Shady Pines Aviary, Breeder of Caiques and Brotogeris Parakeets

Green-Rumped Parrotlet

Forpus passerinus

  • Parrots of the World, Joseph M. Forshaw (1978)

    MALE: General plumage yellowish green, decidedly paler and brighter on forehead, cheeks, underparts, lower back, and rump; greyish tinge on nape and hindneck; in some birds rump and lower back washed with pale blue; primary- coverts, bases of shorter primaries, and under wing-coverts violet blue; secondaries pale blue; undersides of flight feathers bluish-green; tail green, paler below; bill horn-colored; iris dark brown; legs brownish.

    FEMALE: like male but blue markings replaced by green; forehead more yellowish than in males.

    IMMATURES: similar to adults.

    LENGTH: 12cm. (4¾")


    • F. p. cyanochlorus - ADULTS similar to passerinus, except that in female the green of general plumage is more yellowish particularly on underparts, rump and lower back.

    • F. p. cyanophanes - MALE like viridissimus, but with more extensive violet-blue on primary and secondary-coverts thus forming a conspicuous patch on the closed wing; more extensive violet-blue marking on under wing-coverts. FEMALE like passerinus.

    • F. p. deliciosus - MALE similar to passerinus, but rump and lower back emerald green tinged with pale blue; upper tail-coverts greenish-yellow; secondaries violet-blue narrowly edged with pale green; greater upper wing-coverts pale blue becoming violet-blue along shafts. FEMALE like passerinus, but with conspicuous yellow tinge on forehead.

    • F. p. viridissimus - MALE similar to passerinus, but green of general plumage darker throughout; upper sides of wings darker and more strongly tinged with bluish; under wing-coverts and axillaries bluish-green with patch of violet blue on lesser under wing-coverts. FEMALE similar to passerinus.


  • The Atlas of Parrots, Dr. David Alderton (1991)

    ALTERNATIVE NAMES: Guiana Parrotlet.

    SEXES: The cock is mainly emerald-green in coloration, over the forehead and cheeks, with a grayish suffusion to the nape and hindneck. The underparts are also emerald-green, as is the lower back and rump, although pale blue suffusion may be apparent on the green of the lower back. The bend of the wing and the carpal edge are blue. Both the under wing coverts and the primary coverts are violet-blue, with the secondaries being a paler shade of blue. The lower surface of the flight feathers is bluish green, while the tail feathers are entirely green, but of a paler shade underneath. Beak whitish pink in color; legs pinkish; irides dark brown.

    Hens can be distinguished easily because they lack the blue plumage evident in cocks. Their foreheads are also more brightly colored, being a strong shade of yellowish green.

    YOUNG BIRDS: Resemble adults in appearance.

    RECOGNIZED SUBSPECIES: Five. These are as follows:

    • F. p. passerinus: Restricted to French Guiana, Suriname and Guyana. The birds introduced to Martinique may also have been of this race.

    • F. p. viridissimus: Found across the north of Venezuela from northern Bolivar and the Delta Amacuro, being found to the south of the Orinoco River, extending eastwards to the vicinity of the Zulia River valley in Norte de Santander, in the north of Colombia. Introduced to Trinidad, as well as to Barbados and Jamaica, plus Curacao in the Netherlands Antilles. Cocks of this race are generally darker in coloration, especially over the wings. The plumage also tends to be bluer, although the area of blue under the wings is smaller and does not reach the carpal edge, as in the nominate race. Both axillaries and under wing coverts are bluish green, with violet blue evident on the lesser under wing coverts. Hens are very similar to those of F. p. passerinus, but may have less colorful foreheads. Their legs may also be lighter in color. This particular race is known both as the Caracas Parrotlet and as the Venezuelan Green-rumped Parrotlet.

