Also known as the yellow-naped parrot and golden-naped Amazon, this large green parrot is named for the yellow feathers on the back of its neck. Juveniles are all green and start to develop the signature golden-yellow nape feathers after they reach one year of age.
What They Eat
Yellow-naped Amazons eat fruits, nuts, seeds and berries. They use their strong beaks to crack open nuts and to climb from branch to branch.
Where They Live
Three distinct subspecies of this parrot occur in Central America: one population is located along the Pacific coast from southern Mexico to northwestern Costa Rica, one population is located in eastern Honduras and Nicaragua, and one population is located on the Hog Islands off of the northern coast of Honduras. These parrots live in semi-arid woodlands, arid scrub and savannahs, mangroves, forest clearings, forest along rivers and swamps, and sometimes second growth in agricultural areas.
What They Do
These parrots are very social. They are seen in pairs and small family groups in the wild, but occur in larger groups when resting and feeding. Yellow-naped Amazons make an assortment of loud squawks, whistles and screams which vary regionally.
How They’re Doing
Yellow-naped Amazons are endangered. The greatest threats to these parrots are habitat loss and collection for the pet trade.
- The lifespan of the yellow-naped Amazon is much longer in human care (60-80 years) when compared to in the wild (20-30 years). This makes them a life-long companion when cared for by humans.
- Amazon parrots are known for their ability to mimic or “talk.” However, the parrot in Zoomobile has a limited vocabulary, even with diligent encouragement by the trainers.
- The dry, muscular tongue of the yellow-naped Amazon is quite dexterous and can manipulate tiny pieces of food.
The International Union for the Conservation of Nature lists yellow-naped Amazons as “endangered.” Global numbers are estimated to be less than 50,000 individuals, although there is some evidence that the population may include less than 10,000 birds. The population is believed to be decreasing rapidly. The greatest threats to these parrots are collection for the pet trade and habitat loss and degradation, as land is converted for agriculture and timber is harvested.
Yellow-naped Amazons are one of the most desired parrot species in Central America, due to their talking ability and high intelligence. Nest poaching and trapping are common in many parts of their range, even though it is illegal in several countries and international trade of this species is prohibited. Research, education programs and protected area expansions are needed to combat the steep population decline. If you are considering a parrot as a pet, be sure to responsibly source your parrot in order to prevent illegal wildlife trade.