Psittacus picta P. L. S. Mьller, 1776, Cayenne. Nine subspecies.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Painted conure; French: Conure versicolore; German: Rotzьgelsittich; Spanish: Cotorra Pintada.
8.7 in (22 cm); 1.9–2.5 oz (54–70 g). Polytypic species with strong geographical variation in plumage patterns of head and breast.
P. p. picta: Venezuela through Guianas to Amapб, north Brazil. P. p. amazonum: north-central Brazil, north of Amazon River. P. p. microtera: north-central Brazil, south of Amazon River. P. p. lucianii: northwest Brazil and southeast Ecuador to northeast Peru and north Bolivia. P. p. roseifrons: east of range of lucianii in west Brazil and east Peru. P. p. subandina: Sinъ River valley, northwest Colombia; probably separate species. P. p. caeruleiceps: western slopes of East Andes, north Colombia; possibly separate species. P. p. pantchenkoi: Sierra de Perijб, Colombia-Venezuela border. P. p. eisenmanni: Azuero Peninsula, Panama; possibly separate species.
Lowlands and foothills. Closely associated with moist, evergreen forest, though occurring also in dense savanna woodland, cloud forest, and partly cleared areas; favors lower stages in interior of forest rather than margins or secondary growth.
Sedentary, but some local altitudinal movements. Pairs, family parties, or flocks of up to 20 birds; inconspicuous while foraging in lower to upper stages of forest; in dry season bathes regularly at favored watering places; emits shrill “eek” call-notes while in swift, direct flight; where sympatric, gives way to larger crimson-bellied parakeet (Pyrrhura perlata); nighttime roosting in tree hollows.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Feeds arboreally, taking seeds, nuts, fruits, berries, flowers, and possibly insect larvae; also seen taking algae from surface of deep pools; comes to the ground to take mineralized clay.
Monogamous. Breeding season varies geographically throughout extensive range, but mainly January to June in north and June to September in south. Nest in tree hollow; in captivity, clutch of four or five eggs.
Generally common, but locally scarce and declining because of deforestation; subandina possibly extremely rare. Listed on CITES Appendix II.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS
Some localized trapping for live-bird trade.
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