Important Note: The following section shows photos of "Hybrid" parrots. Hybridization of parrots is done for several reasons in aviculture, but usually to offer an "unusual" colored bird to the pet owner that seeks something "different." We at Hill Country Aviaries do not advocate that "all" birds be hybridized, and we are very discriminate in what we do.
All our hybrids are closed leg-banded and recorded to assure that they are not mistaken for a "pure blooded" species. Hybrid macaws are NOT mutations, they are purposefully created for color (as are most color mutations), but they are not pure stock and are bred by crossing two species of parrot together. The parent stock, if pure to start with, remains pure and can be re-paired later with a bird of its own species, thus no harm is ever done to the gene pool. But, hybrid offspring can never be pure and can never produce pure offspring in the future. Therefore, the act of breeding hybrids should not be done haphazardly: there is an implied responsibility to maintain good records and to educate the public about this act.
Some hybrid macaws are among the most beautiful of all the parrots! But beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Here at HCA, we do not breed first generation hybrids, we only take in homeless hybrids and allow them to reproduce with other hybrids. In that way we are not dirtying the gene pool any more than it already has been. NOTE: In virtually all other sciences, hybridizers and purists are at each other's throats until the hybrids themselves pave the way to new science!
1st Generation Hybrid - For pet purposes, we breed a select few hybrid macaws. This is a photo of a first generation hybrid often called the Catalina Macaw. This macaw is created by crossing a Blue and Gold Macaw with a Scarlet Macaw.
3rd Generation Hybrid
We are not sure what to call this bird as the names of hybrids are usually not "recognized" taxonomic descriptions. These birds are produced by crossing hybrid to hybrid for three generations from the original cross of pure birds.
4th Generation Hybrid
We are now four full generations from the "wild" forms of macaws here at Hill Country Aviaries. With each generation, more and more yellow and orange color seems to appear. As well, personalities are becoming more calm and feather problems are less likely to occur.