The larger parrots need a lot more interaction than the smaller parrots such as budgies and cockatiels. They need more mental stimulation and larger toys.
The cost is higher due to food and toys being more expensive. Really the diet is similiar excepting the amount.
The only big difference I find is the time needed to commit to them. They get bored more easily than the smaller parrots. Our amazon is fairly good at being left on his own for periods of time and entertaining himself, however not all are.
Yes, they definitely require more mental stimulation, more out of cage time, and more general interaction with their human flock. I have 2 small conures and I can say without doubt that they require much more of my time than my cockatiel does. In general I would say it's a much bigger commitment with a bigger bird, you definitely have to set aside more time just for them.
Bigger birds, like everyone said, need more time, bigger cages, and a lot more stimulation. They need a fairly constant rotation of toys, more stimulation (foraging toys, puzzles, etc)... they're just not as independent as the smaller birds. As long as you have the time, space, and funds to support them, they're great! I would start fairly small and work your way up! :thumbsup: A conure is a great start since they have a big bird personality in a smaller package, as are caiques and lorikeets (if you can find one and can handle the liquid poop! :biggrin
They need more space, more attention, more money and have scarier bites. They're also typically much louder.
Make sure you're absolutely ready to deal with all of the above before going further. It's a bad idea to buy a bird unless you are sure. Many birds become cage-bound or given up to another home and go through environmental change because people realize it's tough work having a larger parrot. Of course given the nature of parrots, this owner and environmental change potentially wreaks havoc on their state of mind, making it a tougher case with each new person the bird gets homed with.
So don't buy a parrot unless you know you can give it what it needs. There's nothing wrong with deciding you can't or don't wish to deal with what big bird ownership entails. Deciding against a parrot because you aren't sure you can handle it is much more responsible, respectable and humane to the bird than "giving it a try."
Even a hand-fed bird isn't necessarily easy street, because when they mature they may go through a period where they get unruly and bite. This can be a crucial time; the bite(s) of a parrot during this time can scare a person off or cause them to "give the parrot space" enough so that all the benefits of having had a hand-raised bird go down the drain as it loses its socialization to people.
The point in all that is the first step to caring for a larger parrot is doing your (reasonably) best to make sure you intend to make your home its permanent home, and keeping it from a rehoming situation.
Otherwise, it's the same deal as budgies. Spacious cage with toys, plenty of time out of the cage, fresh fruits and vegetables, a lot of time with you (and others if possible), and of course money set aside should a trip to the vet be needed. Most important if you do decide to get a larger parrot, post lots of pictures in this forum.
Parrots give what you give. You put the effort into your friendship with your bird, and you'll have a friend for a very long time.
edit: After posting that it occurs to me that I don't even have a large parrot. LOL.
I learnt the hard way...but I depended on a breeders experience to help me out & he was wrong. LOL He was a breeder of African Greys & Blue Fronted Amazons....I went to him to say this is my needs & wants & what would work for us. Then I told him I think a AG would work for us...he talked me into the Amazon but I said I don't want a bird that screams & screams...that's exactly what I got & so jealous! He bit, yelled you name it...I could not handle him..so do tons of research, talk to many people with them & many breeders, buy books, go online (I am sure you're doing all of that, I know I did) but he was the experienced guy so I took his word. LOL
oh..and this is very important. Make sure you get your grey used to change at a very young age...the earlier the better actually. Greys are known to get very "set" in their ways...and sumthing simple as setting a pen down next to their cage can cause plucking...
Our grey is already cool with whatever comes her way...shes soooo cool..and laid back..lol..I can reach in her cage...grab her..move her...its so nice...
Greys are as loud as they learn to be - one raised in a pet shop around other birds will learn to make other bird sounds (our last baby learned how to screech bloody murder compliments of our rescued macaw ) :lol: one raised in a home that's relatively quiet will stay that way (with any luck) but as soon as they hear something fun and loud to mimic (smoke alarm, siren, etc) they tend to go for it :rofl: