Matomo-Image-Tracker Psittaciformes - Purpureicephalus


Red Capped Parrot - Purpureicephalus Spurius - Least Concern

The red-capped parrot (Purpureicephalus spurius) is a species of broad-tailed parrot native to southwest Western Australia. It was described by Heinrich Kuhl in 1820, with no subspecies recognised. It has long been classified in its own genus owing to its distinctive elongated beak, though genetic analysis shows that it lies within the lineage of the Psephotellus parrots and that its closest relative is the mulga parrot (Psephotellus varius). Not easily confused with other parrot species, it has a bright crimson crown, green-yellow cheeks, and a distinctive long bill. The wings, back, and long tail are dark green, and the underparts are purple-blue. The adult female is very similar though sometimes slightly duller than the male; her key distinguishing feature is a white stripe on the wing under-surface. Juveniles are predominantly green.

Found in
woodland and open savanna country, the red-capped parrot is predominantly herbivorous, consuming seeds, particularly of eucalypts, as well as flowers and berries, but insects are occasionally eaten. Nesting takes place in tree hollows, generally of older large trees. Although the red-capped parrot has been shot as a pest and has been affected by land clearing, the population is growing and the species is considered of least-concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It has a reputation of being anxious and difficult to breed in captivity.

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Page last updated: 7/15/23

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