by Leslie
(Lowell, MA)

When does an Eclectus Male have their first molt? Also, when does the beak change color?

I am considering an 8 month old Grand...who has the yel/orange beak and according to breeder...is going into his first molt.

I just want to be sure he is not older than what I am being told.

Thank you so much for your help.


Comments for Leslie

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Apr 21, 2010
by: Anonymous

Usually around 6 to 8 months old they can have a first 'real' moult.

Eclectus parrots can moult their small head & body feathers year round. Their larger wing & tail feathers are usually moulted around twice a year but this generally doesn?t start this until around the age of one year.
When going through heavy moults you can clearly see all the pin feathers when your bird is wet. It?s not uncommon for the feathers to be show different shades through a heavy moult as they?re older & duller feathers, newer feathers & grey down showing at the same time. Once all the new feathers have fully grown the birds shine & evenness of the colour comes back.
Moults can become a stressful & uncomfortable time for many birds. Some birds can experience loss of appetite if uncomfortable. Some birds can be very uncomfortable being handled when they?re moulting. Those that don't appear to have as an uncomfortable moult can have a much larger appetite. While Eclectus parrots generally should not eat high animal protein diets, when going through moults they do require larger amounts of egg, meat, seafood as well as cooked beans & rice, nuts, hemp seed & flax seed. These all provide protien & fats required to build strong healthy feathers.
Bathing is essential during moulting. It aids in the relief of itchy pin feathers breaking through the skin. Some Eclectus parrots go through such uncomfortable moults they end up plucking & regular daily bathing is a good preventative of plucking. A diluted aloe spray can also benefit in hydrating the feathers & skin when moulting.

It is recommended that birds going through heavy moults get adequate rest & sleep 10 to 12 hours per night.

Delayed moulting in captive birds is usually caused by low levels of light. To encourage an over due moult you can increase the level of lighting in your home. Full spectrum lighting, regular outdoor sunlight, moving the bird closer to a window, increase the heat in the home, daily bathing, reducing the birds stress will all encourage moulting. You can also increase the protein in their diet to encourage & start an over due moult.

Some causes of delay moulting are stress, malnutrition, infectious diseases & parasites.

?Mojo Moult? was named after the first noted Eclectus, Mojo had a heavy moult with face, head & neck balding. Most Eclectus parrots don?t experience this but some can & those that do, the amount of balding can vary individually. People who?re unaware of the Mojo Moult can panic when they suddenly see their Eclectus balding around the head & face & most of them fear it is mites, PBFD or follicle infection. There isn?t a lot that is understood about the Mojo Moult & it can go on for months. Some Eclectus Mojo Moults can be very
extreme while others mild.


Please make sure you read up on them. Eclectus can be a complex bird to have if you're not familiar with the proper care & diets of them.

Apr 21, 2010
by: Linda

All males have the yellow to orange beaks, and they do not change colors. The Grand you are talking about will be duller in all his colorations as is the nature of the Grand Eclectus. The Grands are also the smaller of this family.This link concerns species and subspecies which will be interesting if you are thinking of doing any breeding.


If you are contemplating breeding make sure the birds you are breeding are of the same species or subspecies to keep from further weakening this precarious gene pool. People think it's okay to breed hybrids, and nothing could be FURTHER from the truth.

There can also be a problem with poor diet which leads to all kinds of physical problems. Eclectus eat a large variety of organic fruit and veggies except leave off avocado and spinach. Avocado is poison, and spinach causes problems with calcium absorption. It is recommended that part of a healthy diet for them be pellets of the organic variety. The birds cannot live on fruit and veggies alone and are NOT by nature seed eaters though they will eat some as they like all kinds of food. NEVER FEED PEOPLE FOOD WHICH IS HIGH IN FAT, SUGAR AND SALT AS THESE ARE POISON FOR ANY BIRD. Tracie carries some of the organic pellets here, and other Eclectus safe food so you have a variety to choose from. Eclectus parrots sometimes have a vitamin A deficiency which is taken care of by proper feeding and is a product of poor diet. Healthful, non-dyed pellets with NO preservatives will help keep these problems under control. As said earlier, all fruit and veggies need to be certified organic to avoid pesticide/fertilizer residue which is all over and in them in regular grocery stores. The birds also love seeds that have been sprouted, and the sprouts are a wonderful source for pure protein and vitamin A. No Eclectus diet should be without some daily sprouts. They do not need to eat a bowlful of any one thing, just some of this and some of that.Make sure a large portion of daily intake is pellets though to keep everything in balance. Sprouting can be done with sunflower, safflower or other seeds except peanuts which have very damaging oil in them for any living creature--stay away from peanut products with parrots.

So as to first molt, I think around 8 months and it can sometimes be all year off and on on the head and where other smaller feathers are. Plucking is also a possibility with these birds, and a complete, highly nutritional diet will be a giant step in making sure yours doesn't pluck.

What species/subspecies your hen is will determine whether these two can breed. If she is not a Grand, then breeding is not a good idea at all. Keeping a gene pool pure should be the most important aspect of breeding any animal or bird because once it is lost it is lost forever--THE END.

Thanks for writing,

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