Turquoise-fronted Amazon (Amazona aestiva)
(aka Turquoise-fronted Parrot, Blue-fronted Amazon/Parrot)
Turquoise-fronted Parrot, Pantanal, Brazil, Sept 2000 - click for larger image

Pixaim, Mato Grosso, Brazil
September 2000

Between these two photos you can make out most of the relevant identification features. The yellow crown and face, the turquoise forehead and the red shoulder and speculum. The red shoulder indicates that this is the A. a. aestiva sub-species rather than the A. a. xanthopteryx sub-species which occurs more to the south and has a yellow shoulder.

While it is difficult to differentiate the sex of parrots, the Blue-fronted is supposed to have an orange-yellow iris in the male and an orange-red iris in the female. Unfortunately, the iris does not show up well in my photos!

Turquoise-fronted Parrot, Pantanal, Brazil, Sept 2000 - click for larger image The ability to differentiate the sex of a bird is important in the cage-bird trade since males are reputed to be the better talkers. The Blue-fronted Amazon is said to be one of the best talkers

I believe that the trade in these birds still goes on at an alarming rate. I wonder if the people that keep these magnificent creatures cooped up in a cage would change their ideas if they could see them flying free in their natural habitat. You may be interested in how much can be charged for a caged bird

Illustrations can be seen in Sick, Plate 17 and HBW, Vol.4, Page 472

You can hear a Jacques Vielliard recording of the Turquoise-fronted Parrot at the Brazilian Environment Ministry website.

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