Catalina Macaws

The Catalina Macaw is a hybrid macaw produced by crossing a Scarlet Macaw (Ara macao) and a Blue and Gold Macaw (Ara ararauna) and is a hybrid that naturally occurs in the wild.
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Common Name:

Catalina Macaw, Rainbow Macaw.

Scientific Name:

Catalina Macaws are hybrids, so they don't have a true scientific name. The best way to represent these birds in taxonomy is by the expression Ara ararauna x Ara macao.


Catalina Macaws are only produced in captivity, by crossing a Blue and Gold with a Scarlet Macaw. Therefore, they originate in the homes of bird breeders around the world.


Catalina Macaws generally weigh 2 - 3 pounds and can reach up to 35 inches in length from the beak to the tip of the tail feathers.

Average Lifespan:

50+ years.


It's been said that owners of hybrid macaws get the "best of both worlds." Scarlet Macaws, half of the Catalina's parentage, are known to be curious, feisty, and extremely active, while Blue and Gold Macaws have a reputation for being more laid-back. Catalina owners describe their birds as being a perfect mix between the two.


Catalina Macaws can have a wide variation in their colors and patterns. Most are primarily red or deep orange on their chests and bellies, with green and blue on their backs. Many of them have gold feathers edging their wings and in their tails. Being that hybrids are bred primarily for color traits, a large range of colors and combinations are available.


Like any large parrot, a Catalina Macaw should be fed a diet that includes a high quality seed/pellet mix, along with fresh bird-safe fruits and vegetables.


Catalina Macaws need plenty of exercise in order to maintain top mental and physical condition. Those interested in owning a Catalina Macaw should set aside a minimum of 2-4 hours per day for the bird to play outside of its cage. This is crucial to prevent boredom and allow the bird to properly stretch its wings and other muscles.

Catalina Macaws as Pets:

In a way that few other birds can claim, the Catalina Macaw combines the traits of the most popular Macaws into one spectacularly beautiful package. Many times, it's a Catalina's flashy colors that attract the people who adopt them -- but it's their comical personalities that really draw people in.

Highly intelligent, Catalina Macaws respond well to training and can be taught to perform several tricks. Being social birds, they must spend adequate time bonding with their owners to become happy, well-adjusted pets. If you are looking to adopt a Catalina Macaw, make sure that you have plenty of free time to spend with your new bird. These parrots thrive on interaction and will become depressed and destructive if neglected or ignored.

Potential owners should also think seriously about Macaw ownership. Are you willing to be awakened early every morning by a screaming parrot? Can you accommodate the many needs of such an intelligent, inquisitive pet? If you doubt yourself, do yourself a favor by doing plenty of research before rushing out to buy a Catalina or any other Macaw. Consider the costs of owning a pet Macaw: veterinary bills, high quality feed, toys, and cages all add up very quickly.

If you can't provide your bird with the best of everything, think about waiting to adopt one until you can. After all, spoiled rotten parrots make the very best pets.