Animal Encounters

Fun Animal Encounters

From a hairy tarantula to a talking African gray parrot, you never know what you’ll bump into in Ranger Rick's Backyard Safari at the Tennessee Aquarium!


African Gray Parrot

Psittacus erithacus

  River Journey - Ranger Rick's Backyard Safari gallery


African gray parrots, the continent’s largest parrot, are gregarious and found in groups of 100-200 birds that are all considered equals. They are very intelligent and can mimic sounds, including human speech, sometimes reaching a vocabulary of over 2,000 words. Both parents help to raise the chicks until they are on their own at about four months of age.

Annually, it is estimated that at least one-fifth of the global population of African gray parrots is captured for the international pet trade. In 1992, the Wild Bird Conservation Act made it illegal to import wild caught birds into the United States.

Fan Photo

Ranger Rick's Photo Picks

About This Animal

SIZE  12-14 inches; wingspan: 18-20 inches

RANGE  Central and West Africa

HABITAT  Forest edges and clearings of lowland rainforests, mangroves and other wooded habitats

DIET  Seeds, nuts, fruits, berries and oil-palm nuts