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Switzerland

Color That Pigeon! Parakeets Invade European Cities

Wild parakeet populations are expanding in many European cities, where they enjoy the relative warmth of dense urban settings and have easy access to food.

Urban parakeets in Barcelona, Spain
Urban parakeets in Barcelona, Spain
Nathalie Jollien

LAUSANNE — Walking in some large European cities, it can be surprising to see swarms of birds with unusual colors and emitting shrill noises. The exotic creatures look and sound decidedly out of place — because they are. They're tropical parakeets! And yet they're happy and thriving, with populations in some urban cores in the hundreds or even thousands.

The European monitoring platform ParrotNet identified more than 50,000 parakeets in London, around 12,000 in Brussels, 1,500 in Amsterdam's city center and 1,000 in Madrid. The birds belong to the parrot family, with two particular species predominant in Europe: the rose-ringed parakeet and the monk parakeet.

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Society

The Ideal Age To Marry? Reflections Of A 20-Something Indian Woman

India is raising the minimum age for women to marry. What does that mean on the individual level (with your parents whispering in your ear)?

A couple holding hands after marriage

Priyamvada Rana

-Essay-

NEW DELHI — A few days ago, I got a call from my parents, who wanted to talk about the "ideal age to marry." This came after news about India raising the minimum age for women to marry to 21, to match the age for men. It's a laudable move, sure, but I even wonder if 21-year-olds will be able to fathom the expectations, responsibilities and limitations that come with such a socially-constrained institution.

I am not ready at 26, and won’t be even at 30.

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