Mysterious green parrots in Yıldız Park…

So, I have seen these parrots, just once in a tree outside your apartment, and now a couple of times in nearby Yıldız Park. Today I went to the park with my friend Marijke, and she saw them too! I swear I’m not hallucinating! There were tons of them! But I asked a couple of students about them and they looked at me like I had two heads and said they’d never seen such a thing. So, I’ve been trying to find something about them on the internet and I’m not having much luck. I did find some photos of a type of parrot from India that looks like what I’ve seen here in Istanbul, but I’m not sure if it’s actually the same thing. I just imagine parrots all being rather tropical, and I don’t know why a bird would migrate from India to Istanbul in the winter. Strange. I hope someone will be able to give me more information about this! I need to print out a picture of the parrot that I found and see if any of my friends or students have seen one of these birds.



16 thoughts on “Mysterious green parrots in Yıldız Park…

  1. Hi,
    There are two arguments about this. Nobody knows for sure.
    the first is, when the zoos in iraq were bombed, these birds escaped ..
    the second and most widely believed story is that the bus of an illegal exotic animal smuggler, full of these parrots fell over and the birds escaped. This story is told by eyewitnesses of the incident.
    After seing many green parrots on trees in bebek yesterday, i did a research myself online this morning, but to my luck they were a lot of pages in turkish and not many in english (only yours i guess) 🙂 Are you a traveler in turkey? Do you like it so far? I hope my country is treating you well.:)

    • Thanks for the information Irem! Very interesting. Wherever they came from, they are certainly very pretty!
      Yes, I am ‘travelling’ in Turkey. My husband and I have lived here for over a year and we really like it. 🙂

      Thanks for your comment and take care! 🙂

  2. I saw them when I was visiting home 🙂 in the middle of the winter (however due to global warming winters are not as harsh as they used to be in Istanbul) I saw a pair flying around in camlica hills and a pair nesting in a tree trunk in topkapi palace. it was nice to see these colorful (yet very loud) birds around 🙂 I heard that an egzotic pet smuggler tried to get these into Turkey and when he realized that he was going to get caught he just opened the cages and set them free 🙂

  3. There is no way a ring-necked parakeet could withstand Istanbul’s winters. Perhaps you saw a Quaker parrot? They can withstand cold winters and have breeding colonies in Chicago!

  4. It’s my understand there are two species of parrot found in Turkey, introduced a long time ago from the east. One of them, Psittacula krameri (Rose-ringed Parakeets), looks exactly like the bird in that picture.

    • We saw some parrots in September, which were green, in and around Topkali palace. However, I am sure that I saw a slightly bigger parrot, which looked grey. I wonder if anyone has seen any others.

  5. Ring-necked (Rose-ringed) and Alexandrine Parakeets can often be seen in Istanbul. Ring-necked are very noisy. Ring-necked have colonised other European cities as well and there is a growing population in the UK, originally escaped from captivity.

  6. We went to Yildiz Park today and saw them there as well. We used to live in Wiesbaden, Germany, and there is a large population of them there as well. They are the ring-necked parakeets, and if they can withstand the winters in Wiesbaden, I’m sure they can here in Istanbul as well. They are noisy little things, but fun to watch.

  7. You can see them at Sultanahmet Square and Gulhane Park as well. Some say they are “Psittacula Krameri”.and they became two or more colonies here in Istanbul. I have no idea about their species but I know one thing: they are too noisy, but fun though.

  8. I have just arrived back to Finland from short trip (7.-10.3.2013) to Istanbul. We saw quite a big number of parrots at the park nearby Topkapi palace and Hagia Sofia. There was more than 30 parrots flying in one group at the park. We saw some parrots also nearby Sultanahmet Mosque. Faschinating – however, does this invasion of non-native parrots have any effect on the stocks of native birds !? Is there any predators (hawks/owls) feeding on them ?

  9. The same case happened in Barcelona, but it was easier to explain since the parrots there were the ones in Barcelona zoo which flew to the different parts of the city. I was surprised to see the same thing in Istanbul, and now I read here that they were gifts from a zoo.

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