African Grey Parrots Left: Population Status

how many african grey parrots are left in the world

How many African grey parrots are left in the world? What is the current population status of this iconic bird species?

African grey parrots are facing significant declines and are classified as Endangered1. In some African countries, their numbers have dropped by up to 90%2. Over the past four decades, at least 1.3 million gray parrots were legally taken from Africa to the Middle East1. Sadly, hundreds of thousands of gray parrots have died or been caught illegally from West and Central Africa’s forests1.

The global population of African grey parrots is estimated to be between 560,000 and 12.7 million individuals2. In West Africa, there are 40,000-100,000 birds, and another 6,000-8,000 on Principe’s island1. The species has either gone extinct or is very rare in many countries, including Angola, Benin, Burundi, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Nigeria, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Togo3.

The main reasons for the decline are trapping for the wild bird trade and losing their homes2. In Ghana, their numbers have fallen by 90 to 99% since the early 1990s3. Many areas have seen their populations drop by over 50%3. Wildlife trafficking and certain beliefs that use parrot parts also harm their numbers2.

In 2016, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) banned the international trade of wild African greys, except under special circumstances1. Efforts are underway to protect the remaining birds and stop the trade in wild animals and their products2. The importance of listing African grey parrots on Appendix I was recognized, with a vote of 95 to 35 at the CITES conference in Johannesburg3.

Key Takeaways:

  • The global population of African grey parrots is preliminarily assessed to be between 560,000 and 12.7 million individuals2.
  • Population declines of up to 90% have been reported in some African countries2.
  • Over the past four decades, at least 1.3 million gray parrots have been legally exported from Africa to the Middle East1.
  • Hundreds of thousands of gray parrots have died in transit or been illegally captured1.
  • The decline in African grey parrots is primarily due to trapping and habitat loss2.

Threats to African Grey Parrots

African grey parrots (Psittacus erithacus) face many threats, leading to a decline in their numbers. This puts them at risk of disappearing forever. The exotic pet trade, loss of their homes, and changes in the environment are big reasons for this4.

These parrots are smart and can talk like humans, making them popular pets. This demand has led to a big drop in their numbers because of trapping for the pet trade5. Between 1982 and 2001, about 1.3 million of these birds were taken from the wild for trade45. In Cameroon, a lot of these birds were caught, making up 48% of all exports from 1990 to 19964.

Loss of their natural homes and forests also hurts their numbers. Deforestation and losing trees where they live and nest has reduced their space4. In West Africa, there are only 40,000 to 100,000 birds left, with a high number in Principe4.

About 21% of these birds are taken from the wild every year. This means their numbers could drop by 50-79% in just three generations4. In Ghana, their numbers have fallen by 99% in the last two to three decades5. These numbers show we need to act fast to save these birds from disappearing56.

Summary of Threats to African Grey Parrots:

Threats Statistical Data
Exotic pet trade Data suggests that around 21% of the wild population is being harvested annually, with overall declines likely in the range of 50-79% in three generations. From 1982 to 2014, over 1.3 million African Grey Parrots may have been extracted from the wild for trade purposes. Estimates indicate that perhaps around 100,000 birds per year were captured in Cameroon during the late 1990s and early 2000s. Cameroon accounted for 48% of exports of African Grey Parrots between 1990-1996. Over 1.3 million wild-caught African Grey Parrots have entered international trade between 1982 and 2001.
Habitat loss and fragmentation The West African population of African Grey Parrots (Psittacus erithacus) is estimated at 40,000-100,000 birds. The population in Principe is estimated to be 6,000-8,000 individuals, with population densities as high as 55-63 birds/km2.
Environmental changes Data suggests that around 21% of the wild population is being harvested annually, with overall declines likely in the range of 50-79% in three generations. In Ghana, the African Grey Parrot population has declined by about 90 to 99 percent in the last 20 to 25 years. Observations indicate that the African Grey Parrot is declining at a rate that surpasses their reproductive capacity, potentially leading to irreversible collapse in wild populations.

