Endangered species ‘Great Green Macaw’-Info-16th March 2018

Endangered species ‘Great Green Macaw’-Info-16th March 2018

Great Green Macaw/Buffon’s Macaw or Great Military Macaw; Ara ambiguus or Ara ambigua (Bechstein), is a Central and South American parrot found in Nicaragua, Honduras, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, and Ecuador. Great Green Macaws are the largest parrots in their natural range, the second heaviest Macaw species and the third heaviest parrot species in the world. It is 85cm (33 inches) in length and weighs 1.3 kg (2.9 lb). Most of the body is light green and turns blue around the lower back, rump and under tail coverts. The forehead carries a broad scarlet band and the tail is red tipped, with blue above and olive yellow below. The facial skin is bare except for several fine lines of small black feathers. The bill is greyish black and is paler towards the tip. The legs are dark grey, iris is yellow. Juveniles are duller than adults, particularly on underparts; indistinct yellowish margins on scapulars and inner secondaries; central tail feathers tipped with dull yellow; brown iris. The Buffon’s Macaw is a gentle giant among the Macaw family, this species is generally much softer and more open to a close pet-owner relationship. The clutch size of Buffon Macaw is between 2-4 eggs and incubation begins soon after the first egg has been laid and lasts for 26 days when parent-reared fledge after 9th week. Hand-reared chicks require longer to become independent. Calls are loud, groaning aa —aa; when perched or feeding an occasional squawk (Slud, 1964). In the wild Great Green Macaw eats a variety of seeds, nuts, fruits, berries, and plant material procured in the treetops.
Varada is one of the two Great Green Macaws at Shuka Vana. Varada selected its partner Atri (Scarlet Macaw) during time spend outside its enclosure along with other birds, though inter species breeding is not encouraged by Shuka Vana, considering bird compatibility few birds that select their partners are allowed to do so. Varada likes to preen and to be preened by Atri. Varada enjoys hanging on to mesh top gripping with one finger and leaving one leg free. Varada enjoys swinging back and forth holding the mesh and chewing wooden toys. Great Green Macaws are served fresh sliced fruits, sprouts and vegetable salad. They also receive mixed seeds consisting of sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, and walnuts with shell. Sweet lime, sugar cane, sweet corn are served 2-3 times in a week. Walnuts, sweet corn and hand feeding formula from Sri Swamiji are relished as treat by Varada. Varada likes spending time outside its enclosure interacting with people and enjoys flight and chewing green twigs around. Life expectancy of Great Green Macaw is up to 60 years.

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