Calling All Parrots: (of the Southern Zone)

Crimson-fronted Parakeet (Crimsy): photo by Pepe Castiblanco

I think I know why we like parrots so much.

  1. They are colorful and pretty birds.
  2. They are good family birds, many mating for life with each parent providing for the young.
  3. They just LOVE TO TALK!

And so for your approval, I present some photos of our southern zone parrots; all taken by our local SBVC photographers.

We have three true ‘parrots’ around San Vito and all three are quite common. Parrots have a short, squared tail, as opposed to parakeets who have a pointy tail. The first parrot is the Brown-hooded Parrot. Look for that bright-white eye-ring.

Brown-hooded Parrot: photo by Alison Olivieri

Next is my personal favorite, the Blue-headed Parrot.

Blue-headed Parrot: photo by Jo Davidson

The last of this triad is the White-crowned Parrot; quite similar to the Blue-head above.

White-crowned Parrot: photo by Jo Davidson

Next, we have two members of the Amazon Parrot group. Amazons are big, stocky parrots. Almost always green and always noisy. The Mealy Parrot (below) is the largest of all the Amazon parrots. It’s call is ‘YAK-YAK-YAK’.

Mealy Parrot: photo by Jo Davidson

A little smaller and somewhat more common, the Red-lored Parrot is a frequent inhabitant of the palm plantations. It’s call is ‘SO-QUICK SO-QUICK’.

Red-lored Parrot: photo by Helen LeVasseur
Red-lored Parrot: photo by Helen LeVasseur

Seemingly everyone’s first parrot family sighting in the southern zone, the Crimson-fronted Parakeet is almost always seen flying or roosting communally. There are few guarantees in bird watching but finding these guys in the Botanical Garden palm tree by the back gate comes pretty close.

Crimson-fronted Parakeet: photo by Jo Davidson

We have a couple of specialty parakeets found in the southern zone; one up high, one down low. Let’s start with lowland one; the Brown-throated Parakeet. Once again, big white eye-ring.

Brown-throated Parakeet: photo by Helen LeVasseur

Up in the highlands (Las Tablas for example) is the beautiful Sulpher-winged Parakeet.

Sulpher-winged Parakeets: photo by Pepe Castiblanco

A tiny little parakeet, gregarious in nature and sounding like a flock of Budgies, the Orange-chinned Parakeet can be found in downtown San Vito feeding on flowering trees. The orange chin can be hard to see…but it’s there.

Orange-chinned Parakeet: photo by Helen LeVasseur

From the smallest to the biggest; Scarlet Macaw populations have thankfully made a profound comeback in the last 25 years. Unmistakable when seen but surprisingly, the Scarlet Macaw can almost disappear within the leaves of an Almendro (almond) tree. Their call? Think of a bronchitis clinic.

Scarlet Macaw: photo by Helen LeVasseur

There is one more member of the parrot family found in the southern zone; the Barred Parakeet. Living in the extreme highlands, the Barred Parakeet is a specialist feeder, dining on the seeds of our native bamboo. The next time our native bamboo flowers and then produces seeds, we should see them up on the Paraguas ridge. When that happens please take some pictures…I don’t have a single one!

The San Vito Bird Club does not condone keeping any parrot as a pet or cage bird.