One of my favourite parrots

I’ve discovered a new community – Saturday Critters – and am excited to be able to share some of my love of wildlife.

For my first entry I’m going to talk about Rosellas. I would put this under my Five Favourites banner, but there are six species of Rosella and I’ve only managed to photograph two with an extra variant. having discovered that there are six, I’m going to make a point of visiting all the corners of Australia at some point to get photos of the other four.

Rosellas are gorgeous bright-coloured parrots. There are six species – Crimson Rosella, Western Rosella, Eastern Rosella, Green Rosella, Pale-headed Rosella and Northern Rosella. They are all of the genus Platycercus. For photos and details about each species not mentioned here, Wikipedia is a great place to start. Males are the brightest coloured, but females also can be quite pretty. Because they are bright-coloured and those colours tend to change according the the area they are native to, there has been some confusion as to how many species there actually are. This leads me to my favourite of all.

Adelaide Rosella

I live in Adelaide, South Australia and this rosella is native to only really what is now the metropolitan area of Adelaide and a bit surrounding. I admit that I like it because it is different and uncommon, I’m a bit that way in general, but I have to say that blue and orange are proving to be a strong colour combination favourite of mine. It should be noted that these birds are also a pain in the neck, literally, to photograph, so I don’t really have any great shots. These were taken in the park across the road from my house – with a lot of shoulder and neck pain. They do not pose or sit still and choose the highest and most backlit trees to clamber around in 😀

Adelaide rosella


Adelaide rosella


Adelaide rosella

Now I said there were six species and ‘Adelaide’ wasn’t among them. This is because it has been decided that the Adelaide Rosella and the nearby Yellow Rosella are colour variants of the Crimson Rosella (Platycercus elegans) .


Crimson Rosella

I had never seen one of these until I visited the eastern states of Australia – where they are everywhere in the mountains. These shots were taken in the Grampians in western Victoria.

Crimson rosella


Crimson rosella


crimson rosella juvenile

This one is a juvenile, they start off green and turn red as they mature.

Oh, except for this one which was taken in Marengo near Apollo Bay on the Great Ocean Road, Victoria.

Crimson rosella

So you can imagine me seeing these for the first time (I think it was in Queensland on my honeymoon back in 2001) as they are beautiful. Eastern state people probably find them a bit everyday, but they are not seen here in Adelaide, yet. EDIT: Since posting two fellow Adelaidians inform me that they see these here either seasonally or regularly, so they are here. The Adelaide and Yellow Rosellas share the blue cheeks, that is how you can tell they are of the same species in this little parrot colourfest.


Eastern Rosella

The Crimson Rosella is not seen in Adelaide, yet, but that may not always be the case. EDIT: And it isn’t anymore, apparently.

I grew up with tomato sauce as a staple on our kitchen table (wow, what a change in topic, but bear with me 😀 ). So this label was an every day thing.

Image not mine – borrowed from The Sydney Morning Herald – ironically an article talking about the Rosella factory in Sydney closing down 🙁

But I never set eyes on the featured bird. Never even occurred to me that I might see it. It was a fantasy bird that lived on a sauce bottle. That is so not the case today. The Eastern Rosella has followed the human created wheat belt across the continent and now is naturalised here in South Australia (and a lot of other places, sorry, New Zealand). These photos were taken in Belair National Park in the Adelaide Hills, but they can be seen anywhere in the Adelaide region now.

Eastern rosella

This one is a little grotty because he was eating a discarded apple.

Eastern rosella


Eastern rosella


These birds always prompt me to grab my camera. I really want to get some good photos of them and these aren’t quite up there yet. I attempted a painting of the Adelaide Rosella using the first photo above, but I had problems with the materials I was working with and had to call it to a halt, but I do plan to paint them one day – if I can get a good enough photo 😀

Anyways, this is my contribution to Saturday Critters this week, I hope you enjoyed it. Don’t hesitate to comment below, I love to hear from you.

Art Always!

Best wishes,

Edit: I’ve been invited to share this over at Wild Bird Wednesday, so go have a gander at the gorgeous birds over there 😀