Project Description

Vasa Parrot

Coracopsis vasa

Aquarium Location

Madagascar

Habitat

These parrots live in many different habitats from dense rainforests to sub-desert woodlands.

Range

Vasa parrots can be found throughout the entire country of Madagascar and the Comoro Islands.

Diet

Vasa parrots eat seeds, nuts, berries and fruits.

Fun Facts

Vasa parrots are so common, they are considered to be a pest species by the Malagasy government.
The greater vasa parrot is one of only two species in the Coracopsis genus.
Their beak color changes from black to white in breeding season.
They are well liked by breeders and can learn to say various words and do tricks.
During breeding season, females lose their head feathers to reveal bright yellow underlying skin.

Cool Adaptation

These birds have large claws that allow them to grasp branches and food. They also have very large strong beaks, which allow them to crack the strongest of nutshells and even peel certain fruits if necessary.

Conservation Connection

Vasa parrots are often hunted for food or killed by farmers to protect their crops, specifically rice. They are also caught for the live pet trade, however their numbers seem to be relatively stable.