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FEATURE


landscape management. If true, it would suggest that work with ranch owners and their employees could go a long way to improve the conservation status of these birds in areas dominated by cattle grazing. Therefore the Loro Parque Fundación supported a follow-up project of Dr. Enkerlin-Hoeflich, together with Dr. Don Brightsmith of Texas A&M University, USA, to return to the same sites and repeat the methodologies to determine how the numbers of birds roosting and nesting in this field site has changed over the past 20 years. The immediate intention is to use the resulting information with other researchers to verify conservation status, set conservation priorities and create conservation plans for the endangered species A. oratrix and A. viridigenalis. Between April and July of 2013 the field


coordinator, Jose Luis Manzano, conducted a total of 17 counts of the Amazon parrots as they arrived to roost in a forest patch in the same locality of the study area. On average 148 ± 38 parrots were detected going to roost. The numbers of parrots detected per evening were higher than the average over the period 1992 – 1994 and were most similar to the values from 1992, the year with the highest counts from the original study. These results indicate that after 20 years the parrots are continuing to use this area successfully. The numbers of Yellow-headed Amazons


coming to roost were much higher than the values recorded during the same months in 1992 – 1994. Throughout the 2013 season the roost counts averaged 85 ± 20 individuals per count which is much higher than the average of less than 15 from the same time period in 1992 – 1994. This finding is quite surprising given the reported grave status of this species in many areas of Mexico. The numbers of Green-cheeked Amazons


were relatively high in April (70 individuals), but by May they had dropped to very low levels (3 ± 5 per count). The average value per count for 2013 (12 ± 17) was significantly lower than the average over the same period in 1992 – 1994 (29 ± 26). However, while these numbers are very low, they are similar to those recorded in 1993 and 1994. Therefore this species persists in this environment even though it has not shown the dramatic increase in numbers over the last 20 years like A. oratrix. The numbers of A. autumnalis coming to roost were about 20% higher in 2013 (40 ± 10 per count) than over similar date ranges in the 1990’s (33 ± 13 per count). To examine nesting densities, Jose Luis


Manzano surveyed an area of 258 ha between April and July 2013, to locate and confirm parrot nests. The project located a total of 19 confirmed nests and an additional three probable nests. The most abundant nester was A. viridigenalis with eight confirmed nests, followed by


BIRD SCENE 11


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