An exotic pet bird is not only foreign to the country where it is meant to be kept as a pet but also stands out for some reason. It could be uncommon as a pet, have an unusual appearance, or be extremely rare.
However, before you get excited at the thought of owning one of these birds, it is essential to note that an exotic pet will likely have special needs that make it difficult for an average pet owner to keep. Some might need open space for exercise, while others have long lifespans and thus need adequate care for a long time. However, once you get one, owning an exotic bird can be fun as a conversation starter and an excellent hobby.
List of Exotic Pet Birds
Small Exotic Pet Birds
African Gray Parrot
Originally from the rainforests of Central America, the African Gray Parrot is known for its ability to talk. Their speaking capabilities are almost on par with regular humans, and their intelligence is on par with a human child. However, as an endangered species, a permit or license will be required to keep one as a pet.
Australian King Parrot
As their name indicates, these parrots are native to Australia. Their most striking feature is their bright red head, unique only to this species. While intelligent and affectionate once tamed, the Australian King Parrot can be a handful for inexperienced enthusiasts.
The Golden Conure is a New World Parrot whose original home is the Amazon Basin. It is known for its bright yellow plumage, except for the tips of its wings, which are green. However, far too many of them have been removed from their homes, leading to the population declining and the Golden Conure now holding a ‘Vulnerable’ status.
A small toucan native to South America, the Green Aracari is known for being full of personality. But it is pretty challenging to handle, as they require a lot of space, are very messy, and tend to fly directly at people, meaning protective gear will be needed around them.
A descendant of the Common Rock Pigeon, the Archangel Pigeon is a calm bird like most pigeons. Part of its appeal comes from its bronze plumage, with its wings having black, blue, or white feathers.
Big Exotic Pet Birds
Native to Australia and New Guinea, the Black Palm Cockatoo is strong-willed, intelligent, and lives for a long time (around 60 years). While its beautiful black plumage appeals to many people, it can be challenging to raise and isn’t particularly affectionate. Only experienced bird owners should try to rear one of them.
Known for its beautiful blue feathers and yellow highlights around its eyes and beak, the Hyacinth Macaw originally came from South America. It is affectionate and even-tempered but requires a lot of space and attention.
Victoria Crowned Pigeon
Named after Queen Victoria, this unusual-looking pigeon spends most of its time on the ground and does not require a cage. It has a stunning appearance, with feathers of varying shades of blue contrasting nicely against its maroon-colored breast. While gentle and easy to tame, it is rare to acquire this bird legally, as attempts to smuggle it from its native Indonesia and New Guinea have earned it the status of ‘Near Threatened’ by the IUCN.
The only species of peafowl that can be legally kept in the US, the Indian Peafowl requires a lot of space and can only be kept in an outdoor area that also needs heating. It also requires much grass and dirt to scratch, with a few trees and other elevated areas, since the Indian Peafowl normally roosts above ground.
These 8 birds are among the most sought after exotic pets for their various traits listed above. But even if you can meet the requirements to keep them, make sure that the dealer you’re getting these birds from is legit, as there tend to be a lot of illegal dealings regarding exotic birds.