Family Parrots (Psittacidae)

Least Concern

Niam-niam Parrot (Poicephalus crassus)


French: Perroquet des Niam-niams German: Niamniampapagei Spanish: Lorito nianiam

Pionias crassus


, 1884,

Ndoruma, upper Uele River


Thought to form a species-group with P. meyeri, P. rueppellii and P. cryptoxanthus, and possibly others. In past, treated as race of P. cryptoxanthus, to which morphologically it is extremely close. Monotypic.


SW Chad through Central African Republic to extreme SW South Sudan and extreme N DRCongo.

Descriptive notes

25 cm. Like P. cryp­toxanthus with brown of throat extending more onto upper breast, underwing-coverts green, eye yellow (not red, as often stated). Immature... read more


Very few recordings available. Commonest call is a piercing bisyllabic screech “kee-rh” or “kee-ah... read more


Forest-savanna mosaic, mixed lowland savanna and Syzygium-Adina riparian woodland, often... read more

Food and feeding

Millet and pale yellow seeds in stomachs.


Probably breeds from start of Aug in Zaire and Central African Republic.


Generally believed sedentary but with some nomadism and considerable daily displacements.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. CITES II. The least known African parrot, assumed to be frequent to common in its poorly explored range, but this needs confirmation. Present but... read more

Recommended citation

Collar, N. & Boesman, P. (2018). Niam-niam Parrot (Poicephalus crassus). 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 19 March 2018).