“Blue-headed Pionus are the most commonly available Pionus species” (Source)

If you are like one of my closest friends, and you are looking into the right parrot for you, you need to look carefully. The cockatoo family is energetic, animated and jovial, but these are the loudest parrots I know of and they require great amounts of love and attention. If you are in an apartment or a condo, you’d probably get kicked out!

On the other hand, the Blue-headed Pionus, native to South and Central America, is easily one of the best apartment parrots you can choose. Why?


This parrot is sweet, likes people but is also independent. While she requires significant time and attention from her keeper, like any other parrot, she is also good at being on her own.
Parrots are often referred to as “fids,” or ‘feathered-kids.’ This is because this isn’t a pet, like a fish, that is meant to be fed and admired. A parrot is more of a companion, one of the most intelligent animals (scientifically currently rivaling apes) that requires engagement, interaction and mental stimulation in order to be emotionally (and therefore physically) healthy.

Parrots are true companions, but that’s what I like about the Pionus:
“They are very affectionate and although they are not birds that particularly enjoy being cuddled, they do love a head scratch.They are quite independent birds, they are happy to amuse themselves with toys and food without constant attention from the owner. Well-socialized pionus parrots really enjoy interacting with people.” Source: Beauty of Birds

Physical Attributes of Pionus menstruus Species (Blue-headed Pionus)

This medium-sized parrot is an average of 11 inches (27 cm) long and adults weigh around 230-295 grams. Great size!

The Blue-headed Pionus is not sexually dimorphic, so males can’t be distinguished from females. To know the gender, a DNA test is required.

Voice: Sound Level & Talking Ability

Being highly intelligent seems to mean that parrots do what they want, some some talkers, don’t. Yes, a Blue-headed Pionus have the ability, though some simply don’t. Depends on each bird. The Blue-headed Pionus that do talk sound squeeky, but are said to be fair talkers.

Feeding Your Blue-headed Pionus

Most parrots fall under the same dietary requirement and should be fed mostly high-quality pellets, as these are formulated to offer birds almost everything they need to eat. Additionally, fresh fruits and vegetables should be offered daily, (no avocados, these are toxic to parrots) with seeds given occasionally as treats.

Birds should not eat many fats, and this is more so true for the Blue-headed Pionus.

This is meant as general feeding information, look for more specific information or contact your avian veterinarian to learn more specifics about feeding your Pionus.

Is A Blue-headed Pionus Right for Me?

This is the right bird for you if you don’t want a ‘noisy’ parrot. If you’ve never had a parrot before, the Blue-headed Pionus may be perfect for you because, in addition to their beautiful blue heads and gorgeous, shimmering feathers in sunlight, a Pionus won’t require the same amount of time that less independent parrots need.

Being a medium-sized parrot, the Blue-headed Pionus can also do well out of it’s cage in your home. Provide him with a couple of perches so that he has his “space” to play, eat and spend time (in addition to his cage) and you won’t have a hard time keeping track of him, like you could with a smaller parrot who can hide in small spaces!

A Parrot-Safe Home

Make sure not to have scented products, such as candles, perfume or air fresheners. My theory is that it’s really bad for them, which is a fact, therefore it can’t really be good for you and me either! Also be careful to not use Teflon cookware, as the fumes can be extremely hazardous to parrots (can cause death).

For more on Keeping A Healthy Parrot, check out our blogs on Healthy Parrot.

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