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Sun conure.jpg
Sun conure
Aratinga solstitialis
Scientific classification
Kingdom Information
Domain Eukaryota
Kingdom Animalia
Subkingdom Bilateria
Branch Deuterostomia
Phylum Information
Phylum Chordata
Sub-phylum Vertebrata
Infraphylum Gnathostomata
Class Information
Superclass Tetrapoda
Class Aves
Sub-class Neornithes
Infra-class Neoaves
Order Information
Superorder Psittacimorphae
Order Psittaciformes
Family Information
Family Psittacidae
Population statistics

Parakeet is a name given loosely to many different species of parrots, often unrelated, and sharing some general characteristics such as small-to-medium size and long tails. As with parrots, some parakeet species are popular as pets, with the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus) the most popular cage bird of any kind.


Generally-speaking, parakeets are 8 to 24 inches in length. Parakeets have an upright stance when perched; when not flying they move about in the trees using their hooked beak as a climbing aid. On the ground they walk with a rolling gait, their long tails slightly elevated off the ground. Both feet are zygodactyl, i.e. two toes in front, two toes behind, a trait shared with owls and woodpeckers. With the exception of the budgerigar, parakeets use one foot as a "hand" to hold and bring food to its mouth.

Parakeet plumage is also unique in that the brilliant colors are not the result of diet; they are made directly within the feathers by a set of five pigments, or psittacofulvins, a trait found in no other bird species.[1]


Fruits, seeds, and nuts make up the diet of most parakeets, with flocks in large numbers often taking advantage of human crops. In India, Sri Lanka, and Burma, farmers have to contend with large flocks of rose-ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri), which inflict heavy losses on orchards, wheat fields, and rice paddies, while in Malaysia the long-tailed parakeet (Psittacula longicauda) strips the pulp from oil palms; in both cases farmers have to kill a large number of birds to maintain control and reduce their losses, a tactic which resulted, in part, in the extinction of the Carolina parakeet (Conuropsis carolinensis) in the United States.


The following families and genera have species which are named or have been referred to as parakeets. The term conure has been in use primarily by aviculturalists, in part to differentiate these New World birds from similarly-named Old World parakeets in the pet and millinery trades. The name rosella is a corrupted form of "Rose Hill", a location in New South Wales, Australia, and derived from the original name of "rosehill parakeet" given to the bird by early European settlers.

  • Family Psittacidae
Subfamily Psittacinae
Tribe Arini
Genus Aratinga
Blue-crowned conure, Aratinga acuticaudata
Brown-throated conure, Aratinga pertinax
Caatinga parakeet, Aratinga cactorum
Cherry-headed conure, Aratinga erythrogenys
Cuban parakeet, Aratinga euops
Dusky-headed conure, Aratinga weddellii
Finsch's conure, Aratinga finschi
Golden-capped parakeet, Aratinga auricapillus
Green conure, Aratinga holochlora
Jenday conure, Aratinga jandaya
Mitred Conure, Aratinga mitrata
Nanday conure, Aratinga nenday
Olive-throated conure, Aratinga nana
Orange-fronted conure, Aratinga canicularis
Peach-fronted conure, Aratinga aurea
Red-throated conure, Aratinga rubritorquis
Scarlet-fronted conure, Aratinga wagleri
Sun conure, Aratinga solstitialis
White-eyed conure, Aratinga leucophthalma
Genus Brotogeris
Canary-winged parakeet, Brotogeris chiriri
Cobalt-winged parakeet, Brotogeris cyanoptera
Golden-winged parakeet, Brotogeris chrysoptera
Grey-cheeked parakeet, Brotogeris pyrrhoptera
Orange-chinned parakeet, Brotogeris jugularis
Plain parakeet, Brotogeris tirica
Tui parakeet, Brotogeris sanctithomae
White-winged parakeet, Brotogeris versicolurus
Genus Conuropsis
Carolina parakeet, Conuropsis carolinensis
Genus Guarouba
Golden conure, Guaruba guarouba
Genus Leptosittaca
Golden-plumed parakeet, Leptosittaca branickii
Genus Myiopsitta
Monk parakeet, Myiopsitta monachus
Genus Pyrrhura
Black-capped conure, Pyrrhura rupicola
Blaze-winged conure, Pyrrhura devillei
Blue-throated parakeet, Pyrrhura cruentata
Crimson-bellied conure, Pyrrhura perlata
DeVille's conure, Pyrrhura lucianii
El Oro parakeet, Pyrrhura orcesi
Fiery-shouldered conure, Pyrrhura egregia
Flame-winged conure, Pyrrhura calliptera
Green-cheeked conure, Pyrrhura molinae
Hellmayr's parakeet, Pyrrhura amazonum
Maroon-bellied conure, Pyrrhura frontalis
Maroon-faced parakeet, Pyrrhura leucotis
Maroon-tailed parakeet, Pyrrhura melanura
Painted conure, Pyrrhura picta
Pearly conure, Pyrrhura lepida
Pfrimer's parakeet, Pyrrhura pfrimeri
Red-eared conure, Pyrrhura hoematotis
Rose-crowned parakeet, Pyrrhura rhodocephala
Rose-fronted conure, Pyrrhura roseifrons
Santa Marta parakeet, Pyrrhura viridicata
Sulphur-winged parakeet, Pyrrhura hoffmanni
White-necked parakeet, Pyrrhura albipectus
Tribe Psittaculini
Genus Psittacula
Alexandrine parakeet, Psittacula eupatria
Blossom-headed parakeet, Psittacula roseata
Blue-winged parakeet, Psittacula columboides
Grey-headed parakeet, Psittacula finschii
Layard's parakeet, Psittacula calthropae
Long-tailed parakeet, Psittacula longicauda
Lord Derby's parakeet, Psittacula derbiana
Mascarene grey parakeet, Psittacula bensoni (extinct)
Mauritius parakeet, Psittacula echo
Newton's parakeet, Psittacula exsul (extinct)
Nicobar parakeet, Psittacula caniceps
Plum-headed parakeet, Psittacula cyanocephala
Red-breasted parakeet, Psittacula alexandri
Réunion parakeet, Psittacula eques (extinct)
Rose-ringed parakeet, Psittacula krameri
Seychelles parakeet, Psittacula wardi (extinct)
Slaty-headed parakeet, Psittacula himalayana
Subfamily Platycercinae
Tribe Melopsittacini
Genus Melopsittacus
Budgerigar, Melopsittacus undulatus
Tribe Platycercini
Genus Cyanoramphus
Antipodes parakeet, Cyanoramphus unicolor
Black-fronted parakeet, Cyanoramphus zealandicus (extinct)
Chatham parakeet, Cyanoramphus forbesi
Lord Howe parakeet, Cyanoramphus subflavescens (extinct)
Macquarie parakeet, Cyanoramphus erythrotis (extinct)
Malherbe's parakeet, Cyanoramphus malherbi
New Caledonian parakeet, Cyanoramphus saisseti
Norfolk parakeet, Cyanoramphus cooki
Red-crowned parakeet, Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae
Reischek's parakeet, Cyanoramphus hochstetteri
Society parakeet, Cyanoramphus ulietanus (extinct)
Yellow-crowned parakeet, Cyanoramphus auriceps
Genus Eunymphicus
Horned parakeet, Eunymphicus cornutus
Ouvea parakeet, Eunymphicus uvaeensis
Genus Platycercus
Crimson rosella, Platycercus elegans
Eastern rosella, Platycercus eximius
Green rosella, Platycercus caledonicus
Northern rosella, Platycercus venustus
Pale-headed rosella, Platycercus adscitus
Western rosella, Platycercus icterotis