Minimize Aratinga Canicularis

Half-moon Conure

Orange-Fronted Conure

Petz Conure

Aratinga Canicularis


Aratinga canicularis canicularis 
Aratinga canicularis eburnirostrum
Aratinga canicularis clarae



The smallest of the aratingas at 9 1/2 inches (24cm). The average weight is 73-80 grams.

The bird is primarily green with a wide orange band on the forehead that touches (or nearly touches) the lores. (Thus the source of the common name half-moon or orange-fronted.) The feathers on the top of the head directly behind the orange halfmoon have a distinct blue coloring. The throat and chest are an olive green. The primary flight feathers are a vivid dark blue and the secondaries have blue around the edges. The wide eye ring is white, sometimes even a yellowish white and the iris is a golden yellow. The legs are a dark taupe color.

The nominate species has a horn-colored uppper and lower beaks. The sub-species eburnirostrum looks similar to the nominate species except that the lower beak has a dark grey or taupe stripe on each side. The sub-species clarae has the same stripe on the lower beak but displays a much narrower band of orange on the forehead, sometimes reduced to a large spot in the middle of the head.

The half-moon conure often is confused with the slightly larger peach-fronted conure (aratinga aurea). The easiest distinction between the two is the solid black beak of the peach-fronted versus the horn-colored beak of the half-moon.

 Natural Range

The half-moon conure lives in western Mexico all the way south to Costa Rica. The nominate species is found primarily in southern part of the range, the sub species eburnirostrum is found in the central part of this range and the sub species clarae is found in the northern part of the range.


Half-moons are popular pet birds and can still be found in aviculture. While not thought to be endangered in the wild, some aviculturists who grew up the birds' natural range in Mexico and Central America have noted a decline in the numbers and size of the wild flocks. This is most likely due to development, deforestation and other pressures on the wild population.


Half-moons are big birds in small bodies. They tend to have huge personalities and insist on their rightful place in the home or aviary. They have good talking ability but their little voices can sometimes be difficult to understand. They can be taught tricks and are very interested in being involved in the activities of their home. Pets dearly love to be with their people but are also quite happy to entertain themselves in the cage or on a perch with their favorite toys. Half-moons are quite talented flyers, even when clipped, so owners need to be constantly aware of open doors, windows and household threats such as hot stove tops or ceiling fans.


Half-moons have a reputation of being somewhat hard to breed. Once a compatible pair is found, however, they can be quite prolific. They usually produce three to five eggs in a clutch and tend to be good parents. The young may wean as early as seven weeks of age but also may allow a benevolent caregiver to feed them hand rearing formula beyone the age of ten weeks.


Visit the Conure Photo Album to see some Half-moon Conures.


If you have additional information, corrections or feedback, please email the ICA Webmaster with those updates. Please show the  before and after text for corrections and site your sources for additional information. We are happy to include new information as it is provided to us.


Date » 30 May, 2015    Copyright 2008 by the International Conure Association Login : Register
Inspired by Nina