The Ring-necked Parakeet, Psittacula krameri, an invasive bird species, first appeared in Oman in 1950 but apparently died out and was not seen again until 1965, when it was re-introduced, probably through the escape or release of captive birds. From then on the species has gradually spread to its present distributional range that includes the Musandam Peninsula, all of the northern Batinah coast, the capital area of Muscat, occasional inland towns, and the area around Salalah in southern Oman. Its introduction to Masirah Island appears to have failed to establish a breeding population. The number of sightings of parakeets in Oman has increased from one per year in the late 1960’s to over 65 per year in 2001–2002. Despite the sightings of a few large flocks, flock size has remained fairly small, increasing from a mean of 1–2 individuals in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s to a mean of 7–8 for most years between 1985 and 2002. To date, the parakeets have been observed in areas that are inhabited by humans and in areas of agricultural development. Thus, the spread of this species within Oman is strongly linked to human activities, probably due to the increased availability of food in such areas. This species has the potential to be a serious pest in Oman consuming cash crops, particularly dates and grains.
ASJC Scopus subject areas