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Last updated on April 21, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

Green-winged Macaw, Ara chloropterus

The Green-winged Macaw (Ara chloropterus), also known as the Red-and-green Macaw, is a species of parrot found throughout northern South America. Although this is the most common macaw in the wild, its numbers are declining due to habitat loss and illegal capture for the pet trade.

The breast of the Green-winged Macaw is bright red. The lower feathers of the wing are green. The reddish tail is surrounded by teal feathers. There are red lines around the eyes. This is a large, strong bird and is the second largest macaw in the wild. It has a body length of 39 inches and weighs nearly 3.75 pounds. The wingspan is 49 inches. It has a powerful beak that generates up to 2000 pounds of pressure and an adult can easily snap tree branches that are 5 to 6 inches in diameter. It uses its beak to break open nuts and seeds.

This species usually mates for life. The female lays two to three eggs in a nest in a tree hole. The female incubates the eggs for 28 days, and the young fledge after about 90 days. The typical diet of this bird is fruit, vegetable matter, nuts and seeds.

This is a popular bird in the pet trade, but it is high maintenance. It is expensive to acquire and maintain, and it is a very noisy bird cage bird. On the other hand, it is very affectionate and intelligent. This species is illegal to own in the U.S. and Canada, but is often smuggled in where it ends up being seized by authorities most of the time. Many other birds die from stress during transport.

Image Caption: Green-winged Macaw (also known as Red-and-green Macaw) at Apenheul Primate Park, Apeldoorn, Netherlands. Credit: Arjan Haverkamp/Wikipedia (CC Attribution 2.0)

Green-winged Macaw Ara chloropterus