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Eclectus Parrot

Eclectus roratus
Conservation Status: 
Least Concern
Australia and surrounding islands
Tropical rainforest

This is one of the few parrot species where it's possible to visually distinguish between males and females. The colour difference arises from their nesting habits. Eclectus Parrots nest in tree cavities. Females remain in the cavity for most of the year, defending the space and nesting. They mate with multiple males who each bring them food. Female parrots have a purple coloration to blend in with the dark nest interior and red feathers for visibility to males when they sit near the entrance of the cavity. Males, on the other hand, are bright green with small patches of blue and red, which helps them to blend in with the tree canopy.

If a female has a poor-quality nest that is exposed to rainfall, she may selectively kill all her male offspring within three days of hatching. Female chicks tend to fledge earlier, giving them a better chance of leaving the nest before rain arrives.

The Eclectus Parrot has a few subspecies, with the Eclectus roratus polychloros being the one you can visit at Bird Kingdom. This subspecies is slightly larger than usual and has slightly different colouration.

When it comes to their diet, Eclectus Parrots primarily consume fruits, nuts, and flower and leaf buds, as well as some seeds. Due to their unusually long digestive tract, they require a high-fiber diet to support their digestion.

The Eclectus Parrot is currently listed as "Least Concern" on the IUCN Red List due to its extensive range. However, the species faces ongoing threats, including habitat destruction and trapping for the pet trade.

Eclectus Parrots can live up to 50 years. Their alarm call is piercing, shrill, and very loud.