Classification Order Psittaciformes, Family Psittacidae Scientific Name Aratinga Solstitialis Other Common Names N/A
Species Description On average, Sun Conures weigh approximately 110
g (4 oz) and are approximately 30 cm (12 in) long. They are sexually
Adults have a rich yellow crown, nape,
mantle, lesser wing-coverts, tips of the greater wing-coverts, chest
and underwing-coverts. The face and belly are orange. The base of
the greater wing-coverts, tertials and base of the primaries are
green, while the secondaries, tips of the primaries and most of the
primary coverts are dark blue. The tail is olive-green with a blue
tip. From below, all the flight feathers are dark greyish. The bill
is black. The legs and the bare eye-ring are grey, but the latter
often fades to white in captivity (so using amount of grey or white
in the eye-ring for determining "purity" of an individual can be
misleading). It is easily confused with the closely related Jenday
Conure and Sulphur-breasted Parakeet, but the former has entirely
green wing-coverts, mantle and vent, while the latter has green
mottling to the mantle and less orange to the underparts. The Sun
Conure is also superficially similar to the pale-billed Golden
Juvenile Sun Conures display a predominantly green plumage and
resemble similar-aged Sulphur-breasted Parakeets. The distinctive
yellow, orange and reddish coloration on the back, abdomen and head
is attained with maturity.
Habitat Its exact ecological requirements remain
relatively poorly known. It is widely reported as occurring in
savanna and coastal forests, but recent sightings suggest it mainly
occurs at the edge of humid forest growing in foothills in the
Guiana Shield, and crosses more open habitats only when travelling
between patches of forest.
Like other members of the genus Aratinga, the Sun Conure is social
and typically occurs in groups of up to 30 individuals. It has been
reported as nesting in palm cavities. It mainly feeds on fruits,
flowers, berries, nuts, and the like. Otherwise, relatively little
is known about its behavior in the wild, in part due to confusion
over what information refers to the Sun Conure and what refers to
the Sulphur-breasted Parakeet. Regardless, the behavior of the two
is unlikely to differ to any great extent.
Distribution The Sun Conure occurs only in a relatively
small region of north-eastern South America: the north Brazilian
state of Roraima, southern Guyana, extreme southern Suriname, and
southern French Guiana. It also occurs as a vagrant to coastal
French Guiana. Its status in Venezuela is unclear, but there are
recent sightings from the south-east near Santa Elena de Uair�n.
Captivity Sun Conures are popular as pets because of
their bright coloration and ability to talk. Due to their
inquisitive temperaments, they demand a great deal of attention from
their owners, and can sometimes be loud. Like many parrots, they are
determined chewers and require toys and treats to chew on.
Hand reared pets can be very friendly towards humans that they are
familiar with, but they may be aggressive towards strangers.
Sometimes they can be aggressive towards the owner. They are one of
the friendliest of the Conure species, but they are one of the
Summary Conures are either large parakeets or small
parrots that are found in the western hemisphere. They are analogous
in size and way of life to the Old World's Rose-ringed Parakeets or
the Australian parakeets. All living conure species are found in
Central and South America; the extinct Conuropsis carolinensis or
Carolina Parakeet was an exception. Conures are often called the
clowns of the parrot world due to their constant attention seeking
behavior including hanging upside-down and swaying back and forth or
Despite being large for parakeets, conures are
lightly built with long tails and small (but strong) beaks. Conure
beaks always have a small cere and are usually horn-colored or
black. Most conure species live in flocks of 20 or more birds.
Conures often eat grain, which causes them to be treated as
agricultural pests in some places.
Conures are as diverse
a group as African Parrots, so trying to characterize them all is
difficult and inaccurate. The category conure is loosely-defined
because they do not currently constitute a natural, scientific
grouping. The term conure is now used mostly in aviculture.
Scientists tend to refer to these birds as "parrots" or "parakeets."