Last Updated on November 8, 2023 by Ali Shahid
Imagine sitting in a cozy room, surrounded by the melodious chirping of Fischer’s lovebirds. These colorful and gentle parrots, though small, have an uncanny ability to bring a smile to your face with their playful antics. As an experienced owner of Fischer’s lovebirds, I can attest that their company is a true delight.
They may not be as popular as their peach-faced counterparts, but their charming personalities make them stand out in the aviary. What sets Fischer’s lovebirds apart is their unique combination of energy and kindness. In the world of lovebirds, they are gentle souls, thriving in the communal life of an aviary.
While they may be second in popularity, they certainly do not fall short when it comes to personality. They are monomorphic, which means they share the same appearance as their peach-faced cousins, but they have an identity all their own.
Originating from the heart of central Africa, Fischer’s lovebirds have retained a piece of their wild charm even in captivity. They are a common sight in pet stores, with domestically bred babies readily available, eager to become a part of your family.
If you are curious about welcoming a Fischer’s lovebird into your life and want to know more about their temperament, diet, habitat requirements, and other factors, you’re in the right place. Join me as I share my experiences and insights into the world of Fischer’s lovebirds.
Brief Overview of Fischer’s Lovebird
- Scientific Name: Agapornis fischeri
- Lifespan: Up to 20 years
- Color: Green, Orange, Yellow
- Personality: Social Energetic
- Sound: chattering and whistles
- Weight: 53-58 grams
- Length: 6 inches
- Number of Eggs: 3-8 Eggs
- IUCN Conservation Status: Near Threatened
Origin and History
These birds originated in Central Africa. Since 1926, breeders have been captive breeding Fischer’s Lovebirds in the United States as pets. It was first discovered by a German explorer named Gustav Fischer. It is named after him.
Originally from eastern Central Africa, the Fischer’s lovebird is found in northern Tanzania, south and southeast of Lake Victoria. When there is a drought, some birds migrate westward into Rwanda and Burundi in search of moist environments.
Small flocks of these birds reside at elevations between 1,100 and 2,200 meters (3,600 and 7,200 feet). Typically, they live in isolated clusters of trees separated by grasslands. In 1987, Fischer’s lovebirds ranked as the top traded wild birds in the world (African Wildlife Foundation). In 1992, export licenses were suspended to halt declines in the species’ population.
In 2023, its estimated population is 290,000–1,002,000 (African Wildlife Foundation), with low densities outside protected areas. While they have been observed in Puerto Rico and Florida, it is likely that they are escaped pets, and they have not reproduced.
The Algarve region of Portugal contains around 100 wild mating pairs between Porches and Armacao de Pera. They’ve also been seen in the US Virgin Islands.
A Fischer’s lovebird is a small and brightly colored parrot. Males and females have identical appearances. The best method of identifying male and female Fisher is through DNA sexing.
The average individual measures between 12.7 and 15 cm in length, has a wingspan of 88 to 89 mm and weighs between 53 and 58 grams. A white ring surrounds the eyes, making them stand out.
There is a dark brown iris, a dark orange-red beak, and a white band around the nares. It has an orange face that transitions from orange to olive green, and its back and neck are brown. Dark orange cheeks are followed by lighter orange throats and yellow bellies.
Green covers the rest of the body. The wings are a darker shade of green compared to the body. A wedge-shaped tail is primarily composed of green feathers with a few blue feathers. The color of the feet is light gray.
The coloring pattern of baby Fishers is similar to that of adults. However, the feathers of young birds are less vibrant in color, and their plumage appears dull and drab in comparison to that of adults.
A black pigment is also present at the base of the mandible of young birds. Gradually, the colors of their plumage become sharper, whereas the colors of their mandible gradually fade away.
Fisher’s Lovebird Mutation
- Albino Fischer’s lovebird
- Lutino Fischer’s lovebird
- Opaline Mutation
- Blue Fischer’s lovebird
- Dilute Yellow Fischer’s Lovebird
- Black or dark-eyed white Fischer’s lovebird
- Cinnamon Fischer’s lovebird
Despite his cute appearance, Fisher’s lovebird exhibits a very lively personality with a high level of energy and playfulness. Despite their small size, Fisher’s lovebirds are curious, bold, and very active.
