Conure color change

I have a green cheek conure, roughly 13 years old, and I have had him for about 10 years now. Everything is normal, except that recently some of his feathers have been gradually changing colors with each molt. Mostly the back of his neck (used to be blackish on head, transitioning into green back; now there is a bluish color between the head and back) and his chest/neck area (used to be grey with darker stripes; now with a hint of red on tips of chest feathers).

Other than the color changes, nothing is out of the ordinary, however I did switch him from a seed diet to a pellet diet in the last 12 months (full conversion to pellets occurred roughly 6 months ago). Is this normal for colors to change slightly as a bird ages? I'm not sure if this is a result of improved diet or simply aging.

Comments for Conure color change

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Mar 19, 2012
Conure feather color change
by: The Avian Vet

Generally feather color does not change from age. I suspect that it is diet related. Disease can cause feather color changes, although it sounds like he is otherwise healthy. I do however recommend that you have your bird examined by an avian veterinarian.

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Dr B

Mar 17, 2012
Conure color change
by: Linda

A parrot's basic colors do not change with age. They do change when a poor diet is replaced with a healthy one or if left on a poor diet. With poor diets, feathers start losing color. With healthy, organic pellets like Harrison's, they usually become brighter. The feather colors were always there, but muted because of a poor diet. Your bird needs to be eating organic pellets found here. If you are feeding ZuPreem with all the color dye, sugar and preservatives, this can have an adverse effect on feathering, so I do suggest you go ahead and begin feeding an organic pellet. Also do not feed any table food/people food as all are detrimental to a parrot's health. Salt, sugar, fat, dyes, preservatives and pesticide residue are very bad for birds and take many years' off their lives. The years they do have are spent unhealthy and unhappy. Any animal or bird will adjust to any kind of diet just so it stays alive. What we're wanting with our birds is to see them healthy and vital all their lives, and this is accomplished by feeding correctly and food of the highest quality. Yearly trips to Avian Vet is also needed especially for aging birds. It's an opportunity to catch infections and other physical problems before they become life-threatening.

You can find Harrisons as well as a few other good organic pellets here. Yes, they cost a bit more than junk pellets, and the money you save in vet bills more than makes up the difference.

Linda

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