Because of their beauty, intelligence and exotic nature, parrots have become popular pets. While cockatoos, macaws and African grey parrots are fairly recognisable by sight, one less common but beautiful parrot is the Indian ringneck parrot, also known as the Indian ringneck parakeet.
The Indian ringneck parrot is a smaller, 16- to 20-inch bird with prominent, 8-inch tail feathers. It sports vibrant plumage; Indian ringnecks are typically green or teal, with a yellowish undercolor. Male parrots have a prominent black ring around their throats with highlights of red and blue. Ringneck beaks typically have a black tip. In captivity, breeders have created many colour mutations, leading to yellow, white and bright blue parrots.
The personality of an Indian ringneck most often comes down to the amount of attention it receives. If ignored by its owner, a ringneck can quickly become nippy and moody. When paid attention to, it is a showy, affectionate bird. According to Avian Web, ringnecks can become very loyal to a specific person and aggressive toward potential rivals such as other pets.
Indian ringnecks are not the most vocal of parrots, although unhappy parrots are known to screech and whistle. For their size, according to the website Indian Ringneck, they are very clear speakers when they do talk. Some enthusiasts claim their vocal abilities, when properly cultivated, rival those of African greys and amazons.
Indian ringnecks are native to the forests of Asia, particularly Malaysia, Indonesia and India. Smaller populations also exist in Africa. Though obviously not native, some populations of Indian ringnecks have appeared in California and Florida, where the climate is similar to their homelands. These emigrating parrots are most likely escaped imports and their descendants.
There is some controversy over Indian ringnecks as pets. Some people claim they are bad-tempered birds who are quick to bite and spend an exorbitant amount of time screeching. Others, however, maintain that a "bad ringneck" is only the result of neglect. Like many parrots, ringnecks can become moody during puberty and breeding season, due to fluctuating hormones. With proper attention and training, especially from a young age, the Indian ringneck can be a loving, intelligent pet. With a lifespan of around 25 years, the Indian redneck can be an enduring, entertaining member of the family.