If you wish to find out if your parrot is a male or female before three years of age, the only sure way is through DNA testing. This is very affordable, and many companies will send a free kit out to anyone who is interested. The owner only needs to collect some feather samples then send them back with the kit to the DNA lab. Within a few weeks or days, the owner will be called, e-mailed, or faxed the results. Most parrot DNA testing agencies will send you a certificate to confirm the results. DNA is 99.9 % accurate if the samples were not contaminated.
Obviously, this parrot is named the Rose-ringed Parakeet or the Indian Ringneck due to the male’s ring around its neck. This ring can start to appear around 17 months and can take as long as two molts to become pronounced. If you wish to see if your bird is a boy or a girl before 17 months without DNA results, and before the ring has come, you can do so by the behavior of your parrot. So what types of gender-specific traits should the owner look for?
A male will open his wings slightly in the shape of a heart and bow while the tail fans out. His eyes will pin, the pupil will become smaller, all while displaying. Also, many males tend to hop as well. Try placing your parrot in front of a mirror and see the reaction of the parrot. Most males tend to speak and display, while females will do nothing or attack the reflection.
Also, the male’s feet are usually dainty. Their toes are slightly thinner, while the females are much thicker. A male ringneck will have a much more angular shaped head, and the colors are somewhat more vibrant around the neck; his tail is slightly longer as well. This technique can work for all the mutations except lutino and albino Indian Ringnecks.
Female Indian Ringnecks do not get a ring; however, a slight green ring can be seen around the female’s neck. Female Ringnecks are much stockier and have thicker feet and a wider stance when perching. It takes a trained eye to spot a male from a female visually before the ring has come in, even so, this is still not 100 % accurate.
Female Ringnecks do not display in the same manner as male Ringnecks. Instead, they usually reveal their gender by clucking and tilting their head back while slightly opening their wings. Like the males, their eyes will pin too. Most females will display around one year. This is a perfect way to determine a young female without DNA confirmation.