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Latest discoveries about the El Oro Parakeet

Parrots magazine 150th issueBy Dr David Waugh, Director, Loro Parque Fundación

The El Oro Parakeet (Pyrrhura orcesi) is an endangered parakeet of south-western Ecuador (provinces of Cañar, Azuay, El Oro, Loja), with a geographical distribution of less than 750km2 on the west slope of the Andes, and an estimated population size reduced to possibly fewer than 1000 individuals, due mainly to loss of its forest habitat. It inhabits very humid, tropical forest mainly between 800 and 1,200 m, and tolerates limited habitat fragmentation.

Since 2001 the LPF has supported activities to help the conservation of this species, mainly in the 1,550 ha Buenaventura Reserve (of the Ecuadorean NGO Fundación Jocotoco) in a single valley of the same name. This previous work has given a population estimate of 170-180 individuals in Buenaventura Reserve and immediately adjacent areas. The project has also included research on reproduction, the installation and monitoring of nest-boxes, habitat restoration, extension to the reserve, and environmental education with the local communities.

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