Conures are small to medium-sized parrots. As one of the most popular pet birds, they are famous due to their vibrant and beautiful plumage. They are playful and friendly and love spending quality time with their family members. With around 100 different species and subspecies of conures, this breed is one of the more varied parrot breeds.
Like other parrots, this breed has a long lifespan, about 30 years or more, with proper care. Due to their small size, it’s easy to assume that these pet birds are cheap. However, owning a conure is an expensive affair.
The amount of cash you spend on one of these birds depends on the species of parrot you go for. Compared to larger birds like Macaws, smaller birds tend to be less expensive. However, comparatively, they are still expensive pets.
Apart from the purchasing price, parrots come with a lot of responsibilities that involve money.
So how much does it cost to own a conure? Let’s break down the estimated costs and expenses to guide you on how much you are likely to spend on these unique birds.
Bringing Home a New Parrot: One-Time Costs
After buying a conure, you’ll also need to purchase some bird supply equipment. These expenses can add up over the lifetime of the bird. One-time expenses include the cost of the parrot itself, toys, birdcage, perches, and accessories. These are the items you need to have to keep the bird comfortable.
The expenses for these smaller breeds are usually relatively lower than that of larger birds. The larger birds have more unique needs, require more food, and bigger cages.
Getting a conure will need you to factor in all these one-time costs to make your pet bird comfortable. Here are the one-time costs to consider.
It’s possible to get a free conure in your local classifieds. Many parrot owners are willing to give out their pet birds for free, including the accessories, once they realize how much work is involved in taking care of this bird.
Therefore, check out these places first if you don’t want to buy a new bird from the pet store or breeders. High chances, you’ll get someone giving away their bird.
However, once you get the bird, you need to take over the expenses. You might still incur costs such as medical, food, and purchasing accessories if the previous owner doesn’t give them to you.
As much as it sounds exciting, getting a free conure comes with hidden costs.
There are about 100 different species of conures. All these species come with different needs, personalities, and temperaments. Therefore, you can choose which bird will suit your home best by researching and visiting adoption centers to source for one.
Adoption is a good choice. Apart from getting the pet bird a loving home, the costs of getting the bird are relatively lower.
Before going to the pet store or a pet breeder, consider visiting an adoption center to check the options available. The costs of acquiring this bird will only cover the expenses incurred by the organization while taking care of the pet.
To avoid getting a pet bird with many medical issues, it’s best to go to a reputable organization. There are plenty of parrot rescue organizations that have healthy birds.
The price range for conures is extensive because of the many types of species available. This price also changes depending on the availability of the bird, with the rarest species costing more.
Before you buy a conure from the breeder, ensure you visit their physical location. This visit will allow you to see how the bird is being taken care of. Like any pet, birds also need special care; therefore, you’ll need to go to a breeder that’s reputable to get a healthy bird.
When shopping, beware of extremely low or high prices outside of the normal range. Expensively priced conures should have genetic purity or come with extra bird supplies; otherwise, the breeder might be greedy. On the other hand, extremely low prices are suspicious.
Low-priced birds could either have diseases or behavior problems. This could also indicate that maybe the bird is being traded illegally. If the costs are too low, it’s better to look for another breeder or other options that can get you a healthy bird.
Reputable breeders might be more costly. This is because they take precautions and invest their time and resources in raising healthy pet birds.
Initial Set-Up and Supplies
After getting the bird, you need to get supplies to make them comfortable. These include stands, perches, suitably sized cages, and carriers. The prices of these supplies will vary depending on the size of equipment you buy.
In addition, different stores will have different prices. Therefore, it’s better to shop at online stores and platforms that offer affordable pricing if you are on a budget.
Apart from the pricing, also consider the quality. High-quality supplies will last longer and save you additional costs in the coming years.
List of Conure Care Supplies and Costs
|Food Bowls and Water||$5-$50|
|Nail Clipper (optional)||$10-$12|
|Wing Scissors (optional)||$10|
|Initial Vet Check-Up||$50-$200|
How Much Does a Conure Cost Per Month?
$35-$210+ per month
The total costs of taking care of a conure include vet care, food, insurance, grooming, and entertainment. All these expenses can become huge, especially if your pet bird has a lot of needs.
You need to remember that parrots have an averagely longer lifespan than other birds. Because of this, they will live with you longer, which adds up the costs. This applies even to small birds such as conures.
Once you pay the purchase price, you’ll need to start budgeting for the larger expenses that are recurrent. You can control how high these expenses go by choosing cheaper but quality alternatives. By having a plan, the monthly costs of taking care of your bird will be lower.
$12-$35+ per month
Like any other pet, the health care of your conure is essential. You’ll need to take your parrot for an annual exam to ensure their health is perfect. These costs can significantly increase if your bird is sickly or requires regular medical care.
With medical expenses, it’s challenging to stick to a strict budget because of the unpredictability. If you have multiple pet birds, accidents can happen; therefore, it’s best to be prepared. To be safe, you should keep some emergency funds about $200-$500 aside to cater for sudden illness.
