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Black Parrot
Coracopsis nigra

Black Parrot

Black Parrot




35 to 40 cm. length and a weight between 215 and 315 gr.

The plumage of the Black Parrot (Coracopsis nigra) It, usually, blackish brown (iridescent green glow during breeding season) with inconspicuous grayish color marks in undertail- coverts and gray in vane external to the primary.

Bottom of flight feathers pale grey. Upper, the tail brown-black color; undertail, light grey: subterminal band dark.

The bill color horn, more off-white to modify the moult; irises dark brown: periophthalmic ring grey-brown (does not reach the peak); legs dark brown.

Sound of the ✩ Black Parrot ✩.

Without sexual dimorphism.

Immature paler than adults with pale undertail- coverts and yellowish tint in the bill; Tips of the feathers of the tail pale grey.

Subspecies description

  • Coracopsis nigra libs

    (Bangs, 1927) – Paler and with the underparts browner than the nominal species; back bluish grey tinted. No dark subterminal band on the tail.

  • Coracopsis nigra nigra

    (Linnaeus, 1758) – Nominal species

  • Coracopsis nigra sibilans

    (Milne-Edwards & Oustalet, 1885) – Smaller, of about 30 cm., and paler than the nominal species. The chocolate color replaces the blackish brown of the nominal. No grey in the vane the primary external


The Black Parrot are resident with some movements of foraging day.

It is found in a wide variety of forests and savanna areas, including ecosystems modified by man, wooded land of cities and towns, as well as primary forests, from the level of the sea up to 2,050 m altitude.

You can see more on the dense forests, swamp forest (including mangroves) and scrublands, that the Vasa Parrot, in order to avoid large areas of humid forests.

Usually seen in small noisy groups, either flying or sitting on the tops of the trees; active on moonlit nights.

In Seychelles, However, the Black Parrot seldom form flocks and in general you seen alone or in pairs, except when the food, locally, they are abundant.

Is not known to form mixed flocks with the Vasa Parrot.


Nest in the hollow trunk of tree or in a branch, usually above the 15 m.

Breeding probably from November to February.

Clutch of 2 to 8 eggs.


The Black Parrot they feed on seed, berries, fruits and nuts; more frugivorous than Vasa Parrot.

Specific articles reported on their diet include fruits of Afzelia bijuga and Chassalia, seeds of Cinnamosma fragrans, flowers of Symphonia and some types of leaves.

In Madagascar, according to sources, It has reported consumption of Insect Galls on the part of the Black Parrot.

They attack crops and in the Comoros they are real pests in cocoa plantations, feeding on immature pods.

The main food of the population of Praslin include: Verschaffeltia splendida, Averrhoa bilimbi, Phoenicophorium borsigianum, Deckenia nobilis, Chrysobalanus icaco and Ficus rubra.


Endemic to Madagascar, The Comoros archipelago (Grand Comore and Anjouan) and Praslin island (Seychelles), where it was possibly introduced.

Subspecies distribution

  • Coracopsis nigra libs

    (Bangs, 1927) – Can be found in the West of Madagascar.

  • Coracopsis nigra nigra

    (Linnaeus, 1758) – Nominal species



• Current Red List of UICN: Least concern

• Population trend: Stable

The species that are found in Madagascar and the Comoros they are generally described as common.

Officially treated as pests in Madagascar where the Black Parrot they are persecuted because of the damage caused in crops; Also hunted as food and as domestic fowl.

Despite their intense persecution, apparently they are not at risk and are distributed in many protected areas of Madagascar.

The size of the world's population has not been quantified.

The subspecies of the Praslin island (Seychelles), found in the The Valle de Mai nature reserve, is located in critical state (probably less than 100 birds). Competition for nesting sites with the common mine (Acridotheres tristis) can be one of the threats of the remaining birds.

The “Black Parrot” in captivity:

It is possible to keep them in community with its kind, but out of breeding period. At first he can be shy. It is a active parrot and nervous, generally outgoing Once accustomed to people and environment, tends to be entrusted, although it also depends a lot on its breeding method (natural or by hand) and earlier experiences.

As a pet it can be a wonderful company., loving, playful and very smart.

With regard to its longevity, sources they indicate that a sample lived 34.1 years in captivity.

Alternative names:

Black Parrot, Lesser Vasa Parrot, Lesser Vasa-Parrot (English).
Vaza noir, Perroquet noir (French).
Rabenpapagei (German).
Papagaio preto (Portuguese).
Loro Negro (español).

scientific classification:

Carl Linnaeus
Carl Linnaeus

Order: Psittaciformes
Family: Psittaculidae
Genus: Coracopsis
Scientific name: Coracopsis nigra
Citation: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Protonimo: Psittacus niger

Images “Black Parrot”:


“Black Parrot” (Coracopsis nigra)


– Parrots of the World – Forshaw Joseph M
– Parrots A Guide to the Parrots of the World – Tony Juniper & Mike Parr
– Birdlife


(1) – Madeira_botanischer_garten_Coracopsis_nigra By Hedwig Storch (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(2) – Lesser Vasa Parrot (also known as the Black Parrot). Two in a cage with a nestbox By TJ Lin (originally posted to Flickr as pic-264) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(3) – Lesser vasa parrot (coracopsis nigra) in Anjajavy Forest, Madagascar By Charlesjsharp (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(4) – Lesser Vasa Parrot or Black Parrot (Coracopsis nigra); picture taken at Mangily, Western Madagascar By Axel Strauss (Own work) [GFDL or CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(5) – Male Lesser Vasa Parrot in an aviary at Tropical Birdland, Leicestershire, England By Snowmanradio (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 or GFDL], via Wikimedia Commons

Sounds: Mike Nelson (Xeno-canto)

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