Family Parrots (Psittacidae)

Critically Endangered (Possibly Extinct in the Wild)

Spix's Macaw (Cyanopsitta spixii)


French: Ara de Spix German: Spixara Spanish: Guacamayo de Spix

Sittace Spixii


, 1832,

Joazeiro, Rio São Francisco, Brazil


Last remaining wild-living individual (a male) paired and mated with female Primolius maracana, producing hybrid embryo#R. Monotypic.


R São Francisco basin, in N Bahia (E Brazil). Probably extinct (the last known wild individual disappeared in 2000)#R, but occasional local reports and unexplored potential habitat provide some hope regarding its survival#R. Eventual reintroduction is planned, from captive population#R.

Descriptive notes

55–57 cm; 296–400 g (captivity). Crown pale greenish blue; bare mask-like area around eye to upper mandible blackish grey; cheeks to ear-coverts light grey,... read more


A resonant “kraaa”, weaker and more wavering than Hyacinth Macaw A. hyacinthinus.


Gallery woodland dominated by caraiba (Tabebuia caraiba) trees within the caatinga... read more

Food and feeding

Seeds of Jatropha and Cnidoscolus, fruits of Ziziphus and Maytenus, fruits and/or seeds of braú... read more


Nov–Mar, variable with rainfall. Nest in hole in caraiba and, by report, braúna. Eggs probably 2–3, although in... read more


Reports of the species from other habitats and areas are mostly likely to be misidentifications,... read more

Status and conservation

CRITICALLY ENDANGERED (POSSIBLY EXTINCT IN THE WILD). CITES I. A restricted-range species: present in North-east Brazilian Caatinga EBA. Although known to science since 1824... read more

Recommended citation

Collar, N., Boesman, P., Sharpe, C.J. & Kirwan, G.M. (2018). Spix's Macaw (Cyanopsitta spixii). 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 23 March 2018).