Family Parrots (Psittacidae)

Least Concern

Brown Parrot (Poicephalus meyeri)


French: Perroquet de Meyer German: Goldbugpapagei Spanish: Lorito de Meyer
Other common names: Meyer's Parrot

Psittacus Meyeri


, 1827,

Kordofan, Sudan


Thought to form a species-group with P. rueppellii, P. cryptoxanthus and P. crassus, and possibly others. Believed to hybridize with P. cryptoxanthus in SE Zimbabwe. Much intergradation between races, and also variation within each, indicating need for revision. Six subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • P. m. meyeri (Cretzschmar, 1827) – NE Cameroon E through S Chad and N Central African Republic to S Sudan, W Ethiopia and Eritrea.
  • P. m. saturatus Sharpe, 1901 – S South Sudan, Uganda and W Kenya S to E DRCongo, Rwanda, Burundi and NW Tanzania.
  • P. m. matschiei Neumann, 1898 – E Angola to SE DRCongo, W & C Tanzania, N Zambia and N Malawi.
  • P. m. reichenowi Neumann, 1898 – W Angola.
  • P. m. damarensis Neumann, 1898 – S Angola, N Namibia and NW Botswana.
  • P. m. transvaalensis Neumann, 1899 – S Zambia and NW Mozambique S through E Botswana and Zimbabwe to N South Africa (N & W Limpopo).
  • Descriptive notes

    21–25 cm; 100–165 g. Head, back, wings and tail dull brown, belly and rump green or turquoise, underparts washed yellow; variable amount of yellow on flanks,... read more


    Calls are high-pitched, predominantly upslurred and underslurred, piercing, short whistles such as... read more


    Wide range of open woodland and riparian habitats, with obligate proximity to water in Angola and... read more

    Food and feeding

    Fruits of large riverine trees such as Afzelia quanzensis, Melia volkensii and Ficus sycomorus; seen excavating... read more


    Apr–Oct in Ethiopia, and similarly extended, patchily Feb–Dec in E Africa; nests with young in Jan in Sudan; May–Sept in... read more


    Resident, although local movement or nomadism occurs, Botswana and South Africa.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Common, NE Central African Republic, where present (breeding) and common in Manovo-Gounda-St Floris and Bamingui-Bangoran... read more

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. & Boesman, P. (2019). Brown Parrot (Poicephalus meyeri). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 12 December 2019).