Rainbow Lorikeet

The Rainbow Lorikeet (Trichoglussus haematodus, race moluccanus) is the most brilliantly plumaged of our Australian parrots, being a large, dark green lorikeet with a scarlet bill and streaky blue head, yellow-green nape, red-orange chest and a blue belly. Its eye is orange-red.

It is usually seen in pairs or flocks, and extremely noisy. Their habitat is coastal eucalypt woodlands and forests, paperbark and banksia woodlands as well as flowering street trees and suburban gardens, feeding on fruit, nectar, blossoms, seeds, berries and orchard fruits, also insects and their larvae. Lorikeets have a brush-tipped tongue for blossom feeding.

The flight of the Rainbow Lorikeet is swift and direct, with rapid, shallow wing beats. It breeds from August to January, nesting in decayed debris in a tree hollow, usually in eucalypt or paperbark. There are two to three eggs.

Rainbow Lorikeets are frequently seen flying over the Urrbrae Wetland. They will visit when the gum and other trees are in bloom.