Between October 1991 and February 1992 field surveys on the status of parrots in the North Moluccas were conducted on Obi, Bacan and Halmahera, with principal focus on three significantly traded species, White Cockatoo Cacatua alba, Chattering Lory Lorius garrulus and Violet-necked Lory Eos squamata. Variable circular plots and variable-distance line transects were used to estimate minimum and maximum population densities at each of 18 sites. C. alba and L. garrulus preferred forest, the former largely confined to lowlands to 600 m, the latter occurring more in hilly areas to at least 1,300 m. E. squamata frequented all habitat types, being commoner in disturbed habitats though rarer at higher altitudes. Minimum populations (the first two being global) were 50,000, 46,000 and 66,000 respectively, and minimum estimated captures in 1991 5,120, 9,600 and 2,850, indicating overexploitation of the first two species. To ensure sustainability, total annual catch quotas should be reduced to 1,710, 810 and 1,590 respectively and allow for fair division between islands. Training, enforcement, monitoring, research and habitat conservation are all needed.