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Black-headed Caique  

Also Known As: Black-capped Parrot, Black-headed Parrot, Pallid Caique (P.m. pallida)

Black-headed Caique

Credit: © Kevin Britland | License: ShutterStock

Did You Know?
The stance of the Black-headed Caique is more upright than other parrots, giving them a comical, fearless appearance.

Species Profile


Size: Adult Weight:
23 cm (9 in) 130-170g (4.5-6 oz)

Races including nominate:
two: P.m. melanocephala, P.m. pallida

Colourization Adult:
P.m. melanocephala: both adults small stocky parrot with black cap, forehead and nape; orange/yellow mantle, cheeks and neck; green goggles; green wings, white belly and chest, yellow undertail; orange/yellow thighs. Black bill. Eye red/orange. P.m. pallida: both adults yellow throat, flanks and thighs; breast and centre of abdomen buff/white; orange/yellow cheeks, neck and mantle paler.

Colourization Juvenile: Has flecks of yellow on chest and belly blended into the white/buff; thighs streaked with green. Eye dark brown.

Call: Very vocal bird with loud shrieks and alarm calls. Include trills, songlike sounds, and toots. Displaying birds sound kleeek. Low soft growl in captive birds.

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Recent Academic Research: Google Scholar - search results


Content Sources:

Central Pets


BirdLife International

Internet Bird Collection

ML Media Collection Catalogue 68611, Black-headed Parrot (Pionites melanocephala), Schwartz, Paul, Rio Grande, Venezuela, Jul. 4 1966, Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

Parrots: A Guide to Parrots of the World, Juniper and Parr, 1998.

Parrots of the World, Forshaw and Cooper, 1989.

Parrots of the World, Forshaw, 2006.

Parrots in Aviculture, Low, 1992.

Desi Milpacher, pers. comm.