These birds are outgoing, sociable, and rely on monogamous relationships. It means that they are lifelong partners. In the wild, Fischer’s lovebird nests in trees, rocks, and on top of buildings after rain periods.
Bark and grass stalks are used to construct nests with domed roofs. Although they are small birds, they are brave and enjoy singing with their high-pitched and twittering voices. Fisher’s lovebirds travel in flocks of 10–20 individuals.
However, when the flock meets at food sources between flights, it can grow to hundreds. Fischer’s lovebirds prefer discretion during long-distance trips.
As a general rule, they stay in one area until famine or drought occurs, and then they find alternative water sources. Because people often see pictures of two lovebirds cuddled up against one another, they tend to believe that lovebirds come in pairs.
No doubt, lovebirds often form close bonds with one another. Therefore, lovebirds are devoted to each other and may not socialize with people. Therefore, a single lovebird would be the best choice for you.
Single lovebird companions need a lot of social interaction. Additionally, he or she requires a variety of toys that he or she can destroy and chew on. When defending her territory (cage), a female lovebird might become extremely defensive.
Fischer’s Lovebird Behavior with Children:
Having Fischer’s lovebirds as pets is a wonderful experience. Known for their loving nature and quiet behavior, these birds are favorites among their human companions. Additionally, they have a very gentle approach to children.
They are very social and playful birds. Thus, they’ll love spending time with people and making good friends with kids.
I enjoy having them around the house as pets. In no way are they aggressive or harmful in any way. Therefore, it is very safe for children to be around these birds alone.
Owners Opinion About Fischer’s Lovebirds
The opinions of the owners of Fischer’s lovebirds are quite diverse. Some enthusiasts appreciate their vibrant beauty, playful nature, and abundant energy. With regular interaction, these lovebirds can become loyal companions, adding cheer to your daily life. They’re not the quietest birds, though; when they do vocalize, their chirps are high-pitched and can be quite loud.
In terms of diet, Fischer’s lovebirds are herbivores, relishing a variety of seeds and occasionally indulging in berries and fruits. However, not everyone shares the same experiences with these feathered friends.
Some owners have encountered a different side of Fischer’s lovebirds. They might find them more assertive and prone to aggressive behavior compared to other lovebird species. These birds can be sensitive and easily startled, especially during their breeding period, when they prefer to be left in peace.
Furthermore, some owners have reported that Fischer’s lovebirds can display moments of feistiness and moodiness, particularly when separated from their mate. In sum, opinions on Fischer’s lovebirds appear to be a mixed bag. While their beauty and vitality are undeniable, these birds may require a certain degree of patience and understanding from their owners.
Speech and Sound
Fischer’s lovebird is an extremely vocal bird. These birds make loud, high-pitched twittering calls. A number of physical and vocal signals are used during the mating ritual.
The birds are chatty all day long, singing and whistling constantly, and they are particularly loud at dawn and dusk. Even though they are not known for their ability to speak, they sing better than other companion parrots.
If you acquire more lovebirds, your house will become noisier. In the wild, these birds are flocking birds and enjoy interacting with one another.
Like its relatives in the genus Agapornis, Fischer’s lovebirds mate for life. Apparently, lovebirds are named after the strong bonds formed between mates. In the event of separation, each individual’s physical health will be compromised.
Mates prefer to maintain physical contact as often as possible. The pair affectionately groom each other and bite each other’s beak (this action is similar to kissing, thus the name “lovebird”).
Male birds engage in the mating ritual by sidling back and forth and bobbing their heads up and down while twittering. After repeating this behavior, the male approaches the female and regurgitates into her mouth.
The Fischer’s lovebird nests in cavities. Typically, they look for cavities in rocks, trees, buildings, or even abandoned nests. Afterward, she gathers grass, stalks, and bark strips from the surrounding area to line the cavity.
When the nest is complete, the female will sit on the eggs in an enclosed chamber inside a bulky roofed structure. When nesting, females become extremely aggressive, vicious, and protective of their young.
