There's been more media coverage about Natural England's listing of  the lovely ring-necked parakeet on the General Licence.  The Daily Mail is getting very excited about it, the Daily Telegraph too and with them The Times.  And following an article yesterday, London's evening paper the Standard is still getting stuck in.

Some of this is due to a great quote from the London Wildlife Trust that parakeets are as British as curry! Nice one!  And so true.  The LWT statement makes many of the points that we have made too.

If you look at the pictures in the papers of ring-necked parakeets then you'll probably agree that they are gorgeous birds.  And they are as British as curry in that they are not native species (India is a good place to find them) and were brought here by man.  Like curries, they are lovely; and perhaps like curries, it is difficult to predict what harm they might do in the future.  Generally speaking, it is much better not to ship species around the world because, unlike curries, it is difficult to put them back in their box!  Introduced species are a major cause of species extinctions - but will ring-necked parakeets drive any British species extinct?  I very much doubt it.  Will they, some time in the future, when much commoner, cause economic or wildlife problems?  Hmmm - not so confident I could say no to that.

I'm off for a curry - or should that be bangers and mash?  Actually,  I am keeping up to my four vegetarian days a week - so tonight I will pass on the bangers and maybe go for a vegetable curry.


  • Barry - perfectly fair points.  I vaguely remember some Dutch research suggesting ring-necked parakeetss throw nuthatches out of their nest holes - but don't quote me on that!

    Sooty - maybe Canada goose and chips?

  • I suspect you might do more good Mark that instead of meat free days you had a few veg + parakeet days but only time will tell but Ithink they are increasing at an alarming rate.Now I bet that Dave wishes his Sea Eagles could get some way towards that type of increase.I think I may have upset Dave by calling what the Mull sheep farmers get as compensation whereas he calls it management I think.Although I really like seeing them I am really concerned that as they increase and if they populate large areas the RSPB would never be able to afford the payment to massive numbers of claimants all over the country.I always think that one benefit whatever it is always causes a different problem(what a pity).

  • At this early stage of population growth these "pretty" species may not look a big threat to our native wildlife, but it is only at this early stage that the population could be "controlled". In 10 years time, when perhaps, Starling is limited by the lack of natural nest sites, you might change your personal view.

    If only New Zealand Pigmyweed (Crassula helmsii) had been controlled when it was first noticed in our wetlands we would not be in the sad position now of spending a lot of time and using a lot of herbicide trying to maintain some of our wetlands in a suitable condition for rare native species.

    Is any research being done on the impact of the parakeets on native wildlife?

  • Sorry Mark can't find much to say but a very good blog and I hope the other 399 enjoyed it as much as me but I feel certain that as numbers increase they will be a serious threat to our hole nesting birds.