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    Red-lored Amazon

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    Appearance

    The Red-lored Amazon (Amazona autumnalis), also called the Yellow-cheeked Amazon, is a devoted pet when tamed. These species have a forehead of bright red. The lores are also red, as is to be expected from the common name used in the United States. The cheeks are yellow, which accounts for the alternative name of the yellow-cheeked Amazon.

    The crown and nape are bluish purple. Feathers of the lower nape and back are dark green and have dusky scalloping. Wing primaries are blue-black and green. The bend of the wing is red. The rail is green with a yellowish-green band, as in many other Amazons. There is also a white eye ring on this Amazon.

    Distribution

    In the wild, this parrot is found throughout the lowlands of eastern and central Mexico and also to Brazil. It flies in flocks that may number from a few individuals to over a hundred. They are very active during the day and feed on a variety of fruits, nuts and berries.

    As Pets

    This stocky, mid-sized Amazon has a good reputation in most areas as a companion, with the notable exception of the loud volume of its calls and potential for problem screaming. Curious and energetic, domestics have a reputation as good talkers. As with the mealy Amazons, the red-lored’s disposition is often so good that the volume doesn’t matter.

    Domestically raised red-loreds are not as noisy as their imported predecessors. Both male and female birds are cuddly, almost never refusing a head rub. Males are more aggressive in the spring. The red-lored is much valued for being very loyal to humans in its flock, although the number of humans accepted by the bird may be limited.

    Maintainance

    Red-loreds sometimes require more beak maintenance than other parrots, as this is the only common companion Amazon with a tendency to malocclusion of the mandible and maxilla called scissor beak. This may be a genetic predisposition that is being bred out as more domestics are available. This may be a seasonal problem occurring primarily during the breeding season. Red-loreds have been reported to be affected by idiopathic epilepsy (epilepsy of unknown origin).

    Video Credits: Carlos Ureña
    Image Credits: Kurt Bauschardt

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