Perth Zoo is saddened to announce the death of the two Western Ground Parrots which were recently transferred to the Zoo from the wild.

The birds arrived on 18 November and were captured before fires burnt the species’ habitat at Cape Arid National Park on the south coast of Western Australia, east of Esperance.

Despite settling into the Zoo exceptionally well, the birds developed a respiratory illness and regardless of the best medical care and treatment, both birds have died.

The Zoo’s Acting Director of Life Sciences, John Lemon, said that the loss of the birds was concerning for the future of the species, given the recent serious fires which destroyed a reported 90 per cent of the parrots’ native range.

“We have been working closely with the Department of Parks and Wildlife to understand the reproductive biology of the species with the intent to breed an insurance population,” Mr Lemon said.

“Perth Zoo will continue to care for the remaining five Western Ground Parrots at the Zoo, which are monitored 24-hours a day and are all healthy.”

The core team which cares for the Western Ground Parrots at Perth Zoo has more than 125 years combined experience caring for and breeding an extensive variety of native and exotic parrots including challenging species such as Fig Parrots.

The post mortem results are pending.