Red Crowned Parakeet

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Last updated 8 years ago


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Red Crowned Parakeet

Red Crowned Parakeet

Crimson band extending from the bill through the eye and beyond. Therefore, it is named the Red Crowned Parakeet.

A sharp pointed bill to puncture berries and open hard nuts.

The general plumage is green; yellowish-green to breast, abdomen and under tail-coverts.They have a red patch to each side of the lower back. The outer webs of the flight-feathers are violet-blue.

Red Crowned Parakeet

The Red Crowned Parakeet, commonly known as the Kakariki. There are five main species of käkäriki: yellow-crowned parakeet, orange-fronted parakeet, red-crowned parakeet, Forbe’s parakeet and Antipodes Island parakeet. The Red-crowned Parakeet was once widespread across the islands and mainland of New Zealand. It was extremely abundant during the 1880s and irruptions occurred in a number of locations due to their vulnerability to introduced species, particularly stoats, rats and possums.

Colour Adaptation:The red-crowned parakeet is immediately recognisable by its distinctive, brightly coloured plumage. It has vivid crimson feathers that appear on the forehead, crown and behind the eye, earning this bird its alternative common name . This conspicuous red marking on the head contrasts with the predominantly green colour of the rest of the body, though yellow mutations are occasionally found in the wild . The underside of the wings are blue-violet, the beak is grey-blue, getting darker at the tip, and the eyes are orange

At one time, species was considered "effectively" extinct on the mainland of New Zealand, although recent records indicate that small groups of them still exist. Some cage releases or vagrants from offshore island populations have also established themselves.They feed on leaves, buds, flowers, shoots, seeds, fruit, berries, nuts and other parts of plants. Also eating insects and animal remains. In coastal areas, they forage on seaweed and mussels.Sometimes they eat stones, to help with digestion.

Occasionally, the Red Crowned Parakeets would interbreed with the Yellow crowned Parakeet. Known as cross-breeding. Nesting generally occurs from October through December, they will nest through winter if food is abundant. Breeding generally occurs in constructed in hollows in trees, burrows, cliff faces, talus slopes and under vegetation. Females incubate 5-9 eggs for around 2 days until they hatch.. Incubation takes 23 days. Both birds will assist with the feeding of the young. Female parakeets are responsible for all nest preparations, incubation, brooding and feeding of chicks until 10-14 days of age. Male and female parakeets feed chicks at the nest until fledging and independence. If environmental conditions are good they are able to breed quickly leading to rapid increases in population size. They live in pairs, male and female staying together all year round, and often joining other pairs and their young. There is also Colony and flock breeding is possible even when breeding. Most of these parakeets are extremely willing to breed and may be sexually mature when they are only five months old. However, it's best to prevent breeding in their first year and also avoid breeding during the winter period.

Behavioural AdaptationsThe Parakeets are usually seen in pairs or small groups in treetops or on outer branches of bushes outside the breeding season. Pairs may remain alone throughout year, but these parakeets usually form small flocks.They often forage on or near the ground, making them vulnerable to ground predators Occasionally flocks fly to neighboring islands to forage. Despite their rather erratic flight they are strong fliers and readily move within island groups searching for seasonal foods They emitt noises with a variety of softer tur-tur-tur calls when they fly and while feeding they often hold food up to their mouth with one claw.

Reproductive Adaptation

The Red Crowned Parakeet is a medium sized, long tailed parrot with broad rounded wings and predominately emerald green plumage. The male is slightly larger than the female claiming an aerage length of 28cm, in contrast to females who have an average length of 25cm and usually has a smaller beak.They have a wing length of 125-139 mm

Structural Adaptation