10 Most Expensive Pet Birds In The World (With Pictures)

Hyacinth Macaw parrot sitting on perch

When you think of expensive pets, you probably think of things like lions, tigers, unicorns, griffins, and dragons. But did you realize that birds can be one of the most expensive pets on the planet?

The birds on this list are all expensive to buy, and that’s before you give them their usual fancy digging. All this to say you can see these birds, but don’t even think about buying them unless you have really deep pockets.


10 Most Expensive Pet Birds

1. Racing Pigeon

racing pigeons eat crumbs

One of the most expensive birds you can own is a dove. Yes, a dove — just like the thousands you can find for free in any city in the world. The difference between racing pigeons and their less valuable counterparts is that these birds have a truly noble calling: They allow people to gamble.

In some parts of the world, pigeon racing is big business, and a fast bird can make quite a bit of money for its owner. That’s why many people are willing to pay a premium for one of these birds; In fact, in 2019, a very fast pigeon named Armando sold for $1.4 million!

We bet it’s hard to get mad at a bird for pooping in your car when the bird is worth 10 times more than the vehicle.

2. Water hyacinth macaw

Water hyacinth macaw

These South American birds are some of the most beautiful creatures on the planet, thanks to their beautiful blue plumage and yellow markings around their eyes and beak. They are also the largest flying parrot in the world. Both of these add up to a hefty asking price — up to $40,000, in some cases.

Of course, some of that cost may be due to these birds becoming endangered, and owning them may not be legal where you live. This means that even if you have $40k to drop on a bird, you’re better off just buying a good pair of binoculars and a ticket to Brazil.

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3. Toucans

Toucan resting on a tree

This large beaked bird is one of the brightest colored animals on the planet. While there are over 40 species to choose from, each will be quite expensive to own. They are also social, so you may need to take the price and multiply it several times to get an accurate picture of the overall cost of ownership.

How much does one Toucan cost? It’s not uncommon for them to earn $7,000 or more. That’s a lot of money for a bird, especially since you can get one for free just by opening a box of Froot Loops!

4. Goliath Cockatoo

black palm cockatoo

These great black cockatoos (also known as palm cockatoos) are native to New Guinea, so part of their price is likely due to the difficulty of transporting them from their homeland. They have very large beaks (second only to the Hyacinth Macaw among parrots), and they make an astonishing number of vocalizations, including many human-like sounds.

A Goliath Cockatoo can fetch $16,000 or more. The good news is that they are known to live up to 90 years in captivity, so you will really get your money’s worth from them.

5. Chicken Cemani Chicken

Cemani Chicken

Ayam Cemani Ayam is a black bird. These might seem trivial and unimportant, but the colors weren’t just skin deep—they were black to the core, including the flesh and bones. They are also notoriously difficult to breed, which is why a hen can cost up to $2,500.

They lay large eggs, so you can make a little profit that way. Unfortunately, they’re not big fans of the eggs, so if you want to make more chickens, you’ll have to incubate them, which increases your profits even more.

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6. Flamingo

Pink flamingo with foilage

Nothing tells the world that you live in the lap of luxury like a flock of flamingos outside your door. Everyone who visits will know you did well for yourself, as these birds can cost $1,500 each.

The good news is that owning a flamingo is nothing short of glamorous. For one thing, they eat shrimp and a special kind of red algae, so your property will smell like fishing boats. The good news is that you’ll absolutely love the smell because it definitely overpowers the smell of their droppings, which are renowned for being one of the most foul-smelling bird species on the planet.

7. White Peacock


Peacocks are known for their ornately decorated plumage, which comes in just about any color imaginable. On the other hand, the world’s most expensive peacocks don’t have any color — they’re completely white.

It is caused by a recessive mutation called leucism, and these mutant birds make about a thousand dollars each. Don’t try to catch them yourself — they’re not found in the wild, so you’ll need to get them from breeders.

8. Scarlet Tanager

red tanager on a tree branch

The Scarlet Tanager is a medium sized bird but they have a great voice. Their beautiful singing voices are just one reason why these birds can fetch $900 or more from collectors.

They are also quite striking to look at, as they have a bright red body with black feathers on their wings and tail. These birds are basically pretty clean and tidy, but they mainly eat insects like termites, bees, and wasps, so you might not want to take their lunch home with you.

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9. Mountain Blue Bird

Bluebird_ Rabbitti_Shutterstock side view

There are actually three different types of bluebirds, but the mountain variety is the most valuable (and expensive at over $800 per head because they are the most difficult to catch. They prefer altitudes of 7,000 feet or more, and are generally found in colder climates). .

These little birds have blue heads and shoulders that slowly fade to white as you move down their bodies. They are known to gladly accept nest boxes, so you may be able to enjoy their company for free if you stay in the right place.

10. North Orioles

oriole bird on bird feeder

These migratory species are large fruit eaters, and they prefer very ripe, dark fruits such as mulberries and cherries. They are known to be picky eaters, so don’t hurt your feelings if they lift their beak at the food you offer them.

Then again, after paying $800 or more for one of these birds, you’d think they’d show a little more gratitude! We guess they know that you’re not going to kick them out after dropping that kind of batter on them.

birdcage divider

How Many of These Birds Would You Buy?

Any expensive bird on this list can make a great pet (or gambling companion), but you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a great bird. In the end, a regular parakeet or cockatiel can be just as useful to have at a lower price.

Then again, you might be able to make enough money to buy all the birds you want if you manage to get your hands on a really fast pigeon.

Featured Image Credit: Sanit Fuangnakhon, Shutterstock

10 Most Expensive Pet Birds In The World (With Pictures)
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