Barraband's Parakeet
Polytelis swainsonii
Also known as:-
Superb Parrot, Scarlet-breasted Parrot, Green Leek
Description: Mostly green, nape has slight bluish tinge, yellow on forehead, throat and cheeks; red on chest, slight blue on primary feathers; underside of tail blackish, bill reddish; iris orange-yellow; grey feet.

Female: without the red and yellow plumage; green-grey in chin and throat, thigh yellow-orange, iris yellow. Youngsters like female with brown iris; young males attain adult plumage at about 6 to 9 months

Length: Fifteen inches (40 cm).

Distribution: The parakeet is found in the interior of New South Wales and northern Victoria, Australia.

Habitat: Found in forests - along water courses, enjoys bushland with eucalyptus; grassland with trees and plentiful water supply.

Wild Status: These parakeets were fairly common but are becoming more endangered due to the destruction of their natural habitat through intensive farming.

Aviculture: Fairly quiet parakeet needing a sheltered flight, they soon acclimatise and become hardy. Several pairs can be kept either together in a large flight or in neighbouring flights. These parakeets are very prone to feet problems and eye infections, often due to stress. They also need regular worming.

Outside flight: 15 x 3 x 4.6 ft (5 x 1 x 1.5m), an adjoining shelter should be provided for these parakeets.

Natural Diet: Grass seeds, seeds, berries, fruit, nuts, thistle, flowers and nectar, may forage for dropped grain in harvested fields.

Breeding in Aviculture: Breeding usually begins in March. Male will often display holding his head high and nodding, extending wings and fanning tail. Clutches usually 4-6 eggs (incubation around 20 days) with female brooding alone. Breeding in captivity is achieved regularly; with youngsters fledging between 35-50 days before becoming fully independent. Young can be taken from the nest at 3 weeks old for spoon feeding and weaning. These young make good pets but must be handled daily to keep them hand tame. Like all birds they need fuss. They also require flying time outside their cage, which should be monitored.

Typical Diet:
a variety of fruit and vegetables, a good seed mix containing safflower, oats, canary seed, groats, assorted millets, hemp and sunflower. Suitable minerals and supplements from time to time.

As a Pet:
This small parakeet is very attractive and make good pets, they have several whistles. They can be a little quiet and shy at times.
They need to be taken out of the cage daily for fuss and exercise. As with all pet parrots it's important to buy one as young as possible preferably a week or two after weaning, the best pets are handreard. Make sure that the breeder/pet shop that you are intending to purchase from is reputable.

Copyright 2001 - 2014 All rights reserved.
No part of this site may be copied or reproduced by any media whatsoever without the permission of