During the dry season, Agapornis fischeri breeds between January and April and from June to July. Typically, the female lays three to eight eggs per clutch. Eggs are round, white, and small. It takes 21 to 23 days for the eggs to hatch.
Upon hatching, the young are capable of fledging in approximately 38 days and becoming independent approximately 4 1/2 weeks later.
The eggs are incubated exclusively by females. During incubation, the female provides nourishment to her mate via regurgitation.
Within 21 to 23 days of laying the eggs, the young hatch naked and helpless. Immediately following hatching, both parents begin regurgitating their young.
Fischer’s Lovebird Care
Fischer’s lovebirds require a suitable habitat and diet in order to thrive. A comfortable environment and a healthy diet will make them live longer and happier life.
Keeping Fischer’s lovebirds separate from other parrot types is recommended. They require cages that are around four feet high.
As these birds enjoy climbing, their cage should be equipped with an assortment of climbing activities, such as ladders, ropes, swings, puzzles, and a variety of foraging toys. Additionally, they enjoy bathing.
Diet and Nutrition
Diet in the Wild
An endemic species of lovebird, Fischer’s lovebird lives in grasslands, savannas, and scrub forests in north-central Tanzania. Also, they may live near agricultural areas. In grassland areas, flocks of 10 to 15 birds live among the acacias and baobab trees.
Many flocks of birds consisting of 100 or more birds feed on millet and maize crops in cultivated fields. A lack of suitable vegetation may have contributed to its southern and western limits in Tanzania.
As Fischer’s lovebirds must drink water daily, they live near water sources. In general, they do not migrate and will only migrate if water becomes scarce. They are often seen near water holes during hot weather, which is common.
Diet in Captivity
If Fischer’s lovebirds are kept in captivity, they can be fed either a seed mix made from millet, oats, and hemp or a seed mix designed for canaries.
Furthermore, they can eat fruit such as apples, bananas, pears, Swiss chard, lettuce, chickweed, willow catkins, and spray millet. Certainly, a high-quality seed mix can play a significant role in its diet.
The seed sprouting method can even enhance their nutritional value. The diet of young birds should consist of carrots, all-purpose bread, and hard-boiled eggs.
The food for juveniles should be ground into a flaky texture. They should always have access to fresh water in their enclosures.
Fischer’s Lovebird Health Issues
The Fischer lovebird is susceptible to a wide range of infectious diseases. Fischer’s lovebirds experience a health issue related to their separation from each other.
As these birds form such strong bonds with their partners, having them separated will adversely affect their physical health. A Fischer lovebird’s average lifespan in captivity is approximately 20 years.
Among their predators are lanner falcons. The lifespan of these parrots in the wild is approximately 12.5 years. These are some of the health issues of Fisher’s lovebird:
- Ticks and mites
- Avian Pox
- Respiratory issues
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Feather Plucking
- Egg Binding
- Avian influenza
- Psittacine beak and feather disease
It is best to let your Fischer’s Lovebird out of its cage so that it can get some exercise. Typically, owners recommend allowing their birds to spend at least four hours outside each day, but this can be extended for as long as possible.
Since birds are extremely curious, you should seal off areas that you do not want them to access because they will find any openings. Make sure your bird is kept in a separate room from your other pets, regardless of how friendly they may appear.
Population Number and Conservation Status
In its restricted range, trapping for export is causing moderate-rate population declines, making this species near threatened.
Though this process has been halted, hybridization may continue to present a threat, although right now it is unclear if it will have an impact.
Information regarding how hybridization affects the species or evidence that the species is declining may qualify it for a higher threat rating. In 2023, the Fisher’s lovebird population is estimated to be between 290,000 and 1,002,000.
From Where You Can Get Fischer’s Lovebirds
It may not be as popular as the Peach-Faced Lovebird, but it is easily available in pet stores. However, it is recommended that you first check with your local animal shelter to determine if any animals need to be rescued.
The shelter usually offers it at a lower price. Aside from saving an animal’s life, adopting from a shelter also frees up resources for other animals in need. The cost of purchasing a Fisher’s Lovebird in 2023 will vary between $45 and $130, depending on demand.
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.