Elegant Parrot (Neophema elegans)

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Elegant Parrot
Neophema elegans
Elegant Parrot (Neophema elegans)
Name Elegant Parrot
Name Lat. Neophema elegans
Family Parrots
Family lat. Psittacidae
Order Parrots
Order lat. Psittaciformes
Origin Australia
Climate Subtropical - tropical
Diet Budgie seed, veggies, fruits
Keeping Pair, group
Care Level Easy
Reproduction Cavity nest
Life Span 10-15 years
Protection CITES Appendix II; EC Annex B
Metric Units
Size 23 cm
Temperature Room temperature
Housing 100 x 50 x 50 cm
US Units
Size 9.1"
Temperature Room temperature
Housing 40" x 20" x 20"

Distribution and habitat

The jewel parakeets are widespread from southwestern to southeastern Australia, where they live in sparse forests, savannas, marshes, grasslands and cultivated land. Since the export ban in 1960, they are only available as offspring and are bred in several color mutations.

Cage size

The minimum cage size is 100 x 50 x 50 cm (L x W x H) for a pair. The cage size must not be undercut even in case of justified single keeping. For an additional 2 birds, assuming species compatibility, the floor space must be increased by 50%. The cage must be placed at a height of at least 80 cm (except aviaries) in a bright, draught-free and quiet place and should have cross-wiring or netting. Keeping in an aviary with a floor area of at least 1 m² is preferable to keeping in a cage.


The floor must be covered with sand, shavings of untreated wood or similar material and cleaned once a week if possible. At least 2 perches made of wood or branches of different thickness and height shall be installed in such a way as to provide the longest possible flight path and prevent contamination of the feed and water containers. A bathing facility should be available at all times, alternatively they can be sprayed with water at least once a week. They need climbing and employment material, such as rings, ropes and natural branches that are not harmful to health. They should be kept at room temperature.


The species-specific food supply consists of mixed seeds, available in specialized trade as "neopheme food" in premium quality, supplemented with foxtail millet, green food (chickweed, green panicle millet and grass panicles), vegetables (peppers, grated carrots, etc.), fruit (apples, berries, etc.), occasionally insect food and, especially for rearing young, germ and egg food. If there are several animals, set up several feeding stations. They need grit, cuttlefish and vitamin lime as digestive aids. Water must always be available in birdbaths or in stable, open containers. Feed and water must be offered fresh daily, and the containers must be cleaned beforehand.

A varied diet promotes health and prevents deficiency symptoms.

Reproduction and breeding

Males have an orange-red spot on their abdomen, which females lack.

They breed in budgerigar nest boxes or in hollowed tree trunks. Bark mulch or sawdust from conifers is suitable as nest box bedding. The clutch consists of 4-6 eggs, the brood duration is about 18 days. The incubation period in open-air aviaries is, biologically speaking, from March to August. Young birds should be raised so that they are species-specific.

Species protection

They should be provided with a leg ring. They are exempt from the obligation to notify (Federal Species Protection Ordinance Annex 5 to § 7 para. 2). Your pet store will be happy to provide you with further information.

Protection of species: WA appendix II; EU appendix B. The purchase receipt is the required proof of origin for the animal. Please keep it safe!


In the case of outdoor aviaries, they also need a heated shelter of at least 0.5 m², which can be visited by the birds at any time. The temperature in the shelter must not fall below 5 °C and the furnishings must correspond to those of cage keeping

They often stay on the ground and search for food there

They may only be kept in pairs or in a group. Socialization with other small parrots or finches is possible. In rooms, also in shelters, sufficient daylight or flicker-free artificial light (stroboscopic effect) corresponding to daylight should be provided. The lighting duration shall be 8-12 hours per day and the natural day-night rhythm shall be observed. Adequate indoor climate should be provided. If caged, they should be allowed free flight. The health condition of the birds should be checked daily.

Further literature can be found in your pet store.


Text: Othmar Sieberer; Image: petdata 

Source: BMELV (1995): Tierschutzgutachten - Mindestanforderungen an die Haltung von Papageien; ARNDT (1997): Lexikon der Papageien, Arndt Verlag; GRUMMT & STREHLOW (2009): Zootierhaltung - Tiere in menschlicher Obhut: Vögel, Verlag Harri Deutsch  

  • Gemäß § 21 Abs. 5 Tierschutzgesetz idgF