MADRID Government is to start drastic procedures to start to control the invasive Monks Parakeet population after numbers have spiked since 2016.
According to figures, the population has increased by 33% since 2016 and now, according to environmental researchers, culling measures are now necessary to avoid permanent damage to the cities safety and biodiversity.
The local council, consisting of a coalition between the conservative Popular Party and centre-right Ciudadanos, have proposed a plan to cull more than 12,000 specimens at a cost of around €100,000.
The council also plan to sterilise the eggs of breeding females to limit the birth rates of the birds.
The bright green parakeets have a rough life span of around 15 years and mate regularly, producing six to eight eggs at a time. The species is also extremely adaptable to various environments, making itself at home in the busy and humid climate of Madrid.
“A concern is that the parakeets transmit diseases to other birds, consume their food and push out other species,” explains Santiago Soria Carreras, the head of the Biodiversity Service at Madrid City Hall.
The parakeets also damage the population of local species including the sparrows, song birds and birds of prey such as the lesser kestrel.
The previous local government had also received 197 complaints about the birds from residents between January and August of this year.
The head of environment and mobility at the ayuntamiento, the PP’s Borja Carabante, says the plan will be carried out in accordance with the animal welfare law and plan to cull the population to reduce them to around 600 specimens.