9+ Common Parrot Species (Pet Bird Types & Resources)

Information and photos of this species are hard to come by, so I have listed what very little I could find on the Web.

Brown-Headed Parrots

There are three sub-species of Brown-Headed Parrots:

  1. Poicephalus cryptoxanthus cryptoxanthus – approximately 8 1/2″; green
  2. Poicephalus cryptoxanthus tanganyikae – approximately 8 1/2″; yellowish-green
  3. Poicephalus cryptoxanthus zanzibaricus – approximately 9″


  • Wellsboro Veterinary Hospital & Reptile & Bird Clinic

This website is packed with all the information you need to know about having a parrot, especially if you’re new to birds. Some of the issues discussed include housing, diet, training, and breeding.

  • African Parrot Society Mailing Lists

They have an email list for all Poicephalus species.

  • Breeding Poicephalus

by Jean Pattison

Jean is known as The African Queen to those who have heard of her. She breeds Poicephalus and African Gray Parrots. This is an excellent post about Poicephalus that covers a wide range of subjects, including breeding, compatibility, which couples truly get along in your aviary, and so on. Also included are sections on Senegals, Meyer’s, Red-Bellieds, Brown-Headeds, Capes, and Jardine’s.

  • Poicephalus FAQ

Brown-Headed Parrots, Cape Parrots, Jardine’s Parrots, Meyer’s Parrots, Red Bellied Parrots, and Senegal Parrots are all covered in detail.

  • Pet Poicephalus FAQ

Here is some useful general information on Poicephalus. Jardine’s parrots, Meyer’s parrots, Red Bellied parrots, and Senegal parrots are all examined in detail.

  • Old World Aviaries

In Austin, Texas, there is a MAP (Model Aviculture Program) aviary. There are some fantastic articles and a wealth of useful information connected here, as well as images of the species they breed, including some of the Poicephalus.

You’ll find links to information on this species as well as a link to a photo page.

This is an adorable pet page with photos.


Caiques do not have Poicephalus. They are known as Pionites leucogaster. The White Bellied Caique has three subspecies. Pionites leucogaster leucogaster has green thighs and a white belly, whereas Pionites leucogaster xanthomeria has yellow thighs and a white belly.

Caiques perform the microwave noises, furious squirrel chatter, whistles some completely unrecognizable songs, says a lot of stuff (“Pretty Bird,” “Pretty Boy,” “Pretty Baby,” and “Poor Baby”), and is generally full of himself in a really charming manner.

We can detect the extent to which Caique believes he isn’t receiving enough attention. “Pretty Boy” may become “Pretty Pretty Pretty Pretty Boy” or “Pretty Pretty Pretty Pretty Pretty Pretty Boy.” He enjoys surfing about his cage on his back, but the White Bellied Caique and the Black Headed Caique are some of the finest clowns in the bird world.

If you take the time to teach them and build on their natural behavior, both Caiques are not only highly clownish but also very skilled at doing stunts and conversing. Pionites melanocephala has two subspecies: Pionites melanocephala melanocephala (nominate), which has orange thighs and black heads, and Pionites melanocephala pallida, which has yellow thighs and black heads. The pale Black-Headed Caique is unlikely to be found in the United States.


  • The Caique Site

There is a ton of Caique information on this site–for both the Black-Headeds and White-Bellieds.

This great organization is located in Loxahatchee, Florida. The link above is a great photo page of this species, and here is their information page on the White Bellied Caique.

This is a site with some great Caique information and photos. Gloria has a MAP certified aviary, and I wouldn’t hesitate to send anyone there to buy a Caique or a Parrotlet. She breeds Black Headed and White Bellied Caiques as well as five species of Forpus Parrotlets. Shady Pines is located in southern Florida.

by Theresa Jordan
This is a good article on the Caiques published in their October 1997 issue.

James’ Baby

There is a great photo record of a White Bellied Caique for the first 3 1/2 months of a White Bellied Caique’s life here.

by Tom Marshall

This is the most adorable Caique story!

Cape Parrots

There are three accepted subspecies of Cape Parrots:

  1. Cape Parrot (Poicephalus robustus robustus) – approximately 13″; greenish to yellowish-brown head
  2. Gray-Headed Parrot (Poicephalus fuscicollis suahelieus) – approximately 13″; has silvery gray head
  3. Dusky-Collared Parrot (Poicephalus fuscicollis fuscicollis) – approximately 13″; has bluish-green tinge to body feathers


  • Thor’s Cape Parrot Page

Lots of good information on Cape Parrots is located here along with photos.

  • Tori – A Cape Parrot

There are lots of good photos of Tori, a Brown-Necked Parrot.

Jardine’s Parrots

There are three accepted subspecies of Jardine’s Parrots:

  1. Greater Jardine’s Parrot (Poicephalus gulielmi massaicus) – approximately 11″
  2. Black Wing Jardine’s Parrot (Poicephalus gulielmi gulielmi) – approximately 11″
  3. Lesser Jardine’s Parrot (Poicephalus gulielmi fantiensis) – approximately 10″


  • Aspergillosis & Jardine’s Parrots

There is a possibility that this species is more susceptible to the mold disease, aspergillosis. Read up on this disease here.

