White Capped Pionus on a stick

While the White Capped Pionus is not one of the more popular pet parrots in the world, it is a good overall choice.

This beautiful bird has a social nature and can get along with just about anyone. If you want to get a new bird, this one is worth looking into.

Appearance

The White Capped Pionus can grow up to 10 inches long with a maximum weight of 8 ounces. It has a white forehead (hence name), blue head, blue chest and green flight feathers. These birds also have some red at the end of their tail, making them spectacularly colorful.

Lifespan

This bird can live up to 30 years when properly taken care of, making it a great long term companion. There are reports of some birds that have lived even longer. The genetics of each bird play a large role in how long they live, so you’ll want to keep that in mind.

Personality

You will find that the White Capped Pionus is a very social bird, but it can be a little on the shy side. This means that it is not always up for being held. It is important that you spend a good amount of time with this bird on a daily basis. Lack of social interaction can lead these birds to start plucking out their own feathers.

These birds are a bit eccentric, acting in a way that should provide you with lots of amusement over the years. They are known for being quite intelligent and are fairly easy to train. You will, however, need to be somewhat patient when you are training this bird. While they are pretty smart, they can also be a bit stubborn at times.

While this type of parrot isn’t very loud, it is a pretty talented talker. Those who live in an apartment shouldn’t have any issues with noise.

two White Capped Pionus on stick

Natural Habitat

The White Capped Pionus can be found across Mexico and Central America, mostly in densely wooded areas. These birds make their nests in hollow trees for the most part.

Caring for the White Capped Pionus

Diet

Anyone who owns a White Capped Pionus will want to feed it a seed and pellet mix that is specially formulated for parrots. You can also occasionally give these birds some fruits and veggies, but avoid avocado, as it is toxic to them. 

These birds absolutely love corn on the cob, and it makes for an excellent snack. Just make sure that you don’t give yours too many treats, as it can lead to rapid weight gain.

Environment

The cage that you keep your White Capped Pionus in should be no smaller than 24 by 24 by 32 inches. This will give it plenty of room to spread its wings and fly around a bit. These birds need plenty of space in their enclosure, so bigger is always better.

You’ll want to provide your bird with numerous swings, perches and toys that it can play with. It is very important that you keep your bird stimulated, both mentally and physically. These birds are very playful, so you should have lots of things in their cage to keep them occupied when you aren’t around.

If you have an outdoor aviary for this bird, it has to be temperature controlled. These birds can do very well in outdoor enclosures. It is a good idea to have a flight cage attached to the primary enclosure.

White Capped Pionus in a tree

Common Health Problems

Some of the more common health problems that your Pionus could develop include:

  • Parasites
  • Bacterial infection
  • Fungal infection
  • Respiratory problems
  • Vitamin A deficiency
  • Feather picking
  • Aspergillosis

It is important that you keep a lookout for signs of illness in your bird, including unusual head tilting, lack of appetite, cloudy eyes, and changes in the appearance of their feces. All of these things are strong indications that something is seriously wrong with your bird. You shouldn’t hesitate to take them to the vet. Make sure to stave off boredom to keep your bird healthy over the long term.

Grooming

You should make a point of trimming this bird’s wings if you want to keep it from flying around. This will reduce the chances of it escaping through a door or window that you left open. These birds’ beaks also need to be trimmed if they start getting too long. Keep in mind the pionus naturally has a longer beak than many other parrots.

The nails of your bird should also be kept trim. You should consider investing in a pair of nail trimmers specially designed for birds. You also have the option of taking them to the vet to have their nails trimmed, which is a lot easier.

Price

You can expect to pay anywhere from $200 to $500 for a White Capped Pionus, though some of them cost a little bit more. Handfed younglings can cost up to $600, depending on the seller. This is definitely not one of the more expensive parrots you can buy, but it’s also not the cheapest.

Conclusion

  • The White Capped Pionus is a fairly colorful and beautiful parrot that is often overlooked as a pet.
  • These birds are known for being very intelligent and highly trainable, though they can be stubborn at times.
  • While these birds like being held, they can definitely be shy.
  • Make sure that you get a fairly large cage for your bird so that it has room to spread its wings.
  • Put plenty of different toys, perches and swings in your bird’s cage to keep it occupied while you are away.
  • It is imperative that you spend at least half an hour each day interacting with your bird so it doesn’t get bored.
  • A high-quality seed/pellet mix is appropriate for these birds, and corn on the cob makes for a great snack.
  • You need to make a point of keeping this bird’s nails, flight feathers and beak trimmed.

Welcome to my blog. My name is Anna Liutko and I´m a certified cynologist (KAU, ACW) from Kiev, Ukraine. Handler, blue cross volunteer, owner of Chinese crested kennel "Salvador Dali" and breedless friend called Fenya. "I can't imagine my life without dogs and however I have 2 hairless dogs I totally support the idea #AdoptDontShop".

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