Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Rainbow lorikeets

This morning I came across a pair of these beautiful birds, part of the parrot family (Trichoglossus haematodus) feasting on the nectar contained in the flowers of one of the bottlebrush (Callistemon) trees in my street.

Apparently they have a  tongue adapted especially for their diet of fruit, pollen and nectar. The end of the tongue is equipped with a "papillate appendage" adapted to collecting nectar from flowers. 

A "papillate appendage" turns out to be a small nipplelike tongue extension for dipping into the nectar. Now, one of those would be extremely useful for getting right into the bottom of a honey jar!


  1. So colorful, great. I love lorikeets, they are so typical for Australia.

  2. I love these pictures !
    We don't have these birds here in Holland,I wosh we would have them. They are so nice and colorful :)

  3. I hand fed these birds when I was in Brisbane with honey water! Ha ha... So touristy!