Fun Plum-headed Parakeet Facts For Kids

Oluniyi Akande
Feb 21, 2024 By Oluniyi Akande
Originally Published on Aug 06, 2021
Edited by Katherine Cook
Fact-checked by Gowri Rao
Plum-headed parakeet facts tell us about their habitat spread across the Indian subcontinent.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.5 Min

These very distinct birds that are mostly endemic to the Indian subcontinent are plum-headed parakeets. Belonging to the family of Psittaculidae, plum-headed parakeets are Old World parrots. Their colorful plumage, distinct vocal abilities, intelligence that assist them to pick up and mimic frequently heard sounds have made them very popular as pets amongst many across the globe. Apart from this, plum-headed parakeets or parrots are very frequently mentioned in old and new literature in various languages and are perhaps the only few birds that have exceptional cinematic qualities.

There are a variety of parrots that dwell in the wild and are held captive in domesticated environments. Their diet comprises largely of fruits but seeds, millets, rice, cooked beans are also consumed by these birds as a regular part of their food intake. Fresh water is also an integral part of their diet.

With unique abilities and visual differences, a plum-headed parakeet (Psittacula cyanocephala) is a member of the Psittaculidae family of birds. Here are some of the most fascinating facts about plum-headed parakeets. Afterward, do have a look at our other articles on the green parakeet and nanday parakeet.

Plum-Headed Parakeet Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a plum-headed parakeet?

The plum-headed parakeet is a bird of Psittacula genus. Known for having a distinct neck ring, these plum-headed parakeets are also referred to as Afro-Asian ring-necked parakeets indicating their Asian African origin.

What class of animal does a plum-headed parakeet belong to?

Plum-headed parakeets are birds of the class Aves of phylum Chordata in kingdom Animalia. More specifically, a plum-headed parakeet belongs to the Psittaciformes, the order of parrots, comprising 92 genres and 398 species of known psittacines. Some others in this class include the Kea parrot and the paradise parrot.

How many plum-headed parakeets are there in the world?

Distributed across India and Sri Lanka, the population of plum-headed parakeets is stable. The count of their global population is not really known but they have a stable population for now and need no serious conservation efforts.

Where does a plum-headed parakeet live?

Native to the Indian subcontinent, plum-headed parakeets are found in foothills, city gardens, parks, and open woodlands of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh in Asia. Apart from this, these birds are also sometimes found in the Middle East, New York, and Florida. When held in a housing cage, the desired minimum walk-in aviary length is 9.8 ft (3 m).

What is a plum-headed parakeet's habitat?

This parrot species are sometimes kept as pets in households, but in the wild, plum-headed parakeets are found in their habitat distribution range across open woodlands, parks, and forests. In woodlands, they build their nests on trees with small degraded wood logs, pine shavings, and leaf remnants. Generally, these parrots eat more fruit as compared to other parakeets.

Who do plum-headed parakeets live with?

This pet parrot species generally dwells with the flocks of its own species. They can also survive in captivity with their human owners as pets. In flocks, a male parakeet can be distinguished from the female parakeet by the bluish-gray head of females while males have a plum-colored head.

How long does a plum-headed parakeet live?

The plum-headed parrot has a longer life span in comparison to other psittacines. On average, they may live for around 20-30 years in the wild. The lifespan is longer for ones living as pet birds in a cage.

How do they reproduce?

The breeding season for plum-headed parakeets ranges between December to April in India and July to August in Sri Lanka. Both male and female parakeets construct and guard the nests during the breeding season. After courtship display and mating, females lay four to six eggs and solely incubate and look after them. The eggs hatch after 21 days of being laid in the breeding season and young plum-headed parakeets are born. Females take care of the food requirements of the young birds in the nest for around six weeks till they are ready to fledge on their own after the breeding season. The female may still remain in the nest for around three weeks after the chicks have left.

What is their conservation status?

