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The Poicephalus Parrots

A playful group of pet birds

The parrots that are part of the Poicephalus genus are playful and entertaining.

These parrots are very similar, but they are also different in their own way. They do not have a common name (like “Amazons” or “Cockatoos”), but they are a part of the same genus and are grouped as such.

The birds included in this genus are the Brown-Headed, Jardine’s, Meyer’s, Red-Bellied, Senegal, and Cape/Un-Cape parrots. They are all excellent pets that share many similarities but also have their own unique differences. Red-bellies are sweet and comical, Meyer’s are curious and can be nippy, Jardine’s are acrobatic and mischevious, and the Cape/Un-Cape are gentle, sweet, and cuddly.

If you’re looking for a bird that acts like a large parrot but is in a more compact package, and if you are willing to put in the time and effort to earn their love, then these may be the right birds for you.

Types of Poicephalus Parrots
Brown-Headed Cape Parrot Jardine’s Meyer’s
poicephalus brown-headed (1)
poicephalus brown-headed (2)
poicephalus brown-headed (3)
poicephalus_brown-headed (4)
Red-Bellied Senegal
poicephalus brown-headed (5)
poicephalus brown-headed (6)


Fast Facts
Name (Poicephalus)
Origin Sub-Saharan Africa
Size 9-13 in.
Color Differences Vary widely between subspecies.
Owner Need a more experienced bird owner to get them through that nippy stage.
Average Cost $200-600
Lifespan 25-40 years
Noise Depends on subspecies
Qualities Depends on subspecies, but most are intelligent, curious, great sense of humor, entertaining, good family pet, can become a one-person bird if not socialized well, go through a nippy stage, some are cuddly and affectionate, fair talkers, good at imitating sounds, enjoy chewing, good around children, loving, and playful.
Abilities Good–Most can learn how to talk and learn tricks, but it depends on the subspecies and each individual bird.
Interaction/Time Requirements They are independent and content to play on their own, but they should be handled daily and interact with more than one person or they may become nippy.
Diet They need a diet for medium birds.
Supplies Needed They need supplies for medium birds.
See How the Poicephalus parrots Compare to Other Types of Pet Birds!


Poicephalus Videos
“Senegal Parrot Talking and Singing”

Video by ShaaandyPoicephalus parrots can be very good talkers. This video is a great example of a Senegal’s talking ability and possible vocabulary. 

“cuddly jardines parrot”

Video by kathryn7873Poicephalus parrots can also be very affectionate and cuddly. This video (of a Jardine’s parrot) shows how affectionate they can be. 

“Red bellied parrot”

Video by ksarka1Poicephalus are also very playful (and stubborn!) parrots. This video is a great example of how playful and comical these parrots can be. 


Poicephalus Training
330x280-1Poicephalus parrots, like most medium-sized parrots, can be very nippy. You definitely need to know how to train yourPoicephalus if you want him to be hand tamed and enjoy spending time with you and your friends/family. However, if you don’t know how to train a Poicephalus, you may have difficulty even getting your bird out of his cage.

For this reason, we highly recommend that you find an effective training program for your Poicephalus. Whether yourPoicephalus is new to your home or you’ve had him for years, a training program will always come in handy. We personally recommend the Bird Tricks Parrot Training Course by Chet Womach. You can see many of his videos for free to get an idea of how much he knows about birds and how he can help you train yours.

Below is one of Chet’s videos that covers the first step to stopping your parrot’s biting. This technique is perfect for Poicephalus parrots. This video is a great example of how effective the training courses can be and how they are filled with a wealth of useful information for any bird owner. This video is only the first step in getting your bird hand tamed. We highly recommend checking out Chet’s curriculum for taming your Poicephalus even further.

For more information about Chet’s course, you can visit the Bird Tricks webpage here.


Poicephalus Education

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Have A Great Story About Your Poicephalus?

Share your experience with others! There’s no better way to learn about a pet bird than from an owner.

Some helpful information for potential owners can be: What is the species of your bird? Is he/she friendly? Loving? Cuddly? Talented? Messy? Loud? You get the idea!

Your comment may just help someone decide whether or not this pet bird is for them.


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