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Ruby Macaw

Picture of a Ruby MacawRuby MacawRuby MacawPhoto © Animal-World: Courtesy Sharon
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We have a bonded pair of Ruby Macaws.  They are mating but as of this try the eggs aren't fertile yet.  Time will tell.  Is a Ruby X a Ruby still a... (more)  Mary Lee Fox Penn

   The beautiful Ruby Macaw quickly reminds us of a Green-winged Macaw, but is distinguished by the addition of bright yellow and orange feathers scattered across the center of its back and wings!

   The Ruby Macaw is a hybrid cross between a Scarlet Macaw and a Green-winged Macaw and is quite attractive. Hybrids are usually bred for color rather than personality, so their characteristics can be uncertain.

   This is a first generation hybrid macaw, meaning its parents are two species of naturally occurring macaws. Because the offspring are a mixture of more than one type of macaw, they are influenced by the traits and characteristics of both of its parents. Father's have the dominant gene, so this will generally influence the offspring's coloration and overall appearance. The Ruby inherits its gorgeous coloring from these two striking parents.

   The parents of the Ruby Macaw are two very popular types of birds. The Scarlet Macaw is one of the most highly favored macaws, and often described as both beautiful and striking. It has been the best known South American parrot for over 100 years. The other parent, the Green-winged Macaw, has been has been one of the most popular pet birds in the trade, renowned not only for its beauty but for its gentle, amiable nature.

   The personality of a Scarlet is such that it requires good socialization and a firm consistent hand in training, especially as it matures. The Green-wing is a very gentle, affectionate and sensitive macaw. The Ruby can have the characteristics of the Scarlet, but it can also incorporate the gentle nature of the Greenwing. Ruby Macaws can be a very affectionate and playful, good talkers, and fun pets that are very beautiful.

   See hybrid information, breeding combinations, and photos of hybrid macaws on the Hybrid Macaws page.

For information about the care of Macaws see:
Guide to a Happy, Healthy Macaw

Scientific name:    The Ruby Macaw is a first generation hybrid macaw. It is a cross between a Scarlet Macaw Anodorhynchus macao and a Green-winged Macaw Ara chloroptera.

Distribution:    ThIs is a captive bred hybrid macaw. Hybrid macaws are rarely found in the wild.

Description:    Ruby Macaws are exceedingly striking in coloration, and rank right up there among the most colorful of the Macaws. They are a full size Macaw and can learn to talk with a general vocabulary of about 15 or more words or expressions. A Ruby Macaw needs good socialization and a firm consistent hand in training, especially it matures.

Picture of a Ruby Macaw
Ruby Macaw
Photo © Animal-World:
Courtesy Deborah Pearson

   In the mating pair, the male has the dominate gene. Often times the overall coloration of the Ruby Macaw can be very similar to the Green-winged Macaw and they are often mistakenly thought to be a Green-winged Macaw. Coloration varies however, even in babies from the same clutch.

  • If the male parent is a Green-winged Macaw:
    The offspring will generally have the same size body and head as the father. What distinguishes the Ruby from the Green-winged father is the center band of feathers. These feathers can be a mixture of varying amounts of yellows and oranges, and they can be edged with different shades of yellows and oranges.
  • If the male parent is a Scarlet Macaw:
    The offspring will generally have the head and body size of a Scarlet. The amount and coloration of the facial feathers will also generally be more similar to those of the respective father. There is very little facial feathering on the offspring of a Scarlet father.

Size - Weight:    The Ruby Macaw is a full sized macaw, very close to the same size as its parentage. They will reach over 2 pounds. The length of the Scarlet Macaw is up to 85 cm (33.5 inches) and the Green-winged Macaw is up to 90 cm (35.5 inches). A Ruby Macaw will reach a size somewhere in the middle and possibly closer to that of the father.

Care and feeding:
   A roomy cage is required unless the bird is to be let out for extended periods. Many birds can spend most of their time on a play pen or parrot perch. In the wild their parent species eat a variety of palm nuts, fruits, seeds, and possibly vegetable matter from the treetops. Provide them with a good parrot mix that includes formulated foods, seeds, nuts, and dried fruits. They will also enjoy fruits and vegetables.

   See About Macaws: Housing and About Macaws: Care and Feeding for more information.

Social Behaviors:    They are a typical macaw. Can be cranky at times and may even be a one person bird or only like men or women unless well socialized with lots or folks. See About Macaws: Social Behaviors for information on developing a well rounded friendly macaw. (Also information on handling and activities)

Breeding/Reproduction:    Because it is a hybrid it is generally not bred.

Sexual differences:    No visible differences.

Potential Problems:    Can be noisy (as can all macaws). See About Macaws: Potential Problems for information on illnesses.

Availability:    This bird is somewhat hard to find and fairly expensive. There are more and more breeders however and they are becoming more common.

