The scarlet macaw is one of the largest parrots in the world, growing to a length of up to 36 inches, with a 47-inch wingspan. It inhabits tropical forests throughout Central and South America. It is the national bird of Honduras.
Scarlet macaws have white faces and brilliant bright red plumage lined with orange, yellow, green and bright blue. They have large, thick, sharp bills. They feed on seeds, nuts, flowers, leaves, sap and bark. Because they consume large amounts of clay, they are able to eat fruit that is toxic to other animals and birds.
Scarlet macaws are monogamous and mate for life. The female lays a brood of one to four eggs in a tree cavity high above the forest floor and incubates the eggs for 24 to 28 days. The chicks remain in the nest for 85 to 95 days and stay with their parents for over a year. In the wild, scarlet macaws live for 40 to 50 years, while in captivity they can live as long as 70 to 80 years.
Scarlet macaws are intelligent and affectionate and make good pets. However, they are noisy and tend to get aggressive and destructive if neglected. They require plenty of exercise outside the cage and constant socialization to remain bonded with their owners. They are capable of doing simple tricks and developing small vocabularies.