No parrots for me!

No more pet parrots

Trade and tenure of Hispaniolan parrots is contributing to their extinction. 

Parrots were relatively common in the wild until recently.  Our parents and grandparents often saw them overflying fields and forests.  Their beautiful green flocks crossed the skies, while their noisy calls filled the air….

But not anymore… This is because humans have destroyed or degraded many of their forest habitats, which are their home.  Also, their ability to repeat words makes them very appealing to many humans, who keep inside cages or walking about with some of their flying feathers clipped.  This leaves them with no chance to reproduce. And, to meet the demand, every year, most of the nests laid in the forests by parrots are robbed and the fledglings sold.

Also, keeping pet parrots is illegal in the Dominican Republic: Their capture, trade and/or possession is banned by General Environmental and Natural Resources Law No. 64-00.  Unfortunately, this law is rarely enforced and the sale of parrots proceeds.  

The parrot  trade harms partos because many of the robbed fledglings do not survive. Most die within the first few days or while being transported to larger cities and towns. Competition for getting to these fledglings is intense and they are increasingly being taken earlier, while still not having any feathers nor opened their eyes. It is like kidnapping a newborn baby from its mother´s care.

Una cotorra cautiva nunca podrá reproducirse ni volar libre

Another problem is that, to take the fledglings (baby parrots), predators destroy the tree cavities where they nest, which they typically reuse every season.  This reduces the nesting possibilities since there are not so many suitable cavities to chose from in their natural environment.

By taking most of the fledglings hatched every year, parrots can´t sustain their wild population levels, or recover to what they were in the past.  It is as if we killed all the newborn babies in a city every year during many years. With enough time, the population will be extinct.

This is the inside of a parrot nest within a dry palm in Jaragua National Park.  

By keeping a pet parrot, we are closing its lifetime chances to breed. Even if we release it, it would not adapt to life in the wild, because it never had its parent´s care and teaching of the right foods to eat, where and when they were available, or how to process them.

If this trade continues, our parrots will disappear in a few decades.  If you truly love parrtos and the environment in your country, help us out.  Don´t buy a pet parrot or accept them as gifts: You will be contributing to their extinction.  And spread the word: Help us take this message to everyone and explain them the harm pet parrots are causing.

This is a robbed and destroyed nest in Jaragua National Park

Learn more about this topic downloading our talk “Amores que Matan” or 

watch this short video done with Orgullo de Mi Tierra from Centro Cuesta Nacional

The parrot trail

We have been taking this message across the Dominican Republic, to children and adults to start lowering the demand for pet parrots.  This task has been helped by Rita La Cotorrita, our parrot costume! 

Photo 11. Informative sessions in Santo Domingo, 2017.

With support from: