"La hora de los loros" is an idiom in Spanish. I've seen it writing and heard it in conversation.

How would you say the equivalent in English? Not literally, but figuratively. Is there an idomatic expression in English that means the same thing?

Also, what's the origin of the phrase?

[Edit: loros rather than lobos.]

  • 2
    Where have you heard that idiom? Sep 7, 2012 at 16:57
  • I'm having a hard time remembering...but I know I heard it years ago. Sep 7, 2012 at 20:11
  • Never heard/read that in my life.
    – leonbloy
    Jan 11, 2013 at 13:50

4 Answers 4


This page says that the meaning is "at the crucial moment":

A LA HORA DE LOS LOROS: esta locución significa “en el momento crucial” por ejemplo:”(...)a la hora de loros nadie se pronuncia”

That page also credits it as a Peruvian idiom, but I couldn't find another source to check the validity of that claim.

  • Thanks. I lived in Peru for two years. That must be where I picked it up. Sep 8, 2012 at 14:27

First, I must say it's not a common phrase, it's rarely used. So, I don´t know the exact meaning, but it seems to be something like 'the time when everybody talks', used mostly to express that after something (important) has happened, everybody is going to say they opinions (most of them even talking without knowing the facts, therefore it's a pejorative phrase).


It was a common prase. La 'hora de los loros' is 'the crucial/hardest moment' .. Ex: A la hora de los loros, el/ella no actua At the crucial time, he/she doesn't act A la hora de los loros .. At the hardest time, nobody signs the complaint


"A la hora de los loros" is an idiom indeed and it doesn't translate literally, but there are several English equivalents, such as: "when it comes down to it", "when you boil it down" "when it comes to the crunch", etc.

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