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Federal crime, Cozumel Facebook user selling baby parrots

Cozumel, Q.R. — Young parakeets are being sold on social media by an individual on the island of Cozumel.

While the purchase, sale and possession of parakeets has been prohibited since 2008, a social media page is selling baby parakeets for 450 peso.

A user on a Facebook page identified as Bazar de las Mamitas was selling six baby parrots for 450 peso each, something that is a federal crime in Mexico.

Noel Anselmo Rivas Camo, a biologist and member of the Cozumel Birding Club, explained that the most common way people find these birds to sell is by smuggling them from the continental area.

Noel Rivas said that all three species of parrots found on the island are protected by the Official Norm. He added that many of these birds have been found in boxes or hidden in the luggage of people who arrive to Cozumel by sea.

Local biologist, Ángel Rafael Chacón Díaz explained that in Mexico, there are 22 species of parrots and macaws of which 95 percent are threatened with extinction.

He says that in the absence of federal environmental authorities, the sub-directorate of Ecology of the City of Cozumel must act by collecting information and initiating the procedure to generate a complaint to environmental authorities.

Chacón Díaz says that illegal trafficking, along with the destruction of its natural habitat, are the main causes of the deterioration of these wild birds.

In October 2008, the decree amending the General Wildlife Law and prohibiting the capture of parrots and macaws from Mexico was published in the Official Gazette of the Federation making it a federal crime to buy or sell parrots in the country.

In March of this year, municipal and federal authorities in Playa del Carmen investigated a pair who were seen exploiting a toucan by offering tourists a photo opportunity with the bird.