    • F. p. cyanophanes: Confined to northern Colombia, inhabiting an area to the east of the Santa Marta Mountains. It extends southwards in a strip bordered also by the Sierra de Perija via the valley of the Cesare River, reaching Camperucho. Similar to F. p. viridissimus, in the case of the cock, but distinguishable by the more widespread violet-blue plumage over the primary and secondary coverts, which is noticeable when the bird is resting. In addition, the under wing coverts are also more prominently marked with violet-blue. Hens of this race are apparently identical to those of F. p. passerinus. May be described as the Rio Hacha Parrotlet.

    • F. p. cyanochlorus: Found only in the vicinity of the upper Rio Branco, in Roraima, Brazil. This isolated population is very similar to F. p. passerinus, but is a yellower shade of green on the underparts, as well as on the lower back and rump. The beak is also said to be somewhat smaller. Known both as Hartlaub's Parrotlet and as Schlegel's Parrotlet.

    • F. p. deliciosus: Found in northern Brazil, in the vicinity of the Amazon River extending from the lower Madeira River in eastern Amazonas eastwards as far as the Anapu River in Para. Also ranges further east on the northern side, reaching Macapa in Amapa. Resembles the nominate race, but the emerald-green of the lower back and rump is heavily suffused with pale blue, with the upper tail coverts being greenish yellow in the case of the cock. The secondaries are violet-blue, with pale green edges, while the greater upper wing coverts are similarly colored along their shafts, and pale blue elsewhere. Hens have a more prominent area of yellow on the forehead than those of F. p. passerinus. This race is sometimes described as the Delicate Parrotlet.


  • Encyclopedia of Aviculture (1972)

    MALE: Green, the hind crown and nape tinged with grey, and the sides of the head, lower back and rump emerald; upper tail-coverts and under parts yellowish-green. Bend and lower edge of wing blue; secondaries and under wing- coverts ultramarine. Iris brown; beak whitish; legs and feet greyish flesh colored.

    FEMALE: Entirely green, the forehead and sides of head being yellowish-green, rump bright green, and under parts paler. Length 5 inches.


    • F. p. crassirostris - resembles vividus but has a noticeable stouter beak. The forehead and cheeks are deep emerald green, the rump and wings bright cobalt, and the under wings blue. The hens have no blue in their plumage.

    • F. p. cyanochlorus - very similar to the nominate race but the lower back, rump and the under parts are distinctly more yellowish-green and the beak is smaller.

    • F. p. cyanophanes - very similar to viridissimus but the hyacinth blue on the primaries and secondary coverts is of a deeper shade.

    • F. p. deliciosus - almost intermediate between the green-rumped and blue-rumped forms, its rump being green with a turquoise tinge. The wings are also rather more blue. It is one of the smallest forms.

    • F. p. flavescens - differs from vividus in being lighter and more yellowish-green and the rump and under wing coverts being lighter blue.

    • F. p. flavissimus - very similar to vividus described below, but is lighter green with the forehead more yellowish-green, the sides of the head and under parts apple green, and the lower back, rump and most of the wings cobalt blue.

    • F. p. olallae - closely resembles crassirostris but differs in having the blue of the rump distinctly darker, the under wing coverts paler blue, and the green of the upper parts also distinctly darker. The whitish beak is dusky at the tip. This race was named only comparatively recently and is not mentioned by Peters in his check list.

    • F. p. spengeli - the cock resembles cyanopygius in having a turquoise rump but the under wing coverts are spotted light and dark blue. It is a smaller bird, but has a larger beak. Hens are almost indistinguishable.

    • F. p. viridissimus - Slightly larger than the nominate race and has the under wing coverts glaucous green with a blue patch on the secondary coverts.

    • F. p. vividus - the green is more intense than that of the nominate race and lighter on the sides of the head. The blue is a rich ultramarine and extends over the wings and rump more than in any of the other forms. The under wing coverts are also blue. The hen has no blue in its plumage, the forehead is yellower and the rump more emerald. Known as the Blue-Winged Parrotlet, this is the most commonly imported of all of the parrotlets.



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