Psephotus haematonotus – Red-rumped Parrot

Red-rumped ParrotPsephotus haematonotus (Gould, 1838) - is a very common bird in aviculture. It is easy to breed in captivity and recommended for beginners.

They are usually peaceful towards other species but if they do not have enough space they may become aggressive towards other birds. The male can also attack his own offspring as they mature.

They can be kept in an outdoor aviary as long as they have access to a heated room during the winter.

The expected lifespan in captivity is about 15 years but some are reported to be up to 32 years old with proper care and diet.

Description

The adult male has a bright emerald-green plumage with yellow underparts. The rump is red. The wings and upper back has a blue tinge. The tail is long and green with blue tinge and white undertail coverts. The eyes are dark brown/grey. The beak is black or dark grey. The legs are grey. 

The colour of the female is more dull in general; dull olive-green head, upper parts and breast. Green rump and upper tail coverts; white undertail coverts suffused with a pale blue colour. The eyes are grey. The beak is dark grey.

Notice: Only the male has a red patch on the rump.

Size: 27 cm
Weight: 55-85g

Habitat

The Red-rumped Parrot is endemic to Australia.

They are found in arid areas of south-eastern Australia.

Subspecies

Two subspecies are recognized:

Psephotus haematonotus haematonotus (Gould, 1838)

  • Nominate form - colours as described above.
  • Found in scrub and riverine woodlands of interior south-eastern Australia

Psephotus haematonotus caeruleus (Condon, 1941)

  • The male has in general a paler green colour with more blue. The rump is orange/red.
  • The female has grey-brown head and upperparts. White abdomen and undertail coverts.
  • Native to the north-eastern South Australia and south-western Queensland.

Diet

Wild birds feed on grass and herb seeds, blossoms, leaves, shoots, and blossoms.

 

Aviculture

Red-rumped Parrot is very easy to breed. A vertical box about 15 x 15 x 40 cm is suitable as nest box. Provide some peat and wood shavings  they can use for building the nest.

The clutch usually contains 4-7 eggs. Incubation time is about 19-20 days. Fledging age is 4-5 weeks. The hen will not leave the eggs while brooding and the male provides food for his mate.

Remove the chicks when they are fledged to avoid the male attacking his offspring. The chicks become sexually mature when they are about one year old.

Taxonomy

  • Order: Psittaciformes
  • Family: Psittaculidae
  • Genus: Psephotus

Synonyms

  • Danish: Sangparakit
  • English: Red-rumped Parrot, Red-backed Parrot, Grass Parrot
  • French: Perruche à croupion rouge
  • German: Singsittich
  • Portuguese: Periquito-dorso-vermelho
  • Spanish: Perico Dorsirrojo

IUCN Red List

The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Version 2017-3. <www.iucnredlist.org>.
Downloaded on 19 March 2018.

Female with chicks

Male (yellow colour mutation) and female with chicks

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