Results of the Parrot Watch

by Kimball Garrett

Here are some preliminary results of the San Gabriel Valley-wide parrot count which we conducted in the late afternoon and evening of 21 September 1999. Our target was to cover the known major roost sites in Temple City, and also to station observers at other sites throughout the San Gabriel Valley to determine numbers, times and flight directions of commuting birds and look for other possible roost sites. We still have not heard from a few "precincts".

Karen Mabb and I organized the survey, and we thank the following observers for participating: Larry Allen, Judy Bass, Dave Bradley, Dan Cooper, Alan Cummings, Ron Cyger, Pat DeVorss, Jon Fisher, Kimball Garrett, Rod and Matthew Kiewiet, Ross Landry, Joy Lewis, Mickey Long, Karen Mabb, Kathy Moyd, Jack Nash, Peggy Ogata, Bill and Kathleen Principe, Michael J. San Miguel, Melanie and Russell Stalder, Ed Stonick, Kathy Talley-Jones, Sheri Uhlig, Tom Wurster and the other observers whose data we have yet to get to.

Preliminary results suggest that there were very few Amazona parrots away from the Temple City roost sites; we were unable to confirm the existence of any additional roosts. We also had relatively few sightings of "commuting" parrots well away from the Temple City roosts (the few sightings we did have were from central Pasadena and Monrovia).

The count of Amazona parrots in the main Temple City roost areas was approximately 1,150. The birds roosted in four main areas: Golden West Ave. south of Live Oak Ave.; vicinity of Live Oak Park; vicinity of Pal Mal and Live Oak; and vicinity of Tyler and Freer (technically in SW Monrovia). The vast majority of the birds identified to species were Red-crowned Parrots (Amazona viridigenalis), but many Lilac-crowned Parrots (A. finschi) and a few Red-lored Parrots (A. autumnalis) were also found.

An estimated 200 Aratinga parakeets were found roosting near Tyler and Freer in SW Monrovia and (earlier) feeding near the Arcadia Par 3 Golf Course (west side of Peck Pit). These birds were not identified to species, but previous coverage here suggests that about 80% are Mitred and 20% Red-masked. The only other parakeet species reported was Rose-ringed (a few in Temple City and Sierra Madre).

We will continue to fine-tune results from this count, and use our successes and failures to come up with a better strategy for a future count. Expect an announcement about another parrot count sometime during the winter of 1999-2000.

The California Parrot Project              P.O. Box 153              Weldon, CA 93283-0153

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