Lorikeets form a unique group of very colourful parrots with several distinctive characteristics - particularly their adaptation to a pollen, nectar and fruit diet.
Their fondness for these foods has led to the development of a brush-like structure at the tip of their tongue, along with a slender bill to assist probing into flowers. These adaptations, together with special digestive enzymes, allow them to effectively live on a nectar-based diet.
There is little difference between the sexes, although the male may sometimes have richer colouring especially yellow-green under wings instead of red colours as sported by other Lorikeets.
Similar in habits to the Musk Lorikeet, the Little Lorikeet is fearless and approachable when it is absorbed in feeding, and is often seen in flocks that swoop on flowering eucalypts and other blossom and fruit trees.
The Little Lorikeet is an inhabitant of the coastal heath, open woodland and dry forests of eastern Australia from Cairns to South Australia. It is, however, only common from eastern Victoria to southern Queensland. Outside of this area it is now very rare.
At your place:
In the wild these boisterous parrots like to nest in the hollow limbs and holes found in trees. If you can provide this type of setting in your back yard it will help to lure these delightful birds to your home.
Planting native plants such as Grevillia or Banksia will also help provide trees for the birds to "hide in" and to chew on if you don't already have these planted.
All food trays and water dishes that you provide must be kept clean to avoid passing on any disease to the birds.
And fresh nectar mix needs to be given as soon as it becomes "watery" or you see it beginning to form clumps they will not be able to eat it because of their specially designed beaks.
As a rule these birds do not eat seed - they are nectar eaters and need to eat a special nectar blend of food such as HARMONY™ Lorikeet and Honey Eater
Feeding pollen from eucalyptus blossoms and other native trees such as Banksia and Grevillia will help to provide a balanced diet.
It has a shrill "sit" twittering call when it is feeding and relaxed, and a much harsher and excited call when it's threatened.
It is a gregarious species, except when breeding, and quite large flocks may congregate around good food sources such as flowering eucalypts.
Breeding is from May to January in the north of their range, and from August to January in the south. It likes to nest at least six metres from the ground and close to a
The female usually lays two to three eggs that she incubates on her own for 21 days, and fledging takes place at six weeks. Young birds reach breeding maturity at 12 months.