Amazona guatemalae – Northern Mealy Amazon

Amazona guatemalae virenticeps - Photo credits: Mark Steensen

Northern Mealy Amazon - Amazona guatemalae (Sclater, PL, 1860) - is a large mainly green parrot endemic to tropical central America.

It was previously thought to be a subspecies of Amazona farinosa but was recently split into Amazona guatemalae.

They are very social and usually seen in pairs or in large flocks. They also interact with parrots, e.g. macaws. They are usually quiet but may be noisy at dusk and dawn.

The lifespan is up to 50-60 years.

The Northern Mealy Amazon is Near Threatened according to IUCN Red List due to loss of habitat due to deforestation; hunting and trapping for international trade is also a threat. It is included on CITES Appendix II.

 

Description

The nominate subspecies is mostly green with a blue crown, forehead and lores. The  carpal edge of the wing is green/yellow and the edges of wing feathers are blue with red on secondary feathers. The tail feathers are dark green with light green tip.  The tail is relatively short and squarish like other Amazons. The eye is red with a white eye ring. The bill is dark grey.

The juveniles have similar colors but brown eyes.

Size: 38 cm
Weight: 705-766 g

Amazona guatemalae virenticeps - Photo credits: Mark Steensen

Taxonomy

  • Order: Psittaciformes
  • Family: Psittacidae
  • Genus: Amazona

Synonyms

  • Danish: Nordlig Farinosa Amazone, Costa Rica Amazone
  • English: Northern Mealy Amazon, Guatemala Mealy Amazon, Blue-crowned Amazon
  • French: Amazone guatémaltèque
  • German: Guatemalaamazone
  • Portuguese:
  • Spanish: Amazona harinosa norteña

IUCN Red List

BirdLife International. 2016. Amazona guatemalae.
The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T45430583A95154327.
https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2016-3.RLTS.T45430583A95154327.en.
Downloaded on 25 June 2020.

 

Habitat

The natural habitat ranges from south-eastern Mexico to western Panama, where it is found in lowland rainforest as well as lower montane forest and plantations.

 

Sub-species

  • Amazona guatemalae guatemalae (Sclater, PL, 1860) : Native from south-eastern Mexico to north-western Honduras
  • Amazona guatemalae virenticeps  (Salvadori, 1891) : Native from north Honduras to western Panama. It differs from the nominate subspecies a.g.guatemalae by having less blue crown and more green/yellow colour. Also the beak is black/horn coloured.

Diet

Wild birds feed on figs, pods, arils, leaf buds, seeds and nuts. May also feed on maize.

Aviculture

Northern Mealy Amazon is rarely seen in aviculture.

A vertical box about 30 x 30 x 60 is used as nest box.

The clutch usually contains 3 eggs that are incubated for 24-27 days. The chicks reach fledging age after 9-10 weeks.

 

Amazona guatemalae virenticeps - Photo credits: Mark Steensen