Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Monk Parakeet

Myiopsitta monachus
The Monk Parakeet is a very common member of the Parrot Family. Though they are originally from Argentina and its surrounding neighbors, feral populations exist in many areas, thanks to the birds ability to survive in temperate and colder climates.

Monk Parakeets are also known as Quaker Parrots, and are colored with gray and green feathers. Males and females are not sexually dimorphic, and it can sometimes be rather difficult to tell them apart!

Seeds and fruits make up most of the Monk Parakeet's diet, though they do also consume insects as well. They live in flocks, and are very social. Interestingly, they build their own nests. Many other Parrots prefer to take over already made nests.

In many areas the Monk Parakeet can be kept as a pet. However, some other locations do not allow them, simply due to the pest nature of the invasive, feral populations.

IUCN Status :  Least Concern
Location : South America, with feral population in Europe and North America
Size : Length up to 11.5in (29cm), Wingspan up to 19in (49cm)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Aves -- Order : Psittaciformes
Family : Psittacidae -- Genus : Myiopsitta -- Species : M. monachus

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