Friday, 2 October 2009

Take aim....

Ever noticed that there are an extrordinary amount of "wild" parrots in Cologne? I have a little nest of them in a tree outside my house and they're always having fights with the local magpies and crows.
They're a noisy bunch and they don't take any shit from the native bird population - oh no - they're loud, they're green and they're here to stay. Apparently they're in the UK too - they've colonised the Island all the way up to Scotland. The ring-necked parakeet (proper name) has a natural habitat range from Africa to the Himalayas, but it has very successfully settled in lots of parts of Europe. The novelty of green noisy birds has obviously worn off in the UK though, because they've been officially added to the list of bird "pests" along with gulls, crows and magpies, all these birds can be legally shot without special permission. Apparently there are fears that the parrots may damage native wildlife and crops – in the tropics it is already widely considered a pest. So there you go - open season on the green parrots - in the UK at least. Not sure what the situation in Germany is - so don't load your gun yet - once I've found out I'll let you know!