Nest tree preference shown by Ring-necked Parakeet Psittacula krameri (Scopoli, 1769) in northern districts of Tamil Nadu, India

Main Article Content

M. Pandian


This paper pertains to the nesting aspects of Psittacula krameri with specific reference to nesting-related habitats, number of individuals encountered, inter-specific interactions, and abnormalities in 71 villages covering seven northern districts of Tamil Nadu.  A total of 797 nests (500 active and 297 non-active nests) and 1,119 individuals were enumerated on 284 trees and 13 temples/buildings belonging to eight species, seven genera, and five families.  The highest number of nests (320) and birds (469) occurred on Borassus flabellifer L., followed by Cocos nucifera L., Albizia lebbeck (L.) Benth., Madhuca longifolia J.F.Gmel., Phoenix sylvestris (L.) Roxb., and Ficus benghalensis L.  This species prefers dead trees than living trees for nesting.  The study reveals that 63.4% nests (n= 505) and 65.1% birds (n= 729) were found on dead trees of B. flabellifer, C. nucifera, and P. sylvestris.  They generally prefer to build nests on trees situated near agricultural lands, followed by those near water bodies, human settlements, and temples/buildings.  Pearson’s chi-square test indicates that the birds showed preference towards certain nesting sites/nesting species.  Inter-specific interactions occurred between P. krameri and Blue Rock Pigeon, Spotted Owlet, Indian Roller, and Black-rumped Flameback for sharing of cavities/holes for construction of nests.  Abnormalities in bird’s beak, cere, colour of feathers, and a suspected psittacine beak & feather disease (PBFD) were observed. 

Article Details

Author Biography

M. Pandian, Virugambakkam, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600092, India.

Superintendent of Police, 

Uniformed Services Recruitment Board, Egmore,Chennai-8, Tamil Nadu, India.


Ali, S. & S.D. Ripley (1968). Handbook of the Birds of India and Pakistan, Vol 3. Oxford University Press, Oxford, 380pp.

Ali, S. & S.D. Ripley (1987). Handbook of the birds of India and Pakistan, Compact Edition. Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 278pp.

Bhargava, R. & H. Hanfee (1996). Sightings of a Yellow Rose-ringed Parakeet. Newsletter for Birdwatchers 36: 81.

Bibby, C.J., N.D. Burgess, D.A. Hill & S.H. Mustoe (2000). Birds Census Techniques, 2nd Edition. Academic Press, New York, 302pp.

BirdLife International (2018). The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Accessed on 01 April 2020.

BTO (2014). British Trust for Ornithology. Species Affected, Garden Bird Survey. Accessed on 15 December 2019.

Braun, M. (2004). Alien species in urban habitats: Ecology and niche expansion of Ring-necked Parakeets (Psittacula krameri Scopoli, 1769) in Heidelberg, Germany: Marburg University, 127pp.

Braun, M. (2007). How does thermal insulation on buildings as a result of EU climate protection-affect the breeding biology of tropical Ring-necked Parakeets (Psittacula krameri) in temperate Central Europe?. Ornithol Jahresh Baden-Wurtt 23: 39–56.

Braun, M.P. & M. Wink (2013). Nesting development of ring-necked parakeets (Psittacula krameri) in a nest box population. The Open Ornithology Journal 6: 9–24.

Butler, C.J. (2003). Population biology of the introduced Rose-ringed Parakeet Psittacula krameri in the UK. Thesis, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, 312pp.

Cody, M.L. (1985). Habitat selection in the Sylviine Warblers of Western Europe and North America, 86–129 pp. In: Cody, M.L. (ed.) Habitat selection in Birds. Academic Press, Orlando, Florida, New York, 558pp.

Collias, N.E & E.C. Collias (1984). Nest building and bird behaviour. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey, 336pp.

Cornelius, C. (2008). Spatial variation in nest-site selection by a secondary cavity-nesting bird in a human-altered landscape. The Condor 110(4): 615–626.

Craves, J.A. (1994). Passerines with deformed bills-North American Birds. Banders 19(1): 14–18.

Dhindsa M.S. & H.K. Saina (1994). Agricultural Ornithology: an Indian perspective. Journal of Bioscience 19: 391–402.

Gokula, V., C. Venkataraman, S. Saravanan & S. Swaminathan (1999). Inter and intraspecific variation in the resource use of Blossom-headed and Blue-winged parakeets in Siruvani, Tamil Nadu, India. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 96(2): 225–231.

Grandi, G., M. Menchetti & E. Moris (2016). Use of putlog holes of Visconti Castle by breeding ring-necked parakeets (Psittacula krameri) in Pavia (northern Italy). In: Atti del III Congresso Nazionale Fauna Problematica, Cesena., Palazzo del Ridotto, 24–26 November 2016: 90—91.

Handel, C.M., L.M. Pajot, S.M. Matsuka, C.V. Hement, J. Terenzi, S.L. Talbot, D.M. Mulcahy, C.V. Meteyer & K.A. Trust (2010). Epizootic of beak deformities among wild birds in Alaska: an emerging disease in North America? The Auk 127 (4): 882–898.

Jahan, I., S. Begum, M. M. Feeroz, D.K. Das & A.K. Datta (2018). Nesting pattern of birds in Jahangirnagar University Campus, Bangladesh. Journal of Threatened Taxa 10(5): 11618–11635.

Jones, C.G. (1980). The parrots on the way of extinction. Oryx 15: 350–354.

