Long Tailed Parakeet - Psittacula Longicauda - Vulnerable
The long-tailed parakeet (Psittacula longicauda) is a parakeet endemic to the regions of Andaman and Nicobar islands, Sumatra, Borneo and Peninsular Malaysia (including Singapore). It is allopatric with the congener, the Red-breasted parakeet, Psittacula alexandri, except in the Andaman islands where they occur together.
Subspecies: Five subspecies are currently recognized:
P. l. tytleri – Andaman long-tailed parakeet – Andaman and Coco Islands
P. l. nicobarica – Nicobar long-tailed parakeet – Nicobar Islands
P. l. modesta – Enggano long-tailed parakeet – Enggano Island
P. l. longicauda – common long-tailed parakeet – south Malay Peninsula, Singapore, Sumatra, Nias, Bangka Island Anambas Islands, Borneo
P. l. defontainei Chasen – Natuna Islands
Description: It is mainly green with a long blue tail. The male has a black cap and red face. The female lacks the black cap and has less red.
Habitat: The long-tailed parakeet is able to live in a wide variety of habitats such as in swamp forests, lowland evergreen forest, oil palm plantations, coconut plantations, gardens, public parks, and is a frequent visitor to agricultural areas (especially those who yield tropical fruits and seeds). It is usually seen in elevations of up to 300 meters.
Ecology & Behavior: The long-tailed parakeet is an extremely social bird, always seen communicating with other birds of its species. Even though small groups are usually seen, flocks of thousands of birds have been in the Andaman Islands and Borneo. However, the large flocks tend to appear during breeding season. It is a colony breeder. Birds on the Malay Peninsula tend to breed from December to February while birds on the Nicobar and Andaman Islands tend to breed from February to March. Females tend to lay a clutch of 2 to 4 eggs approximately 30.5 x 24.5mm. It usually takes about 23 to 24 days for the eggs to hatch. Chicks fledge at around 7 weeks old. Its diet consists of a variety of berries, papaya, areca nuts, a wide variety of cultivated and wild fruit, seeds, and cultivated grains such as corn. It is a curious species, as it is often seen playing with sticks or other materials found in its environment.
Threats: Much of the long-tailed parakeet's natural habitat is threatened by deforestation and illegal logging. Capture for the illegal pet trade is also a threat to the survival of this species.
Psittaciformes, The Parrot Index, a part of Phoenix Feathers © 2016 - 2023
Page last updated: 1/1/2320