Purple Crowned Lorikeets
The Purple Crowned Lorikeet is native to Australia, they are found in the open woodland, coastal heath and mallee of south Victoria and south South Australia and forest area of south Western Australia. It is very uncommon, although can be found in New South Wales in the iron bark woodland of the Riverina and south west slopes.
Description and Sexing
The Purple Crowned Lorikeets are one of the smallest lorikeets in Australia. They are green with a dark purple crown, a yellow-orange forehead and ear-coverts, that deepens to orange. The chin, chest and belly are a conspicuous powder blue, while the thighs and under-tail coverts are yellowish-green. The male Purple Crowned Lorikeet has a large crimson patch under the wings when the bird is in flight.
The female looks very similar although has a darker iris and has a paler ear convert. The juveniles are duller in colour and lack the purple crown.
Feeding and Care
The Purple Crowned Lorikeet just like all lorikeets, in the wild, feed on nectar and pollen from plants and flowers.
In captivity one of the most common cause of premature death in lorikeets are infections caused by a poorly balanced diet or food that has been spoilt. There are many good quality commercial formulas available for lorikeets, that will provide the proper dietary requirements and nutrition for your bird.
There are two main types of commercial formulas, namely wet mix and dry mix. These mixes come in powder form. If feeding dry mix, plenty of fresh drinking water needs to be made available for the bird. The power should be thrown out and feed containers washed every day. If feeding wet mix, the mixture spoils easily should be thrown out and containers washed every day. In hot weather it will spoil faster than normal and may need to be thrown out and container washed more often. This is one of the reasons why dry could be better, but young lorikeet will need to be weaned off wet on to dry a few months after purchase. Their requirements for drinking will be reduced, as the feed contains a large amount of water, however fresh drinking water should still be made available at all times. Purple Crowned Lorikeets also need their diet supplemented with fresh fruit and vegetables on a daily basis. A variety of different fruit and vegetables should be made available. Spinach or silverbeet leaves provide calcium for the bird, as they will not use a cuttlefish or shellgrit for calcium intake, as it can damage their crop. A calcium supplement or calcium perch may also be used for calcium intake.
Other kinds of fruits and vegetables frequently enjoyed by lorikeets include apples, pears, corn on the cob, berries, grapes (only to be fed in small amounts as the high iron content in grapes can cause liver damage), pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and citrus fruits (only once a week). Fruit and vegetables should be removed at the end of each day and no be allow to accumulate at the bottom of the cage.
Do not feed your bird (or any other bird) avocado, onion, chocolate, caffeine or alcohol. These foods contain chemicals which are lethal to birds. Purple Crowned Lorikeets will also eat small quantities of millet spray, oats, canary grass seeds and sprouted sunflower. If you are unable to feed the nutritional requirement for
your lorikeet, vitamins and mineral supplements will need to be provided. It is important to make sure the cage is clean weekly, including all toys, perches and feed containers.
The Purple Crowned Lorikeet are a very active birds and recommended that you house your bird in the largest cage you can afford. Even though these birds are small, you have to remember that you need room for the many toys, swings, perches, food/water dishes, as well as providing sufficient space for them to move around and exercise their wings.
Purple Crowned Lorikeets are very playful, you should provide your bird with foraging toys, non toxic plastic toys, ladder and ropes. They love toys that make noise, such as bells and toys they can chewing, such as wood, rope and leather. Swings are important not only for play, but to strengthen their legs and improve balance.
Purple Crowned Lorikeets as Pets
Purple Crowned Lorikeets make great pets and are becoming more popular due to their intelligence, entertaining personality and stunning beauty. They are a good beginner’s bird as they are affectionate, curious, and exhibit some unique behaviour.
Purple Crowned Lorikeets as an
In larger aviaries, Little Lorikeets mix well with other Purple Crowned Lorikeets, Little Lorikeets, pigeons, doves, quails, finches and other small parrot. With any birds always be careful when introducing a new bird into the flock as sometimes just like people an individual can have a bad attitude. It is recommend when introducing a new bird into the flock, to have what I call a soft release cage. The new bird is place in this cage inside the aviary and all birds are able to adjust, interact and get use to each other. After two weeks then introduce the bird into the aviary. This should stop the original bird from mobbing the intruder.