Blue-crowned Racket-tail (Prioniturus discurus)

Blue-crowned Racket-tail

Blue-crowned Racket-tail

[order] PSITTACIFORMES | [family] Psittacidae | [latin] Prioniturus discurus | [authority] Vieillot, 1818 | [UK] Blue-crowned Racket-tail | [FR] Palette a couronne bleu | [DE] Philippinen-Spatelschwanzpapag | [ES] Lorito Momoto Coroniazul | [NL] Blauwkapvlagstaartpapegaai | [copyright picture] Benedict De Laender


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Prioniturus discurus OR Philippines
Prioniturus discurus discurus Mindanao, Basilan and islands in Sulu Arch.
Prioniturus discurus mindorensis Mindoro (nc Philippines)
Prioniturus discurus whiteheadi Luzon to Leyte and Bohol


The taxonomy of racquet-tail parrots, genus Prioniturus, has been often revised with nine species recognised. Six species are endemic to the Philippines, of which three are threatened with extinction. Indonesia, with three species, is the only other country where Prioniturus occur. The island of Buru is home to a single endemic species that is classified as near threatened. The remaining two species, the Golden-mantled Racquet-tail P. platurus and the Yellowish-breasted Racquet-tail P. flavicans both occur on Sulawesi. P. platurus is distributed across the entire island and has the greater altitudinal range of the two species. In contrast, P. flavicans is endemic to the northern peninsula and immediately adjacent offshore islands. It is currently classified as near threatened. Very little is known of the ecology of any Prioniturus species, with data on nesting and breeding behaviour virtually unrecorded. Available information comes from the few nests that have been identified, sightings of juveniles, and the breeding condition of specimen birds.

Physical charateristics

In general, green body, bright emerald green on face. P.d. discurus: both adults-crown to nape deep blue; centre tail feathers green, “racquets” black tinged with blue, outside tail feathers blue edged with green and tipped with black. Bill blue/grey. P.d. whiteheadi: both adults-less blue on crown, blending into green on rest of head. P.d. mindorensis: both adults-forecrown green, with no blue; back of crown and nape dark lilac/blue.

Listen to the sound of Blue-crowned Racket-tail

[audio: Racket-tail.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

recorded by Frank Lambert

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 27 cm size max.: 29 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 4  


Oriental Region : Philippines. P.d. discurus: Jolo in Sulu Archipelago, and Balut, Mindanao, Olutanga, and Basilan, S Philippine Islands.
P.d. whiteheadi: S Luzon, Catanduanes, Tablas, Ticao, Sibuyan, Masbate, Samar, Biliran, Leyte, Cebu, Bohol, Guimaras and Negros, in the N to C Philippine Islands.
P.d. mindorensis: Mindoro, N Philippine Islands.


Found in primary and tall secondary growth, forest margins and remnant trees in cultivated areas. Up to 1750m (5740 ft).


Said to breed in colonies in tall trees. Clutch size 3 eggs.

Feeding habits

Seen in small noisy groups of five to a dozen birds outside the breeding season. Groups converge to feed in fruiting trees. Diet includes fruit, berries, nuts and seeds.

Video Blue-crowned Racket-tail


copyright: Daniel Jimenez


This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is reported to be generally common. The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.
Blue-crowned Racket-tail status Least Concern


Resident, but disperses after breeding season.

Distribution map

Blue-crowned Racket-tail distribution range map

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