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Meet the Parrotlets

Pacific Parrotlet Parrotlets are just what their name implies – tiny parrots.  Despite their diminutive stature – they average but 6 inches in length, and some are even smaller – they are “all parrot”.  Parrotlets combine all of the larger species qualities in a small package, with an important exception – they do not scream (but they can learn to speak)!

Parrotlet Species and Personalities
Seven species of parrotlet inhabit much of Mexico, Central America and South America.  All are clad in brilliant green with varying splotches of other colors, and a number of captive bred color mutations are available.

In common with lovebirds, parrotlets seem bent on convincing the world that small size is not a handicap – most are utterly fearless and extremely territorial.  They will recklessly attack birds, dogs, cats and other creatures many times their size, and should not be trusted in mixed aviaries.  However, they bond readily to people, make wonderfully affectionate pets, and may live for 25-30 years.  Perpetually on the move, these tiny bundles of energy will never fail to entertain you.

Popular Species in the USA
The Pacific or celestial parrotlet (Forpus colestis) is the species most commonly kept in the USA.  Ranging from western Ecuador to northwestern Peru, it is among the feistiest and most active of the group.  At a mere 4 ¾ inches in length, the green-rumped parrotlet (F. passerinus) is the smallest species.  It is somewhat more retiring than the Pacific, but makes an excellent introduction to parrot-keeping.

Parrotlets are wildly popular in European aviculture, but are only now coming into their own in the USA.

Information on breeding Parrotlets is available at:


  1. avatar

    Good information Frank! However, I must have some of the best parrotlets on earth, since they seem to go against much of the info given in the link you provided to “11 tips”. As far as being easy to breed, they have been the easiest of all the species I have bred over the years (from macaws to amazons to cockatiels and more.) I think they are the perfect choice for a beginner, and they are wonderful first pets for an older child if they are hand raised properly. This must include beginning training!

    Anyhow, I would love to share my experiences, and have started a blog (accessible from my website) to journal my breeding and raising of these wonderful little angels. Please feel free to visit!

    Keep up the terrific work here 🙂

  2. avatar

    Hello Kim, Frank Indiviglio here.

    Thanks for you’re the kind words and most interesting post. You seem to be doing some fine work with your birds…I enjoyed the photos and info.

    Keep it up! Good luck, enjoy and please keep me posted.

    Best regards, Frank Indiviglio.

About Frank Indiviglio

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I believe that I was born with an intense interest in animals, as neither I nor any of my family can recall a time when I was not fascinated by creatures large and small. One might imagine this to be an unfortunate set of circumstances for a person born and raised in the Bronx, but, in actuality, quite the opposite was true. Most importantly, my family encouraged both my interest and the extensive menagerie that sprung from it. My mother and grandmother somehow found ways to cope with the skunks, flying squirrels, octopus, caimans and countless other odd creatures that routinely arrived un-announced at our front door. Assisting in hand-feeding hatchling praying mantises and in eradicating hoards of mosquitoes (I once thought I had discovered “fresh-water brine shrimp” and stocked my tanks with thousands of mosquito larvae!) became second nature to them. My mother went on to become a serious naturalist, and has helped thousands learn about wildlife in her 16 years as a volunteer at the Bronx Zoo. My grandfather actively conspired in my zoo-buildings efforts, regularly appearing with chipmunks, boa constrictors, turtles rescued from the Fulton Fish Market and, especially, unusual marine creatures. It was his passion for seahorses that led me to write a book about them years later. Thank you very much, for a complete biography of my experience click here.
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