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28 cm. Wine-purple in colour, becoming more rufous on the back. dark brown tail and primary flight feathers, black bill, and the legs are purple-red. Iris typically reddish. Amazonian populations sometimes with yellowish irides, but always appear dark from any distance due to their relatively distinct red eye-ring. The female is slightly duller and browner than the male, and the juvenile bird has a greyish brown head, neck and breast, with cinnamon or rufous scaling on the head and upperparts.
Six subspecies are recognized1: subvinacea, zuliae, berlepschi, peninsularis, purpureotincta, and bogotensis. Restall3 mentions that the last subspecies (bogotensis) is treated as a subspecies of Plumbeous Pigeon by some authors.
It builds a platform nest out of twigs 5 m high in a small tree, and lays 1 white egg.
The diet includes mistletoe, fruits and berries.
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