Purple Crowned Lorikeets

One species I forgot to mention yesterday was the Purple Crowned Lorikeet. Like many Australian parrots and lorikeets, the Purple Crowned is a gregarious, noisy, restless bird found in many parks and gardens in southern Australia. It ranges south of a line from Geraldton Western Australia through to eastern Victoria (but not Tasmania).

Garden Visitor
I can’t say that they are a resident species in our garden – they don’t seem to stay long enough! When the mallee is in flower they come on rushed sorties into the trees in near the house, feed for a while before screeching off to the next feeding ground. Their underwing patch of red distinguishes them from the slightly larger Musk Lorikeet (which is an uncommon species here in Murray Bridge).

Difficult to photograph

These bright green parrots with a prominent red forehead and purple coloured crown are very difficult to photograph – or so I have found. Many times they just go darting overhead as they pass from one clump of trees to another. When they do decide to stop in our garden they are so cryptic in the leaves and flowers of the eucalyptus tree where they are feeding that it becomes hard to see where the leaf ends and the bird begins. I almost dispair of ever getting a clear photo of this species.


One of the field guides* I use regularly describes their flight as “bullet-like”. As they go rocketing across the sky past our garden, their “zitt-zitt-zitt” calls seem to challenge me. “Catch us if you can,” they seem taunt as they fly by.

*Pizzey, G and Knight, F “The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia” (Angus and Robertson 1997)


4 Responses to “Purple Crowned Lorikeets”

  1. Don says:

    Okay Folks please explain this one.

    I am a canadian who now lives in the usa and has raised many aussie parakeets in captivity. Favorite is Princess parakeets.

    I know of hundreds of other folks in North American that love aussie parrots and I am not alone. We can get media on many things around the planet.

    However try and buy on either VHS format or DVD footage on aussie parrots. Zilch…
    This is literally a very profitable market but no one seems to be coming forward to show off the great abundance and life histories of aussie parrots to North America.

    I love oz and enjoyed living there for a season. I am thinking now that I have top rated camera equipment that I need to come back down and shoot aussie parrots for my north american mates to enjoy. Otherwise it seems like we will be up a bilagong without a paddle… grin..

    Cheers and thanks!


  2. Trevor says:

    Hi there Don. Welcome to my blog.

    This is quite puzzling as I know that there are a number of excellent videos (not sure about DVDs) available on Australian parrots.

    By your comments I presume you mean that they are not available in North America. The main problem could be that we have different television formats (PAL and NTSC) and if they haven’t been released in your format they are useless to you. The same can apply to the different zones with DVDs.

    I’ll do a little research and let you know by email.

  3. Brittney says:

    hey every one!
    i just got a breeding pair of purple crowned loris and they are so sweet! they are hand reared and beautifuly friendly birds. even tho they have each other as a mate, they are still very affectionate. if any one else breeds birds i’d like to hear from you. im soon to be breeding love birds, budgies and cockatiels too. birds are my life…and my family! just post a comment on this blog so i can hear about your birds you are breeding!

  4. Trevor says:

    Hi there Brittney – welcome to my blog.

    Sorry to disappoint you, but this blog is about Australian birds seen in the wild – not cage birds. There are many interesting sites that deal with captive birds and bird breeding, but you will probably not find anyone in my readers who is interested in those areas.

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