Brazil Trip Part Three: Quaker Parakeets
I have been writing a series of posts about a recent trip I took to Brazil, and today I am writing about Quaker Parakeets (Myiopsitta monachus). All the pictures with this update were taken in the southern Pantanal region of Brazil. Quaker Parakeets are very common there. Where I stayed, they had built several nests at the top of palm trees. The dead leaves hanging over the nests acted like “curtains” over the entrance of their nests. The palm leaves concealed many of the nests, but here’s one where I could see the entrance:
Quakers are the only parrot species that creates such large nests out of sticks. Most parrots nest in natural tree cavities, although a few species will nest in the side of cliffs. Quaker nests are communal affairs, and several birds will live in each nest. They use the nests for raising young, but they also sleep in the nests during the non-breeding season. One nest may have several “doors” and chambers. Young Quaker Parakeets may help their parents raise young before they start families of their own.
There is one subspecies of Quaker Parakeet (Myiopsitta monachus luchsi), found in central Bolivia, that nests in cliffs
Wild Quakers are incredibly busy birds and seem to spend quite a bit of the day adding sticks to their nests. They are also very noisy which makes their nests quite easy to locate. They even chatter away while inside the nests and only quiet down once it starts to get dark.
Quaker Parakeets may also be referred to as “Monk Parakeets.” Their natural range includes southern Brazil, northern Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, and Paraguay. They tend to occur in open woodlands. However, introduced populations occur in parts of the United States, Japan, Puerto Rico, Israel, Bermuda, and Europe. Most of these introduced populations live in cities.
Quaker Parakeets will sometimes nest in the “basement” of Jabiru Stork nests. Jabiru Storks are the largest of their kind, and are common in the Pantanal. Their nests, like the nests of quakers, are large and built out of sticks. Jabirus will tolerate the presence of Quaker Parakeets in their nests.
The next post in this series will concern the two species of macaw I saw: Hyacinth Macaws and Greenwing Macaws.
Related posts in this series: