Brownsville Birds: Red-Crowned Parrots

Red-Crowned Parrot - Amazona viridigenalis
My “home base” in Brownsville Texas has a “Reseca” or Oxbow lake on its border. I spent my mornings checking out the local bird-life.

Being trapped, so to speak, by the COVID-19 pandemic, my bird explorations have been curtailed. Rather than attempt a series of long yarns, I thought I’d share a few image sets of the birds I found nearby, starting with the parrots I found a few feet from my door. The fruit tree appears to be an orange, but the fruits were small, about the size of a marble. (Update: I’ve since learned this was a cumquat tree) The tree was laden with fruit when I setup camp, but when these birds found it, the fruit was stripped in a matter of days.

Red-Crowned Parrot populations are threatened by the pet trade and habitat losses. Thier natural range is northeastern Mexico and the southern tip of Texas, but released and escaped pets have established colonies in southern California, south Florida and Oahu (Hawaii). The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 failed to mention this species, and so the regulatory laws of states and local governments provide their only legal protections.