The Rainbow Lorikeet
, Trichoglossus haematodus
is a species of Australasian parrot
found in Australia
, eastern Indonesia
, Papua New Guinea
, New Caledonia
, Solomon Islands
. In Australia, it is common along the eastern seaboard, from Queensland
to South Australia
and northwest Tasmania
. Its habitat is rainforest
, coastal bush and woodland
Rainbow Lorikeets have been introduced
to Perth, Western Australia
Auckland, New Zealand
and Hong Kong
Lorikeets grow to 25-30 cm (9.8-11.8 in) in size, with a wingspan of about 17 cm (6.7 in) and vary significantly in coloration between the numerous subspecies. Their eponymous markings of the best known subspecies moluccanus
are particularly striking: a dark blue or violet-blue head and stomach, a bright green back, tail and vent, and an orange breast and beak. Several have darker scalloped markings across the orange breast and the Weber's lorikeet is predominantly green.
There are many subspecies of rainbow lorikeets.
Rainbow Lorikeets feed mainly on pollen and nectar, and possess a tongue adapted especially for their particular diet. The end of the tongue is equipped with a papillate appendage adapted to collecting nectar from flowers. They are also frequent visitors at bird feeders that supply lorikeet-friendly treats, such as store-bought nectar, sunflower seeds, and fruits such as apples, grapes and pears.