Macaws are known for their large, curved beaks; loud, squawking calls; and bright, bold colors. Macaws are very social birds, living in flocks of 10 to 30 other individuals.
The large, curved beak of the macaw is designed to crush nuts and seeds. Some macaws have been observed to file down the shell of nuts and seeds by rubbing them on their beaks. This allows them to break the shell more easily. These birds are seldom seen alone. They spend time in pairs, family groups, and flocks. This behavior protects them from predators.
Scarlet macaw, yellow-headed parrot
CLASS: Aves (birds)
ORDER: Psittaciformes (parrots)
FAMILY: Psittacidae (parrot)
GENUS/SPECIES: 17 different species
Size: Largest: 3 ft (1 m); Smallest: almost 1 ft (0.3 m)
Weight: Largest: 3–4 lbs (1.4–1.7 kg); Smallest: 9–10 oz (0.3 kg)
Original Diet: Plants
Present Diet: Fruits, nuts, seeds, flowers, leaves, snails, and insects
Habitat: Rainforests, seasonally flooded savanna and palm forests; Central and South America