Psittacula parrots and other feathered ferals/cane toads

To: "Frank Hemmings" <>, <>
Subject: Psittacula parrots and other feathered ferals/cane toads
From: "michael norris" <>
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2005 21:17:45 +1100
[BOCA this is for Don Saunders]
Quite right Frank!  And many thanks.
I checked using Google searches for monk parakeet in europe and australia with around 90 results.  I've only looked at the pages from the BBC and the USA Institute for Biological Invasions (IBI) and skimmed the important document from the Bureau of Rural Sciences in Canberra.
When in Barcelona I was busy looking at Gaudi buildings and the (soccer) World Cup and rarely with binos. So I am completely happy that the birds must have been Monk Parakeets/"Quaker Parrots" (Myiopsitta monachus Boddaert 1783).  (But I can't tick them because I didn't work hard enough on i/d - grey faces !)
The IBI site has a lot of interesting stuff on their biology and attempts to remove them from the wild in the USA.
The BBC says (in 2003) "its mushrooming population in the city [Barcelona] is driving the citizens to distraction".  But from the text the agricultural problem seems to be their attacks on tomatoes in neighbouring rural areas - not mushrooms.
Seriously there is  a Queensland government site which says the monk parakeet is here (in cages we hope). 
The unsuccessful attempts to stop them in the USA are mentioned in our federal government paper word/rural_science/lms/ferals/risk_assess_book.doc
"Someone" needs to read it.
Especially because it has data on releases apparently relating to Streptopelia decaocto (the Eurasian Collared-dove) but no mention of the Barbary Dove (S. 'risoria'  =?  S. roseogrisea).
I did not identify those Barcelona parakeets at the species level and so may be wrong about our local new Streptopelias which I think are S. 'risoria'. (S. decaocto erupted in the USA as result of an import of birds believed to be S 'risoria'). Do  we have to capture them for the museums to identify so the authorities can accept there is a serious issue ?
But whatever these escaped breeding feral pigeons and parakeets are: STOP THEM NOW.  "One year's seed equals seven years' weed".
Michael Norris
Bayside Friends of Native Wildlife
PS We went to get the new breeding pair in Brighton, Melb. but they had gone and the nest was empty of all but plastic. Grey Butcherbirds - which have only recently spread into our foreshore (because they are being fed so often?) - were calling near the empty nest.
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