Occasionally, scarlet macaws are seen consuming clay found
along riverbanks. Scientists now think that the clay may
help the birds to digest harsh chemicals such as tannins
that are ingested when they eat unripe fruit.
like many birds, form a close monogamous pair bond for
life. The pair are dutiful parents, both male and female
help to care for the chicks once they hatch. The young
macaws remain with their parents for about two years, until
they are mature enough to fledge, or set out on their own.
Only when the young macaws fledge will their parents then
raise another group of chicks.
scarlet macaws are threatened by loss of habitat and by the
illegal pet trade. In fact, macaws draw huge sums from
traders -- an individual bird may be sold for up to $1000