African Grey Parrot: Timneh vs Congo Comparison

african grey parrot timneh vs congo

Did you know African Grey Parrots think like 5-year-olds but feel like 2-year-olds1? They are super smart and have their own special personalities. If you’re thinking of getting one, it’s good to learn about the Congo and Timneh types. We’ll see the big differences between them to help you choose the right one.

Key Takeaways:

  • African Grey Parrots think a lot and feel deeply. They’re like smart 5-year-olds with the emotions of 2-year-olds1.
  • There are two main types: Congo and Timneh African Greys. They each bring something unique to the table.
  • The Congo African Grey is often seen as a family friend. It’s bigger, heavier, and has a flashier tail than the Timneh1.
  • Then there’s the Timneh African Grey. It tends to be calmer, grow up faster, and learn to speak sooner1.
  • Choosing between Congo and Timneh African Greys means picking the one that matches your life and wants best.

African Grey Parrot Characteristics

African Grey parrots are loved for their smart minds and fun personalities. They make great friends for those who love birds. This makes them a top choice for many people.

Both types, Congo and Timneh, are very smart. They can think as well as a five-year-old child. Yet, they act emotionally more like a two-year-old, full of play and joy.

Timneh African Greys grow up quicker. This means they settle into their personalities faster. They are more relaxed and do not pluck their feathers as much as Congo African Greys2.

Their talking skills are truly impressive. They can copy everyday sounds and voices well. This makes them fun to talk to and spend time with2.

They need activities that make them think. Along with a good diet, these activities keep them happy and healthy. They love to play and use their brain.

Picking an African Grey as a pet means a big commitment. They need regular interaction and a stimulating environment. Meeting their needs is essential for their well-being.

African Grey Parrot (Congo) African Grey Parrot (Timneh)
Length: 33cm/13 inches3 Length: 30.5cm/12 inches3
Weight: 400-650 grams3 Weight: 235-275 grams3
Life Span: 40-50 years3 Life Span: 40 plus years3
Natural Habitat: Central Africa, Tanzania, Western Kenya3 Natural Habitat: Equatorial Africa3

African Grey parrots really bond with their owners. They are smart but shy. They usually get very close to one person. Having conversations with them is fun thanks to their talking skill3.

When it comes to noise, they are moderately loud. Their sounds are clear and not too loud. So, they can live with people in apartments or close neighborhoods3.

Congo and Timneh African Greys need slightly different cages. Congo Greys need a smaller cage: 30 x 24 inches. Timneh Greys need a bigger one: 36 x 24 inches. This gives them more space and keeps them happy3.

African Grey parrots are incredibly intelligent pets that form deep connections with their owners. They have a remarkable ability to mimic sounds and voices, making them excellent conversation partners.”

It’s sad that African Grey parrots are close to being endangered. Some reasons are the loss of their homes and being caught from the wild too much. This is why taking care of them well and protecting their natural places is so important4.

Congo African Grey Parrot Characteristics Timneh African Grey Parrot Characteristics
Average Lifespan: 40-50 years2 Average Lifespan: 40 plus years2
Weigh between 400 to 500 grams2 Weigh between 275 to 375 grams2
Beak-to-Tail Length: 13 to 16 inches2
Beak Color: Solid black2 Beak Color: Slightly darker with horn-colored upper beak and smoky-colored bottom beak2
Tail Color: Bright fiery red to orange2 Tail Color: Darker, maroon-colored tail feathers2
Baby Timneh African Greys are typically maroon-brown in color2
Start to utter one to two words at six months2 Can start putting words together even at a younger age, approximately six months2
More abundant as household pets compared to Timneh African Greys2
Less prone to plucking or becoming phobic compared to Congo African Greys2

African Grey parrots bring a lot of joy. Their smartness and unique ways make any home better. They are truly special and loved pets4.

Size and Appearance Differences

When we look at Congo African Grey parrots versus Timneh African Grey parrots, we see big differences. Congo African Greys are taller. They measure 13 to 16 inches from beak to tail2. Their weight is usually between 400 to 500 grams2.

They are known for their stunning red to orange tail feathers. This has led to their nickname, “Red-tailed Grey”2. Their gray feathers have white edges, adding to their beauty5.

In contrast, Timneh African Greys are smaller, measuring 9 to 11 inches long1. They weigh between 275 to 375 grams2. Their dark maroon tail feathers stand out, giving them a unique look5.

But, both Congo and Timneh African Grey parrots are intelligent. They have special features that make them very appealing to bird lovers.

Now, we’ll look at how well these parrots can talk and their personalities.

Talking Ability and Personality Differences

Both Timneh and Congo African Greys can talk really well. Timneh Greys may start talking at 6 months old6. Congo Greys, on the other hand, usually start around one year6. It’s interesting that whether they are male or female doesn’t affect their ability to talk6.

Now, let’s talk about their personalities. Timneh Greys are generally calmer than Congo Greys67. However, with the right care, Congo Greys can also be very stable7. Both types of African Greys like to watch everything closely before they join in6.

In conclusion, Timneh Greys start talking earlier than Congo Greys6. And they are known for their gentle nature67. But, both need plenty of time and training to really shine in the talking department.


When choosing between Timneh and Congo African Grey parrots, think about their needs. Consider what fits your home best. They are both great companions. But, they vary in size, looks, talking skills, and personality.

The Congo African Grey is bigger, about 12 to 14 inches long. The Timneh is a bit smaller, at 9 to 11 inches long. Both need a diet that includes pelleted food. Add fresh fruits, veggies, seeds, nuts, and treats89.

African Greys are very smart and need lots of love and attention. They can live 25 to 50 years or even longer. Give them a big space to live with different types of perches. Natural branches make great perches for them9.

The choice between Timneh and Congo African Grey parrots is up to you. Both have their own beauty and challenges. Expect to spend time and effort ensuring they have what they need1089. Learning about their long life, smarts, and diet is key before deciding9.

With the right care and knowledge, African Grey parrots can be lifelong friends. They bring joy and smart talk to your life.


What are the differences between Timneh and Congo African Grey parrots?

Timneh African Greys are smaller and start talking early. They have a darker beak and tail. Congo African Greys are bigger with a brighter tail. They are more common as pets.

Are Timneh African Greys easier to handle compared to Congo African Greys?

Timneh African Greys are calm and easier for new parrot owners. They are a good choice for families. With care, Congo African Greys can also be steady companions.

How big do Congo and Timneh African Greys get?

Congo African Greys grow to 13 to 16 inches in length. They weigh 400 to 500 grams. Timneh African Greys are smaller, 9 to 11 inches long. They weigh 275 to 375 grams.

When do Timneh and Congo African Greys start talking?

Timneh African Greys start talking at about 6 months. Congo African Greys begin to talk around age one. Either can learn to speak, regardless of gender.

What should I consider when choosing between Timneh and Congo African Grey parrots?

Consider the parrots’ needs, size, looks, and talking. Think about your time and energy. The right parrot for you depends on what you’re looking for and can provide.

Source Links

  1. – What’s The Difference Between Congo African Greys And Timneh African Greys?
  2. – Timneh vs Congo African Grey – Key Differences Between These Parrots (Personality, Lifespan & More)
  3. – Congo or Timneh ?
  4. – African Grey Parrot Facts & Worksheets | Features, Diet, Reproduction
  5. – African Grey Parrots
  6. – Timneh African Grey vs Congo: Key Differences
  7. – African grey temperament, male vs female
  8. – African Grey Parrots: An Overview of Characteristics and Care
  9. – African Grey Parrots | Strongsville Animal Hospital
  10. – african grey personality – Pamela Clark, CPBC

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