Psittaciformes

Families overview for this order

  • Large to medium-sized parrots, with massive bill and medium to longish tail; crest well developed in many species.
  • Australasia.
  • Variable habitats, from moist forest to dry shrubland.

Recent reappraisal of higher taxonomy of parrots#R proposed arrangement into three superfamilies, here treated as families (Strigopidae, Cacatuidae, Psittacidae); same study split Psittacidae, as here defined, into three families, with additional recognition of Psittrichasidae (Psittrichas to Coracopsis, below) and Psittaculidae (Psephotus to Micropsitta, below); in present work, separation of these families considered to require further study and perhaps additional support. In the past, present family was often split into two, with recognition of family Loriidae; at the other extreme, it was sometimes considered to include all Psittaciformes.

  • Stocky, large-headed birds with powerful, short, curved, articulated bill, highly developed tongue and jaw musculature, and short legs; plumage exuberantly colourful in many species.
  • Neotropical, Afrotropical, Oriental and Australasian, but only marginal in Nearctic and Palearctic; greatest diversity in tropics.
  • Mainly forest; also woodland and savanna, with a few species in open areas.