Rufous-fronted Parakeet (Bolborhynchus ferrugineifrons)

Rufous-fronted Parakeet

[order] PSITTACIFORMES | [family] Psittacidae | [latin] Bolborhynchus ferrugineifrons | [authority] Lawrence, 1880 | [UK] Rufous-fronted Parakeet | [FR] Toui a front rouge | [DE] Rotstirn-Sittich | [ES] Catita Frentirrufa | [NL] Tolima-parkiet | [copyright picture] Birdlife


Monotypic species


Most of the representatives of the genus Bolborhynchus own short and acuminate tail feathers, which is unusual for parakeets. Obvious differences between the sexes cannot be found with any species of that genus. It contains the following species: Andean Parakeet, Bolborhynchus orbygnesius; Barred Parakeet, Bolborhynchus lineola; Rufous-fronted Parakeet, Bolborhynchus ferrugineifrons.

Physical charateristics

Both adults in general short, green parrots with red markings on face; red frontal mark, lores and base of lower mandible blue/green underwings; short rounded tail. Bill grey/yellow. Eye dark brown.

Listen to the sound of Rufous-fronted Parakeet

[audio: Parakeet.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

recorded by Bernabe Lopez-Lanus

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South America : Central Colombia. The species is known from three areas of the Central Andes in Colombia. Most records are from the Volcan Ruiz-Tolima massif in Tolima, Risaralda, Quindio and Caldas, but there are two specimens and a few observations from Volcan Purace in Cauca, and it is probably present at low densities along the intervening ridge. In September 1993, the species was found to be common (over 100 birds seen in eight hours) at El Bosque, below Laguna de Otun, in its stronghold, Los Nevados National Park.


It inhabits temperate sub-paramo and paramo at 3,200-4,000 m, sometimes as low as 2,800 m. It also uses modified shrublands and agricultural areas in the temperate zone, and seems tolerant of heavily modified habitats.


The nest is reportedly located in rock-cavities in cliffs, and breeding has been recorded in January. No further detail.

Feeding habits

It forages terrestrially, mostly taking grass-seeds (especially Anthoxantum odoratum), the fruits of Acaenia elongata and flowers, and has adapted to some forms of habitat modification, possibly even preferring to feed in fallow fields and areas altered by grazing.

Video Rufous-fronted Parakeet


copyright: ProAves


This species is listed to Vulnerable because it has a small population which is continuing to decline because of ongoing habitat degradation, with a high proportion of birds concentrated in one or two strongholds.
Conversion of forest for agricultural purposes has been widespread below 3,300 m in the Central Andes. At higher elevations, the forest is exploited for firewood and grazing, but large areas remain. Given its adaptation to the agricultural environment, the level of threat posed by deforestation is unknown. Conversely, widespread destruction of paramo vegetation, even in Los Nevados, seems to have seriously affected numbers. This is caused by frequent burning (promoting fresh shooting), intense grazing and, to a lesser extent, conversion to potato cultivation. The Colombian authorities have been unable to purchase pre-existing landholdings within national parks, often rendering the parks ineffective. It is occasionally kept as a pet.
Rufous-fronted Parakeet status Vulnerable


Sedentary, may be nomadic outside of breeding season

Distribution map

Rufous-fronted Parakeet distribution range map

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