Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Vernal Hanging Parrot or Lorikeet

Vernal Hanging Parrot

The Vernal Hanging Parrot, formerly known as the Lorikeet, is India’s only parrot species (the rest are all parakeets). It is a small bird, the size of a sparrow, that is a resident breeder but having local migrations depending on the availability of food.

Vernal Hanging Parrot

It has a grass-green upper plumage, with wings and tail darker. The upper side of the tail covert are a crimson colour, while the lower is yellow. The male has a patch of blue on its throat, that is absent in the female. The bill is coral red with a yellow tip. Feet is yellowish to pale orange.

Vernal Hanging Parrot

It gets its name from its ability to hang upside down during roosting. It also uses its beak to climb with.

Vernal Hanging Parrot

It food consists mainly of fruits and berries as well as bamboo seeds. They are known to be fond of the nectar of some flower, especially that of the coral tree. Interestingly, they are also known to raid toddy pots and end up drunk!

Vernal Hanging ParrotVernal Hanging Parrot

They feed as a flock on trees and can be quite difficult to spot due to their camouflage. Unlike parakeet, they do not make a racket while feeding. They utter a twittering warble:

 

Vernal Hanging Parrot

The breeding season is from February to May, depending on the locality. Nest are constructed in natural hole in trees and the clutch consists 3-4 in number.

Vernal Hanging Parrot

  Sighting information:
Location: Gudalur
Date: 29th May 2011
Time: Morning; 7:40 AM
Weather: Sunny morning after overnight rains
Other Details: Seen in a flock along with yellow-browed bulbuls, Wood-shrikes, scarlet minivets, Gold-fronted leafbirds, barbets etc.

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