PetKeen advocates for adopting before shopping. However, we understand that there are many reasons for seeking a breeder or purchasing from a store, so we encourage it to be done the right way. Learn more here.
Some folks have a special love for exotic birds, and we can’t blame them! Parrots like the wonderful Macaw have vibrant personalities and beautiful feathers. These hyper-intelligent creatures will impress you daily with their intuitiveness, mental capabilities, and bonding intensity.
If you would like to adopt or purchase a Macaw but are wondering if you’re making the right choice, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we explain where to buy a Macaw responsibly and the specifics of owning this bird so you can see if they’re a pet that you could properly provide for.
Owning a bird is much different from owning a dog or a cat, so knowing the care requirements is essential.
Macaws as Pets: What to Know Before Welcoming One Into Your Home
Owning any bird is a huge responsibility. After all, you’re domesticating some of their most basic, natural instincts. You must learn their diet, exercise needs, and behaviors. Owning a bird is not for everyone. In fact, some birds shouldn’t be kept as pets at all, as their care requirements are far too specific and complex for most people to oblige, but the illegal pet trade continues to supply them.
Many birds find themselves in situations where they are moved around from home to home due to a lack of education and appropriate caretaking by the owners.
Once you make a Macaw your pet, you have to be prepared for the extensive time that you need to spend with them, as this is a highly social bird that requires constant attention. If your bird gets lonely, they can become depressed and develop nervous or unwanted behaviors.
Since you have to clip their wings to prevent them from flying or hurting themselves, you have to find other ways to encourage them to use their wings to keep them strong. Also, feather care is very important. You must ensure they’re grooming properly and help them when needed.
Where to Adopt a Macaw
There are tons of rescue centers and facilities explicitly designated for avian species. What is fantastic about these rescues is that they have staff on hand to educate people and place these beautiful creatures with suitable families. You can be aware of any health issues or behavioral challenges with each potential Macaw. The staff can also get to know a little about your living situation and lifestyle to ensure that you are up for the commitment before you adopt.
Rescues can help you decide whether this type of bird is truly a fit for you. At this link, you can view the rescues and sanctuaries for Macaws and other types of parrots throughout the U.S.A.
Here are a few of our favorites for Macaws specifically.
1. The Charlie Brown Bird Rescue — Columbus, Ohio
The Charlie Brown Bird Rescue is located in Columbus, Ohio. This rescue takes in parrots of all kinds, placing them in loving forever homes. Many birds are surrendered to them every year, and the staff works diligently to find the correct living situation for each bird they acquire.
2. Patty’s Parrot Palace — DeLand, Florida
The staff at Patty’s Parrot Palace rescues and rehomes beautiful birds that have found themselves in unwanted situations. They also rehabilitate birds to get them back to health before placement. In addition, they offer educational classes, boarding, and tours to raise awareness.
3. Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary — Del Mar, California
At the Free Flight Exotic Bird Sanctuary in Del Mar, California, the team’s mission is to rehabilitate and re-socialize birds in less-than-favorable situations. They also offer tons of educational classes to help people understand these beautiful birds better.
Where to Buy a Macaw Online
Before we explain where you can purchase a Macaw online, we have to express strong precautions here. Shipment can be very stressful for birds, making them susceptible to sickness and injury.
If you choose to buy a Macaw online, it’s best to research the breeder or facility thoroughly to make sure they follow the correct protocols and deliver their birds in prime condition.
1. The Macaw Farm
The Macaw Farm is an online breeder that was established in 2012. The staff tries to provide the correct education necessary for sales. They have various different Macaws but try to protect those that are endangered so they don’t get passed around in the pet trade. Depending on your preference, you can buy eggs, hand-raised babies, or adults.
2. Terry’s Parrot Farm
Terry’s Parrot Farm is an online breeder that specializes in parrots of all kinds. In order to reserve a parrot from Terry’s, you must place a deposit of $400, regardless of the total cost of the parrot. Each parrot comes with appropriate DNA genetic testing, vaccinations, health screenings, and vet checks.
3. Silver Line Breeders
Silver Line Breeders sells Macaws of varying ages. These birds are typically between the ages of 2 and 10. So, this is a very good selection if you’re looking for an established adult.
How Much Does a Macaw Cost Online?
Macaws can range drastically in price—from as low as $50 for an egg to several thousand dollars for a fully established adult. Ultimately, you have to decide what life stage is best for you to start with.
Make sure you research the company you plan to purchase from, and be aware of extra low prices, as this could indicate improper care techniques.
