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Psittacidae (true parrots)
The Hispaniolan parrot is a medium-sized parrot with a hooked beak and gray feet. In general, this parrot has green plumage with a white face, beak, and forehead; slight blue crown; red spot on chin and belly; and blue primaries.
Approximately 28-29 cm (11.2-11.6 in.)
Approximately 200-350 g (7-12.3 oz.)
Includes seeds, fruits, nuts, berries, and leaves
Approximately 28 days
Up to 80 years
Haiti, Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico
Inhabits montane forests and lowlands
Less than 10,000
These birds are very good at mimicking human speech and are known to be noisy. When Amazon parrots were first discovered they were called
, which is derived from the French word meaning "screechers".
When the flock finds a new tree with fresh buds, they all land on a branch with much squawking. The branch bends under their collective weight and they all begin to chew at the fresh branch. The bark is crushed in their powerful beaks and they swallow the plant juices.
Amazons use their feet as hands.
Like most parrots, Amazons are monogamous, choosing a partner for life.
ECOLOGY AND CONSERVATION
Amazons are messy eaters - their extremely strong beaks are perfectly adapted for eating all sorts of nuts and seeds, as seen in their ability to crack open incredibly hard-shelled nuts with ease. In the course of daily feeding, Amazons allow plenty of seeds (while eating, as well as in their droppings) to fall to the forest floor, thus generating much of the forest growth.
Parrots are considered pests because their eating habits are destructive to crops.
This parrot is very popular in the pet trade and is often taken as a nestling or an egg. These birds also fall victim to loss of habitat through deforestation.
The U.S. Wild Bird Act forbids the commercial import of any bird listed by CITES which includes most parrots - endangered or threatened.
Bosch, K. and U. Wedde.
Encyclopedia of Amazon Parrots
. New Jersey. T.F.H. Publications. 1981.
Parrots of the World
. New Jersey. T.F.H. Publications Inc. 1978.
Marrison, C. and A. Greensmith.
Birds of the World
. New York: Dorling Kindersley, Inc. 1993.
Perrins, C. (ed.).
The Encyclopedia of Birds
. New York: Facts on File Publications. 1985.