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Cuban parrot

The most common, cheapest, and consequently the most popular of all parrots is the Cuban. These birds are natives of various parts of Cuba and the surrounding islands, but those from the
Isle of Pines are considered decidedly the best, as they are somewhat larger in size and appear to be more intelligent, though it is more expensive and difficult to obtain the birds from there than from other portions of Cuba.

The Cuban parrots are usually ten or eleven inches long, with green body, wbite forehead, scarlet thro-tt, and wings and tail feathers are of blue, green and scarlet intermixed, thus making it decidedly gorgeous colored. They are not as tame as the Mexican parrots, being more apt to be cross and bite the hand of their keeper.

If they are young when their training begins they are good listeners and learn very rapidly, so that they soon learn to imi­tate not only words and sentences, but all other noises which they hear, such as the chickens, dogs, and other sounds. Some of them also be­come excellent whistlers. They seem to be somewhat hardier and more easily acclimated than the Mexican parrots, and do not require as large a cage, one about twelve or thirteen inches in diameter being ordinarily used, though the four­teen-inch cage is really more satisfactory.

It is stated that when Columbus returned from his voyage of discovery he carried with him to Spain some of these parrots, which he found domesticated by the natives.

In certain parts of Cuba and other West India islands, parrots were used for soup and cooked in various ways, and it is said that a stranger lunching in a restaurant there felt somewhat apprehensive when he heared the waiters shout "two Cubans on toast", but it was afterwards ex­plained to him that this means two Cuban parrots.