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King Parrot on neighbour’s tree

A high-pitched whistle drew me to the window early on Friday morning. A King Parrot perched on a nearby tree to take stock of the neighbourhood.

Here’s a zoomed-in view of the same photo:

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 6 July 2018 (Winter)

Location: Allambie Heights, New South Wales, Australia

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Sharing a treetop shower with King Parrots

This was one of those magical moments that happen when you walk in the Aussie bush. I was strolling along under the canopy of tall gum trees…

… when I heard a swooshing and clattering of wings. I looked up, just in time to receive a spattering of large droplets on my face.

Oops, I thought, some bird had a little accident.

But then it happened again. And I saw this face looking down from high in a leafy cluster:

Looking around, I saw four or five other birds – all Australian King Parrots.

(The birds were very high up indeed. My camera’s zoom has done a good job, though some of the images are a little fuzzy.)

They were swooping through the wet clusters of leaves at the top of the trees, then coming to rest for a good grooming session.

And I was lucky enough to share the resulting shower of droplets!

Here’s a female King Parrot. It’s interesting how short her tail is in comparison with the male birds. It’s perhaps a trick of perspective:

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 1 April 2018 (Autumn)

Location: Manly Dam National Park, New South Wales, Australia: 33°46’51.3″S 151°14’52.3″E

King Parrots on the pavement

A pair of King Parrots surprised me today. They were quietly feeding on a grassy pavement as I walked by. At first they took a careful look at me, then they decided I was harmless and went back to their browsing. The photos aren’t great quality, because I had only the camera on my mobile phone with me.

The male of the pair has a red head and chest, and dark green on his back. The female bird has a green head and softer red colouring on her chest.  The video shows them feeding quietly then flying off with a characteristic chirp.

It wasn’t me that scared them away, but rather a big bird flying overhead. The big scary bird turned out to be just a currawong, so the parrots came back quite quickly. Here they are together:

Here’s the male, showing the pretty colouring and markings on his back:

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 7 July 2017 (Winter)

Location: Allambie Heights, New South Wales, Australia: 33°46’13.2″S 151°15’41.1″E

King Parrots on my commute

Not many people in the world are lucky enough to be able to say this: I bumped into a couple of King Parrots on my way home from work the other day.

We see a few different varieties of parrots around the neighbourhood. King Parrots aren’t a very common sight – I see them maybe two or three times a year. One of their charming characteristics is that they’re always in pairs. See one, and the other isn’t far away.

These two were investigating some seeds on the ground. They let me get quite close, and flew off when I was about a metre away.

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 5 October 2016

Season: Spring

Location: Allambie Heights, New South Wales, Australia

Approximate latitude/longitude: 33°46’13.2″S 151°15’41.1″E

King Parrot in spring splendour

This splendid King Parrot is perched high in a tree. Only the power of my Canon zoom brought it into clear sight.

King Parrot in spring splendour

Another shot, after the bird moved to shadier spot:

King Parrot in spring splendour

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 14 September 2014

Season: Spring

Location: Manly Dam National Park, New South Wales, Australia

Approximate latitude/longitude: 33°46’50.2″S, 151°14’54.5″E

 

A King Parrot comes to call

This Australian King Parrot dropped in for a visit this afternoon. He hung around for a while, exploring the trees around our house and making his piercing whistle, “Eeeeeep”. King Parrots are fairly large birds, bigger and more dramatic in appearance than the Rainbow Lorikeets we see more often.

King Parrot

This was my first view of the bird, before I zoomed in with the camera:

King Parrot

He moved to another tree:

King Parrot

Where I got a shot of his back too:

King Parrot

Common name: Australian King Parrot

Scientific name: Alisterus scapularis

Approximate length: 44 cm

Date spotted: 30 April 2014

Season: Autumn

Location: Allambie Heights, New South Wales, Australia

Approximate latitude/longitude: 33°44’15.2″S, 151°18’44.1″E