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Rainbow Lorikeet
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The Rainbow Lorikeet is a small, brightly-colored Australian parrot with a brush-tipped tongue. This active bird has a shrill call while flying and chatters while eating. It is found in rainforests, open forests, woodlands, heath, mangrove forests, parks, and orchards in Australia.

In the wild, this parrot feeds in flocks of about 20 parrots, but roosts in flocks of thousands of birds. Mating pairs stay together for life. The Rainbow Lorikeet has a life span of about 20 years.

Anatomy: The Rainbow Lorikeet is up to about 14 inches (35 cm) long. They weigh about 5 ounces (133 grams). These parrots have brightly-colored red, green, blue, yellow, and orange feathers; the curved bill is red. The males and females are hard to distinguish.

Eggs and Chicks: There are 2 to 3 white eggs in each clutch (a set of eggs laid in one nesting period). The eggs are laid in a tree cavity high above the ground. The female incubates the eggs for 25-26 days, and the male feeds her. Both parents will feed the chicks.

Diet: Rainbow Lorikeets eat flowers, pollen, nectar, seeds, insects, and some fruit, feeding while upside-down. They use their brush-tipped tongue to get the pollen. The tip of the tongue has hairy projections (called papillae) that soak up nectar and catch pollen. These birds spend most of the day feeding.

Predators: Rainbow Lorikeets are eaten by peregrine falcons, brown falcons, whistling kites, and pythons.

Classification: Order Psittaciformes, Family Psittacidae, Subfamily Lorinae, Genus Trichoglossus, Species haematodus.



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