is a participant in the Amazon Associate program, we may earn a small commission from the qualifying sales of our suggested product links. Learn more.

How Long Do Scarlet Macaws Lives? 5 True Facts You Should Know

Scarlet Macaws are stunning parrots with beautiful green and red plumage. They are commonly used as pet parrots in different because of their friendly nature.

If you’re planning to adopt a Scarlet Macaws, you probably have already heard different stories about them.

Among these stories is that they can live for up to a century, and with that, you may start to wonder how long the feathered friend lives.

But how long do Scarlet Macaw live? You learn a lot about Scarlet Macaws in this article.

Details of How Long Do Scarlet Macaws Live

Details of How Long Do Scarlet Macaws Live

Many factors can determine the number of years the parrots can live.

For example, a Scarlet Macaw in the wild can live for up to 50 years, whereas one in captivity can survive for 75 years.

Scarlet Macaws are healthy and hardy birds. They live mostly in the wild, but you can find some living in captivity as pets.

The birds have a characteristic large size, which is why other animals don’t usually view them as prey.

However, they can be vulnerable to other predators when they are in their nests. For example, the hatchlings may fall prey to monkeys, snakes, and other birds.

The adults are mostly preyed on by larger birds like eagles or cats, but this rarely happens. Another threat to the bird’s life is smuggling and poaching.

Feeding, environment, level of care, and even interaction are factors that can influence the lifespan of the bird when in captivity.

In general, the average life of these beautiful birds is 50 years, whether it’s in the wild or in captivity. The birds have long lifespans, and in many cases, they even outlive their owners.

Scarlet Macaw Lifespan Overview

The bird’s lifespan when in the wild is shorter than when the bird is raised as a pet, and this is for many reasons. The bird is prone to attack other wild animals and larger birds.

In addition, the bird is exposed to a lot of other harsh situations in the wild, and this makes survival their only activity.

Scarlet Macaws tend to be on the move a lot, constantly changing their habitat.

This is sole because society is continuously encroaching on their habitat. In general, birds can live for 40 to 50 years when they are in the wild.

The birds are exposed to multiple threats and predators in the wild, like hawks, eagles, jaguars, monkeys, and snakes.

These predators will either feed on the birds, their eggs, and in some cases, it may be the chicks.

Humans also pose a great threat to the birds, and this is a result of illegal trading and deforestation.

Another interesting thing about the bird is that despite the threats posed to them, they are not considered to be an endangered species.

Although the number of Scarlet Macaws in some regions has reduced, its population still thrives in other regions like South America.

Every creature, regardless of their species, will definitely age one day, and scarlets are not left out.

For example, humans can live long, for up to 120 years or more. However, not every human enjoys life for that long.

The same goes for every creature. For Scarlet Macaws, the average lifespan in the wild is 50 years.

However, some of these birds have lived for up to 100 years, especially when in captivity.

Examples of some of these birds that have lived long based on reports from different records include Cookie, the name given to Major Mitchell’s cockatoo.

The bird died at 83 in 2016. Another example is Charlie, the famous blue and gold Scarlet Macaw that was unofficially given over 115 years.

Old Man is another example of a Scarlet Macaw that’s 75 years old.

There are so many other Scarlet Macaws that have lived for many years, even longer than the average lifespan expected.

However, the common thing with them all is that they were all raised as pets, and this is mostly in captivity.

Therefore, we can say that environmental and surrounding factors play a key role in determining the lifespan of the bird.

Scarlet Macaw Lifespan in Captivity

As earlier mentioned, the birds generally live longer when raised in captivity, unlike when they live in the wild.

The minimum they can live for in captivity is 50 years, but some can live for up to 75 years.

The most important factor that determines how long the bird will live when in captivity is the level of care given to the bird.

These factors also include their feeding. In general, Macaws should only be fed a healthy and balanced diet.

In addition to that, they often require a stress-free and spacious environment. Regular interaction will also help to extend the lifespan of a Scarlet Macaw.

If the bird receives proper care, you can be sure that it will outlive its counterparts in the wild. The bird can also outlive other pets and even its owner.

Because of this, owning a Scarlet Macaw can be a huge responsibility, and it often requires effective planning, especially in cases of unforeseen circumstances.

In some cases, catering for the bird may become much of a burden for you.

With that, you’ll need to opt for other options to ensure that the bird continues to receive proper care and attention.

Factors That Affect the Lifespan of a Scarlet Macaw

Factors That Affect the Lifespan of a Scarlet Macaw

It’s clear that birds can live for many years, but they don’t all live that long. Although we mentioned earlier that when raised as a pet, they can live longer, unlike when in the wild.

However, there are cases whereby the bird lived longer in the wild than in captivity. You might want to think about how this is possible.

Some users are always in a hurry to own these birds, and when they eventually do, they pay very little attention to the bird’s needs.

To avoid this, you’ll need to understand the factors that can affect the lifespan of a Scarlet Macaw, and they include:

01. Diet

Most people think that seeds are enough to meet their dietary needs because they are small birds.

However, this will lead to malnutrition and death. You’ll need to feed the bird with veggies and parrot pellets regularly.

