A Ringnecked Parakeet sitting and drinking from ice on branch of a tree in the Vondelpark, Amsterdam. It is well known that tropical parakeet species are popular as pets. Interestingly, an increasing number of Ringnecked Parakeets (Psittacula krameri) have adapted to live in urban areas far away from their tropical home grounds and established feral populations in a number of European cities.
A growing group of Ringnecked Parakeets – often confused with parrots – have been living in Amsterdam since 1976. The very first birds were released pets that managed to survive the cold dutch winter by living in old trees in the well known Vondelpark. In the meantime, the exotic species has expanded to areas far outside the city centre. With their bright green feathers the exotic birds distinguished themselves from the dutch native species.
The Vondelpark is the main breeding place of these social birds. Bird countings in 2004 and 2006 revealed that more than 2000 Ringnecked Parakeets were living in Amsterdam. Biologist Roelant Jonker who was the organiser of the countings postulated that 99 % of the birds was born in the wild