This page is about a Black Winged Jardine’s, a rare sub-species.

  • Oscar The Jardine’s Parrot Home Page

Oscar has a bio, photo, and care tips page.

There are lots of great photos of Jardy on this page.

  • Bariki – a Lesser Jardine’s Parrot

This is a simply gorgeous Lesser Jardine’s.

Meyer’s Parrots

Meyer’s Parrots are one of the bird world’s best kept secrets. They have a lot of personality! They’re a little more clownish than the rest of our red Senegals, at least in our aviary. Mickey sometimes asks me, “What are you doing?” just when I thought all he knows how to say is “Pretty Bird”!

Mickey enjoys being the center of attention and is, by far, our most outgoing Meyer’s. When any of us is in the bird room, he comes right up to the front of the cage and begins making noise because he wants you to come over and chat to him. Don’t get me wrong: he’s not a noisy person. None of the Poicephalus species are. However, you may sometimes hear him over the din.

Another stunt that the Meyers seem to like is hanging from the top of the cage. When they do that and start bobbing their heads or spinning their heads around in half circles, it’s quite amusing to watch!

Meyer’s Parrots are around 9″ long from the top of their heads to the bottom of their tail feathers. They have dark grey heads and wings with a yellow spot on the front of their heads and at the shoulders of their wings. The size of these yellow spots varies greatly among individuals of this species, and the patches do not “set” until they attain maturity. Their chests and backs are a stunning mix of bright green and turquoise. Their eyes are brown. Their coloring is stunning.

This species lacks dimorphism. In other words, you can’t determine which is male and which is female just on their coloring. Males have bright black stripes over their chest, but a DNA test is required to identify which sex they are.

At least two of our Meyers periodically make this magnificent trumpet cry, which is not piercing but is really nice to hear.


  • Menagerie, The Magazine For Pets And Their People

This is a nice article on the Meyer’s Parrot.

There are a couple of adorable photos of Meyer’s (including babies) on this page.

  • Cuddle’s Home Page

This is Cuddles’, a pet Meyer’s, web page. There are lots of photos!

Niam-Niam Parrots

There are no known sub-species of Niam-Niam Parrots (Poicephalus crassus). This species is approximately 10″.

This species of Poicephalus is unknown in captivity.

Red Bellied Parrots

From the top of their heads to the bottom of their tail feathers, Red Bellied Parrots average 8″ in length. Males and females both have dark grey heads and wings. Both have crimson eyes with a dark gray circle surrounding them. The female is almost identical to the female Meyer’s Parrot. From the bottom of the chest to the rear beneath the tail, the feathers are an amazing blend of light green and turquoise. The female’s breast is light gray with red feathering underneath. The female has feathers on her back that are a mix of pale green, aqua, and turquoise.

The male Red Bellied Parrot has a very bright red chest. The male’s chest color may vary from a rich orange-red that is just short of a true red to a reddish-orange. The male, like the female, has feathers on his back that are a mix of light green, aqua, and turquoise, and the feathers from the bottom of the breast to the rear under the tail are an excellent combination of light green and aqua. This is our most vibrant Poicephalus ever!


This is the cutest Red Bellied pet page!

Ruppell’s Parrots

There are no known sub-species of Ruppell’s Parrots (Poicephalus ruppellii). This is a dimorphic species with the female having the bright blue feathers on her abdomen and lower back and the male having a much more muted blue-gray feathering in this area. This species is approximately 8 1/2″.

This species of Poicephalus is rare in captivity.


I don’t know anything about this aviary, but they raise Rüppell’s. I’ve linked to a photo page. This aviary is located in southern California.

Senegal Parrots

From the top of their heads to the bottom of their tail feathers, Senegal Parrots average 9″ in length. These birds have dark gray heads, gray eyes that yellow with age, brilliant green wings, and a green “v” on their breast. They also have “red” below the “v” on their chest (sometimes a mix of red and yellow for the females), and yellow below that. The female has a darker green “v” on her breast than the male, and she will have at least one green feather, if not many, mixed in with the yellow beneath her tail below the vent. Females have around half the “red” that men have, and it tends to be a lighter “red.” This is true for all of our ladies, however you may sometimes come across a female that is marked as a male. Their color scheme is very stunning!

Senegals are not dimorphic, and a DNA test needs be performed to determine which sex they are.

You haven’t lived until you’ve had a Senegal kiss your nose! You have to remember that breeder birds can’t be handled and domesticated too much or they won’t be good Moms and Dads.

We’ve found that Senegals frequently have a favorite person in the family, but after a little effort (training), and the parrot gets acclimated to you, anybody else may touch that Senegal without fear.


There are lots of photos of Senegals (including babies) on this page.

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