Kanwar, K. (2019). Beak Deformities in Birds: Special on World Parrot Day. Accessed on 15 December 2019.

Khan, A.K. (2002a). Breeding habitats of the rose-ringed Parakeet (Psittacula krameri) in the cultivations of central Punjab. International Journal of Agriculture & Biology 4(3): 401–403.

Khan, H. (2002b). Foraging, feeding, roosting and nesting behavior of the rose-ringed parakeet (Psittacula krameri) in the cultivations of central Punjab. Pakistan Journal of Biological Science 1: 37–38.

Kasambe, R., A. Joshi & S. Meppayur (2009). Bill deformities in House Crow Corvus splendens and Large-billed Blue Magpie Urocrissa flavirostris in India. Newsletter for Birdwatchers 49(5): 73–77.

Kushwaha, S. & A. Kumar (2018). Report on cinnamon green Rose-ringed Parakeet, Psittacula krameri (Scopoli 1769) (Aves: Psittacula) from Jhansi, India. Journal of Wildlife Research 6(3): 34–36.

Low, R. (1992). Parrots. Their breeding and care, Blandford, London, UK, 432pp.

Mahabal, A., R.M. Sharma & A. Sayyed (2015). Colour aberrations in Indian Birds. Birding ASIA 24: 119–121.

Mahabal, A., H.V. Grouw, R.M. Sharma & S. Takkur (2016). How common is albinism really? Colour aberrations in Indian birds reviewed. Dutch Birding 38: 301–309.

Menchetti, M., E. Mori & F.M. Angelici (2016). Effects of the recent world invasion by ring-necked parakeets Psittacula krameri, pp. 253–266. In: Angelici, F.M. (ed.). Problematic wildlife. A Cross-disciplinary Approach. Springer, New York, xvi+603pp.

Mukherjee A., C.K. Board & B.M. Parasharya (2000). Damage of rose-ringed parakeet, Psittacula krameri Bordeat, to safflower, Carthamus tinctorius L. Pavo 38: 15–18.

Neo, M.L. (2012). A review of three alien parrots in Singapore. Nature in Singapore 5: 241–248.

Newton, I. (1994). The role of nest sites in limiting the numbers of hole-nesting birds: a review. Biological Conservation 70: 265–276.

Nice, M.M. (1957). Nesting success in altricial birds. Auk 74: 305–321.

Nilsson, S.G. (1984). The evolution of nest-site selection among hole-nesting birds. The importance of nest predation and competition. Ornis Scand 15: 167–175.

Oslen, G.H. (2003). Oral biology and beak disorder of birds. Veterinary Clinics of North America. Exotic Animal Practice 6(3): 505–521.

Pass, D.A. & R.A. Perry (1984). The pathogens of psittacine beak and feather disease. Australian Veterinary Journal 61: 69–74.

Paton, P., C. Griffin & L. Griffin (1982). Rose-ringed parakeet nesting in Hawaii: A potential agricultural threat. Elepaio 43(5): 37–39.

Pomeroy, D.E. (1962). Birds with abnormal birth. British Birds 55: 49–72

Rasmussen, P.C. & J.C. Anderton (2005). Birds of South Asia: The Ripley Guide. 2 vols. Smithsonian Institution & Lynx Editions, Washington D.C. & Barcelona, 378pp.

Ritchie, B.W., F.D. Niasro, K.S. Latimer, W.L. Steffens, D. Pest & P.D. Lukert (1991). Haemagglutination by psittacine beak & feather disease virus and use of haemagglutination inhibition for detection of antibodies against the virus. American Journal of Veterinary Research 52: 1810–1815.

Schackermann, J., H.V. Wehrden, N. Weiss & A. Klein (2014). High trees increase sunflower predation by birds in an agricultural landscape. Vol 2. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 2: 35.

Shivanarayan, N., K.S. Babu & M.H. Ali (1981). Breeding biology of Rose-ringed Parakeet, Psittacula krameri at Maruteru. Pavo 19: 92–96.

Shivashankar, T. & S. Subramanya (2008). Prevention of Rose-ringed parakeet Psittacula krameri damage to Sunflower Helianthus annus. Indian Birds 4(2): 60–65.

Soni, S., N.K. Sahi & T.K. Kler (2019). Records of beak deformities in Punjab, India. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 116: 52–53.

Strubbe, D. & E. Matthyen (2007). Invasive Ring-necked Parakeets Psittacula krameri in Belgium: habitat selection and impact on native birds. Ecogeography 30(4): 578–588.

Strubbe, D. & E. Matthyen (2009). Establishment success of native Ring-necked and Monk Parakeets in Europe. Journal of Biogeography 36(12): 2264–2278.

Tamil Nadu (2020). Government of Tamil Nadu website Accessed on 13 April 2020.

Thabethe, V., L. Thompson, L. Hart & M. Brown (2013). Seasonal effects on the thermoregulation of invasive rose-ringed parakeets (Psittacula krameri). Journal of Thermal Biology 38(8): 553–559.

Wesolowski, T. (2007). Lessons from long-term hole-nester studies in a primeval temperate forest. Journal of Ornithology 148: 395–405.

Zwart, P. (1995). Diseases of the respiratory tract in Psittacine birds. Veterinary Quarterly 17(1): 52–53.

Zylberberg, M., C.V. Hemert, C.M. Handel & J.C. Derisi (2018). Avian keratin disorder of Alaska Black-capped Chickadees is associated with Poecivirus infection. Virology Journal 15(1): 100.