This bird species also need to be vaccinated, especially if they are in contact with other parrots. But if your bird is mostly caged by itself, it’s not necessary.
The Polyomavirus vaccine should be given at 4-8 weeks and boosted with yearly doses in the subsequent years. For older birds, they can get an initial double dose and annual boosters.
$25-$100+ per month
Pet birds eat according to their sizes. A larger bird will require more food which can increase your budget. But for small birds such as conures, the monthly food expenses will be much lower.
For your pet to be healthy, you can spend $25-$100 monthly. These costs don’t include treats and other fresh foods. Therefore, once you add the extras, the budget will go up slightly. To control these expenses, ensure your pet gets a balanced diet and only what they need.
In addition, when buying commercial foods, it’s advisable to buy in bulk. This strategy will cut down the expenses you could have incurred purchasing a refill every time.
Medication and Vet Visits
$30-$150+ per month
Birds are good at hiding illnesses; therefore, it’s best to schedule an annual vet check-up. They develop this hardiness from their wild background, where they are forced to appear strong to avoid predators. Therefore, to avoid detecting diseases late, you have to take the bird for a check-up every year and 6 months for older birds.
Your conure will also need medication against parasites. Birds are highly prone to attacks by parasites.
It would help if you worked with your vet to develop a healthy diet that strengthens their immune system and fights infections. Have the vet check them for Giardia infections that affect parrots and can be passed to humans if left untreated.
$5-$30+ per month
Insurance for your conure can be as low as $5 or go up to $30 per month. This cost varies depending on the cover you choose.
To adequately protect your pet bird, you need an insurance plan covering theft, illness, emergencies, and death. Smaller bird breeds such as conures are cheaper to treat in emergencies; therefore, you can go for the low-cost plan. This allows you to treat your bird without incurring high costs.
$5-$8+ per month
Conures are low-maintenance birds; therefore, these costs are relatively low. These birds need cage liners in their cage, which you can improvise and use newspapers. They also need chew toys such as woodblocks to keep them occupied.
Budgeting for these costs is essential because when birds can’t get chew toys, they might get into destructive behaviors like tearing into your furniture.
|Chew Toys||$20-$50 annually|
$5-$20+ per month
When you keep a pet parrot, you have to budget for toys, ladders, and perches. These birds love to chew and climb; therefore, they will need these supplies to stay occupied and stimulated.
Conures and other large parrot species tend to get bored by the same toys quickly. Because of this, they need a regular rotation of toys; otherwise, they’ll start looking for another source of entertainment or begin chewing on items in your home. Larger parrots chew on the perches and toys, which will need to get replaced often.
By regularly replacing these sources of entertainment, your pet expenses will go up throughout the year. For this reason, you should always go for quality products to keep them going for longer.
Total Monthly Cost of Owning a Conure
$80-$160+ per month
A conure can cost you more than $150 per month, depending on its needs. The monthly costs take into account all the food, vet visits, and replacing toys. Apart from this, you need to factor in emergencies and the initial set-up costs that drive your budget up.
As your pet bird grows older, the expenses might reduce, but that’s dependent on their health and behavior.
Additional Costs to Factor In
Pet birds can be destructive when they don’t get suitable toys and attention. Once they get tired of the chew toys, they turn on your furniture and other items in the house.
You’ll incur costs when fixing these kinds of damages. In addition, if you have other pets in the house or multiple birds, accidents happen, and they can engage in fights that result in injuries.
You also need to factor in the costs of hiring a pet sitter when you are not home. The bird needs to be fed and taken care of when you are not home.
Owning a Conure on a Budget
Taking care of a conure is pretty expensive. However, you can cut down on the purchase costs by choosing cheaper alternatives.
For instance, you can get a parrot from the adoption centers or rescue at a lower price. You’ll give the bird a loving home while saving cash.
In addition, you can get accessories from the local classifieds and online sites. You’ll find many people selling second-hand perches and cages that are still in good quality. This tactic is one way to reduce your initial costs, and you get to own a conure on a budget.
Saving Money on Conure Care
Parrots such as conures live for up to 30 years or more. You have to provide and feed this bird for all these years. To cut down on the total costs, you can opt to buy food in bulk. With this strategy, you’ll sustain your bird for longer without having to buy more food.
The other way to save money is by making some homemade perches and ladders. This will cut down the expenses you would have incurred purchasing these accessories. Finding creative ways to build these items is a money-saver. In addition, you can use newspapers as cage liners which is cheaper.
Conures make excellent pet birds. As a parrot species, they are costly to maintain. Due to their long lifespan, they need a lot of investment to keep them alive and healthy. However, you can find ways to cut down on costs by adopting a bird from the shelter or getting one from the local online classifieds.
These bird species need a lot of toys and accessories such as perches. Ensure you get quality ones as the birds can get very destructive.
When budgeting for a conure, consider all the one-time costs and recurrent expenses. Also, have an emergency fund for sudden illnesses and accidents. As long as you are prepared financially, owning a conure is such a fun experience.
Featured Image Credit: Gareth Bogdanoff, Shutterstock
Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts’ knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.