Saturday, November 28, 2009

Rainbow Lorikeets

The Rainbow Lorikeet is a very striking bird, which we see all the time in Adelaide.  Every tree with blossom, and many without, holds large numbers of these, even in streets with heavy traffic.  Green body and the dark blue head draw the eye, then you see the bright red beak, and the blue, orange, pink and yellow on the abdomen, variable between individuals.  The screech is easily identified, and they are often seen in the suburbs with musk lorikeets, which don't have the blue and orange; they are green with red ear patches, so easily distinguished from their rainbow cousins.

Rainbow lorikeets feed on nectar and pollen, with a brush-shaped tongue. They also eat the blossoms, insects and fruit.  Their red eyes regard you briefly before returning to their voracious feeding.  They are found around most of Australia's coastline except for the very dry parts. 

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