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Cuban Parakeet Psittacara euops

Justification
This species has declined rapidly, and now has a small and fragmented range and population (Collar et al. 1992). The rate of decline is unknown, but it is still trapped for the domestic market and habitat loss continues; the population probably now numbers fewer than 5,000 individuals, and the species therefore qualifies as Vulnerable.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.

Taxonomic note
Psittacara euops (del Hoyo and Collar 2014) was previously placed in the genus Aratinga.

Synonym(s)
Aratinga euops (Wagler, 1832)

Identification
26 cm. Plain green parakeet with red bend of the wing. Scattered red feathers on head and breast, bare white orbital ring, red carpal and underwing-coverts, yellowish-green underside of flight feathers and tail. Similar spp. The only parakeet on Cuba. Voice Loud crick-crick-crick in flight, soft calls when perched.

Distribution and population
Aratinga euops was formerly one of the most common endemic birds on Cuba, but is now rare throughout the island. It survives in a few of the more remote regions, remaining fairly common only in the Zapata peninsula, the Trinidad Mountains and the Sierra de Najasa (Juniper and Parr 1998, Raffaele et al. 1998, Snyder et al. 2000). Suggestions that the species occurred in the Sierra Maestra appear unfounded (A. Mitchell in litt. 1998). It has been extirpated from the western provinces (excluding Zapata) (Raffaele et al. 1998) and Isla de la Juventud, where it was once abundant. Recent studies of 14 populations have found that four are in serious decline (Snyder et al. 2000). Even the population within Ciénaga de Zapata National Park appears to have declined, with recent surveys finding no flocks larger than 18 birds (Mitchell and Wells 1997, A. Mitchell in litt. 1998). The total population is now thought not to exceed 5,000 individuals (A. Kirkconnell in litt. 2007).

Population justification
The population is estimated to number 2,500-9,999 individuals based on an assessment of known records, descriptions of abundance and range size. This is consistent with recorded population density estimates for congeners or close relatives with a similar body size, and the fact that only a proportion of the estimated Extent of Occurrence is likely to be occupied. This estimate is equivalent to 1,667-6,666 mature individuals, rounded here to 1,500-7,000 mature individuals.

Trend justification
There are no new data on population trends; however, the species is suspected to be declining at a moderate rate, primarily as a result of habitat degradation.

Ecology
It has been recorded in semi-deciduous woodland, palm-savanna habitat, trees on cultivated land and the edges of woodland. It nests in tree-cavities or holes in arboreal termite nests, and is mostly restricted to dead royal Roystonea regia and sabal Sabal palviflora palms (Snyder et al. 2000). Breeding takes place in late April or early May, coinciding with maximum fruit availability, and runs through to August (A. Kirkconnell in litt. 1999). The species seems somewhat nomadic, ranging widely in search of food (Raffaele et al. 1998).

Threats
Persecution as a crop-pest, habitat loss and in particular trapping for the cage-bird trade explain its current rarity (A. Kirkconnell in litt. 2007). Trapping for the international trade is now insignificant, with only 10 birds recorded in trade between 1991 and 1995. Another significant threat is loss of nesting-trees (Snyder et al. 2000) as a result of hurricane damage (such as caused in Zapata by Hurricane Lilli in 1996), and tree-felling for Cuban Parrot Amazona leucocephala chicks (A. Mitchell in litt. 1998).

Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix II. It is legally protected. It occurs within seven environmental reserves, including the important Ciénaga de Zapata National Park (Snyder et al. 2000). A study of the species and an intensive public awareness campaign are intended to help establish an effective management programme (Wiley 1998). Ecotourism programmes have been initiated in some areas (Snyder et al. 2000). A nest box provisioning scheme has been initiated. Synthetic boxes are longer lasting than those made from sections of palm trunk (Waugh 2006), but the parakeets prefer those made of natural materials (Anon. 2010).  A reintroduction programme from mainland Cuba to the Isla de la Juventud was being developed in 2004 but the species is generally difficult to breed (Parrots 2000-2004; avianweb.com).
Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct further research to determine the species's ecological requirements and population (Wiley 1998, Snyder et al. 2000). Conserve additional habitat, especially nesting areas (Snyder et al. 2000). Tailor environmental awareness and nest-site protection to local situations (Snyder et al. 2000). Continue to plan for the re-establishment of the species on the Isla de la Juventud (Wiley 1998, Snyder et al. 2000) through development and extension of the captive breeding programme.

References
Anon. 2010. Nest-boxes to help the endemic psittacines of Cuba. Cyanopsitta: 16.

Avian Web. Cuban Conures. web page. Available at: http://www.avianweb.com/cubanconure.html. (Accessed: 05/08/2013).

Collar, N. J.; Butchart, S. H. M. 2013. Conservation breeding and avian diversity: chances and challenges. International Zoo Yearbook.

Collar, N. J.; Gonzaga, L. P.; Krabbe, N.; Madroño Nieto, A.; Naranjo, L. G.; Parker, T. A.; Wege, D. C. 1992. Threatened birds of the Americas: the ICBP/IUCN Red Data Book. International Council for Bird Preservation, Cambridge, U.K.

Juniper, T.; Parr, M. 1998. Parrots: a guide to the parrots of the world. Pica Press, Robertsbridge, UK.

Mitchell, A.; Wells, L. 1997. The threatened birds of Cuba project report. Cotinga: 69-71.

Raffaele, H.; Wiley, J.; Garrido, O.; Keith, A.; Raffaele, J. 1998. Birds of the West Indies. Christopher Helm, London.

Snyder, N.; McGowan, P.; Gilardi, J.; Grajal, A. 2000. Parrots: status survey and conservation action plan 2000-2004. International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK.

Waugh, D. 2006. Hilfe fur die Papageien in Zentral-Kuba. Papageien: 319-322.

Wiley, J. W. 1998. Psitta News: Cuba. PsittaScene 10: 16.

Further web sources of information
Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Detailed species account from the Threatened birds of the Americas: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 1992). Please note, taxonomic treatment and IUCN Red List category may have changed since publication.

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Recuento detallado de la especie tomado del libro Aves Amenazadas de las Americas, Libro Rojo de BirdLife International (BirdLife International 1992). Nota: la taxonomoía y la categoría de la Lista Roja de la UICN pudo haber cambiado desde esta publicación.

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Isherwood, I., Sharpe, C J, Wege, D.

Contributors
Kirkconnell, A., Mitchell, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Psittacara euops. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 18/12/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 18/12/2014.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Psittacidae (Parrots)
Species name author (Wagler, 1832)
Population size 1500-7000 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 11,900 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species