Report Swift Parrot Sightings (23/04/2021)

Swift Parrot, Lathamus discolor. The photo was taken by G. Dabb at Mt Majura.

Use the glorious autumn days for a walk in the nature reserve and watch out for Swift Parrot, one of the most endangered Australian bird species.

Sightings of Swift Parrot at Callum Brae have been reported on Canberra Nature Map a couple of days ago and it is quite likely they will be visiting the Majura area.

Swift Parrots visited Mt Majura from the end of March to the beginning of May in the past years. Most observations were from around the Hackett reservoir and the Majura paddock east of Rivett Street where they fed on the nectar of Bundy and lerp of Yellow Box.

If you observe Swift Parrots please contact FoMM with information on the date of observation, the time of the day, the location and the number of birds.Click here to learn more about the Swift Parrots.

To view photographs of the species click on the Swift Parrot Gallery of the Canberra Ornithologists Group.

Mount Majura was host to a record number of endangered Swift Parrot, Lathamus discolor between the end of March and the beginning of May in 2005 and 2008. The parrots were most frequently observed around the lower Hackett reservoir off Rivett / French Streets feeding on the nectar of Bundy, Eucalyptus goniocalyx and lerp – the sugary protection cover of sap-sucking insects – of tall Yellow box, Eucalyptus melliodora. There were reports of Swift parrot in smaller numbers after 2008.

Swift parrots are bright grass green in colour. They have patches of red on the throat, chin and forehead, which are bordered by yellow. They have red on the shoulder and under the wings and blue on the crown, cheeks and wings. A distinctive alarm call of kik-kik-kik usually given while flying, a streamlined body, a long tail and flashes of bright red under the wing enable the species to be readily identified.

Swift parrots breed in Tasmania and migrate to mainland Australia in autumn. During winter the parrots are semi-nomadic, foraging in flowering eucalypts mainly in Victoria and New South Wales. Small numbers of swift parrots are occasionally recorded in the ACT, south-eastern South Australia and southern Queensland. The parrots choose larger trees for foraging and feed extensively on nectar and lerp from eucalypts during the non-breeding season.

Many thanks,

Waltraud Pix

23 April 2021

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.