Genus: Psephotus Information / Australia
These Australian parakeets are commonly referred to as "grass parrots," "grass parakeets," or "grasskeets."
The expected lifespan of these small parrot is 10 years or longer.
The genus Neophema includes the:
- Blue-winged Grass Parrots / Parakeets
- Elegant Parakeets
- Orange bellied Parakeets.
- Rock Parrots
- Scarlet-chested Parakeets; and the
- Turquoise Parakeets
The Bourke's parrot has recently been removed from the Neophema genus and placed in a genus of its own.
Sometimes the broad-tailed parrots are considered a subfamily. In this case, Neophema and Bourke's parrot are united in the tribe Neophemini. mtDNA sequence data (Miyaki et al. 1998) suggests that the former may be correct, but the latter almost certainly isn't. It appears more likely that the group would need to include more closely related forms, such as the budgerigar and the ground-parrots (Pezoporus).
They are beautiful, quiet, fascinating to watch. They are very family-oriented and curious, and can become quite trusting with the human care takers. I found them to be absolutely fantastic aviary birds. Although some people treasure these little parakeets as pets as well.
They do best in planted aviaries. You have got to make sure they have plenty of room to fly, are protected from rats, mice, snakes, and other critter which might get to them or their eggs. You also have to provide them with adequate shelter and protection from wind, rain and cold weather. They are not as hardy as most of the other parrot species and do require a committed owner.
They will accept just about any nest box that you may provide. Parakeet-sized boxes placed high up in the aviary are usually favorites. They will also accept cockatiel / lovebird-sized nest boxes. It's best to provide more nesting boxes than they are pairs -- to allow them to choose their favorite box and to reduce any fighting over favorites.
Soil floor may not be a good choice. Predators can dig themselves through that; and grasskeets are known to spend a good part of the day on the floor of the aviary. Grasskeets are often afflicted with parasites for this reason alone.
I prefer concrete myself with potted plants, as it is easier to keep concrete floors clean. But other breeders do it differently. As long as the birds are protected, it doesn't matter how you do it. If you like soil floor, you could throw it over the concrete and then change it once a year. Keeping the aviary clean is important
- Photo Gallery of Grasskeets
- Parakeet Nutrition
- Common Diseases of the Grasskeets
- Procuring Your Bird
- Aviary Birds / Breeding
- Housing Your Birds
Blue-winged Grass Parakeet (Neophema chrysostoma)
Bourke's Parrots (Please note: Formerly classified as Neophema - more recently placed into its own genus: Neopsephotus Bourkii - but still being debated)
Elegant Parrots, Elegant Grass Parakeets (Elegans)
Orange-bellied Parrots (Chrysogaster)
Red-rumped Parrots / Grass Parakeets (Haematonotus)
Rock Parrots (Petrophila)
Splendid or Scarlet-chested Parrots (Splendida)
Turquoise or Turquoisine Parrots (Pulchella)
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