Rufous-fronted Parakeets / Parrots

The Rufous-fronted Parakeet, Toui À Front Roux, or Catita Frentirrufa (Bolborhynchus ferrugineifrons) is a rare and endangered species that is endemic to the Central Andes of Colombia where it can be found in a very restricted, high altitude range; specifically in the area of Nevado del Tolima, Nevado El Ruiz in Los Nevados National Park and Chingaza National Park and Cauca.

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    These parakeets favor subtropical or tropical high-altitude shrubland, subtropical or tropical high-altitude grassland, and arable land.

    They are threatened by habitat loss caused by deforestation for agriculture and the large destruction of páramo (desert areas) vegetation, caused by frequent burning, intense grazing and potatoes cultivation.

    Their population is small and continues to decline. This species is classified as Endangered by IUCN Red List of threatened species.  

    Rufous-fronted Parrots are gregarious. Within their limited range, they may be seen and heard in noisy flocks of 10 to 100 birds. They roost communally on cliff faces.Outside the breeding season, Rufous-fronted Parrot may disperse locally.

    Description

    Adults are stocky, short parakeets, averaging 7 inches (18 cm) in length. Plumage is dull green, lighter on the uppertail coverts. The throat, breast, belly and thighs are tinged olive-yellow. Under the wings, greater underwing coverts and undersides of flight feathers are bluish-green. The green tail is short and rounded.

    The outer undertail feathers are bluish-green. There is a narrow rufous band on the forehead, lores (the regions between the eyes and bill on the side of a bird’s head) and around the base of the bill. The bill is grey with yellowish tip. The eyes are dark brown, with narrow grey eye-ring. The legs and feet are yellowish-grey.

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      Immature birds have horn-colored bills.

      Rufous-fronted Parrot has swift, direct flight. It performs strong, rapid wing beats. When disturbed, it flies short distance before landing again.

      Diet / Feeding

      They mainly feed on grass-seeds, such as Sweet vernalgrass (Anthoxanthum odoratum), fruits of Acaenia elongate and flowers. Frequenty, they are seen foraging in potatoes fields.

      Song / Call

      Their call is moderately loud, consisting of high-pitched chattering contact notes: ‘dy-dy-dy-gy…dy-dy-dy-gy’, or a series of ‘gurk’ notes.

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        Breeding / Nesting

        Te breeding season appears to commence in January. They frequently nest in rock-cavities in cliff faces.

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          Taxonomy

          Species: Scientific: Bolborhynchus ferrugineifrons … English: Rufous-fronted Parakeet … Dutch: Tolima Parkiet, Roodvoorhoofdparkiet … German: Rotstirnsittich … French: Perruche à front rouille

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