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The Natural History and Captive Care of the Australian King Parrot

Male King ParrotI once heard the male Australian King Parrot, Alisterus scapularis, described as “riotously colorful” and have since come to agree with that sentiment.  The females’ subtle but beautiful plumage stands in sharp contrast to that of the males’…so much so that the sexes may easily be taken for different species.  The Australian King Parrot’s extreme sexual dimorphism and startling colors have led many to compare it to the Eclectus Parrot.  Although a bit smaller than its magnificent cousin, the Australian King Parrot is in my opinion no less beautiful, and usually makes a wonderful pet as well.


The fire-red to scarlet head and back of the Male Australian King Parrot contrasts dramatically with the dark green wings and back. Females sport pale lime green feathers in place of the males’ red, and their under-parts are a unique shade of pinkish-orange.

Two subspecies and two related species – Green-Winged King Parrot and the Amboina King Parrot – have been described. Read More »

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