Killarney Heights Public School logo

Killarney Heights Public School

Killarney Heights Public School

Bringing Excellence in Education Within a Unique Bilingual Setting

Telephone02 9451 9547

Rainbow Lorikeets: The issue of Bread

Evie & Jess witness our native fauna eating damaging leftovers

Protect our birdlife!

By Evie & Jess

Lorikeets are a palm sized bird, around 32 cm, with multi-coloured feathers all over their bodies. They are very agile birds and are most commonly found in the north of Queensland to South Australia. Rainforest, coastal bush and woodland are their preferred habitats.

The Issue of bread

Lorikeets cannot eat processed foods such as biscuits or bread. They have a sweet tooth. However, their digestive system cannot cope with artificially refined sugar. They have delicate beaks that can be damaged by eating grains or bread. Sadly, leftover bread is commonly found on the ground and refined seeds and sugar are found in all varieties of bread, especially in whole grain bread. This means that lorikeets have an abundant source of harmful food.

Many lorikeets that eat bread starve to death. Their beak gets damaged and then they cannot eat. They need your help!!!

What YOU can do to help

  • Remember to bring your lunchbox back to class with you.
  • Put your leftovers in the bin.
  • DO NOT leave out bread or seeds  for the lorikeets.
  • DO NOT leave sandwiches out in lunch boxes.
  • Never feed lorikeets processed foods, like bread.
  • Don’t ever feed lorikeets grains.
  • ONLY feed lorikeets healthy food scraps.

Heatlhy food scraps

  • A variety of fresh, seasonal fruit should also be made available. For example, apple, melon, grapes, citrus, pawpaw, banana, mango, lychee, stone fruit.
  • Some vegetables can be offered, however, the lorikeets will tend to overfeed on sweet corn, so don't overdo it.
  • Fresh water is essential and must be provided, the more the better as they need to dip their tongue in water after dipping it in the dry nectar.

Fun facts

  • The Rainbow Lorikeet, a medium sized member of the parrot family grows to about 32 cm long.
  • They spend most of their time in trees eating pollen, nectar, fruit, seeds and insects.
  • In the wild, rainbow lorikeets usually live about 10 years, however, lorikeets that are pets can live up to 25 years old.
  • Their tongue has a feathery tip.
  • Sometimes lorikeets are known to hang upside down, duck and weave to reach hard to reach places for food, comfort or safety.
  • Rainbow lorikeets always travel in groups of two or more so one can look out for predators while the other feeds.

Come on Killarney! Can we clean up our act?