Lorikeet

STATUSVulnerable

COMMON NAME (SCIENTIFIC NAME)Loriinae

DIETHerbivorous: feed mainly on pollen, nectar, and fruit.

RANGEAustralia, New Guinea and several small Indonesian islands.

HABITATStrictly arboreal and can be found in forests, mangroves, and eucalyptus groves.

Lorikeet

About: Parrots are known for their bright colors, and some of the most colorful members of the parrot family are lories and lorikeets. Also known as honeyeaters, the many species of this parrot group (subfamily Loriinae) can be found throughout the islands of the South Pacific and Australia.

There are differences between lories and lorikeets, especially if you compare tails. In general, lories are bigger, with tails that are short, rounded, or square. Lorikeets tend to be smaller, with longer, pointed tails. Most lories are red with patches of yellow, purple, and green; most lorikeets are green with patches of red and yellow. There are, of course, exceptions, and these birds can be found in all the colors of the rainbow.

A lorikeet’s tongue is covered with small “brushes” called papillae that allow them to obtain the pollen and nectar from flowers. Lorikeets and lories are important pollinators in their native habitats.

The Lehigh Valley Zoo currently houses rainbow lorikeets, forsten’s lorikeets, coconut lorikeets, dusky lories, and red lories.