Conservation Efforts for African Grey Parrots

Many actions have been taken to save the African grey parrots. They are on CITES Appendix I, which stops all trade of wild parrots7. This rule helps fight against poaching and smuggling. It also helps the remaining wild parrots.

Efforts include watching over trapping sites and spreading the word about saving these parrots87. But, we need more action against those who illegally trade them.

African Grey Parrot Distribution and Population

The African grey parrot, known as Psittacus erithacus, calls many African countries home, like Nigeria, Cameroon, Uganda, and Tanzania9. They also live on islands such as Sao Tomé, Principe, and Bioko. These birds stretch from southeastern Côte d’Ivoire to northern Angola and the Congo forests. But, their numbers are dropping fast.

There are between 560,000 and 12.7 million African grey parrots worldwide10. Yet, their numbers are falling in many places. For example, Ghana has lost 90-99% of its parrots since the early 1990s10. Sadly, they’re extinct or nearly so in countries like Angola, Benin, Burundi, Ivory Coast, and Liberia10.

We need to act fast to save the African grey parrot. They’re listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List10. This shows how critical their situation is.

African grey parrots are vital to the ecosystem. They help spread seeds for many trees10. They also gather in huge groups, sometimes with up to 10,000 birds10. This shows how important it is to protect their homes.

These parrots are incredibly smart. They can mimic human speech and have learned over 100 words10. They solve problems as well as some animals and children do10. Their smarts make them even more interesting to scientists and bird lovers.

Wild African grey parrots are usually shy around people but are kind to each other. They follow a quiet pattern from sunset to dawn11. This shows how complex their communication and social life is.

In summary, African grey parrots live across Africa but their numbers are dropping10. We must act quickly to save them. By learning about their lives and needs, we can help protect these amazing birds for the future.

African Grey Parrot Ecology

African grey parrots are known for their bright feathers and smart minds. They live in dense forests across many countries like Nigeria, the Central African Republic, and the Democratic Republic of Congo12. They also like living in forest edges, clearings, mangroves, and even in gardens13.

These parrots eat a mix of fruits and seeds13. They love to be around others, forming big groups and eating together12. They make their nests in tree holes, which keeps them safe during breeding13. When they breed, it can be alone or with a few others13.

African grey parrots can also live in areas with some trees and forests, showing they can adapt to changes13. This adaptability is key to their survival as forests are being cut down more and more12.

Knowing what African grey parrots like and how they live is important for saving them. By protecting their homes, we can help these amazing birds thrive in the future.

Impacts of Wildlife Trafficking on African Grey Parrots

The African grey parrot population is facing a severe decline due to the harmful effects of wildlife trafficking. These birds are highly sought after for the exotic pet trade, leading to a devastating impact on their survival.

According to reference14, the African grey parrot population is decreasing by 21% every year. In Ghana, a shocking 90-99% of these parrots have been lost to illegal wildlife trade.

This decline is not just in Ghana14. shows that other countries where these birds live have lost over 50% of their populations. This shows how wildlife trafficking is harming these amazing birds.

The illegal wildlife trade is a big threat to African grey parrots. Traffickers use fraud and corruption to get around the law, leading to the unsustainable capture of these birds. The loss of their natural homes, hunting for bushmeat, and illegal trade make things worse.

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), a trafficker was caught with 122 parrots and got seven years in jail. This shows how big the illegal trade is and why we need to act fast.

In Kenya, having a parrot costs US$100 (KES12,000) a year. In the DRC, poachers sell young birds for about US$10 each. This shows how profitable this illegal trade is.

Reference15 talks about how these parrots are transported. They are put in dark boxes without air, making them breathe bad fumes, get thirsty, and hungry. Even short trips can be very dangerous for them.

There are now efforts to stop wildlife trafficking and save the African grey parrot. Police leaders from Central and East Africa have agreed to work together to fight this crime. This is important for helping these birds.

