The White-eyed Conure or White-eyed Parakeet (Aratinga leucophthalma) is a parrot native to South America.
First described by German zoologist Philipp Ludwig Statius Müller in 1776, its specific epithet is derived from the Ancient Greek leukos "white" and ophthalmos "eye".
White-eyed Conures feeding, apparently on Queen Palm fruit
The White-eyed Conure is an overall green bird approximately 32 cm (12½ in) long with red on the shoulders and some random flecks of red on the head and neck. The underwing primary coverts are red tipped yellow. A prominent white eye ring gives this species its name. In addition to the nominate, there are two very similar subspecies, callogenys and nicefori, although the validity of the latter, based on a single specimen, is questionable. Juveniles have little or no red and yellow in their plumage.
Distribution and habitat
White-eyed Conures are found over much of northern South America, from eastern Venezuela, Colombia and the Guianas in the north across Brazil to northern Argentina and Uruguay in forests, woodland, savanna and mangroves. Adapts readily to degraded and urban areas, provided there are sources of food and nesting places (under roofs and other cavities) and occurs in several cities.
Though not as popular as some of the more colorful conures, the White-eyed Conure can become a sweet, loving and talkative pet. They are seldom destructive and are generally not screamers, often choosing to mimic speech instead. Although many breeders ignore this species, those that do breed them appreciate their good parenting skills. Breeding requirements for White-eye Conures are much the same as for other conure species.
They will usually start to go to nest in March or April, sometimes breeding throughout the year and having four to six clutches. The clutch size is usually four eggs. Chicks will sometimes start to talk by the time they are weaned and generally will talk by six months of age.
White-eyed conures are sometimes confused with Finsch's Conures because both have the red and yellow epaulets under their wings. The White-eye Conures lack the red triangle on the forehead as adults.