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What Is a Mustached Parakeet?

Judith Smith Sullivan
Judith Smith Sullivan

The mustached parakeet is a medium-sized tropical bird in the parrot family. It has a green body, a pink breast, and a large black marking across its face, earning it the name "mustached parakeet." It is found in the wild in parts of Asia and the South Pacific and is from the family of birds called ringnecks. In the wild, the mustached parakeet is part of a 10 to 50 bird flock.

An alternate spelling for the mustached parakeet is the moustache parakeet. It is also called the red breasted parakeet because of the pink or red coloring across its torso. There are many subspecies in the ringneck parrot family, but the mustached parakeet is one of the more personable and intelligent of the group.

Veterinarian with a puppy
Veterinarian with a puppy

The adult bird typically measures 13 to 16 inches (33 to 40 cm) in height and usually weighs between 3.75 and 4.5 ounces (100 to 130 grams). It has a fairly long life span of up to 25 years. Adult males have red or orange beaks and females have black beaks.

Their size, colorful feathers, and personality make these birds popular as pets. Mustached parakeets can learn to mimic language and to whistle tunes. If they are properly fed, cared for, and socialized, they are pleasant, congenial cage birds for many years.

As a pet, the mustached parakeet must be socialized early in its life to reduce aggression in its personality. Socialization can be done through humans, but mustached parakeets are happiest with one or more other birds. If the bird is kept alone, it must have daily human companionship.

Active and playful birds, mustached parakeets need a very large cage with many toys and perches. They should be able to climb and fly, to some extent, in their cages. For optimum exercise and contentment, a pet parakeet should be let out of its cage at least once a day for 30 minutes.

Although generally considered a good pet bird, the mustached parakeet has a distinct personality. It is often called feisty, opinionated, and bossy. Properly socializing the bird and providing some discipline can help the bird adapt to living with humans. Teaching the bird to talk and whistle can also help to reduce screeching or screaming, a common problem with pet parrots.

Curious and exploratory, mustached parakeets will try a large variety of foods. They will eat plain pellets, seeds, nuts, and fruits. They like to be clean and preened, but they have a significant molt twice yearly. They need a large cage and a perch made of concrete to help keep their beaks and claws trimmed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Mustached Parakeet?

A Mustached Parakeet is a medium-sized parrot species, known scientifically as Psittacula alexandri, characterized by its distinctive facial markings that resemble a mustache. Native to South and Southeast Asia, these birds are admired for their striking plumage, playful nature, and vocal abilities, making them popular pets among avian enthusiasts.

What does a Mustached Parakeet look like?

Mustached Parakeets boast a grey-blue head with a black stripe resembling a mustache, a pinkish collar, and a predominantly green body. Males typically have a reddish-pink beak, while females have a black one. Their tail feathers are long and pointed, with yellow underparts, adding to their visual appeal.

What is the natural habitat of the Mustached Parakeet?

The natural habitat of the Mustached Parakeet spans across woodlands, forests, and mangroves in South and Southeast Asia. They are often found in flocks near water sources and agricultural areas, where they can feed on seeds, fruits, and berries. Urbanization has led them to adapt to city parks and gardens as well.

How long do Mustached Parakeets live?

In captivity, with proper care, Mustached Parakeets can live for 20 to 30 years. Their lifespan in the wild tends to be shorter due to predation, habitat loss, and other environmental factors. Providing a nutritious diet, regular veterinary care, and mental stimulation can contribute to a longer, healthier life for these birds.

Are Mustached Parakeets good pets?

Mustached Parakeets are considered good pets for those who can dedicate time and attention to their care. They are intelligent, social, and can be trained to perform tricks and mimic sounds. However, they require a spacious cage, a varied diet, and plenty of social interaction to thrive in a domestic setting.

What should I feed my Mustached Parakeet?

A balanced diet for a Mustached Parakeet should include high-quality pellet food, fresh fruits, and vegetables, supplemented with seeds and nuts in moderation. It's important to avoid avocado, chocolate, and caffeine, which are toxic to birds. Regular access to clean water for drinking and bathing is also essential for their health.

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    • Veterinarian with a puppy
      Veterinarian with a puppy