You must have heard about Macaws. They are beautifully colored, long tail birds of the Parrot family. They are also found in tropical regions around the world. The main difference between a Macaw and a Parrot is their physical appearance. While Parrots have tails that are proportional to their body, Macaws have long tails. Their bare facial area is another difference.
The white Macaws are very rare and highly coveted members of the Macaw family. The Macaw family makes up about 18 species of the Parrot family. All of the birds come in different shapes, proportions, and color shades. Despite this, there are no natural white Macaws. Now you might wonder, how do they come about if there aren’t any white Macaws? That’s where the skin pigment comes in.
Are White Macaw and Albino Macaw the same?
Although Macaws come in several colors, there are no naturally white Macaws. So how do white Macaws come about? Well though they are magnificent creatures, the white pigment is caused by a disorder known as albinism.
Albinism occurs when there is a pigment production problem. Another physical representation of albinism in Macaws is their red eyes. The affected birds can sometimes retain their natural skin color, so the eye test is the actual albino test. To answer the initial question, white Macaws and albino Macaws are the same creatures.
Brief history and origin of the Albino Macaw
It is not certain when albinism was first spotted in birds or mammals. One thing is certain; both species can suffer from skin conditions. The albino Macaws, whose white skin has made it one of the most coveted birds in the world, is no exception. Though they don’t make up a lot of the parrot family, the Macaws generally are the most coveted of the same parrot family.
There are around three hundred and fifty species that are involved to make up the parrot family. Macaws make up about 18 of those. The Macaws generally are found in regions with rainforests. An example of such territory is the country of Amazon rainforest, Brazil. Australia is another country where different Macaw species are found. You can also spot the Cockatoo family over there.
White or Albino Macaws are not specific to any Macaw specie. They can be of any species; blue, gold, or yellow. However, white Macaws are generally Macaws with albinism. This condition has also reflected on the skin or feathers of the Macaw.
White Macaws have the same physical makeup as other Macaws. However, their lack of pigment makes it difficult for them to survive in the wild, unlike other Macaws. They also exhibit the same traits or characteristics of the Macaw family they belong. In a contained and monitored environment, the white Macaw can live for up to 40 years, and some go as high as 80 years.
The white Macaws physical appearance
If you pay closer attention to white macaws, you will get the idea that White Macaws are a part of the parrot family. They are called Parrot giants. They are bigger than the other parrots in the parrot family. Some of the Macaw species are as long as 40 inches. They have large, solid, and powerful beaks that help them crack open hard objects and foods. Though they also use it for protection a lot of the time, they are mostly harmless creatures. The white Macaws also share these characteristics.
The length of the Macaw is not its unique trait; Its colorful feathers are also one of the many reasons they stand out, unlike its family. The albino Macaw, however, is white all over, so it does not have the same color scheme. However, as we have mentioned earlier, the white Macaw shares similar features and characteristics as the other Macaw family. For example, they have bare facial patches.
Again like its family, the white Macaw has a dry, Sealy tongue. The Macaw uses this tongue to tap into fruits while feeding. You should know the tongue has a bone that makes tapping into fruits possible.
Because of the albinism, it suffers; the white Macaw has red eyes. Red eyes are a pretty good indicator of albinism. They also have long, graceful tails and gripping toes, which they use to latch unto trees.
The white Macaw shares all similarities with the typical Macaw, but they have white skin, feathers, and red eyes. This combination makes it very beautiful, which is appealing to a lot of people.
Where can you buy White Macaw?
Having combed the internet for where you can buy a white Macaw, there aren’t many places where you can find a white Macaw online. Though Macaws are generally highly sorted after, the White Macaw is the most coveted. The birds are coveted because of their beauty and rare nature. Rare birds are usually sold by collectors, highly rated bird stores, or exotic animal stores.
Collectors, in this case, are people who keep an extensive collection of rare animals and birds for any number of reasons. A typical bird collector should have a White Macaw.
The white Macaw birds are also sold at exotic pet stores. However, there is a long wait list for this type of bird. You might want to give them an offer they cannot refuse if they are to sell to you.
Though you can buy from the list mentioned above, the White Macaw is also sold illegally. This is because animal sales, especially international animal sales, are highly regulated. You can buy it illegally on the black market, but you are never sure how that purchase might turn out because of its unregulated nature. You must also explain to the authorities how you came about the bird.
How much does the White Macaw cost?
White Macaw can cost anywhere from a thousand dollars to the north of twenty thousand dollars. This is because of their coveted nature.
