Lories and Lorikeets

Quick Facts

- Best for experienced owners
- Best solo, in pairs or in small groups
- Medium size
- Medium activity level
- Medium Trainability
- Medium sociability with people

Lories and Lorikeets are small to medium sized parrots that are found in Australia, Southeastern Asia, Polynesia and New Guinea. Most live in flocks that range in size from a couple to a few dozen. There is no difference between Lories and Lorikeets, other than that Lorikeets have longer tail than Lories do.

Unlike most other parrots, Lories eat pollen and nectar. There are around 55 different species of Lories and Lorikeets, about 15 species are commonly sold as pets. The Rainbow Lory is the most popular pet Lory.

Lories are friendly good-natured parrots. They are active and playful, and enjoy learning to do tricks and to talk. They have high clear voices and are capable of learning a large variety of words. They are moderately quiet birds that do not screech and scream the way many of the larger parrots do. They are a good choice for apartment dwellers.

Most Lories are very sociable birds, but some can be a little one personish, especially if not well socialized. They enjoy spending time with their human family and can become depressed if ignore. They are easier to keep than many of the larger parrots, but still take a daily commitment; they require at least an hour or two of attention each day. They are active birds; they need time out of their cage and exercise daily. Boredom and loneliness, can lead to behavioural and health problems.

Lories require a large cage with lots of perches to help keep their feet healthy and toys to help keep them amused; toys are best changed every few days to keep them interesting. Due to their soft and liquid diet, they tend to have runny droppings that can be very messy; their cage needs to be cleaned regularly. Most Lories happily live with other Lories of the same species and some will peacefully cohabitate with other birds; however, some can be aggressive with other birds.

Appearance and Care:
Lories are small to medium sized birds that measure 6-15 inches from head to tail. They are usually slender with moderately long tails. They are generally bright vibrant birds with red, blue, purple, black or green plumage.

Most Lories love taking baths and will happily bathe themselves several times a week. They should be supplied with a shallow bowl of warm water every day or two to splash around in.

Health and Diet:
Lories are hardy birds that live around 20 years when well cared for. They are susceptible to kidney and liver problems, gout and iron storage disease. When ill, Lories will show signs of inactivity, noisy breathing, lack of activity and appetite, sneezing, cloudy eyes, weight loss, bleeding, droopy wings and ruffled feathers. At the first signs of illness, they should be taken to their veterinarian.

Lories eat pollen and nectar, which can be difficult for a bird owner to supply. Thankfully, there are commercially made nectar replacement diets that can be bought for the birds. Lories also fed on fresh fruits and vegetables. Most Lories enjoy spinach, apples, pears, corn on the cob, grapes, berries, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, citrus fruit, peas, clover and edible flowers. Honey is usually a big favourite of Lories and makes a wonderful treat. Their diet should be low in both iron and protein. As with all birds, they need fresh water daily. All fruits and vegetables should be washed thoroughly to ensure they are clean of pesticides, and all fruit should be carefully deseeded, as some fruit seeds contain cyanide and are poisonous to birds.


Located in: Birds