Plum-headed parakeets are listed by IUCN amongst the species of birds that require minimal conservation efforts. Their population is stable for now but the threat is imposed on their existence in the wild because of the decrease in the forest area for industrial and housing purposes.

Plum-Headed Parakeet Fun Facts

What do plum-headed parakeets look like?

A plum-headed parakeet is a medium-sized bird, with an overall green plumage. A male parakeet has a plum-colored head with a black ring on the neck, while the female has a bluish-gray head and a yellow neck ring. A distinct red shoulder patch, upper orange mandible, and lower mandible black in color are features of this parakeet. Their long wingspan and other body parts are covered in green plumage and the other peculiar feature is a crooked bill.

Plum-Headed Parakeet perched on a tree

How cute are they?

These pet parrots are very cute birds. They are social, intelligent, and pick up sounds from their surroundings very well.  Their intelligence and friendly nature are very attractive to their owners.

How do they communicate?

Parakeets can mimic the sounds they hear very well. They are talkative and produce short whistling and beeping calls. During mating, they communicate with their mates via a unique call and mating display.

How big is a plum-headed parakeet?

A plum-headed parakeet is slightly bigger than a plain parakeet. They measure somewhere between 13-14 in (33-35 cm) in terms of length. Their tail is as long as the size of their body with a length of around 8.7 in (22 cm).

How fast can a plum-headed parakeet fly?

Parakeets are in general swift flyers and they fly with twists and turns. Their flight speed is not really known but it is sure that they fly very fast like other parrots.

How much does a plum-headed parakeet weigh?

These birds are lightweight and their weight may measure around 0.14 lb (0.06 kg). Hollow bones for their endoskeleton and exoskeleton made of light feathers are all vital for easy flight. These are a few contributing factors to their lightweight.

What are the male and female names of the species?

A male parrot is referred to as a cock while a female parrot is referred to as a hen. Both sexes have distinct physical features and the male is slightly larger in size than a female parrot.

What would you call a baby plum-headed parakeet?

A baby parakeet is referred to as a hatchling or a nestling just after it is born and after it is able to fledge on its own it is referred to as a chick. Juvenile parakeets stay with their parents in flocks.

What do they eat?

A plum-headed parakeet likes feeding on a large quantity of fruit. This pet bird likes feeding on rice, freshly cooked beans, fruits like plums, seeds, and some other grains. Fresh water is one important food requirement of these parrots and must be regularly provided in their walk-in aviary.

Are they dangerous?

They are absolutely not dangerous. This parrot is an intelligent, friendly, and docile bird. They may bite if they are angry but they do not cause any major harm.

Would they make a good pet?

They make really good pets. The plum-headed parrot is the least demanding and social bird. They get along with their owners very well and survive for a longer time in a well-kept household. However, in India, these parakeets are protected under the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972, and can not be kept as pets.

Did you know...

Parakeets love to chew and fly with other fellow mates as their hobby.

Is the plum-headed parakeet banned in India?

Under the standard Wildlife Protection Act, it is illegal to keep a plum-headed parakeet or any other wild bird in captivity. They are banned to be kept in captivity in India.

Can the plum-headed parakeet talk?

A plum-headed parakeet is a talkative bird. If its owner talks frequently with this parakeet, they start mimicking their owners and learn to talk as well.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our oak titmouse facts and nene goose facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our parakeet coloring pages.

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Written by Oluniyi Akande

Doctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

Oluniyi Akande picture

Oluniyi AkandeDoctorate specializing in Veterinary Medicine

With an accomplished background as a Veterinarian, SEO content writer, and public speaker, Oluniyi brings a wealth of skills and experience to his work. Holding a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from the University of Ibadan, he provides exceptional consulting services to pet owners, animal farms, and agricultural establishments. Oluniyi's impressive writing career spans over five years, during which he has produced over 5000 high-quality short- and long-form pieces of content. His versatility shines through as he tackles a diverse array of topics, including pets, real estate, sports, games, technology, landscaping, healthcare, cosmetics, personal loans, debt management, construction, and agriculture.

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