Scotland: stuffed extinct paradise parrot discovered


Paradise parrotsFrom the University of Aberdeen in Scotland:

Extinct parrot resurfaces in Aberdeen

The University of Aberdeen Zoology Museum (UK) has taken care of a case of mounted Australian birds, one of which is the spectacular but sadly extinct Paradise Parrot Psephotus pulcherrimus.

Nature-lover Michael Middleton, from the city centre, donated the exotic birds after the case that held them developed woodworm.

It prompted him to scan the internet for more information on the assortment of stuffed birds, totalling three parrots, a pardalote, a kookaburra, a wild budgie and a cuckoo-shrike.

The specimens have been in Mr Middleton’s family for around half a century.

So he was stunned when he discovered one of his feathery charges had not been seen since 1927.

Realising the slice of Australian heritage he had on his hands, Mr Middleton has donated all the birds to the University of Aberdeen’s Zoology Museum.

Although 26 species of Australian birds are currently classified as being endangered, the brightly plumed Paradise Parrot is the only mainland species of bird to have become extinct since white settlement.

Dr Martyn Gorman, honorary curator of the Zoology Museum, said: “We are indebted to Mr Middleton for his great generosity and delighted that this important specimen can now be seen by the public at large.

“To receive a specimen of a recently extinct species is a rather special event.

“It is sad that the Paradise Parrot is extinct but we hope that our parrot will help educate people about the need for conservation of wildlife.

See also here.

A ‘beautiful plague’: Australian outback town is invaded by swarm of colourful budgerigars: here. And here.

Endemic to Australia, the spotted pardalote is one of Australia’s smallest and most colorful passerines, but also one of the hardest to see because of its habit of staying high in forest canopies where its outrageous plumage provides superb camouflage for mottled shade: here.

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