02. Housing

Leaving the bird in a cage all the time will only cause them stress. Doing this can also cause obesity and even death.

The birds need regular exercise, no matter how small. You can get toys for the bird and create time for them to exercise regularly.

03. Socialization

The birds need a lot of attention because they are equally social beings. Boredom and loneliness can cause them to start plucking their feathers.

They may also develop different behavioral issues like excessive vocalization and aggression.

04. Entertainment

If you own a Scarlet Macaw, you’ll need to ensure that they never get bored. You’ll need to find ways to ensure that they are always busy, and for this, you can get them toys.

05. Safety

Safety is also a factor that affects the bird’s lifespan. Ensure that you keep the bird away from smoke and fumes.

In addition to these factors, it’s advisable to have the number of your vet ready in case of any unforeseen circumstances.

If you need a new cage for your Parakeets then this guide is for you.

Types of Scarlet Macaws

Scarlet Macaw is also known as Ara Macao, and they have two subspecies – Ara Macao and Ara Macao Cyanoptera.

What does available information say about these two subspecies? Most breeders will tell you it’s best to classify them differently.

A 1994 study in the Ornitologia Neotropical journal recognizes the subspecies Ara Macao cyanoptera.

The subspecies can be geographically and visually distinguished from each other.

The Ara Macao cyanoptera are larger, and they are from North Central America.

On the other hand, Ara Macao Macao originates from regions between Brazil and Central Nicaragua, and they mostly have green wingtips.

Suppose you are not sure about the type of Scarlet Macaw you have. In that case, you can opt for DNA analysis to further show whether it’s an Ara Macao Cyanoptera or Ara Macao.

Different researchers across Texas A & M and the American Museum of Nature have sequenced the genes of both subspecies, and they are available to help you differentiate.

Colors of Scarlet Macaws

As mentioned earlier, there are two subspecies of the bird, and the various ways of distinguishing between them include using their colors.

The birds mostly have a vivid red color with blue and bright yellow edging on their wings.

In some cases, the bird may have a green band around the region where the blue and yellow color meets.

The bird has a lot of distinctive features. For example, its bill has a black lower mandible and a horn-colored mandible, while the eye is white.

It’s not usually easy to distinguish between males and females, but there are a couple of sex methods that you can use.

The most efficient of these methods are surgical sexing and genetic sexing.

How to Take Care of Scarlet Macaw in Captivity

How to Take Care of Scarlet Macaw in Captivity

If you’ve decided to own a Scarlet Macaw, or you already own one, then you must know how to take care of them.

You need to ensure you consider all the important factors for their survival and to keep the bird safe.

Here are a few other things you’ll need to do:

a) The bird’s comfort should be a top priority for you, and one way to ensure guaranteed comfort is by keeping the temperature of your home between 21- and 27-degrees C.

b) For their cage, you’ll need to ensure that it’s large enough and that there’s enough space for the bird.

c) Additionally, you’ll need to ensure that there are different toys and branches within the cage.

This is to keep entertained all the time and for enough beak exercise.

Ensuring that the bird can engage in different activities will keep the bird happy and healthy.

d) The bird requires regular grooming, and you’ll need to trim its nails frequently.

In addition, you’ll also need to bathe the bird regularly as they originate from the tropical rainforests.

e) Scarlet Macaws like to mate, and they usually have different breeding seasons, depending on location and season.

f) Always remember to take the birds out of their cage. This should be done every day and for nothing less than least three hours.

This is important for their overall health. The bird requires a lot of space, and they poorly tolerate being restricted.

g) The last thing to always do is to properly feed the birds. Food options include fruits, vegetables, seeds, berries, and nuts. You can also include high-quality pellets in their diet.

People Also Ask For

Here are answers to some of the most asked questions about Scarlet Macaws:

Where Does Scarlet Macaw live?

The birds are native to South and Central America but may extend to eastern Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Brazil.

There are also populations of birds in Florida, although they are not native to Florida. Some of these birds either escaped or were released.

Where Do They Nest?

The bird likes to build nests in tree hollows, especially those that form naturally. Sometimes, they may build their nests in hollows that were created by other larger birds.

What Does The Bird Look Like?

It’s easy to identify the bird as they have brilliant plumage. The head of the bird is bright red, as well as the shoulders and long tail.

It has dark blue on its rump and yellow on its wings. The face around the eyes and bill are white.

The male and female Scarlet Macaws are identical, but you can easily differentiate between the adult and the juvenile. The adult has yellow eyes, while the juvenile has dark eyes.

How Strong is The Bird?

The bird has a mighty beak, and it uses it for crushing hard-shelled nuts seeds and for climbing as well.

It also uses its stout and toes to grab hold of things. The wings are also powerful, allowing the bird to fly long distances.


We have covered all the key things you should know about Scarlet Macaws, including how long they can live.

The birds are incredible, whether they are in the wild or used as a pet in captivity.

Scarlet macaws have a long lifespan, and they usually outlive their owners and other pets.

However, for this to be possible, they require a stress-free environment, enough exercise, and a healthy diet.

With this, you can be sure that the bird will live for up to 50 years or even longer.