St Lucia parrot

St Lucia Parrot
Scientific Name
Amazona versicolor
Animal type
Bird
Location
the island of St Lucia in the eastern Caribbean.
Conservation Status
Vulnerable

Profile

St Lucia ParrotThe St Lucia amazon is arguably the most striking parrot of its kind. The species is found only on the island of St Lucia in the eastern Caribbean, where it is known locally as ‘Jacquot’. The Government of the island became aware of the plight of its endemic parrot population in 1975 when Durrell first became involved with St Lucia, and the Trust was asked to help by starting a captive breeding programme for the species at its Jersey headquarters. In 1989 a pair of captive-bred parrots returned to their native home with the Prime Minister of St Lucia.

Deforestation by humans has been the most devastating factor for the parrots, followed by their capture for food and the wild bird trade and the effects of hurricanes. In three decades, starting with the 1950s, numbers had decreased from about a thousand to a mere hundred, and the parrot’s habitat had shrunk to a fifth of what was already a tiny area. Although ‘Jacquot’ has been officially protected since 1849, the legislation had been largely ignored, but in 1979 it was made St Lucia’s national bird and St Lucians started to care about their parrot.

‘Protection through Pride’ education programmes have been crucial in helping to save the species – there are now thought to be over 500 parrots living in the wild. Durrell and the St Lucia Forestry Department are now planning new surveys to obtain a more accurate count.

 

 

Video

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Other Vulnerable Animals