Suitable Aviaries and Compatible Birds

Breeding pairs or individual birds are best kept in a medium to large aviary. The former should measure at least 1.5m x 4m. Regardless of size, cages or aviaries should be supplied with a range of perches. Red-winged Parrots are quite spiteful and aggressive toward others and are best kept by themselves. In very large aviaries, they may be kept with other large parrots such as King and Superb Parrots.

Species Specific Problems

Red-winged Parrot
FAMILY: Psittacidae     GENUS: Aprosmictus      SPECIES: Erythropterus

Other Names

Crimson-winged Parrot, Red-winged Lory, Blood-winged Parrot

Description

Large parrot. Male's head and neck is bright green with lower parts duller. Shiny black mantle with distinctive red patch on the wing. Rump is deep blue. Tail green with lighter tips. Bill orange/red. Adult females are duller overall, lacks a black mantle, has a smaller wing patch and duller bill. Immatures resemble adult females, except tail tips often pink rather than light green or yellow.

Usually found in pairs or small family groups. Occasionally congregates into large flocks after breeding. Wary and shy, it is most often confined to the canopy and descends only to drink.<
Length:300-350mm.

Subspecies

None.

Distribution

Across northern Australia from Broome (WA) east to Cape York Peninsula and south into northern New South Wales. It also occurs in southern New Guinea.

Habitat

Temperate and tropical woodlands.

Diet

Seeds, nectar, pollen and blossoms.

Breeding

August to February in the south and May to October in the far north.

Usual nesting site is a high tree cavity (often a large eucalypt) near water. The hen alone incubates the eggs, although the cock does assist in rearing the young.

In captivity, Red-winged Parrots will breed in either logs or boxes. Each of these should be around 1.8-2m in length with an internal diameter of around 25cm. These should ideally be positioned at a slight angle, and supplied with an internal ladder to facilitate easy entry and exit from the nest. The preferred nesting material is wood shavings.

Courtship Display

Like the Mulga Parrot, the Red-rumped cock settles on a perch and stretches to his full height. He pushes the shoulders forward to reveal the blue and yellow markings and fans the tail which he wags from side to side. This is accompanied by much head bobbing and is followed (usually) by courthsip feeding (ie. by regurgitation).

Sexual Maturity

The hen becomes sexually mature at the age of one year, the cock at the age of three years (when it is fully coloured).

Clutch

Three to five white rounded eggs. Incubation period: 20days. Fledging usually occurs at about 35-40 days.

Mutations and Hybrids

The only known mutation of this bird is a yellow variety in Europe and a mostly yellow type referred to as a Cinnamon here in Australia.

The Red-winged Parrot has hybridised with the (Australian) King Parrot, Superb Parrot, Princess Parrot, Regent Parrot and the Sula Island King Parrot.