August EcoQuest | Desert Botanical Garden


Join the August EcoQuest: Look Out for Lovebirds

Find and map as many rosy-faced lovebirds Agapornis roseicollis and the plants they interact with as possible.
Rosy-faced lovebirds can be seen all over the valley and are adored by many. Often thought of as a native bird, these cheeky characters were actually introduced to the area. Observations from this EcoQuest can help us learn more about how these colorful birds have adapted to life in metro Phoenix.
It’s fascinating to see how an introduced species can adapt to a new environment, especially an urban one. Thanks to the work of the  Arizona Field Ornithologists, we have a lot of information and data on this feral population. As is the way with science, there’s always more to learn! There could be plants we don’t know they are eating, or they could be interacting with other birds in ways we aren’t aware of. Can you help us learn more about rosy-faced lovebirds?
Fun fact: Did you know there was once a native parrot found in Arizona? The thick billed parrot inhabited higher elevations in the forests near the Chiricahua Mountains until it was hunted into local extinction. The last sighting of one in Arizona was in 1938, but it can still be found in Mexico.
Observations from this EcoQuest can contribute population and occurrence data for rosy-faced lovebirds and we can learn more about their relationships with plants and other wildlife in metro Phoenix.
Common Name: Rosy-faced lovebird
Scientific Name: Agapornis roseicollis
Family: Psittaculidae
 Origin:Southwest Africa
Lovebirds can often be found near water sources, especially with palm trees or houses with roof tiles nearby. Bird feeders are also a common place to spot them. Use iNaturalist to see where they’ve been spotted in the past!
Associated Plant Species:
Saguaro (Carnegiea gigantea)
Creosote (Larrea tridentata)
Palms (Arecaceae)
Cactus (Cactaceae)
Mesquite (Prosopis spp.)
Palo verde (Parkinsonia spp.)
EcoQuests are month-long challenges that are part of the larger Metro Phoenix EcoFlora project.
You can learn more and join the Metro Phoenix EcoFlora here:
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Let’s be social @ecofloraphx
**PLEASE observe COVID-19 guidelines/recommendations.**
This a great opportunity to get outdoors close to home as we all navigate the complications of COVID-19. However, it is imperative that you follow the guidelines/recommendations of your local governments and institutions (wear a mask, practice physical distancing and wash your hands). Do what’s best for you and your community.
Arizona Office of Tourism: Responsible Recreation in AZ
Please do not observe indoor houseplants or pets.
For your own safety and the protection of plants and wildlife, do not trespass when making observations. Please follow all posted rules and guidelines in parks/preserves and do not enter private property.
Do not remove or move natural materials (plants, animals, rocks).
Respect wildlife (do not touch, feed, or disturb animals and keep a safe distance).
Photo by Reagle Photography