The Role of Monk Parakeets as Nest-Site Facilitators in Their Native and Invaded Areas
Department of Conservation Biology, Doñana Biological Station (CSIC), Calle Américo Vespucio 26, 41092 Sevilla, Spain
Department of Physical, Chemical and Natural Systems, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Carretera de Utrera, km 1, 41013 Sevilla, Spain
Department of Evolutionary Ecology, Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales (CSIC), José Gutiérrez Abascal 2, 28006 Madrid, Spain
Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, Castell dels Tres Dragons, Parc Ciutadella, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto di Ricerca sugli Ecosistemi Terrestri, Via Madonna del Piano 10, Sesto Fiorentino, 50019 Florence, Italy
Puerto Rican Parrot Recovery Program, US Fish and Wildlife Service, P.O. Box 1600 , Rio Grande, PR 00745, USA
Department of Health Sciences, Faculty of Biomedical and Health Sciences, Universidad Europea de Madrid, 28670 Madrid, Spain
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Ettore Randi
Received: 8 June 2021 / Revised: 9 July 2021 / Accepted: 14 July 2021 / Published: 19 July 2021
Invasive species can be harmful to native species, although this fact could be more complex when some natives eventually benefit from invaders. Faced with this paradox, we show how the invasive monk parakeet, the only parrot species that builds its nests with sticks, can host other species as tenants, increasing nest-site availability for native but also exotic species. This same pattern is observed in the native range of the species, and when parakeets occupy urban or rural habitats, although the richness of tenants was higher in invaded areas and rural habitats. Tenants participated in the cooperative defense against predators, benefiting parakeets with their presence. As tenants can be both native and invasive species, management plans should consider the complex network of interactions developed with the invader.