Eastern Rosella


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Eastern Rosella: A Colorful Parrot of Southeastern Australia

The Eastern Rosella (Platycercus eximius) is a striking parrot species native to southeastern Australia, including Tasmania. With its vibrant plumage and captivating behavior, the Eastern Rosella has become a favorite among bird enthusiasts. In this comprehensive article, we explore everything you need to know about these charming parrots, from their appearance and habitat to their aviculture history and conservation status.

Before we delve into the details, let’s summarize the essential points about the Eastern Rosella:

  1. Native Range: Found in southeastern Australia, including Tasmania.
  2. Distinctive Appearance: Red head, white cheeks, and scalloped black-and-yellow plumage.
  3. Diet: Feeds on fruit, seeds, flowers, and insects.
  4. Aviculture Popularity: Widely kept in aviaries for their beauty and sociable nature.

Now, let’s explore the Eastern Rosella in more depth.

Appearance and Behavior

Vibrant Plumage

  • Red Head: The Eastern Rosella boasts a bright red head.
  • White Cheeks: Distinctive white cheek patches.
  • Scalloped Plumage: Black feathers with yellow or green margins create a scalloped pattern.

Behavioral Traits

  • Communication: Emit soft calls.
  • Habitat: Found in lightly wooded areas, open forests, gardens, and parks.

Habitat and Distribution

Natural Range

  • Southeastern Australia: The Eastern Rosella’s native habitat includes Tasmania.
  • Introduced to New Zealand: Feral populations exist in New Zealand, particularly in the North Island and around Dunedin in the South Island.

Preferred Environment

  • Wooded Country: Thrives in lightly wooded regions, open forests, and woodlands.

Diet and Feeding Habits

  • Fruit and Seeds: Eastern Rosellas primarily feed on fruit, seeds, and flowers.
  • Insects: They also consume insects as part of their diet.

Conservation Status

The Eastern Rosella is classified as Least Concern by the IUCN. However, ongoing conservation efforts are crucial to protect their natural habitat.

Aviculture History

Introduction to New Zealand

  • Early 1900s: Eastern Rosellas were introduced to New Zealand.
  • Population: Now common over much of the North Island, with a smaller population centered around Dunedin in the South Island.

Subspecies and Variations

  • Three Subspecies:
    1. P. e. eximius: Victoria and southern New South Wales.
    2. P. e. elecica: Northeast New South Wales and southeast Queensland (also known as the golden-mantled rosella).
    3. P. e. diemenensis: Eastern Tasmania (with larger white cheek patches and darker red head).

The Eastern Rosella’s vivid colors, melodious calls, and adaptability make it a delightful addition to any avian collection. Whether you’re a seasoned breeder or a curious observer, these parrots continue to enchant bird enthusiasts worldwide.

Remember to appreciate and protect their natural habitat, ensuring that future generations can enjoy the beauty of the Eastern Rosella.

Additional information


3-5 Months, 6-9 Months, 10-13 Months


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