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A photo of a Regent Parrot (Polytelis anthopeplus), male
Regent Parrot, Male

Regent Parrot

Polytelis anthopeplus

The Regent Parrot, also known as the Rock Pebbler, is a striking bird native to southern Australia. Exhibiting a predominantly yellow plumage with a green tail, this long and slender parrot is a sight to behold. Males are particularly vibrant, with a yellow body and a red beak, while females are more greenish in color. Both sexes have dark blue-green tail feathers above and black ones beneath.

Identification Tips

Adult males are characterized by their bright yellow coloring and red beaks. Females, while also yellowish-green, are generally greener than males. Immature birds resemble females but are duller. The Regent Parrot measures between 37 to 42 centimeters in length and weighs approximately four ounces.

Habitat

These birds are primarily found in eucalyptus groves and other wooded areas. They favor subtropical environments in southwestern Australia and also inhabit subtropical and temperate regions in southeastern Australia.

Distribution

The Regent Parrot is distributed across southern Australia with two subspecies: Polytelis anthopeplus anthopeplus in the southwest and Polytelis anthopeplus monarchoides in the southeast.

Behaviour

Regent Parrots are sociable creatures, often seen in pairs or small flocks, which may swell to a hundred individuals in the southwest. Their flight is both fast and erratic, yet graceful, with wings swept back as they move through the air.

Feeding

These parrots forage primarily on the ground, searching for grass seeds. They also consume seeds and blossoms from acacia and eucalypt trees, as well as fruits, leaf buds, and nuts from native species. The western subspecies has adapted to include fruits and cereals in its diet following European settlement.

Reproduction

Nesting occurs deep within tree hollows, often in large eucalypts. Females lay around four eggs and brood them for approximately 21 days, during which they are fed by the male. Both parents care for the hatched young, which fledge at about five weeks of age. Sexual maturity is reached at around two years.

Conservation Status

The western subspecies is listed as "Least Concern," while the eastern subspecies is considered vulnerable under Australian law. A recovery plan for the eastern subspecies was published in 2011. In Western Australia, the bird is sometimes seen as an agricultural pest.

Captivity

Regent Parrots are traded as aviary birds and require experienced handlers. They thrive on a diet of chopped mixtures for large parrots, eggplant, fruit, sprouting seeds, and occasionally insects. Fresh branches from willow or fruit trees are also appreciated. These hardy birds do not require protection from drafts but should be shielded from excessive cold.

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Regent Parrots on Birda

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Elegant Tit
12 Apr 2024 - 6:26am
Australia

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