Bonaparte's Parakeet Pyrrhura lucianii

  • © Thiago Laranjeiras

The taxonomy and nomenclature of Pyrrhura parakeets can be complicated; the taxonomic status of Bonaparte's Parakeet is a good example of this confusing state of affairs. The Bonaparte's Parakeet for many decades was classified as a subspecies of the Painted Parakeet (Pyrrhura picta), although some authors had suggested that brown headed lucianii was the immature plumage of the red-headed taxon otherwise called roseifrons. Provisionally Bonaparte's now is recognized as a distinct species, but questions remain over its phylogenetic relationships to neighboring species, especially to the Rose-fronted Parakeet (Pyrrhura roseifrons) and the Santarem Parakeet (Pyrrhura amazonum). The Bonaparte's Parakeet occurs in western Amazonian Brazil, along the south bank of the Amazon and in the drainage of the Rio Purus. In common with many other Pyrrhura parakeets, especially within the Painted and the Maroon-faced (Pyrrhura leucotis) parakeet groups, the Bonaparte's Parakeet is mostly green with whitish auriculars, which form a pale patch on the sides of the head, and with a red tail and center to the belly. The head is mostly dark brown. Bonaparte's Parakeet is very similar to the Santarem Parakeet of central and eastern Brazil south of the Amazon, but is distinguished from the snethlageae subspecies, of the Rio Madeira drainage, by the large dark centers to the buff feathers of the breast (these feathers have very narrow dark centers in snethlageae), and is distinguished from the eastern amazonum subspecies of Santarem by the absence of blue on the forecrown. The Bonaparte's Parakeet is widespread and fairly common in lowland evergreen forest, but the biology of this species is very poorly known.

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Recommended Citation

Bonaparte's Parakeet (Pyrrhura lucianii), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: