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Red Lory

Eos bornea

  1. Not Evaluated
  2. Data Deficient
  3. Least Concern
  4. Near Threatened
  5. Vulnerable
  6. Endangered
  7. Critically Endangered
  8. Extinct in the Wild
  9. Extinct

About Us

Come and visit Woburn Safari Park’s Rainbow Landing walkthrough, enjoy these colourful and exotic birds free flying above your heads. You can even purchase a small pot of nectar for our Lories and Lorikeets. Experience these magnificent birds landing on you while they drink nectar using their unusual but specialised bristle tongue. 

Distribution
Indonesia
Habitat
Plantations near villages, mangroves and humid primary forest.
Height
Length 31cm
Weight
170g
Lifespan
25 - 30 years
Threats
International pet trade.

Social structure

Red Lories are usually observed in pairs or small flocks, but large noisy groups of over 50 birds are not uncommon, sometimes in company with Rainbow Lorikeets. They usually prefer to feed in tree canopies rather than the ground and will travel vast distances to find food. 

Diet

Red Lories feed on flowers, pollen, nectar, seeds, insects and fruit. They use their brush-tipped tongue to get the pollen. The tip of the tongue has hairy projections (called papillae) that soak up nectar and catch pollen.

Physical features

Red Lories are mostly red and the plumage of the upper body is all red. There are red, blue, and black markings on the back and wings, and the tail is red-brown with blue under-tail coverts. The beak is orange and the legs are grey.

Breeding behaviour

Breeding activity can vary depending on the region, climate and food availability. Little is known of their breeding ecology in the wild, research shows eggs have been found in nest sites around August and young birds found in December.  

Male’s display and approach females stretched to their full height. With the neck arched, they bob the head and hop along the perch, all the while emitting a low whistle. The pupils constantly dilate and contract during this process. The female's interest will depend on how near to nesting she is. They nest in hollows or cavities in trees, females lay between 1-2 eggs and are incubated for around 24 days. During incubation the male brings the female food and once the chicks hatch both parents will perform feeding duties. It is not unusual for pairs to produce two clutches per year. 

When the chicks hatch they are completely naked and born without any feathers. Both male and female Lories will feed the chicks and the hatchlings are completely dependent on their parents for as long as 6 weeks. In 8 weeks, the chicks become feathered and are ready to take their first flight. The young usually fledge the nest between 9-10 weeks old. Lories appear to mature at around nine months of age; however most birds do not breed until 18 months or two years old.

Communication

Red Lories are extremely active and loud birds, communicating with noisy screeching, squawks and are in constant chatter.

Threats and conservation

These birds potential for tameness and bright plumage have led to the lorikeets popularity as cage birds. The species has been heavily traded and wild-caught individuals have been recorded in international pet trade. Today the Red Lory is listed on CITES in their Appendix II, meaning Lorikeets and Lories are not currently threatened with extinction. Overall, the Red Lory remains widespread and common. 

Fun facts

Lorikeets have uniquely shaped beaks. The upper mandible (beak) has a long, pointed tip and much narrower structure than other parrots. Their beaks are perfect for crushing flowers, and their special tongue mops up the nectar.

There are four sub-species of the Red Lory

  • E.b.bornea
  • E.b.cyanonothus
  • E.b.rothschildi
  • E.b.bernsteini