Saturday, 13 July 2013

Eclectus parrot

Eclectus roratus

Photo by Doug Janson (Wikipedia)

Common name:
eclectus parrot (en); papagaio-eclético (pt); grand éclectus (fr); loro ecléctico (es); edelpapagei (de)

Order Psittaciformes
Family Psittacidae

This species is found in New Guinea, the Moluccas, the Solomon islands, the island of Sumba in Indonesia and also in northern Australia on the Eastern Cape York Peninsula. It has also been introduced to Palau and Singapore.

These birds are 35 cm long and weigh 440-620 g.

The eclectus parrot is found in a wide range of wooded habitats, including rainforests, secondary growths, Eucalyptus woodlands, moist savannas, mangroves, coconut plantations, and also grasslands, scrublands, pastures and rural gardens. They are present from sea level up to an altitude of 1.900 m.

They forage on the trees, taking berries, fruits, seeds, nuts, blossoms, nectar and leaf buds.

These birds can breed all year round. They nest in a large hollow on the trunk of a tall tree, which is lined with wood chips and decayed wood dust. There the female lays 2 white eggs which she incubates alone for 26-30 days. The chicks are raised by both parents, often with the help of other adults, and fledge 11-12 weeks after hatching. They reach sexual maturity at 2-3 years of age.

IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and is described as common to uncommon. The population in Sumba is estimated at 1.900 individuals, but it represents a very small portion of the total range. The population is suspected to be in decline owing to ongoing habitat destruction and unsustainable levels of exploitation for food and for the cage bird trade.

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