Red billed Parrot
Pionus sordidus

Tropicbird Parrot

The Red billed Parrot (Pionus sordidus), of looking scruffy, has a length of 28 a 31 cm. and a weight between 255 and 275 g..

Red billed Parrot

The subspecies Pionus sordidus corallinus, the most widespread, has the feathers of the forecrown, lores and behind the eyes, Green at the base and with blue edges widths; the cheeks, ear-coverts and the sides of the neck, mainly green with some blue narrow tips; the crown and rear of the neck, Green with edges blue narrow. Mantle and back pretty dull green with paler blue margins; rump and uppertail-coverts, of color green basally, more Brown olive distally. Coverts medium and small with wide olive green tips; the front edge of the wing ; coverts primary and higher and flight feather brightest which the parts superiores and others wing-coverts.

Under, the wings green; chin green; throat and upper breast with band broadband of color blue violet; belly green, Some birds with gray Suffusion; undertail-coverts Crimson. Tail Green by the Center, Blue side; Red at the base.

Bill coral red, pale at the base of the upper mandible; cere dark grey; bare periophthalmic pale grey; Iris dark brown; legs pale grey.

Both sexes are similar. Immature sample undertail-coverts yellowish-green with some red marks; head green.

  • Sound of the Red billed Parrot.
[audio:HTTPS:// piquirrojo sound.mp3]
Description 6 subspecies
  • Pionus sordidus antelius

    (Todd, 1947) – Similar to the nominal species but the feathers of the throat lack of edges blue and the center of the chest is in color pink.

  • Pionus sordidus corallinus

    (Bonaparte, 1854) – Described above.

  • Pionus sordidus mindoensis

    (Chapman, 1925) – Is as the subspecies Pionus sordidus corallinus, but of color green more beige, those edges blue of the feathers of the head are more narrow and the under wing-coverts not have them edges dark.

  • Pionus sordidus ponsi

    (Aveledo & Gines, 1950) – Throat of color blue violet almost solid. The chest and upperparts they are darker and greener that the of the nominal species, they lack clear margins to the feathers of the back and of the wing-coverts.

  • Pionus sordidus saturatus

    (Todd, 1915) – More dark and more green that it nominal species with the feathers of the upperparts lack of margins of color green olive. Less green in the throat and cheeks.

  • Pionus sordidus sordidus

    (Linnaeus, 1758) – Nominal. Much more Brown that the subspecies Pionus sordidus corallinus, with blue (turquoise) more reduced in the throat. Feathers in them upperparts with most distinctive pale margins.


It is a very rare species. It inhabits in mountains of cloudy humid and semi-humid forests, edges of forest and partially deforested areas, between 200-2850 m, Although they are more frequent at altitudes of 500-1.500 m. They use areas of secondary growth, partially deforested with tall trees scattered and sometimes light forests on coffee plantations, being less frequent in dry areas.

Gregarious outside of the breeding season; formations in flocks of up to 50 birds, sometimes more where the food is abundant. Children sleep in community.


They nest in the cavity of the trees, sometimes in very degraded habitats. Birds in attitude breeds during the months of February-April in Colombia; Breeding in months of April-June in Venezuela, January-may in Ecuador; Nest occupied in October in Bolivia. Laying three eggs in captivity.


Feeds of fruit, berries and seeds.


Size of the area of distribution (reproduction / resident): 169.000 km2

This species has a distribution batch through them land high in the North and West of South America, from Venezuela to the North of Bolivia. You can find in the North of Venezuela, in the mountains of Anzoátegui, Sucre, North of Monagas and apparently, of way to discontinuous, in the Highlands of the Federal District through the mountains coastal, to the West, until Lara and Falcon, then in the Sierra de Perija, Zulia and parts adjacent in Colombia, West to the foothills of Santa Marta in Magdalena, also locally in the Eastern Andes of Boyacá and Huila. Extends over the Western side of the Andes in Ecuador, from Pichincha until Gold and for all the East side to the northeast of Peru.

Although there are no records in the Eastern Andean slope, in the central and southern Peru, the range includes the Yungas North of Bolivia in Santa Cruz and Cochabamba.

Common locally; apparently less numerous in the West of Ecuador and North of Bolivia, and probably in decline locally due to the deforestation (for example, in the Ecuador Western, North of Venezuela and Andes of Colombia).

A recent study not localized to the subspecies Pionus sordidus antelius in its area of distribution widely cleared, Although the subspecies can dwell in forests moderately disturbed.

Kept as pets locally although generally scarce in captivity.

Distribution 6 subspecies


• Current red list category of the UICN: Least concern.

• Population trend: Decreasing.

Justification of the population

The size of the world population It has not been quantified, but this species is described as “quite common” (Stotz et to the., 1996).

Justification of trend

It is suspected that the population is in decline due to ongoing habitat destruction.

Red-billed parrot in captivity:

Very rare in captivity. In general, they are not so nervous in temperament as other parrots. They can learn to imitate.

Its diet in captivity It varied: Fruits such as: Apple, orange, banana, Granada, Cactus, they form approximately the 30 percent of the diet; vegetables such as: carrot, celery, Green beans, pea in the pod, fresh corn; Greens such as: Chard, lettuce, Dandelion, Aviary grass; millet; mixture of small seeds, such as: millet, birdseed, and small amounts of oats, buckwheat, safflower and hemp; soaked and sprouted sunflower seeds; beans, cooked vegetables and boiled corn; hard cheese.

Alternative names:

Red-billed Parrot, Dusky parrot, Red billed Parrot, Sordid parrot (English).
Pione à bec rouge, Perroquet sordide (French).
Dunenkopfpapagei, Dunenkopf, Dunenkopf-Papagei (German).
Curica-de-bico-vermelho (Portuguese).
Cotorra Piquirroja, Loro de Pico Rojo, Loro Piquirrojo (Spanish).
Cotorra piquiroja, Cotorra Piquirroja (Colombia).
Loro de Pico Rojo (Peru).
Perico Pico Rojo (Venezuela).

Carl Linnaeus
Carl Linnaeus

Scientific classification:

Order: Psittaciformes
Family: Psittacidae
Genus: Pionus
Scientific name: Pionus sordidus
Citation: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Protonimo: Psittacus sordidus

Tropicbird Parrot images:

Red billed Parrot (Pionus sordidus)


  • Avibase
  • Parrots of the World – Forshaw Joseph M
  • Parrots A Guide to the Parrots of the World – Tony Juniper & Mike Parr
  • Birdlife
  • Book parrots, Parrots and macaws Neotropical

  • Photos:

(1) – Red-billed Parrot, Pionus s. sordidus, Perico Pico Rojo – Our beautiful world
(2) – Red-billed Parrot, Pionus s. sordidus, Perico Pico Rojo – Our beautiful world
(3) – Red-billed Parrot, Pionus s. sordidus, Perico Pico Rojo – Our beautiful world
(4) – Red-billed Parrot (also known ans the Red-billed Pionus); two captive By TJ Lin (originally posted to Flickr as coral-billed pionus) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(5) – Red-billed-Parrot (Pionus sordidus), Pajaro Jumbo Reserve, NW Ecuador By Nomdeploom (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons
(6) – BARRABAND, Jacques (1767/8-1809) Le Perroquet brun [Red-billed Parrot (Pionus sordidus)] – Wikimedia

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