Red-bellied Parrot (Poicephalus rufiventris)

Red-bellied Parrot

[order] PSITTACIFORMES | [family] Psittacidae | [latin] Poicephalus rufiventris | [authority] Ruppell, 1845 | [UK] Red-bellied Parrot | [FR] Perroquet a ventre Rouge | [DE] Rotbauch-Mohrenkopf | [ES] Lorito Ventrirrojo | [NL] Roodbuikpapegaai | [copyright picture] Kristian Svensson


Monotypic species


The genus Poicephalus comprises 10 species of small and medium-sized parrots, which collectively are distributed over much of Africa south of the Sahara Desert. The genus is characterized by parrots that are compact and stocky; have head coloration that is often distinct from body coloration; have relatively large heads, square tails, and relatively large bills (Poicephalus means, literally, “made of head”); and are either sexually dimorphic or monomorphic depending on species.

Physical charateristics

Male-grey/brown, with varying tinges of brown/orange on cheeks and breast; orange lower breast, abdomen and underwing coverts; pale green/blue thighs and lower flanks to undertail coverts; yellow/green rump and upper tail coverts with blue suffusion. Bill grey/black. Cere and eye ring bare and brown/grey. Eye orange/red. Female-green lower breast to undertail coverts; green rump and upper tail coverts, blue suffusion absent.

Listen to the sound of Red-bellied Parrot

[audio: Parrot.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

recorded by Jelmer Poelstra

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 25 cm size max.: 27 cm
incubation min.: 23 days incubation max.: 28 days
fledging min.: 60 days fledging max.: 66 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 3  
      eggs max.: 4  


Africa : East. East Africa: From north-eastern Tanzania, eastern and northern Kenia into the Horn of Africa in southern and eastern Ethiopia (including Rift Valley) and western and northern Somalia


Found between 800-2000m (2624-6560 ft) in dry country, partial to Commiphora bush with baobabs, lowland Acacia short-grass savanna and Acacia-Commiphora thorn bush, riverine forest and bushland. Avoids dense foliage.


Nesting sometimes loosely in colonies, with pairs 100-200m (328-656 ft) apart. The average clutch size is three to four eggs. The clutch of the Orange-Bellied Parrot takes an average of 26 days in incubation and the eggs hatch a day or two apart. Chicks leave the nest about 63 days after hatching.

Feeding habits

Feeds on Ficus figs, seeds, fruits and maize. Seen in pairs or family groups of 3-4 birds. Drinks frequently and often found near water sources.

Video Red-bellied Parrot


copyright: Josep del Hoyo


This species has an extremely 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.
Widespread within range and generally frequent to common. However trade may pose a
significant threat for the species, especially from Tanzania.
Red-bellied Parrot status Least Concern


Usually sedentary but wit hsome local movement, also altitudinal to 2000m, in pursuit of figs.

Distribution map

Red-bellied Parrot distribution range map

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *