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Yellow-crowned Parrot - BirdForum Opus

Subspecies ochrocephala
Photo © by Dave Bancroft
Hato Pinero, Venezuela, 9 March 2012

Alternative name: Yellow-crowned Amazon
It has also in the past been known as Yellow-fronted Parrot, however, that name is now used for a species from Africa.

Amazona ochrocephala


35–38 cm (13¾-15 in); wing length 198-220 mm (8-8.5ins)
This is an overall green parrot with a yellow forehead. There is a conspicuous white eye-ring and the bend of the wing plus the wing speculum are red. The feathers to the nape are faintly edged blackish and the thighs have a hint of yellow. The tail is green with a greenish-yellow tip (more visible on the underside than the upperside of the tail) and the base to the outer tail feathers is red. The bill is grey with reddish sides to the upper mandible and the feet are grey.

Similar species

At least in some areas, a bird seen from below may show the white eye ring but not the yellow crown. In such circumstances, Mealy Parrot would be a confusion species, and size judgment may be necessary (and we know how difficult it is to get size right!).

Geographical variation

Subspecies panamensis
Photo © by max1
Cartagena, Colombia, 13 February 2016

The Yellow-crowned in Panama, northwestern and western Colombia has the yellow restricted to forehead and forecrown; lores and area around eyes green; back of crown tinged with blue; thighs green, a few birds with yellowish tinge.
In the Belize Yellow-crowned the yellow extends to eye area, cheeks and ear-coverts; occasionally scattered yellow feathers to throat and back of head; red bend of wing often with scattered yellow feathers; throat and abdomen with slight bluish tinge.
The Yellow-crowned found in southern Colombia and Ecuador has a broad green frontal band, cheeks, ear-coverts and throat in most birds strongly suffused with blue; green to breast and abdomen varies from yellowish-green to bluish-green; red bend of wing often mixed with yellow; upper mandible grey with yellowish to pinkish sides.


Central and South America:
Central America: occurs only Panama
South America: found in Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Brazil Released and escaped pets can be found in many countries, sometimes in feral populations.


Formerly lumped with Yellow-headed Parrot and Yellow-naped Parrot and still included with them by some authors.


Subspecies nattereri
Photo © by Joseph Morlan
Rio Ucayali, Zapote Creek, Loreto, Peru, 13 February 2016

Four subspecies are recognised[1]:

  • A. o. panamensis:
  • A. o. ochrocephala:
  • A. o. xantholaema
  • Ilha de Marajó (off northern Brazil)
  • A. o. nattereri:


Forest, tropical deciduous woodland, mangroves, seasonally flooded woodland, savanna and may also be found on cultivated land and suburban areas.



The diet includes fruits, tree flowers, nuts, seeds and berries.


The breed from December-January in western Panama and Colombia; January in Surinam; February–May in north-eastern Venezuela; They nest in a hollow in a tree, palm or termite moount. The clutch consists of 2-3 eggs which are incubated for about 26 days; the young fledge about 60 days later.


Common calls include a variety of low-pitched, nasal, rolling barks and screeches.


Mostly resident with occasionally wandering in search of food.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Avibase
  3. Collar, N., P. F. D. Boesman, and G. M. Kirwan (2020). Yellow-crowned Parrot (Amazona ochrocephala), version 1.0. In Birds of the World (J. del Hoyo, A. Elliott, J. Sargatal, D. A. Christie, and E. de Juana, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.ywcpar.01
  4. Wikipedia contributors. (2019, July 4). Yellow-crowned amazon. In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 08:10, July 18, 2019, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Yellow-crowned_amazon&oldid=904744128
  5. Juniper, T., & Parr, M. (1998). Parrots: A guide to parrots of the world. Yale Univ. Press.
  6. Schulenberg, T. S. & Stotz, D. F. & Lane, D. F. & O'Neill, J. P. & Parker III, T. A. & Egg, A. B. (2010). Birds of Peru: Revised and Updated Edition. Princeton: Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0691130231
  7. Ayerbe Quiñones, F. 2019. An illustrated field guide to The Birds of Colombia. Wildlife Conservation Society/Colombia Program. ISBN: 978-958-5461-41-3

Recommended Citation

External Links

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