a lorra, lorra parrots in Loro Parque

A few weeks ago (I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while!) we went on a last minute holiday to Tenerife for a bit of sun and relaxation. As much as I enjoy a week of sunbathing, reading, drinking cocktails and occasionally jumping in the pool to cool down, it doesn’t make for much of a blog post, but in the middle of the week, we actually left the resort to visit Loro Parque in the north of the island, home to over 4,000 different parrot species. Having a bit of a thing about parrots – and by extension, birds generally these days – this was the highlight of the holiday for me, and the one thing I wanted to do all week. Just as well, it pretty much was the only thing we did…

I wasn’t sure which camera lens I’d be best with on the day, so I took a couple with me but only used my 70-300mm all day – not much call really for a wide angle lens in an animal park when you want to fill the frame with a bird! I’m still using my kit zoom lens (Tamron) though, so an upgrade is definitely needed. I recently upgraded my standard 18-55mm to a Canon 17-50mm and it’s definitely made a difference; one for the Christmas list perhaps…

It’s worth saying a couple of the pictures were taken through glass, and you can see some flare in the photos. But it was great to get up close to some of the birds, like the Eclectus, the beautiful green one above, especially in the treetops aviary, a covered (with a net) outdoor area where the birds fly around and sit on the walkways as you walk around and past them. It’s great to see and hear them so close up.

As well as birds the park is also home to other animals like chimpanzees, meercats, tigers, dolphins and tortoises (which I also have a thing about – they had giant torts too; amazing animals, they’re like dinosaurs when you see them up close, but weirdly just like super gigantic versions of my Horsefield tortoises).

Of course, homing 4,000 different parrots, they had African Grays like Kev. Which generated a lot of ‘hello’s from the pair of us when we finally found them (chatting to them as though it was actually Kev and his girlfriend – to be fair, I’d recognise Kev in a line up of Grays, but only because he has funny feet, otherwise I think he’d have to start talking to be sure it was him). We probably looked like a right couple of tools trying to talk to all the birds. But sod it, we were on our holidays, you never see these people again do you…

Some of the birds definitely had a sense of humour – as well as some we saw deliberately winding each other up, one in particular kept dancing at us as we walked past – and went a bit crazy with some strange body-popping head moves when we stopped at his cage; he seemed to be loving the attention (he got a few ‘hellos’ from us as well as the Greys).

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