Red-shouldered Macaw (Diopsittaca nobilis)

Red-shouldered Macaw

[order] PSITTACIFORMES | [family] Psittacidae | [latin] Diopsittaca nobilis | [authority] Linnaeus, 1758 | [UK] Red-shouldered Macaw | [FR] Ara noble | [DE] Zwergara | [ES] Guacamayo Noble | [NL] Roodschouderara


Monotypic species


The Red-shouldered Macaw comprise two distinct subspecies, D. n. nobilis (Hahn’s Macaw) and D. n. cumanensis (Noble Macaw), and some parrots with longer wings might represent a poorly differentiated subspecies, D. n. longipennis, which intergrades with D. n. cumanensis in central Goias, Brazil. Previously the Red-shouldered Macaw was included in the genus Ara with the other macaws.

Physical charateristics

Like all macaws, D. nobilis has a long narrow tail and a large head. It has bright green feathers on the body, with dark or slate blue feathers on the head just above the beak. The wings and tail have feathers that are bright green above and olive-green below. The leading edges of the wings, especially on the underside, are red. (These red feathers appear at puberty.) Their eyes are orange, and the skin around the eyes is white without feathers, just as in the larger macaws. This bare patch of facial skin is smaller in proportion to the head than the one seen in larger macaws.

Listen to the sound of Red-shouldered Macaw

[audio: Macaw.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 28 cm size max.: 32 cm
incubation min.: 24 days incubation max.: 26 days
fledging min.: 58 days fledging max.: 26 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 2  
      eggs max.: 5  


South America : Amazonia, Southcentral


Open forests of the tropical lowlands, savannah and swamp-lands as well as the fringes of tropical rainforests.


In the northern parts of the distribution the season begins February to March, earlier in the southern range. Clutch may consist of up to 5 eggs which are incubated for 24 to 26 days. Nestlings leave the hollow after about 60 days.

Feeding habits

Fruits, seeds, berries, nuts and the like collected from the treetops

Video Red-shouldered Macaw


copyright: D. Ascanio


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.
The red-Shouldered Macaw is native to the tropical forests north of the Amazon in Brazil, in addition to the Guyanas and the eastern areas of Venezuela. It has also been found in Suriname, mainly on savannas where it is common.
Red-shouldered Macaw status Least Concern


Resident throughout range, with some possible waderning outside the breeding season.

Distribution map

Red-shouldered Macaw distribution range map

Leave a Reply

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