Family Parrots (Psittacidae)

Least Concern

Yellow-capped Pygmy-parrot (Micropsitta keiensis)


French: Micropsitte pygmée German: Gelbkappen-Spechtpapagei Spanish: Microloro de las Kai

Nasiterna keiensis


, 1876,

Kai Islands


Forms a species-group with M. geelvinkiana and M. pusio. Proposed race sociabilis is synonym of chloroxantha. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • M. k. keiensis (Salvadori, 1876) – Kai Is (Kai Kecil, Kai Besar) and Aru Is.
  • M. k. chloroxantha Oberholser, 1917 – Gebe and W Papuan Is (Waigeo, Salawati, Misool), and NW New Guinea (Vogelkop and Onin Peninsulas).
  • M. k. viridipectus (Rothschild, 1911) – S New Guinea.
  • Descriptive notes

    9 cm; 11–14 g. Most of plumage green, but crown dusky yellow, shading to green at rear, and upper face ochre, shading to green below. No apparent sex or age differences... read more


    Calls include high-pitched short notes such as “tsit” or “tsee”. Also short phrases of 2–4... read more


    Lowland and hill forest, coconut plantations, mangroves, nypa forest, even visiting trees in... read more

    Food and feeding

    Presumably fungus and lichen taken by bark-gleaning on trunks of flowering trees, particularly figs; most stomach contents are an... read more


    Sept–Mar on basis of nestling in Oct, breeding condition male in Nov, nest with young in Mar. Nest in hollow excavated in arboreal... read more


    No information.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. CITES II. Very common on Kai Is, scarce on Aru Is (apparently naturally), moderately common throughout W Papuan Is.

    Recommended citation

    Collar, N. & Boesman, P. (2019). Yellow-capped Pygmy-parrot (Micropsitta keiensis). 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 20 October 2019).