Australian King Parrot

Australian_King_Parrot_male

Description

Adults of both sexes are about 43 cm (17 in) in length, including the long broad tail. The adult male has a red head, breast, and lower undersides, with a blue band on the back of the neck between the red above and green on the back, the wings are green and each has a pale green shoulder band, the tail is green, and the rump is blue. The male has a reddish-orange upper mandible with a black tip, a black lower mandible with an orange base, and yellow irises. The plumage of the female is very different from the male having a green head and breast, a grey beak, and the pale shoulder band is small or absent. Juveniles of both sexes have brown irises and a yellowish beak, and otherwise resemble the female.

There are two subspecies; A. s. minor is found at the northern limit of the species range and is similar in appearance to the nominate subspecies but smaller, typically about 5 cm (2 in) smaller in length.

Australian_King_Parrot__femaleOn those rare individuals which have areas without melanin, feathers are orange to yellow. Such a bird can look startingly different from the more common scarlet and green variety (see example in gallery below).

Other variations include the Aprosmictus erythropterus or red-winged parrot, which has a bright green head, red wings and a black back.

Distribution and habitat

 

AustAustralian_King_Parrot_mapralian king parrots range from North and Central Queensland to Southern Victoria. They are frequently seen in small groups with various species of rosella. Further from their normal eastern upland habitat, they are also found in Canberra during winter, the outer western suburbs and north shore of Sydney, and the Carnarvon Gorge in Central Queensland.

 

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