The three species in the Coracopsis genus are mostly black African parrots. They are native to Madagascar and other islands islands in the western Indian Ocean.
Most parrot species have some beautiful colors but the Coracopsis species are more discrete with their black or dark grey/brown plumage. Do not let the dull colors fool you - the Vasa Parrot is actually a very interesting bird so keep reading! 🙂
Recent studies indicate that the Vasa Parrot should be moved to the Mascarinus genus but there is still some dispute on this matter; eBird/Clements Checklist has placed it in the Mascarinus genus since the 2012 edition, while most other sources still place the Vasa Parrot in the Coracopsis genus.
Seychelles Black Parrot
Lesser Vasa Parrot
Greater Vasa Parrot
Species and subspecies
- Coracopsis barklyi (Newton, E, 1867) - Seychelles Black Parrot
- Coracopsis nigra (Linnaeus, 1758) - Lesser Vasa Parrot
- Coracopsis nigra nigra (Linnaeus, 1758)
- Coracopsis nigra libs (Bangs, 1927)
- Coracopsis nigra sibilans (Milne-Edwards & Oustalet, 1885)
- Coracopsis vasa (Shaw, 1812) Greater Vasa Parrot
- Coracopsis vasa vasa (Shaw, 1812)
- Coracopsis vasa comorensis (Peters, W, 1854)
- Coracopsis vasa drouhardi (Lavauden, 1929)
Coracopsis vs Mascarinus
In recent years there has been some disbute about the classification of the Coracopsis species and subspecies.
Recent studies suggest that the Vasa parrots should be moved to the Mascarinus genus but there is some debate as to the validity of these studies; the official classification according to [IOC] is still Coracopsis while [Clements] uses the Mascarinus classification.
Some sources also mention Coracopsis vasa makawa as a subspecie of Greater Vasa Parrot but this is not recognized by [IOC] or [Clements].