© 2004 by Russ Shade. Used here with permission.
The Plum-crowned parrot, Pionus tumultousus, is perhaps the most rare and most controversial of the Pionus genus.
Occurring primarily in Andean Bolivia (La Paz to Cochabamba) and Peru, this species is found at altitudes ranging from 2,000–3,000 meters and higher in areas characterized by rugged, inhospitable terrain.
Plum-crowned parrots are described as being particularly skitterish in the wild and in captivity, but that description could be applied to any member of the Pionus genus.
This species is virtually nonexistent in aviculture. There is a small, privately-held collection in the US. Loro Parque in Tenerife also has some specimens. Many of those parrots imported into the U. S. are alleged to have succumbed to aspergillosis, possibly as a result of the stresses suffered during the importation process.
Plums are attractive parrots. They sport yellow-green on their back and wings. The back of their heads has a dark, ruddy appearance while the top and front of the head are covered in reddish, purple feathers. They are one of the larger species with lengths in the 29 cm range.
Their weight, according to several authors, ranges from 219 grams to over 240 grams.
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