The lory and lorikeet are colorful parrots that come in many different hues one example, the rainbow lorikeet. They are highly social birds that are natural clowns. They can be easily trained, can be trained to talk, and often mimic sounds. Lories and lorikeets voices are higher pitched than other parrots so the voice quality in their speech is not as good as the Amazon or African grey.
What is the difference between a lory and lorikeet? The difference between a lorikeet and a lory is that the lorikeet has a long pointed tail and a Lory a short blunt tail and a heavier body.
While Lories and Lorikeets is a parrot from the Psittacidae family they have one very unique characteristic. They have brush tongues; these brushes are made of papilla, which is used to remove nectar from flowers. In the wild their primary diet is fruit and nectar. They have very different nutritional needs from other parrots and in fact cannot have seeds. The ventriculus or gizzard is not capable of grinding dry seeds. If they do eat dry seeds they will die of malnutrition or crop impaction.
There are many different sub species of lories and lorikeets from many different countries like Australia, Indonesia, New Guinea, Pacific Islands, Philippines, and Solomon Islands. Their lifespan varies from species to species from approximately 28-38 years.
A lory and a lorikeet can be very sweet and have delightful personalities. They are nature’s perfect little clowns, seemingly happier hanging upside down than standing on perches.
They are energetic, social, and incredible little birds. They can bond very closely with their human family but can also become very jealous. Always supervise these birds around other birds, animals, and children. They are usually sweet tempered but some can be a bit nippy. They mimic sounds. In fact they seem to “collect sounds” building quite a large repertoire of different sounds. They are quick learners and can be trained to do tricks very easily. They love to play with toys and need a variety of toys to keep mentally active and alert.
One disadvantage to the lory and lorikeet is that their droppings are messy because of the liquid, fruity diet. It’s more of a liquid dropping that can splatter and adhere to where ever it falls.
Purchasing a Lorikeet or Lory
Be sure to purchase a bird from a reputable lory and lorikeet breeder, or a trusted pet store. Make sure it is a domestically bred bird. Many species of lories and lorikeets are extinct or endangered. Loss of habitat and exploitation is the primary factors of their extinction and endangerment.
A healthy Lorikeet or Lory should have glossy feathers and bright shiny eyes. I recommend having any bird checked out by an avian veterinarian before purchasing for examination and laboratory tests. These tests should include a complete blood count, (CBC) Chlamydia Screen and a culture of the throat and vent.
Always quarantine a new bird away from other birds for about 8 weeks before introducing the new bird to other birds in your home.
Cages and Accessories
As mentioned before these birds are very messy. They will need to be housed a little differently than other birds.
They should have a big cage. If you do use a parrot cage fit the outside of the cage with poly-carbonate or acrylic plastic sheets but allow plenty of ventilation. Other alternatives are suspended aviaries with mess floors and acrylic boxes with mesh on the back and sides for adequate ventilation.
You should outfit the inside of the cage with hard wood branches from safe non-toxic trees. You will need feeders, food dishes, and water dishes for drinking and bathing.
Health and Nutrition
The Lory or Lorikeet loves to be bathed and you should always provide them with a clean source of bath water. They also love to be misted from a soft spray mister. Use filtered water for bathing, misting, and drinking.
The cage and accessories need to be kept clean and sanitized.
Special care should be given to remove fresh foods so that they don’t spoil. The bird can get sick and die eating spoiled foods. Because of their fresh fruit and nectar diet these foods can spoil very rapidly especially on a warm day. Be sure to rinse fresh fruit.
Lorries and Lorikeets cannot have much protein. Limit their protein intake to no more than 15 percent a day. Their diet needs to be high carbohydrates that contains between 12-14% proteins. There are commercially available Lory foods that can be supplemented with fruits and fresh greens.
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Kindle version Lories and Lorikeets (Birdkeepers' Guides)