Yesterday out of the corner of my eye I saw this Evening Standard teaser board and my first thought, crazy thought, I know…was “license-to-kill” James Bond parakeets, ‘cos that would be cool.
But I knew without looking up the story that this was the declaration of open season on London’s growing population of feral green parakeets. There are various explanations as to how the parakeets came to London in the first place, escaped from the film set of the African Queen, released by Jimmi Hendrix as a symbol of psychadelic peace, escaped from a pet store…and so on. But however they came, they can be spotted in many of the parks of South West London.
I love them. I think they’re cheery, especially since their breeding season is in January so their bright green is often the only thing that colourful in gray and bleak midwinter. But apparently many people think they’re a nuisance – and apparently a group of them chattering in the early hours in your back garden can drive people to distraction.
So now they’ve removed some layers of bureacracy when it comes to a parakeet cull.
According to the Daily Mail:
Other species also added to the ‘general licence’ hit-list include the monk parakeet from South America, which can occasionally be found in the northern Home Counties, the Canada goose and the Egyptian goose.
Can’t say I’m particularly cut up about Canadian geese having their numbers reduced, but Egyptian Geese! I’m shocked and deeply disappointed. Egyptian Geese are my favorite birds, the only goose I’m not absolutely terrified of.
The commonality of all the birds on the hit list is that they’re foreigners. Blatant discrimination. The fact is these birds will work harder and for less bird seed than the native working birds, who frankly have become a little soft.