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Rosella repast

June 23, 2014

Crimson RosellaOne of the more abundant and ubiquitous birds around this district at present is the Crimson Rosella, with many small, and some not so small, flocks roaming around in search of winter food. With introduced fruit trees and vines now bare, they resort to a range of native tucker. It is fascinating to watch them eating seed from Callistemon and Melaleuca shrubs, holding small branchlets in one claw and nibbling at the woody seed capsules like corn on the cob. We also observed a couple of richly coloured adult birds spending ages delicately feeding on Yellow Box, Eucalyptus melliodora, seed. All these seeds are extremely fine (up to 400 per gram for Yellow Box) and lengthy periods of feeding are required for birds the size of rosellas to get a decent feed – the ripe seeds are presumably highly nutritious to make it worthwhile for them.
The few local indigenous plants flowering at present also attract Crimson Rosellas, who can devastate isolated specimens, such as the Common Correa, Correa reflexa, pictured below in our garden. A Drooping She-oak, Allocasuarina verticillata, has been a target, with 13 of the rosellas counted in the small tree the other day.

See also a recent post by Ronlit on Crimson Rosellas: Manky and moth-eaten.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Di Foletta permalink
    June 23, 2014 9:13 am

    We have also seen them, in numbers, feeding on dry thistle seeds, so nothing is wasted!

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