Panama Amazon

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Panama Amazon
Amazona ochrocephala panamensis -captive-8a.jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Psittaciformes
Family: Psittacidae
Subfamily: Psittacinae
Tribe: Arini
Genus: Amazona
Species: Amazona ochrocephala
Subspecies: A. o. panamensis
Trinomial name
Amazona ochrocephala panamensis
Cabanis, 1874

The Panama Amazon, also known as the Panama Yellow-headed Amazon, (Amazona ochrocephala panamensis) is a subspecies of the Yellow-crowned Amazon, and is endemic to Panama (including the Pearl Islands and Coiba) and northwest Colombia.[1][2][3][4] In aviculture, it is sometimes listed as a separate species (Amazona panamensis),[5] and this is potentially correct; at least as a phylogenetic species.[6][7]


Adults are approximately 35 centimetres (13.8 in) in length, bright green with a yellow area on the forehead, and a horn-colored beak -- lacking the reddish coloring on the upper mandible that is present in nominate Yellow-crowned Amazon Parrots,[8] -- sometimes with a dark tip. The plumage of the body is green with a little coloring at the brims of the wings. The yellow on the crown is more restricted, and tends to be triangular, compared with the more extensive and rounder distribution of yellow on the nominate race. There is much variation in coloring among individuals.


Highly sought after as a pet, and trapping of wild birds -- now illegal -- has contributed to population decline. Difficult to encounter owing to low numbers in the wild and in captivity. Panama Amazons are extremely playful, can be excellent talkers, and tend to be loud at times; much like (nominate) Yellow-crowned, Double Yellow Headed, and Yellow Naped Amazon Parrots. Though their body-language is the same, Panama Amazons are much less likely to become physically aggressive. Many Amazons are erroneously sold as Panama Amazons, because of their scarcity and popularity.


  1. ^ Juniper, Tony; Mike Parr (1998). Parrots: A Guide to Parrots of the World. Yale University Press. p. 341. ISBN 978-0-300-07453-6. 
  2. ^ "A classification of the bird species of South America". South American Classification Committee. American Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 2009-04-02. 
  3. ^ "Zoological Nomenclature Resource: Psittaciformes (Version 9.022)". 2009-04-02. 
  4. ^ Forshaw, Joseph M. (2006). Parrots of the World; an Identification Guide. Illustrated by Frank Knight. Princeton University Press. plate 113. ISBN 0-691-09251-6. 
  5. ^ "Panama Amazon, Panama Yellow-headed Amazon, Amazona panamensis". Animal World. Retrieved 2009-04-01. 
  6. ^ Eberhard, J., & E. Bermingham. 2004. Phylogeny and Biogeography of the Amazona ochrocephala (Aves: Psittacidae) Complex. Auk 121(2): 318-332
  7. ^ Russello, M. A., & Amato, G. (2004). A molecular phylogeny of Amazona: implications for Neotropical parrot biogeography, taxonomy, and conservation. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 30(2): 421-437
  8. ^ Amazona ochrocephala. Lexicon of Parrots, online version. Arndt-Verlag. Accessed 16 February 2010.