Re: common captive parrot species?

Subject: Re: common captive parrot species?
From: "Peter Menkhorst"<>
Date: Mon, 27 Jul 1998 11:30:16 +1000
As you suggest, it is highly unlikely that the bird your relatives saw is
an Orange-bellied Parrot - they do not occur naturally north or east of
South Gippsland these days, and there are none in captivity (at least not
legally) except those in the captive-breeding component of the recovery
program. These are held in a Parks and Wildlife Service facilility in
Hobart and at Healesville Sanctuary.

Many species of Australian parrot are commonly and successfully kept in
captivity, including most of the smaller, OBP-sized species. Ignoring the
cockatoos and lorikeets for the moment, about the only species which are
not in private aviaries are Fig-Parrots, Ground Parrots and Night Parrots,
Red-capped and Swift Parrots are rarely kept.

If we assume that  the bird was a Neophema (the genus of the so-called
'grass parrots' which includes the OBP) then there are several candidates
which can have varying amounts of orange on the belly, could be confused
with OBP and which are commonly kept by aviculuturalists. These are: female
Turquoise Parrot, female Scarlet-chested Parrot and Elegent Parrot.
Blue-winged, and Rock Parrots can also have orange bellies but are uncommon
in captivity.

Your relatives need to look at the brightness of green on the upperparts,
the brightness of yellow in the underparts, the presence of blue on the
face, colour of the lores, and the colour(s) and brightness of any blue
line above the bill. These features were well covered in a recent article
in Wingspan.

If the bird is a Neophema it is most likely to be a female Turquoise or
Scarlet-chested. Coincidently, we have just been through this debate with a
zoo in Coffs Harbour where the bird keeper was perplexed by what was
supposed tpo be a Turquoise Parrot which had a very orange belly. At least
one experienced local birder was apparently convinced that it was an OBP
and it made the local paper, despite the obvious blue face and white lores.

Peter Menkhorst
Victorian Co-ordinator
Orange-bellied Parrot Recovery Effort

cc:    (bcc: Peter Menkhorst/NRE)
Subject:  common captive parrot species?

Hi all
At the risk of this being the wrong forum for this question, I was hoping
someone might be familiar with the Australian parrot species typically kept
and bred in captivity by aviculturalists/parrot fanciers.  I ask in order
to clarify the identification of a parrot some relatives saw in their back
yard (in Mackay, Qld) which is most probably an aviary escapee.  They have
ID'd it as an Orange bellied parrot, but we thought this seemed pretty
unlikely.  Any thoughts?  Mulga Parrot??  Scarlet Chested??
Malea Kneen         Email: 
The University of Melbourne   Phone: 03 9496 3595
Department of Medicine   Fax: 03 9457 5485
Austin Hospital
Heidelberg, Victoria, 3084

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