Wildlife trafficking is having a huge impact on the African grey parrot. We need to stop the illegal trade, fix the rules, and protect these birds. They are in danger and we must act.

Statistical Data on the Impact of Wildlife Trafficking on African Grey Parrots
Data Source
21% annual decline in the African grey parrot population Reference14
90-99% population loss in Ghana Reference14
Over 50% decrease in populations in other countries Reference14
Arrest of a trafficker with 122 parrots in the DRC Reference14
Cost of annual parrot license in Kenya: US$100 (KES12,000) Reference14
Transportation conditions and risks to parrots Reference15
Coordinated efforts to combat wildlife trafficking Reference15

World Rewilding Day Celebrates Success in African Grey Parrot Rehabilitation

World Rewilding Day honors the big wins in saving African grey parrots. Groups like the Jane Goodall Institute and local teams have worked hard. They’ve given these endangered birds a new lease on life and a chance for a future.

In the Republic of Congo, the Tchimpounga Nature Reserve is a key player. It’s saved and helped African grey parrots. By releasing these birds back into the wild, it’s helped protect their kind. This work shows how much we can achieve when we care.

Seeing African grey parrots back in the wild is a big deal. It shows that conservation efforts work. These programs prove that with the right actions, we can make a difference for endangered species.

The progress in rehabilitating African grey parrots gives us hope. It highlights why we must keep fighting for their survival. By focusing on saving these birds, we can make a better world for them.

Reference

  1. 16 Statistical data extracted from: Link 1

african grey parrot conservation efforts

The Importance of Listing African Grey Parrots on Appendix I

Listing African grey parrots on CITES Appendix I is a big step towards protecting them from being trapped and traded. This move, backed by 95 countries at the CITES CoP17 session, shows the urgent need to save these birds17. Putting them on Appendix I stops international trade, which has taken over 1.5 million parrots from their homes in 25 years17.

This ban gives African grey parrots a chance to recover and grow their numbers17. It removes the demand for these parrots on the international market, helping authorities focus on stopping poaching and smuggling17. This plan aims to fight illegal trade and help the species survive long-term.

“The trafficking of wildlife, including high-value species like African grey parrots, is seen as a serious crime by CITES. Illegal trade hurts conservation efforts and threatens species survival.”18

Even though Appendix I limits international trade, owning an African grey parrot doesn’t need a CITES certificate if you don’t plan to sell it19. This rule lets people keep these amazing parrots as pets while protecting wild populations19.

The listing also helps control trade for those selling African grey parrots. Sellers must have a valid CITES certificate, ensuring they get parrots legally19. This step makes trade more transparent and stops illegally obtained parrots from entering the market.

Moving African grey parrots from Appendix II to Appendix I shows they are vulnerable and need strong protection17. This action highlights the commitment to saving these birds and the need for more action against wildlife trafficking worldwide17.

Stopping traffickers is key to fighting the illegal trade of African grey parrots. Recognizing wildlife trafficking as a serious crime shows how important it is for law enforcement to act18. With international cooperation, enforcing laws can better protect these parrots and other endangered species from harm18.

Table: Comparison of CITES Appendix Listings

CITES Appendix Species Designation Trade Status
Appendix I Highest level of protection No international commercial trade
Appendix II Species that may become threatened without regulation Regulated international trade
Appendix III Species protected in at least one country Domestic regulations applied

Unsustainable Harvesting and Impact on African Grey Parrots

African grey parrots face a big threat because they breed slowly and live in groups. Hunters mainly go after adult birds, causing a huge drop in their numbers. This is due to overhunting, bad trade rules, high death rates before being sold, and a big illegal trade.

Almost all African grey parrots have vanished from Ghana’s forests since 199220. Most countries where they live say their numbers have dropped by half in just three generations. Now, they are very rare or gone in many places like Benin, Burundi, and others. The IUCN Red List moved them to Vulnerable in 2012.

