Gender of my two macaws

by Holly Burlile
(Tiffin, Ohio USA)

Casey and Dylan

Casey and Dylan

Hi, I have 2 macaws that I basically inherited and I was told that one was 7yrs old and the other was 8yrs old and I do not know for sure the gender of these birds?

I received the first parrot a blue and gold macaw when he/she was 2yrs old and then later recieved the greenwing macaw when he/she was approx 5yrs old. I was told that one was female the B&G and the male was the Greenwing but how am I to tell? I have never seen any eggs in the years that I had had these birds and was a little confused honestly.

Could you please help me identify which is which? Thanks so much.

Comments for Gender of my two macaws

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Jun 12, 2009
Macaw Sexing
by: Linda

Though your birds are old enough to be sexually mature, it is still tricky to tell by site. The males normally have larger beaks and heads. The sexually mature female will exhibit some behaviors like squatting down fluffing up feathers and shaking tail which is a normal message of I am ready to a male, but this is not always so.They kind of look like a baby bird needing to be fed.

My advice is to take both birds to an Avian Vet and have them sexed using the DNA method. Vet will either pull a blood feather or draw a drop or two of blood and either test it there or if they aren't equipped for DNA testing (most are not), they will send samples off for testing.

This would be the best, most accurate way to tell. Breeding Macaws is a BIG job and requires a large space for them to fly in so they get the exercise they need for toning up the muscles. Females who have flabby muscles will have trouble laying eggs, and trouble could be serious for the bird.So, unless you are very serious about setting them up properly, you may wish to not try and breed them. The cage they have now looks roomy enough for them to live in and play, and Macaws are best bred in larger flights where they can actually fly from one perch to the other. The other issue is proper nextbox which I believe has to be a 36" minimum boot shaped wooden affair with metal affixed around the hole so they cannot tear hole bigger. They probably will not go to nest unless they are set up for it, so you may or may not see any eggs. Condition has a lot to do with breeding and laying as well. Your parrots need to be eating an organic pelleted diet to make sure they are in good health. Seed diets do not provide balanced nutrition,and birds will not breed or lay unless they are at 100% breeding condition.They should be in their best condition either way.

Just enjoy your birds, and take them to have them sexed so you will not be confused. I called a baby Scarlet Macaw, Sherlock, many years' ago only to find out later that he was a she, and I've never gotten over the confusion!!!

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