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Parrots in Florida (17 Species With Pictures)

Parrots are found throughout tropical regions of the world. Although on the boundary of what is considered tropical, the southern tip of Florida is within the neotropical realm (barely), and is now home to many species. Which is what we’ll be discussing in this article, the parrots in Florida. 

Unfortunately, the only parrot native to Florida is now extinct, so all species found there today have been accidentally introduced and more often than not from the pet trade. Their populations are naturalized, but are quite small and not a lot is known about them.

Let’s take look at the long list of parrot species found in Florida

17 species of parrots in Florida

1. Budgerigar

Length: 7 in
Weight: 1 oz
Wingspan: 12 in

The smallest of parrots in Florida, these cuties are the epitome of the “pet bird.” There are a wide variety of colors, including blue, white, and yellow, but in the wild the main plumage is greenish.

Budgies used to be quite common in Florida with a population upwards of 20,000 individuals. Nowadays, there are suspected to be fewer than 100 birds left, with populations restricted to urban areas along the Gulf Coast from Crystal River to Fort Myers and in Fort Lauderdale. Despite all the exotic flora present in these areas that are perfect for budgies, their decline in population can be attributed to house sparrows which have claimed the majority of nest boxes.

2. Nanday Parakeet

image: Russ | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 12 in
Weight: 4.5 oz
Wingspan: 23 in

Nanday Parakeets are identifiable by their black heads and bills, beautiful blue coloring on the chest and outer wings, and reddish legs.

Also referred to as the “Black-hooded Parakeet”, the name “Nanday” derives from their indigenous name.

In the wild and captivity, Nanday’s have distinct voices and bright personalities. They can learn up to 20 words and have pretty great memory.

These beauties have established populations in the Tampa Bay Area, particularly St. Petersburg, and also along the southeastern coast, including Miami for a total population of +/- 1000 individuals and increasing.

3. Rose-ringed Parakeet

Length: 16 in
Weight: 4.1 oz
Wingspan: 18.5 in

These pale green parakeets have a red eye-ring and bill. Males have a colorful head with blue and pink at the nape and a thin black collar. Their long, pointed tails give them a slender look, making for a very attractive bird.

Although native to Africa and India, this adaptable bird has established populations all over the world. In Florida, there are wild flocks around Naples and Fort Myers with a population around 200.

4. Monk Parakeet

Length: 11.5 in
Weight: 3.5 oz
Wingspan: 19 in

Monk Parakeets have a unique plumage with grey faces, throats, and breasts, and blue on the wings. They are unmistakable.

These pretty parakeets are the most widespread psittacid in North America. In Florida, there are colonies on both southern coasts.

Monk Parakeets are the only parrots that don’t nest in cavities and instead build massive stick nests and live as a colony. There are several nest chambers or “apartments” with tunnels leading to the outside. Their nests can be almost as large as a small car and continually get larger each year. Some colonies have been recorded to house 200 or more nests!

5. Blue-crowned Parakeet

image: Bernard DUPONT | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 14.5 in
Weight: 7 oz
Wingspan: 24 in

These birds are green overall (like the majority of parrots on this list) and have a bluish head. The inner parts of the tail feathers are reddish and not always readily apparent.

There are roughly 125 Blue-crowned Parakeets in Florida at Fort Lauderdale, Upper Keys, and St. Petersburg with populations increasing.

6. Red-masked Parakeet

image: Mike’s Birds | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 13.5 in
Weight: 6 oz
Wingspan: 22 in

Their bright red masks give them the look of a superhero. Red outlines their upper wings and inner thighs (which is highly inconspicuous.)

They are often found in mixed flocks with the Mitred Parakeet (a very similar looking relative) and tend to stay near exotic plantings in suburbs and parks rather than wild habitat. Unlike the Mitred, Red-masked Parakeets will only roost in natural cavities in oaks and palms. Populations are found locally in the Miami area, roughly around 200 individuals.

7. Mitred Parakeet

image: Susan Young

Length: 15 in
Weight: 7 oz
Wingspan: 25 in

Larger than the similar Red-masked, Mitred Parakeets also have red feathering on the face, though it’s much more spotty and patchy. The same goes for the red found outlining the upper wings. The similarities between the two, coupled with them flocking together, makes for difficulties identifying them correctly.

In Florida they are found in the southeastern parts of the state (Miami in particular) in the same habitat as the Red-masked—around exotic plantings in suburbs and parks. They have been seen roosting and breeding in cavities and chimneys of buildings.

8. White-eyed Parakeet

image: Wagner Machado Carlos Lemes | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 13.5 in
Weight: 6 oz
Wingspan: 22 in

Another bird similar to the Mitred and Red-masked. White-eyed parakeets show even less red flecking on the face and head. Some red is seen at the bend of the wing. A white eye-ring gives this bird its name, but it’s not all that helpful when trying to identify it from Mitred and Red-masked birds, as they also have white eye rings. The best indicators would be the amount of red on the head paired with the color of the underwing, which is very yellow on White-eyed Parakeets.

White-eyed Parakeets have been introduced in 12 southern counties in Florida and are pretty common in the greater Miami area. They nest in cavities in buildings and under eaves.

9. White-winged Parakeet

image: Greg Schechter | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 8.75 in
Weight: 2.1 oz
Wingspan: 15 in

These little parakeets are adorable little beauties! Not much bigger than a budgie, they have bright white patches on their wings that can be seen in flight. There’s a bit of yellow next to the white on the inner wing that can be seen when the bird is at rest, and bluish coloring next to the white in the outer wing.

