Powdery Parrot, Mealy Parrot, Mealy Parrot: Features and Photos

Powdery Amazon, Mealy Amazon, Mealy Amazon: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. Psittacidae are a family...

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The psittacines are a family of birds that includes parrots, macaws and parakeets, species that are distributed in tropical areas. They are beautiful animals capable of communicating in a very particular way through different sounds that can be heard over long distances. But their ability to communicate is not limited to the emission of specific sounds, but, in addition, they have the particularity of knowing how to imitate the voice of humans, learning to repeat various phrases or words.

In this group of birds is the powdery amazon, a green parrot (Amazona farinosa), also known as the king parrot, blue-crowned parrot, blue-headed parrot or mealy amazon. It is one of the largest of its kind and has been a domesticated bird for years due to its docility and good ability to relate to humans. However, it is a wild species and in several countries its capture and trade is considered illegal. In this AnimalPlanet sheet, we present several important aspects of this species and we talk about the characteristics of the Powdery Amazon.


  • America
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Colombia
  • Ecuador
  • Guyana
  • Panama
  • Peru
  • Suriname
  • Venezuela

Characteristics of the Powdery Amazon

As we mentioned, it is a large parrot, measuring about 40 cm from head to tail and weighing between 570 and 700 grams. It should be noted that only the wings measure from 22.5 to 24.5 cm. Now, in the characteristics of the powdery Amazon, without a doubt, the most remarkable is its coloring. Thus, the plumage is mostly green, with the exception of the head, where there may be the presence of a blue cap that can sometimes present yellowish feathers. Similarly, some individuals have yellow or red feathers under their wings. In addition, those located on the tail have a yellowish coloring. Another peculiarity of the coloring of the green parrot is that the upper rear area usually has a whitish tone, which has given it one of the common names: Mealy Amazon.

The wings have a rounded shape, the tail is short and square.The iris of the eye is reddish, surrounded by a white eye-ring. For its part, the beak is quite resistant and off-white in color. Finally, it can be confused with other species of the genus Amazon, but the differences in coloring of certain areas of the body, the tone of its sounds and genetic studies have allowed the differentiation of the species.

Habitat of the Powdery Amazon

They are endemic to many, many different countries. Powdery Amazons are found between 290 and 1200 meters above sea level, approximately. Its main habitat is tropical evergreen, subtropical, and rainforest, as well as lowlands, palm areas, and plantations. Eventually, they can inhabit deciduous forests, gallery forests, and secondary growth areas close to forests.

They can be observed in various urban areas near wooded areas or other types of ecosystems described.So in areas with thick trees, they can be seen or heard frequently. It is very common for this species to be in captivity, for which it is kept enclosed in cages, which, regardless of its size, will always mean insufficient space for the animal that feels the need to fly freely.

Discover other breeds of parrots and their characteristics in this other article.

Habits of the Mealy Amazon

The Mealy Amazon is a diurnal and arboreal animal. It is monogamous and is organized in groups of 20 or more individuals. It is a fairly active and sociable animal, hence the interest of humans in keeping it in captivity, but it is also often seen interacting with other species of psittaciformes, such as macaws. At dawn and when it starts to get dark, it is usually quite noisy. Within the group, it is the one that presents one of the most remarkable or striking flights.

They tend to move in pairs or in the family groups they form, but it is common for them to share feeding areas and roosts with other families or species. In captivity, they are quite docile and in these conditions they have a life expectancy of between 50 and 100 years. However, it is unclear how long they live in freedom. Additionally, they can roam over wide areas, especially after breeding or when food is scarce.

Powdered Amazon Food

The Powdery Parrot develops its diet primarily in the tree canopy and is based on fruits, seeds, nuts, flowers and leaf buds. The species from which it usually consumes its fruits or seeds are:

  • Brosimum alicastrum
  • Cochlospermum spp.
  • Dialium guianensis
  • Dusia spp.
  • Eschweilera spp.
  • Inga spp.
  • Peritassa account
  • Piptadenia spp.
  • Pithecellobium spp.
  • Prionostemma aspera
  • Sloanea grandiflora

The Powdery Amazon can also consume fruits of Ficus spp. And Cecropia spp. On the other hand, it has been shown to additionally consume the flowers and nectar of Caesaria spp., Tabebuia spp. And Virola spp. Due to its type of diet, it plays an important ecological role in dispersing seeds within the ecosystems it inhabits, so many of the plant species it consumes reproduce in a wide range of distribution.

Reproduction of the powdery Amazon

The mealy amazon is a monomorphic bird, so there are no visible and distinctive characters between males and females.They reach their sexual maturity between four and five years. This species performs a courtship display before mating, which takes place during the dry season, between the months of November to March. Likewise, let's remember that it is a monogamous animal, so it has only one partner. Nests are prepared in tree cavities, preferring great heights of up to 30 meters, so tree size is an important aspect for the species. In some urban areas, they may use building cracks to create nests.

They have low fecundity, as females usually lay two to three eggs, which measure approximately 38 x 29 mm, spaced three days apart for spawning. The incubation time lasts 26-27 days, and the young remain in the nest for up to 60 days. While the female is in the incubation process, the male feeds her by regurgitating the food to feed her and then he will do this with the hatchlings.The powdered amazon does not reproduce with the same frequency in captivity, and it tends to slow down the process in these conditions.

State of conservation of the powdery Amazon

The main threats to this bird are the deforestation of forests for the planting of crops such as soybeans and livestock, as well as its marketing for sale as pets. Likewise, it is hunted intensively to be eaten in Guyana.

In several countries, its commercialization has been penalized, but it continues to be subject to the aforementioned pressures. In this sense, this species has been declared threatened by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna (CITES), while for the International Union for the Conservation of Nature it is considered as a Near Threatened species, although its habitat is protected in many of the areas where it lives.

The green parrot requires constant monitoring, as its low reproductive rate and the continuous pressures on this species, as well as the destruction of its habitat, make it fragile.In fact, although there are no precise data, it is estimated that its population is declining. On the other hand, education is necessary to make people aware and understand that it is not an animal to keep in captivity, despite strong sociability and great docility with humans.

Pictures of Powdery Amazon, Mealy Amazon, Mealy Amazon

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