minutes or so.
Lovebirds are known to be eager to please, which can be a great advantage when it comes to training them to relieve themselves in cages before they are allowed to explore their surroundings free of control.
If you want to train your bird to respond to your hand gesture and your voice, I recommend that you do this in the cage. As soon as your lovebird master this skill, always make sure the lovebird “goes potty” before you take him out of his cage.
When the lovebird is reinforced for this behavior, he will learn to relieve himself before leaving the cage while being reinforced.
13. Lovebirds don’t eat chocolate
You might think it’s a common-sense concept, but you can keep your chocolate and give it to a human instead of eating it to a bird. When wild, lovebirds survive off of seed, berries, fruit, and occasionally insect larva, in addition to a healthy diet of seeds, berries, and fruit.
14. Can Become Endangered Specie in Upcoming Years
In the past, it was very common for lovebirds to be found in the wild. Today, however, some endemic species of lovebirds are in danger of becoming extinct. There are two species of black-cheeked lovebirds in Zambia, and they have been classified as vulnerable by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
A recent estimate shows that there are roughly 10,000 Black-cheeked lovebirds in the world. It would seem that this species of love bird is facing a big hazard due to natural causes and climatic changes.
There is no doubt that you will remain surprised until the very end of this article. In my opinion, these facts are quite surprising and are good news for many bird owners. Through this article, we hope that you will gain a deeper understanding of lovebirds.
Ali Shahid is a veterinarian by profession and an animal lover. He loves to give expert opinions about different animals. He has worked in top organization of birds like Bigbird Feed and Poultry Research institute. He loves birds, especially parrots and has great experience in different parrot farms.