Author: Clarice Brough, CAS
Lastest Animal Stories on Ruby Macaw

Mary Lee Fox Penn - 2016-06-16
We have a bonded pair of Ruby Macaws.  They are mating but as of this try the eggs aren't fertile yet.  Time will tell.  Is a Ruby X a Ruby still a Ruby?  Or another name?

  • bassam almaznai - 2016-07-19

    Me too, I have pair ruby macaw and 3 times the eggs are not fertile yet . first time 5 eggs , second time 2 eggs and third time 3 eggs . I am producing many kinds of parrots like ( Blue and Gold, Scarlet , Yellow napped amazon , blue fronted amazon , Yellow crowned amazon and African Grey ) , To be honest , the harder one is the ruby and now It has been 8 months since I got it but no fertile eggs :(-

    Bassam from Saudi Arabia
  • George Balady - 2019-01-11
    We are having the same problem. Other macaws are laying fertile eggs, but for some unknown reason, the ruby eggs have been infertile,despite all factors being identical for our other macaws. Did your situation ever change positive?
  • Valaya Choudhary - 2020-04-28
    Ight guys time to teach you some middle school science. I hybrid cannot reproduce. A ruby macaw really isn't a separate species just a hybrid. Therefore it cannot reproduce.
KaylaDarie - 2019-03-20
Hello, did you receive my offer? from2325214cv

Kellie - 2009-10-05
When the kids left home I told my husband I was going to get a job, a dog, or a big bird. Well 2 years ago I got a job and then 8 months ago he brought home the bird. I new what a big responsibility it was and told him we can't keep it but he said he would help. He basically rescued the bird, and we fell in love with our Ruby Macaw named Skittles. We chose not to rename him. He or she is loving and and fun and gets along with everyone including the 4 year old twins and wants to meet every new person that comes over. Our friends and relative go straight to him to see what mood he is in to see if he will step up. Sometimes he won't but most of the time he will. On all hardwood floors his screams are ear piercing but he is pretty tame most of the time. The feather dander can seem overwhelming but Skittles is worth the trouble. He has his own spot in every room of the house with lots of toys so he is not too destructive. Some wonderful person did teach him to "go on the paper" so that is not a problem. We just love him-her, Skittles.

  • Norah - 2012-09-25
    Thanks for posting this tutirbe to Mac. I got confirmation just this morning that my elderly Scarlet Macaw is losing weight, experiencing some diminished vision and probably has some level of liver disease. We'll keep him comfortable, and in good health for as long as we can. If me makes it to Labor Day, we will celebrate what we think will be his 61st birthday (he may be older than that). It's nice to see a Scarlet Macaw of similar age, and even more unusual habits, given a tutirbe like this one.
  • Perky - 2017-11-25
    My pair look like full Scarlett's but chicks look like Ruby's. what are they named
Deborah Pearson - 2012-10-14
As you can see by my name, I am the owner of the pictured bird. That picture was one of the first I took after acquiring him. He was a rescue and totally unhandlable when I brought him home and named him BIRDIE. It took over a month of sitting in the same room and reading and spending time to finally get him out of the cage- another couple weeks of getting on the stick, then a couple weeks of walking around the house with him on the stick to move him to his day cage in the computer room. I had never had a macaw before and must say if Birdie is a 'usual' Ruby I highly recommend them. He is an only bird and does not and never has been a screamed. His day cage is in front of a sliding glass door and he will let out a startled squawk if a hawk swoops by and when home alone a few squawks at sunset but not the continual ear bleeding screams some macaws subject their owners to. His being a nonscreamer may be due to his being an only bird which means no other bird to scream to and we do not share our time with another bird. Whenever we are home his cage door is open and when he wants company will slide down the side of the cage and cruise over to climb up my leg to spend time. He has picked up quite a vocabulary as well as what we call bird 'Morse code' tapping. In the subsequent years since that picture was taken, he has transformed from an unhandlable pile of feathers to a friendly, easy to work with, wonderful pet both of us can handle. Just be prepared as there are a lot of people who fervently dislike cross-breeding any birds. While such an attitude is understandable as macaws are no longer imported so the pure breeding stock is limited, once the deed is done, giving the off-spring a good home is all that counts, and my Ruby has been a delight.

  • Clarice Brough - 2012-10-14
    Thanks so much for sharing your story. Your bird is truly awesome. I love the  picture and its great to have you share your experience and history with this beautiful creature. How awesome, you've got a great bird!

    And thanks again Deborah, for sharing that picture. That was way back in 2004, and at that time you told us it was the first photo you took of him. You did a great job and Birdie's picture was the only example we had for several years. It has really helped to have Birdie's portrait for people to see what the Ruby Macaw looks like. So many, many thanks!
KaylaDarie - 2019-03-20
Hello, did you receive my offer? from2325214cv