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Meet the Indian Ringneck Parakeet: A Bright, Playful and Devoted Friend

Native to India, the Indian ringneck parakeet is a "companion" bird that will certainly keep you on your toes if you're looking for a true bond with a winged wonder. The Indian ringneck is also commonly referred to as the rose-ringed parakeet or ring-necked parakeet. The most important thing to know about the Indian ringneck is that this is a bird that requires attention. In fact, an inability on your part to devote love and attention to this breed could result in neurotic behaviors that could negatively impact your bird's health. While you don't need to make your rose-ringed roommate your whole world, you do need to be willing to put in some one-on-one bonding time every single day. These birds also do quite nicely when their cages are in main living areas within a home.

Getting to Know the Indian Ringneck Parakeet

If your ringneck seems tenacious, it's not your imagination. This is a resilient, resourceful bird. The ringneck is one of the few parakeet species on the globe to successfully adapt and thrive in the face of disturbed natural habitats. In India, they are commonly found thriving in large numbers in urban areas. In cities throughout Europe, escaped ringnecks have actually colonized quite a few cities! There's even a long-standing population of feral ringnecks soaring through the Japanese forests! The way these lovely birds can adapt to climates that are very different from their native climate in South Asia is a thing of wonder! In many ways, ringnecks bring that adaptability along with them when living in your home. Next, let's cover some ringneck parakeet stats. While these birds have larger-than-life personalities, they are relatively diminutive birds when compared to many other species.

The typical ringneck will grow to 16 inches in length when you count the length of its tail feathers! They reach an average weight of 4 ounces in adulthood. Like most exotic parakeets, ringnecks are known for their long lifespan. Life expectancy for a ringneck is between 25 and 30 years. In some cases, these birds continue to flap their feathers well past the age of 50! When you make the decision to bring a ringneck into your home, you're truly entering into an agreement to care for a bird for a large chunk of your life. The tendency this breed has for forming strong attachments to humans means that this is a commitment you should take seriously. Ringnecks are truly jewels of the sky. The default plumage for the ringneck is an apple-green hue. However, you'll see prisms of mutations that range from powder blue to daisy yellow. The signature feature of the ringneck is the beautiful strip that runs along the bird's chin. "In the wild, ring necked parakeets usually feed on buds, fruits, vegetables, nuts, berries, and seeds," according to the Cub Creek Science Camp. As a bird owner, it's important to take the responsibility of recreating a varied and robust diet for your pet at home seriously. Birds that don't get well-rounded diets are prone to vitamin deficiencies that can lead to everything from feather plucking to kidney failure. The importance of getting into a good feeding routine with your new bird early on cannot be overstated!

Life at Home With Your Indian Ringneck Parakeet

It's truth time. Yes, the ringneck parakeet does have a reputation for being a little "hard to handle." Blame it on the fact that they were bred as ornamental birds for centuries. That means that building up trust with some one-on-one love is essential for forming a good relationship with your ringneck. Most ringneck owners find that these birds are absolutely delightful. With some work, they are easy to train with all kinds of tricks and talents. They especially love "brain" activities like puzzles and mazes. Ringnecks are also very affectionate and sweet once they feel at home with a human. Before you bring home a baby ringneck, it's important to know about something called the "bluffing" stage. Occurring between four months and 12 months, the bluffing phase is comparable to the teenage phase for humans.

During this time, hormonal changes can make your formerly docile ringneck more aggressive and opinionated. Don't be surprised if your ringneck suddenly hisses, nips or refuses to interact with you. When handled gingerly, this phase typically passes with the bird-owner relationship intact. While ringnecks aren't huge birds, they do require a little more room than one might expect. The longer tail on the ringneck requires a slightly larger cage than what you might use with a traditional parakeet. That's because ringnecks need a little extra room to navigate those extended tails! Additionally, ringnecks need that extra cage space because they are so active. A ringneck can quickly grow bored and stressed in a cage that doesn't allow them to feel "free." The chattiness of the ringneck parakeet is also something to consider before you bring one home. If you live in an apartment with thin walls, your neighbors might not appreciate the constant noise.

The Allure of the Ringneck Is Strong for Bird Lovers

If you're prepared, owning a ringneck parakeet is a satisfying and exciting journey! There's nothing quite like looking over to see your ringneck glistening like a peridot stone in the sunshine as it perches with delight. Known for their stunning plumage and distinctive neck ring, these birds have complex personalities that make the bonding process even more rewarding.

Frequently Asked Questions About Indian Ringneck Parakeets

Do Ringneck Parakeets Talk? Yes! Ringnecks are actually known for being great talkers! In fact, these birds were once considered to be sacred animals due to their strong ability to recreate human speech. In places of worship throughout India, these birds repeated daily prayers while fluttering in ceremonial gardens. When trained, your ringneck can easily learn dozens of words! Most ringnecks will begin speaking during their first year of life. Some ringnecks become expert whistlers! Of course, there's no guarantee that any bird will learn to speak just because it belongs to a species with a reputation for learning words easily. It's important to go into bird ownership with the understanding that you will love your bird regardless of how quickly they can be trained to do things! How Much Exercise Does a Ringneck Parakeet Need?

Ringnecks are vivacious, active birds! Typically, they will play in their cages for several hours each day. Safe time outside the cage can also be important. Typical activities for ringnecks include stretching their wings and interacting with toys. Equipped with strong jaws, ringnecks love toys and games that require them to use their beaks. Puzzles and toys are great for ringnecks. What Are the Signs of a Healthy Ringneck Parakeet? When bringing home a new parakeet, it's important to look for signs of a healthy bird. A ringneck bird that's in good health should be very alert and active. A bird in good health will exhibit clean feathers, a full crop and eyes that are free from crust and debris.