After using it for centuries and indiscriminately the Wax palm along with the “Yellow-eared Parrot” are in danger of extinction.
As usual, every year millions of faithful Catholics use different designs of bouquets prepared from wax palm for the traditional Palm Sunday (24-III). But the abuse of this kind of palm and the expansion of the agricultural and livestock frontier has decreased its population.
The Ministry of Environment recommends not to use the wax palm on Palm Sunday and suggested that it could be replaced by species such as Iraca palms, Areca or reed, corn husks, eucalyptus or rosemary.
The Wax Palm, from the Ceroxylon, is a plant of slow growth reaching their reproductive stage (seed production) after 30 to 50 years of planting, their disappearance would mean the extinction of two species of rare and endangered parrots of Ecuador, the Yellow-eared Parrot (Ognorhynchus icterotis) and the plumed Parakeet (Leptosittaca branickii), who use the palm as a nesting site, also for playing and sleeping.