Small, naturalized populations occur in Fort Lauderdale (+/- 200) and even smaller numbers are present in Miami. Their numbers have decreased since the 1970’s.

10. Yellow-chevroned Parakeet

image: Derek Keats | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 8.75 in
Weight: 2.1 oz
Wingspan: 15 in

This species is closely related to the White-winged Parakeet, and the two were considered conspecific (the same species) until 1997. At rest, the two look almost indistinguishable, but in flight you’ll notice the Yellow-chevroned doesn’t have the bright white patch on the wing. Where they occur together, there have been hybrids reported.

In its native habitat it feeds on seeds and fruit, but feral populations have adapted to consume nectar. They also will stop by feeders if they are out!

These guys seem to be doing better in terms of population size and stability than the White-wings. Approximately 450 individuals live in Florida, mostly in Miami with some at Fort Lauderdale. Their numbers appear stable and increasing.

11. Green Parakeet

Green parakeet perching
Green parakeet perching | image by Melissa McMasters via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY 2.0

Length: 13 in
Weight: 8 oz
Wingspan: 21 in

This bird is pretty straightforward in its looks—all green. There might be occasional red flecking on the neck (it’s related to the Mitred, Red-masked, and White-eyed which also have red feathering to some degree), but the majority of its feathers are green. Aside from the occasional red feathers, this is the only entirely green parakeet in the United States.

These birds can be seen at Fort Lauderdale and Miami along with its relatives mentioned earlier. Their population is suspected to be increasing.

12. Red-crowned Parrot

image: Susan Young

Length: 12 in
Weight: 11 oz
Wingspan: 25 in

This parrot is also known as the Green-cheeked or Red-crowned Amazon. They are often described as stocky or chunky, and have a notable red crown with a bit of blue behind the eye. The males show more red than females, extending from the bill to the crown of the head, whereas females are red mostly between the eyes. The wings have a red patch and dark blue tips, and the tail has a yellowish band on the end.

Red-crowned Parrots are very noisy and can be heard causing a raucous in the mornings and evenings. They like to caw, and will be vocal about anything. Breeding pairs use a coordinated vocal duet to defend their nest site from invading pairs. They don’t mind vocalizing close to their nest, which makes it easy for poachers to find them, and has unfortunately contributed to their population decline in their native habitat.

A naturalized population in southeastern Florida has roughly 400 birds and is just a small contribution to the total U.S. population. It’s believed that the rising number of birds here is outnumbering the number in their native habitat, which is declining and endangered.

13. Orange-winged Parrot

image: Félix Uribe | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 12.5 in
Weight: unknown
Wingspan: unknown

Like other Amazona parrots (from the Red-crowned to the Red-lored) their bodies are similar with the red patch and blue on the wings. Their tails have thin stripes of orange. The real identification key with these parrots is the coloring of the head. Orange-wings have a yellow face with baby blue stripes that go through and above the eye to the back of the head. Their bills have blackish edges.

image: Gary Leavens | Flickr | CC 2.0

Like most psittacids in the United States, not much is known of its history in the country. Nests have been found in royal palm snags and it’s estimated that about 100 individuals live at Fort Lauderdale and Miami with their populations increasing.

14. Yellow-headed Parrot

image: Heather Paul | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 14 in
Weight: 15.8 oz
Wingspan: 28 in

This parrot is distinguished by its bright yellow head and red shoulders. Unlike most parrots, Yellow-heads are fairly silent when they fly. When they are being noisy, they make human-sounding screams.

Yellow-headed Parrots are endangered and are on the CITES Appendix I, which means the import and trade of any wild-caught birds is illegal and the trade of birds bred in aviculture are subject to control in most of the world.

Very small populations breed in southeastern Florida, but unfortunately are declining.

15. Red-lored Parrot

image: Steve Wilson | Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 12.5 in
Weight: unknown
Wingspan: unknown

Red-lored parrots have red between the eyes, a patch of yellow below the eyes, and blue that extends from the red lore patch to the back of the crown.

This species has been established for several years in southern states, but is not as common as the Red-crowned. Small numbers live in southern Florida, and have for decades.

16. Chestnut-fronted Macaw

image: Fernando Flores| Flickr | CC 2.0

Length: 18 in
Weight: 15 oz
Wingspan: 30 in

Larger than the previous species on this list, the Chestnut-fronted Macaw has reddish-brown underwings, deep, beautiful blue on the primaries, and a long pointed tale that is tinged with blue on the outer tips and chestnut on the inner patch. Their heads have a bare, white face patch with a bit of chestnut feathering on the forehead and a large black bill.

These macaws are also referred to as the “Severe” macaw, which is mostly due to their aggressive and sassy attitudes that come out when they hit puberty. Otherwise, they are quite sociable and enjoy company.

A small naturalized population has established itself in southeastern Florida, with nest sites in the Miami area.

17. Blue-and-yellow Macaw

Blue and yellow macaw perched
Blue and yellow macaw perched | image by Arthur T. LaBar via Flickr | CC BY 2.0

Length: 34 in
Weight: 42 oz
Wingspan: 50 in

The largest of parrots in Florida and on this list, this massive bird is entirely blue on the upper parts and golden yellow beneath. Their white face patch has thick, black feathered stripes that outline the eye and their neck has a thick black collar. Their black beak is enormous and intimidating. It helps them crack open nutshells and is strong enough to help them climb and hang from trees.

A small breeding population is in southeastern Florida in Miami-Dade county.

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