5 Common Yellow Parrot Species

Here's how to identify yellow parrot species often kept as pets

When people think of yellow birds, canaries often come to mind. But there are many beautiful parrot species that also have predominantly yellow feathers. Of these species, only a few are commonly kept as pets, so identifying them is generally easy.

  • 01 of 05

    Budgies (Lutino Mutation)

    Yellow parakeet perching on a hand

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    While wild budgies (also known as parakeets) typically sport light green plumage, selective breeding has led to a solid yellow color mutation referred to as "lutino." In fact, the color is so brilliant that yellow parakeets are sometimes mistaken for canaries or other bird species by those unfamiliar with them. The lutino variety is a very common color mutation in these birds, and some also display a reddish tint in their eyes. Like all budgies, these birds originated in Australia and have become very popular as pets around the world.

  • 02 of 05


    Yellow cockatiel perching on a cage

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    Also hailing from Australia and enjoying enormous popularity among bird owners is the cockatiel. Although several color varieties exist, the yellow lutino is one of the most recognizable. Lutino cockatiels vary in shade from a very pale yellow to a darker, egg-yolk tone. They display the common bright orange patches on their cheeks, and most have a bright yellow head crest. Lutino cockatiels can be readily found in the pet trade in most places, and reputable cockatiel breeders should be able to help you locate a bird if you are interested in adopting one of these beauties.

  • 03 of 05

    Golden Conures

    Headshot of a golden conure

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    Also known as the "Queen of Bavaria conure," the eye-catching golden conure has bright yellow feathers all over its body with the exception of the tips of its flight feathers, which offer dark green contrast. Although they are not as commonly seen as pets as other conures, they are still popular among bird enthusiasts and are hailed by many as one of the most beautiful conure species. Golden conures are some of the largest conures, measuring up to 14 inches in length. They have specialized care requirements, making them a better choice for experienced bird owners.

  • 04 of 05

    Sulphur-Crested Cockatoos

    The face of a sulphur crested cockatoo against a green background

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    The large white parrot with a brilliant yellow head crest is a sulphur-crested cockatoo. These birds come in two size varieties: the greater and the lesser sulphur-crested cockatoo. Originally from Australia, these cockatoos are known for being loving, affectionate pets and consequently are popular among bird owners. However, as with all large parrots, they are not the best choice for everyone. These birds can be expensive and time-consuming, and they require complex diets, ample space, and lots of socialization. Plus, they're often a decades-long commitment, as they're known to live past 70 years in captivity. So carefully research the species before deciding to bring one home.

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  • 05 of 05

    Pacific Parrotlets (Lutino Mutation)

    A green Pacific parrotlet sitting on a branch

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    Known affectionately as "pocket parrots," the Pacific parrotlet—including its yellow lutino variety—has exploded in popularity with bird owners. These small birds have big personalities, making them a great choice for those who want a parrot but are unable to keep a larger species. If you are interested in adopting one of these little jewels, locate a reputable parrotlet breeder for advice on their care. While they are tiny in comparison to many other bird species, their needs can be just as great as a larger parrot.