Pet Stores That Sell Macaws
You can certainly find a Macaw at a pet store. This is one of the most readily available ways to secure this type of bird. However, not all pet stores have large parrots like Macaws. Many have decided to discontinue selling these beautiful birds as awareness spreads about the illegal and dangerous bird trade.
So, it is important to do your research to ensure that a pet shop near you carries these beautiful creatures. However, remember that some pet stores buy from unreliable sources where birds haven’t been properly handled or treated correctly. This sentiment doesn’t just extend to birds but many other pets in the industry. It’s important to know beforehand how a shop obtains its pets and the quality of each bird it offers.
Purchasing a Macaw from a pet shop—or anywhere, for that matter—can be extremely pricey, so you’ll need to prepare for the cost of the bird, all of their supplies, and their daily diet.
Petland often has Macaws for sale. You might have to inquire with an employee about obtaining one if the location nearest you does not have them available at the moment. Often, it can ship from another store or give you instructions on how to make that happen.
How Much Does a Macaw Cost in Store?
Traditionally, Macaws are extremely expensive birds. Whether you buy one from a breeder or online, you have to consider that they will have a very long lifespan and be incredibly intelligent. It’s no wonder that these beauties are top dollar. It also tends to weed out buyers who aren’t quite as serious about the Macaw, which hopefully means they’ll end up in the correct home.
Macaw Breeder Information
If you would rather go to a breeder to see how they operate firsthand, this can be a perfect way to gauge the overall health and quality of your potential Macaw.
Breeders might be more expensive than some other options, but they typically follow a strict regimen to ensure that they are selling the best Macaws possible. Be bold and ask questions, getting as much information as possible about the breeder before deciding.
If you feel confident in the breeder’s expertise and handling, you can follow their instructions on how to acquire a bird. Some people have extensive wait times or careful selection, while others have Macaws readily available at all times.
Top 6 Tips for Adopting or Buying a Macaw
If you’re certain that you’re going to bring home a Macaw soon, here are a few adopting and buying tips that might benefit you.
1. Consider the Commitment
Owning a Macaw is a huge responsibility! It requires extensive knowledge, proper planning, adequate housing, and an appropriate diet to ensure that the Macaw is living the best life that they can under your care.
Also, Macaws live for a very long time. It’s important to understand that you’re not getting a dog that lives 15 years, but a bird that can live longer than you! You need to understand what a commitment this is and put measures in place if something happens to you so your bird is taken care of.
2. Do Your Research Diligently
The best thing that you can do before you buy a Macaw is to do all the research you can. These complex animals have very particular needs, and education is critical.
Carefully learn all of the ins and outs about the bird itself so you can make sure you can provide the bird with the right life, both financially and otherwise.
3. Secure a Vet
Finding an exotic veterinarian can be quite a challenge. These vets are few and far between, as most traditional veterinarians do not take birds. Make sure you have located one within a reasonable distance of you in case you ever need them.
Your bird should have checkups just like any other pet, and you need a place to take them if something goes wrong. Keep in mind that exotic pet care can be extensively more expensive than traditional vet care.
Check into pet insurance and other forms of financial security regarding emergency or unexpected vet bills.
4. Consider Adoption First
Tons of Macaws need suitable homes. They are rescues and shelters across the nation. Also, many families and individuals find themselves in situations where they can no longer take care of their birds.
Due to their extensive lifespans, they can easily outlive their owners. So, before you try to purchase a Macaw, consider that many of these wonderful birds deserve a second chance at a forever home.
5. Be Prepared for Waiting Lists & Home Checks
If you are adopting a Macaw from a rescue or shelter, be prepared to jump through some hoops. It might require home visits, questionnaires, counseling sessions, and other work on your part.
Also, since many shelters want to place these birds into the correct homes, you might be put on a waiting list. When a Macaw comes up that matches your situation, you will be contacted and offered to adopt.
6. Select the Correct Breeder
Selecting the correct breeder is one of the most important things you can do. It will ensure that you get a quality bird that has been hand-raised and vet-tested. Raising a juvenile bird is challenging, and the breeder can set the foundation for success.
Many reputable breeders will encourage you to reach out with any questions or concerns as your bird develops. They might also take the bird back if you cannot care for them in the future.
It’s important to read satisfaction reviews and learn about the breeder’s reputation before you make your final decision. Nothing paints a clearer picture than checking what experiences other people have had working with the breeder.
Macaws are brilliant birds with extensive lifespans, and they require proper attention and care. If you’re the type of person who can commit to such a responsibility, you might want to buy a hatchling from a breeder. However, if you would rather give an older Macaw a second chance, consider adoption first. Be sure you are capable of enriching their daily life with exciting activities and interaction.
Featured Image Credit: Vader Chen, Shutterstock