Fraud is a big problem in the trade. Between 2008 and 2013, countries like Guinea reported many birds as captive-bred20. But, these countries don’t have places to breed them. Most birds come from the Congo basin, and corruption lets traffickers take too many birds from the wild.

To save the African grey parrots, we need tougher laws and better enforcement. Banning the trade would help stop poachers and smugglers. The illegal trade hides behind fake permits and claims birds are captive-bred when they’re not.

African Grey Parrot Population Decline

Country Population Decline
Ghana 90% to 99% since 199221
Benin Extremely rare or locally extinct20
Burundi Extremely rare or locally extinct20
Guinea Extremely rare or locally extinct20
Guinea-Bissau Extremely rare or locally extinct20

We must stop the overhunting and control the trade of African grey parrots to save them. With stronger rules and working together, we can help protect this amazing bird.

african grey parrot population decline

The Role of Captive Breeding in African Grey Parrot Conservation

Captive breeding is key to african grey parrot conservation efforts. It helps meet the demand for pets while protecting wild populations. Breeders with CITES can legally send out parrots, helping control their trade (Reference:22). South Africa leads in exporting these parrots, with over 1,630 facilities making about 67,000 chicks a year (Reference:22). This industry is worth over $18 million annually and employs more than 1,500 people (Reference:22).

It’s vital to watch over these breeding places to make sure they follow conservation rules. Poor conditions in some places harm the parrots’ health and happiness (Reference:23). Many captive-bred parrots are lonely and eat poorly, leading to health and behavior problems (Reference:23). This shows we need to keep a close eye on these facilities to protect the parrots and help their conservation (Reference:23).

Captive breeding helps with african grey parrot conservation efforts by offering a legal pet source and lowering wild capture demand. But, we must balance this with the parrots’ welfare and conservation (Reference:2322). Experts and supporters push for responsible breeding and policies for the parrots’ future in and out of captivity (Reference:2322).

Conclusion

The African grey parrot population is declining, and their conservation status is worrying. These birds live in the rainforests of West and Central Africa. They face threats like being trapped for the pet trade and losing their homes24.

Even though they are listed as Endangered, there’s hope for their future. Banning the international trade in wild parrots is a big step forward. We need to keep monitoring the trade and fight against traffickers to protect these birds25.

African grey parrots are smart and social, making them popular pets. But, they need the right care and attention24. They form strong bonds with people and need interaction to stay happy and healthy24.

We must act fast to help African grey parrots. By working on conservation, controlling the trade, and spreading awareness, we can save these amazing birds for the future25.

FAQ

How many African Grey Parrots are left in the world?

There are between 560,000 and 12.7 million African Grey Parrots worldwide.

What is the conservation status of African Grey Parrots?

They are listed as Endangered.

Why are African Grey Parrot populations declining?

Trapping for the pet trade and losing their homes are the main reasons.

What conservation efforts are being made for African Grey Parrots?

Efforts include controlling the trade, watching trapping sites, and spreading the word about their need for protection.

Where do African Grey Parrots live and what is their current population?

They live from southeastern Côte d’Ivoire to northern Angola and the Congo forests. There are between 560,000 and 12.7 million of them.

What is the ecology of African Grey Parrots?

They live in dense forests and can also be found in forest edges, clearings, mangroves, and gardens.

How does wildlife trafficking impact African Grey Parrots?

The wild bird trade has greatly reduced their numbers.

How has the rehabilitation of African Grey Parrots contributed to their conservation?

Rescuing and rehabilitating them, like the Jane Goodall Institute does, gives hope for their future.

Why is listing African Grey Parrots on Appendix I important?

It protects them from being trapped and traded.

How does unsustainable harvesting impact African Grey Parrots?

It harms them due to over-harvesting and illegal trade.

What role does captive breeding play in African Grey Parrot conservation?

It helps meet the demand for pets while protecting the wild population.

What is the current conservation status of African Grey Parrots?

They are Endangered, facing a big decline due to trapping and losing their homes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

error: Content is protected !!