A Web Site About the Wild Parrots of Brooklyn

Quaker Parrot Facts, lore, audio files, video clips, photos, pictures, photo comics, and other information about Brooklyn's flocks of wild Quaker Parrots (AKA Monk Parakeets).

Friday, October 24, 2008

It's Here: The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill Collectors DVD (With Extra Brooklyn Parrots!)

I'm happy to say Judy Irving's wonderful film, The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, is being re-released on a special 2-disk Collector's Edition. This new release is chocked full of more than 100 minutes of extra features, and makes for an ideal Holiday gift.

Judy Irving and Mark Bittner are great friends of this site and I was honored that the new DVD includes "The Ballad of the Brooklyn Parrots." It also includes a feature called "Parrots and Power Poles," a sequence featuring's Alison Evans-Fragale, who has labored mightily to protect the wild Quaker Parrots in New Jersey. You can learn more about this wonderful new DVD by clicking here.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

2009 BrooklynParrots Calendar Will Be Available November 1, 2008

Five Quaker Parrots Laugh in a Brooklyn Tree - Photo By Steve Baldwin
Five jolly wild Quaker Parrots laugh in a Brooklyn Tree: a photo from the forthcoming 2009 Wall Calendar

I've gotten quite a few e-mails about the 2009 Brooklyn Parrots Calendar, but fear not: the new calendar will be on sale this November 1st. I need just a few more days to finish the image processing tasks - thanks for your patience - please check this website at that time and you can buy it!

-steve baldwin


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Wild Parrots Invading NYC Subway System?

Wild parrots appear to be visiting some stations on the New York City Subway System's Sea Beach Line with greater frequency this year.
You probably wouldn't expect that a subway platform in the middle of Brooklyn would be a wild parrot hot spot, but this borough is filled with small miracles, as long as you have your iPod unplugged and your eyes peeled. (Click on any photo for an enlarged view; all photos by Steve Baldwin).

An overhanging apple tree at the Sea Beach Line's Fort Hamilton station is what attracts these hungry avians.
Why do wild parrots seek out this subway stop? The key is the overhanging apple trees. If you look closely at this photo, you can see ripe red apples dislodged by the parrots scattered on the roof of the platform.

Two wild Quaker Parrots dig into apples at the Fort Hamilton Parkway Subway station
Here's a hungry pair of wild Quakers digging into what look like the tastiest wild red apples in the borough.

A wild Quaker Parrot at the Fort Hamilton Parkway station on the N line eats a red apple.
This little guy looks like he's already eaten through half of this red apple, which probably weighs as much as he does.

A wild Quaker Parrot looks curiously at a passing N train at the Fort Hamilton Parkway station on the Sea Beach line.
Here's his mate, looking curiously at an N-Train passing below.

A view of the wild Quaker Parrot colony in Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY
So where are these parrots from? Well, the subway station in question is just about eight blocks away from a major wild parrot colony, which is centered around the "Dust Bowl" sandlot baseball field in Bay Ridge.

Two wild Quaker Parrots look down from their well-constructed nests in Bay Ridge Brooklyn New York
Here are a couple of apple-fed Quakers who seem to be very proud of their well-constructed, well-insulated nest.

An N train arrives at the Fort Hamilton Parkway subway station below an apple tree filled with wild parrots
The parrots seem to visit this subway station every morning, spending many minutes in the apple tree and squawking noisily all the while. It's funny that more people haven't commented on this oddly miraculous event. Perhaps they're too distracted by the economy to notice.

A group of wild Quaker Parrots in Bay Ridge Brooklyn gather on top of a television antenna
On the other hand, most people in cities never seem to look up, even when the most extraordinary events present themselves to their eyes, such as these Bay Ridge Quaker Parrots frolicking on a television antenna.

How could a Portable PlayStation ever display anything more wondrous than this?

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Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Photo-Essay: Angels, Accordions, and Wild Parrots

Each October, a few weeks before Halloween, Green-Wood Cemetery hosts "Angels and Accordions," a haunting musical tour of some of the more storied monuments in "The Sacred City of the Dead," Brooklyn's permanent home to some 500,000 souls. The combination of ethereal music accompanying white-garbed angels perched in trees, floating in ponds, or dancing upon tombs, is magical. When you add the parrots, the experience borders on the metaphysical.

Enjoy, then, this unlikely confluence of angels, accordions, and wild parrots! (click on any photo for an enlarged view; all photos by Steve Baldwin)

A human angel in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery gestures skyward at its annual Angels and Accordions Event
Hark -- spoke the angel - what bird flies there?

A group of starlings in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery
A spectral starling?

A large group of sparrows gathers at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery
A sepulchral sparrow?

A wild Quaker Parrot soars over the main gate of Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery
No - a wild Quaker Parrot whose home is high in the heavenly loft!

Birdwatchers at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery watch the wild Quaker Parrots living there
But where is that parrot going? To whose tomb does he pay tribute?

A group of Wild Quaker Parrots at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery walk among the tombstones
None can parse the parrots' secret dialect.

Wild Quaker Parrots at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery visit a nearby grave site
Nor know the purpose of their graveside visits.

Wild Quaker parrots foraging for beechnuts at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery
Some claim they land here for mere earthly food.

A wild baby Quaker Parrot in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery dangles from the end of a branch.
Claiming beech nuts dislodged by their sisters in the trees.

But the children know.

A human angel with young child points toward the horizon at Green-Wood Cemetery's annual Angels and Accordions Festival
And the angel knows.

A flock of wild Quaker Parrots take off in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery
That when angels, accordions, and parrots converge,

Wild Quaker Parrot rises above headstones of American Civil War Dead, Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, May 25, 2008, Photo by Steve Baldwin
Anything is possible.

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