email a friend
printable version
White-necked Parakeet Pyrrhura albipectus
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
Please email us with any relevant information

This species qualifies as Vulnerable because it occurs at few locations and has a small range in which habitat (and presumably the population) is declining.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.
SACC. 2006. A classification of the bird species of South America. Available at: #

24 cm. Brightly coloured, boldly marked parakeet. Dusky crown with pale grey fringes on hind part, thin reddish frontal band, yellow-and-green scaled cheeks and orange ear-coverts, full white collar and yellow breast, green belly and rest of upperparts. Green wings with red primary coverts and carpal area, and bluish primaries, green tail, dull red on underside. Immature lacks frontal band and has paler ear-coverts. Voice Rapid screet screet calls in flight, chirping calls while feeding, increasing before flock takes flight.

Distribution and population
Pyrrhura albipectus is confined to three areas in south-east Ecuador and has recently also been found in northern Peru. In Ecuador it is known from Podocarpus National Park, Cordillera de Cutucú and Cordillera del Cóndor. Although its numbers appear relatively low, with a total population possibly of only a few thousand individuals, it is apparently common in Podocarpus National Park. There are now also confirmed records from as far south as Panguri in Zamora-Chinchipe. It has also recently been observed in the adjacent parts of the Cordillera del Cóndor, Peru with a published sighting from Mirador Cóndor in Morona-Santiago Province (Navarrete 2003). These range extensions suggest that it is not as severely threatened as formerly feared (Balchin and Toyne 1998).

Population justification
The total population may only be a few thousand birds, and so it is placed in the band 2,500-9,999 individuals. This equates to 1,667-6,666 mature individuals, rounded here to 1,500-7,000 mature individuals.

Trend justification
The species is suspected to be declining slowly, on the basis of continued habitat destruction.

This parrot inhabits upper tropical forest at 900-2,000 m. It usually occurs in flocks of 4-20 individuals, foraging in fruiting trees within primary forest or clearings. It also occurs in partially and severely degraded habitat around Podocarpus National Park (Snyder et al. 2000). Diet includes fruit, seeds and flowers, mainly taken in the canopy (Juniper and Parr 1998). A dependent juvenile was seen in September (Snyder et al. 2000).

Habitat destruction is the principal concern, as upper tropical zone forests east of the Andes are being cleared at an alarming rate. However, subtropical forests in Podocarpus National Park and Cordillera del Cóndor are largely intact (Schulenberg and Awbrey 1997, Snyder et al. 2000). Logging has been extensive at lower elevations within its range (to c.1,000-1,200 m), and is gradually encroaching on core altitudes. In the Cordillera de Cutucú, some forest has been cleared for agriculture and to secure indigenous people legal ownership of their land. Illegal gold mining and human settlement occur, even within Podocarpus National Park, particularly at its southern boundary (Snyder et al. 2000). In the Peruvian part of its range, there is little or no threat of deforestation; however, there is a mining concession in the area (F. Angulo in litt. 2012). It is trapped in small numbers for the domestic cage-bird trade (Snyder et al. 2000).


Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix II. Podocarpus National Park is an important site for the species's conservation. A revised management plan for the area has been devised, and a public awareness campaign highlights the importance of the park (Snyder et al. 2000). The parakeet also occurs in the Fundación Jocotoco's 3,500 ha Tapichalaca Reserve where artificial nest boxes are being used successfully (Waugh 2009). It is also found in the Ichigkat Muja - Cordillera del Cóndor national park (F. Angulo in litt. 2012).   Conservation Actions Proposed
Carry out surveys to assess the species's distribution and total population size. Monitor rates of habitat loss and degradation within its range. Manage Podocarpus National Park such that threatened species are better protected. Designate a protected area within Cordillera del Cóndor, and involve local people in the area's land-use management (Schulenberg and Awbrey 1997).

Related state of the world's birds case studies

Balchin, C. S.; Toyne, E. P. 1998. The avifauna and conservation status of the Río Nangaritza valley, southern Ecuador. Bird Conservation International 8: 237-253.

Collar, N. J.; Gonzaga, L. P.; Krabbe, N.; Madroño Nieto, A.; Naranjo, L. G.; Parker, T. A.; Wege, D. C. 1992. Threatened birds of the Americas: the ICBP/IUCN Red Data Book. International Council for Bird Preservation, Cambridge, U.K.

del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J. 1997. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 4: Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Juniper, T.; Parr, M. 1998. Parrots: a guide to the parrots of the world. Pica Press, Robertsbridge, UK.

Krabbe, N.; Sornoza M., F. 1994. Avifaunistic results of a subtropical camp in the Cordillera del Condor, southeastern Ecuador. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 114: 55-61.

Navarrete, L. 2003. Neotropical Notebook: White-breasted parakeet Pyrrhura albipectus: a new record for Peru. Cotinga 19: 79.

Schulenberg, T. S.; Awbrey, K. 1997. The Cordillera del Cóndor region of Ecuador and Peru: a biological assessment. Conservation International, Washington, DC.

Snyder, N.; McGowan, P.; Gilardi, J.; Grajal, A. 2000. Parrots: status survey and conservation action plan 2000-2004. International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK.

Toyne, E. P.; Jeffcote, M. T.; Flanagan, J. N. M. 1992. Status, distribution and ecology of the White-breasted Parakeet Pyrrhura albipectus in Podocarpus National Park, southern Ecuador. Bird Conservation International 2: 327-339.

Waugh, D. 2009. Rare parakeets in southern Ecuador. AFA Watchbird 36(1&2): 50.

Further web sources of information
Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note, taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Recuento detallado de la especie tomado del libro Aves Amenazadas de las Americas, Libro Rojo de BirdLife International (BirdLife International 1992). Nota: la taxonomoía y la categoría de la Lista Roja de la UICN pudo haber cambiado desde esta publicación.

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Isherwood, I., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Pyrrhura albipectus. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - White-necked parakeet (Pyrrhura albipectus) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Psittacidae (Parrots)
Species name author Chapman, 1914
Population size 1500-7000 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 6,300 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species