Friday, January 1, 2016

Wild Monk Parakeets or Quaker Parrots


Flock of wild or feral Monk Parakeets also called Quaker Parrots feeding on wild fruit along a canal on a cool windy day. Hardy, introduced birds they can survive even much further north than Florida. In past years wild or feral  Blue Crowned Conures have visited the Backyard:  https://youtu.be/Lau6U10vCPo

The Monk Parakeet (Myiopsitta monachus) is a member of the parrot family (Psittacidae). Unlike most members of the parrot family, which eat mostly seeds and nest in cavities (such as tree holes), Monk Parakeets also eat a variety of fruits and are the only parrot species that builds nests out of sticks.

Monk Parakeets are small to medium-sized parrots, approximately 12 inches long (29 cm) with a wingspan of 20 inches (53 cm) and weigh 3–4 ounces (90–120 g). These small parrots are brightly colored (Fig. 1); their thick beaks are yellow-brown, their backs (including the backs of their heads) and tails are bright green, and their flight feathers are blue to bluish-black. In contrast, their faces, throats, chests, and legs are pale gray. The plumage of Monk Parakeets is similar in both sexes throughout the year; juveniles may be brighter green. Monk Parakeets are noisy birds whose calls have been described as metallic, rasping squawks and screams.
In the 1960s, Monk Parakeets became extremely popular in the pet trade, and by the end of the decade United States' imports had increased to more than 16,000 Monk Parakeets per year! Reports of free-ranging individuals date back to the 1960s, when wild Monk Parakeets were reported from cities across the country. Many of these birds are believed to have escaped from damaged shipping crates, whereas others accidentally escaped from their owners or from zoos, or were intentionally released. Monk Parakeets were first documented nesting in Florida in 1969.
source: https://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/uw302

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Wild Monk Parakeets or Quaker Parrots