Name: Amazona vittata external image pr01.jpg

Description: The Puerto Rican Parrot, first described by Dutch zoologist Pieter Boddaert in 1783, is one of the world's rarest birds, with vibrant green feathers, solid black eyes, and a strong, stubby beak. The Amazona vittata's favorite food is the guava, but its diet consists mostly of flowers, fruits, leaves, bark, and nectar. This species normally selects the fruit that is right in front of its eyes and uses its foot to pick up the food. When this species reproduces, it picks one mate for its entire life, and will only change mates with the death of a partner. It nests in tree trunk cavities and prefers the Palo colorado tree. The female will lay 2-4 eggs that she will incubate for a period of 24-28 days. The chicks leave the nest 60-65 days after hatching. They reach sexual maturity at 4 years of age in the wild, and 3 years in captivity.

Habitat: The Puerto Rican Parrot can be found in a few secluded regions of the Puerto Rican forests and its islands, and evidence has shown that they once thrived in Barbuda, Antigua, and the Virgin Islands. Their life span is 10-15 years, and they were thought to be very abundant in Puerto Rico before 1492, with over 1 million is population. They live and thrive in the canopy of the Puerto Rican islands and forests and are not known to migrate during the winter because of their position in reference to the equator.

Problems: The Puerto Rican Parrot population started to decline when human population grew and spread, squeezing the parrot population out of its habitat. Until recently, the species was hunted for food by the natives, but because of its endangered status is now protected by wildlife preservation organization.