The White Macaws cost more than your average Macaw. They are more sort after and deemed more beautiful, so they cost more. In the bird market, it is rare to find, and it can cost more than fifty thousand dollars or more. Another reason for their high price is that the white macaws are mostly sold on the black market. Buying from the black market means you have many regulatory factors to consider.
How to take care of a White Macaw
Because of the fragile beauty of the bird, the white Macaws are pretty expensive and tedious to maintain.
For starters, you have to ensure a conducive environment for them. Remember, their natural habitat is in the rainforest, but they cannot survive long out there because of their lack of pigment. So it would be best if you kept them indoors most of the time. Indoors, away from the sun and potentially harsh weather is an excellent way to start.
The white Macaws are bigger, so they also need a substantial amount of space. The Wing span of a white Macaw can be several feet wide. Therefore, it would be best if you made a cage or nest for the Macaw that is at least double or triple that size. In addition, making the cell spacious would ensure the birds are comfortable. This protects them against banging their wings or body against the cage walls.
They can be very destructive and loud when they scream, so you must also factor that in when creating a space for them. The Macaws are probably one of the largest and loudest birds out there. Example of a factor to consider for their size: what kind of cage are you getting? Remember, their beaks are very powerful and can even break bones. You would also ensure that they can only cause minimal damage wherever you keep them.
They also need a lot of time, commitment, and attention. You can liken having a White Macaw to having a permanent toddler who is always ready to scream and break stuff for the next 60 years. They would require a lot of time and a great deal of attention from you.
You can feed them fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts; you should also try to get them to exercise their beaks now and then. Don’t forget to bring them toys. They deserve it.
Pros and cons of having a White Macaw
You might be thinking of having a white Macaw. Before you buy one you should know some more information about it. As with several other things, there are pros and cons to having a White Macaw which is discussed below.
- They make good pets and are highly sociable birds
- They forge strong bonds with their owners and adapt to their environment, especially when it is supportive.
- They can be brilliant birds
- They are easy to train
- Some of them (depending on the specie) can speak fluently
- They can be very destructive. You might end up replacing many pieces of furniture in your house several times.
- Their loud nature means you can rarely take them to public spaces. It also means you might have many wakeful nights for yourself.
- They are costly to purchase and equally expensive to maintain
- The attention they crave usually means less social life for yourself. Especially if you are the lone person taking care of the bird. It might also require you to live in seclusion because of its loud noise, which can be heard from several miles.
- They make challenging pets for first-time pet owners.
Are white Macaws extinct?
White Macaws are not extinct. But, because their whiteness results from a skin condition, i.e., albinism, that cannot be scientifically engineered, they are very difficult to come by. This makes it seem like they are extinct, but they aren’t.
Does the white Macaw bite?
The white Macaw does bite. Typically biting is not one of its instinct. The white Macaw would bite to protect itself against dangerous predators. Examples of such predators are snakes. They could bite their owners because they don’t understand them yet. For the white Macaw to bite you as an owner, your behavior must have made it feel like it was in danger. You would have to change whatever it is you are doing.
How rare is a white Macaw?
The white Macaws are extremely rare because of their condition. White Macaws are estimated to make up less than one percent of the total Macaw population. They are probably less than the Spix Macaw, which has only about 177 worldwide.
Does White Macaw talk?
The white Macaw, like all other members of the Macaw and parrot family, can talk. However, they need to be trained.
The white Macaws are magnificent creatures. They are difficult to come by and expensive to maintain. But trust me, they can be a pet for your life. They live anywhere from 40 to 80 years, so companionship would never be a problem.
Are you looking to get a pet Macaw? Well, for first-time pet owners, you are in for a shock. It is advised you have a pet for a good number of years, learn how to take care of one, and then try owning a Macaw.
More Read: Top 4 Premium Double Macaw Cage With Divider
Hi, I’m Regina Rios. Just another bird lover who loves to share knowledge from personal experience. I’ve grown up with pet birds since childhood as my mommy also loves birds. As I can’t pet many birds in open air in my house as my mom does; I created my first bird cage on my rooftop using wood, copper wire, and a metal shed in 2018 and start collecting pet birds. Now, I have so many pet birds such as Macaws, Parrot, Cockatiel, Parakeet, and others. Not only that, if I see natural birds are injured I keep them in my house until they get well. Now, my hobby becomes my income source as my home birds have babies and I sell them to birds lover like mine. I’ve created this blog to inspire others bird owners by sharing my personal knowledge. Good Luck!