General Description

A small grass-green parrot with a yellow-green face, yellow underside and a bright orange patch on its abdomen. It has a two-toned blue forehead band, blue primaries ("fingertip" feathers), and green-blue upper tail feathers. Females have a light blue forehead band and juveniles have an olive head and chest. Body up to 20 cm long.


The Orange-bellied Parrot is one of only two species of parrot that migrate: it breeds in southwest Tasmania (from November to December) and then flies (in autumn) across Bass Strait to the coastal grasslands of south-eastern South Australia and southern Victoria. It nests in the hollows of eucalypt trees, laying 4-6 white eggs. It eats seeds and berries, feeding in pairs or small flocks on the ground and in low shrubs. Once abundant across its range, the species is now critically endangered; after the 2011-12 breeding season, there were only 36 known individuals in the wild. A captive breeding program hopes to save the species from extinction.


South-eastern mainland Australia and Tasmania.


Mainland: coastal grasslands, salt marshes and low scrublands within 3 km of the coast. Tasmania: button grass moors.

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