Lovebirds arrive at park

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New two pairs of black-cheeked lovebirds have arrived at Galloway Wildlife Park in time for Valentine’s Day.

And a special offer at the Kirkcudbright park means that children can get in to see them for half price until the end of this month.

A type of African parrot, tarly European explorers described the brightly coloured birds that they had seen on their travels and people wanted to know more about them.

The lovebirds were imported into Europe and became very popular as wedding gifts because of their loving ways and their passion to groom each other.

The name lovebird comes from their affectionate natures. They form very close bonds with their mates for the whole of their lives, which can be as long as 15 years.

The black-cheeked lovebird is Africa’s most endangered parrot. There is an estimated 20% chance that this species will be extinct in the wild within the next 20 years. They are restricted to approximately 6000 sq km in southern Zambia, where the wild population is probably well below 10,000.

Lovebirds are one of the most popular cage birds and can be taught to perform tricks and even to speak, just like larger parrots. It was their popularity as cage birds that led to wide-scale trapping and the decline in numbers in the 1920s.

The special offer allows half price admission for children under 15 years to Galloway Wildlife Conservation Park until February 28.