Last Updated on August 3, 2023 by Ali Shahid
Pearly Conure (Complete Specie Profile)
Pearly Conures also known as Pearly parakeets are a rare, gentle, and less noisy species of conure. While they are quite friendly and affectionate, their numbers in captivity are less than the Sun Conures and Green Cheek Conures.
This is due to their nervous nature and breeding difficulties. However, people who have Pearly conures have only positive things to say about them.
Their distinctive features include a blue neckband and white ear covers. Pearly Conures have a lifespan of over 20 years, making them excellent pets for many years to come.
|Overview of Pearly Conure|
|Scientific Name||Pyrrhura lepida|
|Origin||North Central Brazil|
|Color||Green, with blue neck, and white ears|
|Personality||Friendly, Playful, Affectionate|
|Noise Level||Generally Quiet but can be loud|
|Lifespan||20 Years Plus|
Origin and History
The Pearly Conure, a vulnerable bird species, can only be found in a small region in north-central Brazil, mainly in parts of Para and Maranhao provinces. It hangs out in lowland terra firme tropical rainforests and is sometimes spotted on forest edges, clearings, and areas with secondary growth.
With fewer than 10,000 birds left in the wild, its future looks pretty bleak, mostly because of Brazil’s reckless wildlife policies. The loss of its natural habitat has hit hard, but the Pearly Conure seems to handle disturbed environments somewhat well.
Yet, trapping for trade, which was previously underestimated, is a bigger threat to its decline. Although it occurs in protected areas like the Serra dos Carajas conservation units, illegal logging activities are putting those at risk too.
And to add to the misery, if deforestation in the Amazon basin continues as expected, the Pearly Conure could lose nearly half to two-thirds of its suitable habitat in just 18 years. It’s a tough situation for these birds, and it doesn’t look good at all.
Size and Color
The Pearly Conure measures approximately 24cm (9.3 in) in size and weighs about 70g (2.4 oz). It shares many resemblances with the Crimson-bellied Conure, save for distinct differences in certain areas.
Notably, the Pearly Conure displays a predominantly green lower breast, abdomen, and thighs, whereas the Crimson-bellied Conure boasts a vivid crimson lower breast and abdomen, staying true to its name.
Additionally, the edging to the breast feathers on the Pearly Conure is narrower compared to its Crimson-bellied cousin.
In adulthood, the Pearly Conure showcases a blue collar on its hindneck with varying thicknesses, along with brown cheeks tinged with a dull blue shade. The ear coverts are off-white, while the breast appears brown with off-white and dark brown barring.
The bend of the wing and lesser underwing coverts take on a striking red hue, and the tail appears brownish-red. The bill takes on a dark grey color, and its eye ring is bare and off-white, surrounding a dark brown eye.
Pearly conures can get quite moody, even if they have been tamed. But, overall, they are friendly little birds and not too nippy. Having one around guarantees you won’t be bored – they are always up for a good time, exploring and finding new things.
They are easy to train and have a goofy side that will surely crack you up. After a long play session, most pearly conures like snuggling with their owners, enjoying a nap and some head scratching. However, this may differ from bird to bird, as some are just not into cuddling at all.
Speech and Sound
Among the bird types, conures are less noisy than bigger exotic parrots. Their natural calls are soft, but they can get loud in the morning and late afternoon.
Sun and Jenday Conures are noisier, but Pearly Conures are quieter. They chatted softly and can learn some basic words with patient training. When flying, their calls are shrill, but other vocalizations are not known.
Pearly conures can recognize household sounds, basic melodies, and even their names, but they are not very good communicators.
The Pearly Conure is a rare find in aviculture, making it quite difficult to acquire. Breeding them is no easy task either, as they lay a modest 3 to 6 eggs that require a lengthy incubation period of around 23 to 26 days.
One peculiar recommendation is to have these birds undergo surgical sexing. This procedure aims to address their vulnerability to polycystic ovary disease, which can lead to infertility.
For the Pearly Conure’s optimal health, a diverse diet is paramount, encompassing seeds, fruits, insects, and crops. Novice caretakers should start with a mix of commercial seeds suitable for parakeets or conures, providing essential nutrients found in millet, oats, maize, and rye.
Boost protein and calcium intake with additional foods. Gradually introduce new foods to comprise 20% of their daily consumption, while the remaining 80% should be seed pellets.
Nuts, dry pasta, vegetables, fruits, and some human foods are acceptable, but steer clear of junk, fatty foods, alcohol, chocolate, salt, sugar, avocado, and milk. Be mindful of fresh vegetables and fruits, as they may spoil quickly, depending on weather conditions.
How to Care for a Pearly Conure?
When it comes to taking good care of a pearly conure, it starts off with keeping it in a large cage. It should be just enough for it to stretch its wings, play, and climb. The cage should exactly measure at about 24 inches wide, 24 inches tall, and 24 inches deep. When the cage is bigger, it is when it becomes a lot better.
Provide two perches of different materials and thicknesses. The variation will help keep the bird’s feet healthy and strong. Even the perches must be placed at various heights.
Never place the perches over water or food dishes. This is due to the reason that the droppings would only create a mess where the pet drinks and eats.
And since the Pearly Conure is sensitive to the strong smell, smoke, and draft, keep the cage away from the kitchen. Open the windows, but the cage should be out of direct sunlight.
Add some cushioning on the floor of the cage. It should be an inch or two inches of aspen, corncob, recycled-paper, and wood-pellet bedding. Remove any of those droppings. Clean the bedding or the liner every week. Replace it at least once a month. Groom it and play with it. The Pearly Conure is also sociable and smart. It can easily learn some of the valuable tricks of stepping up and stepping down.
Let it enjoy more time outside the cage. Provide a playpen or a t-stand as a hangout. Keep the bird busy inside the cage. Introduce 2 to 3 different toys like the squeakers or the foraging puzzles. Give it a bowl of warm water two or three times a week for a bath. Mist the Pearly Conure gently with warm water from a spray bottle.
Common Health Problems
Pearly conures, like other parrots and conures, can get into feather-picking trouble. Usually, this is a sign that they are bored out of their minds or neglected. In addition, these little fellas are also prone to some nasty viral stuff like proventricular dilatation disease and psittacine beak and feather disease.
They can catch a bacterial infection called psittacosis, suffer from beak malocclusion, or even get hit with a fungal infection called aspergillosis.
If you suspect your bird isn’t feeling so hot, don’t mess around with it. You need to take your feathered friend to a proper avian veterinarian or some exotics specialist who knows their stuff.
And let me tell you, annual check-ups with these bird doctors are a must. So, take care of your colorful buddy and watch out for any signs of trouble.
Pearly Conures for Sale and Price
As I said, Pearly Conures are very rare as a pet so it will be very difficult for you to locate one. In addition, they are challenging to breed so there are not many breeders breeding pearly conures.
There is hardly a chance that you are going to find pearly conures for sale. If you get lucky, be ready to pay above $1000.
2. Somenzari, Marina, and Luís Fábio Silveira. “Taxonomy of the Pyrrhura perlata-coerulescens complex (Psittaciformes: Psittacidae) with the description of a hybrid zone.” Journal of Ornithology 156 (2015): 1049-1060.
3. Jordan, Rick. “Pyrrhura Conures: Status in Aviculture.” AFA Watchbird 23.2: 8-12.
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.