There were once two parrot species native to the United States: the Carolina Parakeet and the Thick-Billed Parrot. Unfortunately the Carolina Parakeet is now extinct, but the Thick-Billed Parrot is protected by federal law. The Thick-Billed Parrot lives in New Mexico and Arizona in pine forests. However, the species has become threatened due to deforestation and the fact that people have captured them and kept them as pets.
The Carolina Parakeet was the only parrot species native to the United States (the Thick-Billed Parrot actually being a native of Mexico whose ventures into New Mexico and Arizona represent repopulations of a non-native bird and not appearances of an already native bird).
The Carolina Parakeet is now extinct because during the expansionary years of the 1800s, it was viewed by most southern expansionists as a nuisance, and so were systematically forced out of their homes and een shot in large quantities. The last known example died in a zoo in 1918, and the last bird in the wild is said to have been killed in Okeechobee count (FL) in 1904.
The picture shown below is one of six stuffed and preserved Carolina parakeets known shown at museums across the country.
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