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Parrots of the Caribbean: Birding tourism affords hope for threatened species

JENNINGS MOUNTAIN, St. Vincent and the Grenadines — The destruction was horrible, however the silence was even worse. Yvette Pereira had simply walked up the highway to the farm she owned on St. Vincent, an island positioned between St. Lucia, Grenada and Barbados within the Lesser Antilles.

“It was like in a nightmare. It was all grey and no inexperienced. I heard nothing,” Pereira recounted.

A few days earlier than, on April 9, 2021, a volcano named La Soufrière erupted and blanketed a lot of the island in ash. The small river that usually gurgled by Pereira’s property ceased to move, timber had been snapped in two, and several other of her livestock had been killed. But it surely was the parrots that anxious Pereira probably the most.

“Usually I drive up, open my door, and am listening to parrots. I believed, the place are the parrots?”

Pereira had trigger for concern. The parrots that she was so accustomed to seeing weren’t the type of parrots discovered on the pet store, and even in most zoos. These had been St. Vincent parrots (Amazona guildingii), a stunning species with colours like a sundown. The species, endemic to this island that measures simply 29 kilometers lengthy and 18 throughout (18 by 11 miles), is one in every of 4 parrot species restricted to just one island within the string of islands often known as the Lesser Antilles. All are thought of threatened species on the IUCN Pink Record (three are weak and one is critically-endangered).

Lead Picture: A younger birder from america, Heather Levy, scanning for imperial parrots at a viewpoint in Dominica’s Morne Diablotin Nationwide Park. Picture by Peter Kleinhenz for Mongabay.

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