Plum-headed Parakeet   Psittacula  cyanocephala

Etymology :

  • Psittacula : Latin word derived from  psittacus – Parrot
  • Cyanocephala : Greek word kuanos- dark blue; kephalos –headed { Dark blue headed}

Vernacular Names :  Hindi: Tuinya tota, Pun: Bengali tota, Lal sir-tota, U.P: Desi tuinya, Lalsira tota, Tuinya tota, Ben: Fariadi, Tui, Fultusi, Nepal: Tui suga, Guj: Tui, Thuyi, Mar: Keera, Tuiya Popat, Ta: Pacha varna kili, Te: Rama chiluka, Mal: Poon totta, Kan: Kendale gini, Sinh: Pannu girawa, Rosa girawa

Distribution in India: Widespread resident except in North West and North East of India.

Description: Size of 33–37 cm; wt. of 56–85 g.  The bill is yellowish above and black below. The head has crimson shading to greyish plum on mid-crown to nape and ear-coverts. It has a black chin extending as complete narrow collar, shaded blue-green below on back and sides of neck. The underparts are yellowish green; mantle and back green, shading darker on wing-coverts, with maroon patch on lesser wing-coverts, and darker again on flight-feathers. The rump is light blue-green, tail is blue tipped whitish centrally, and green tipped yellow laterally. The female has purplish grey head with an indistinct complete narrow yellowish neck-ring, no maroon wing-patch, and creamy upper mandible. The immature has green head, orange on forecrown. It is found in moist deciduous forest and wooded habitats and adjacent clearings and cultivated areas. Found from lowlands and hills to 1300 m.

Food habits: It  is more frugivorous than most Psittacula parakeets, and prefer small to large seeds. It also eats, buds, fleshy petals and nectar of plants and seeds. It visits cultivation inside forest in flocks of several hundred, doing much damage to crops including rice, sorghum, maize, vegetables and orchard fruit.

Breeding habits: They breed in Dec–Apr; in Sri Lanka Jul–Aug. The nest is in a hole in tree trunk or bough, often in small colonies within one tree or group of trees. They lay a clutch of 4–5 eggs.The incubation period is 24 days and nestling period 6 weeks.