Checking in on L.A. parrots



A contributor at Leimert Park Beat posted a brief video of the parrots in his coral tree.

It's been awhile since I posted any observations on the wild parrots and parakeets that dash across our skies. (Veronique de Turenne keeps up on the activities of her Malibu flock.) I still like Emily Green's primer on the California Parrot Project that ran in the Times in 2006.

The successful breeding populations, he says, were never tame, but arose from lost shipments of wild birds that escaped when it was still legal to import them between the 1950s and late '80s. These include the black-hooded parakeets of Brentwood, the yellow-chevroned parakeets of Lafayette Park, the rose-ringed parakeets of Malibu, the mitred parakeets of Palos Verdes and blue-crowned parakeets of Northridge, 10 species in all.

The naturalized populations vary, from 60 to 600, but none of them approach the 1,000-plus status of the red-crowned Parrots of Temple City. In addition to those, there are at least 500 or 600 other red-crowned parrots in Orange, more in Fullerton and other colonies around the state, says Walter Piper, an ornithologist at Chapman University in Orange. The upshot: We may have as many red-crowned parrots here as in their native range in northeastern Mexico.

Related: Chatting with Kimball L. Garrett, author of "Birds of the Los Angeles Region," about L.A.'s crows.


More by Kevin Roderick:
Ralph Lawler of the Clippers and the age of Aquarius
Riding the Expo Line to USC 'just magical'
Last bastion of free parking? Loyola Marymount to charge students
Matt Kemp, Dodgers and Kings start big weekend the right way
LA Times writers revisit their '92 riots observations
Recent Fauna stories on LA Observed:
Mountain lion killed in Sunland by state warden
Hey, take a gander at this: geese in traffic on the 110 *
OR7 wanders back into California
California's lone wolf returns to Oregon
Bert Bonnett, horseman was 101

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