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Vini peruviana

Common Name: Blue Lorikeet

Range: Society Islands, Cook Islands and w Tuamotu Archipelago

Vini peruviana
  • general plumage dark blue; crown with paler shaft-streaks; lores, cheeks, ear-coverts, throat and upper breast white; tail underside grey; narrow periophthalmic ring grey; iris dark; feet flesh-coloured; bill orange.
  • Female as male.
  • Immatures with blackish bill (adult colouration attained at 6 months); dark blue duller; lores, cheeks and ear-coverts whitish; iris black; feet blackish-brown.
  • Length: 18 cm
  • Status: endangered; now only larger populations on Bellinghausen (approx. 250 pairs) and Scilly (300 to 400 pairs); main cause for decline or disappearance from many islands introduction of European Black Rat (Rattus rattus) and possibly Swamp Harrier as well as starlings; also threatened by avian malaria.
  • formerly on 23 islands of the Cook Islands, Society Islands and Tuamotu island group; today still on Aitutaki, Bellingshausen, Scilly, Rangiroa, Arutua and Tikehau; also possibly still on a few other islands.
  • Habitat: palm groves, gardens as well as banana and coconut plantations.
  • extremely active and playful lory; call quiet and similar to Blue Tit; susceptible; sudden mortality without discernible cause can occur; minimum temperature during acclimatization 24°C; provide branches with leaves for climbing around; colony system possible, however not entirely without problems; can occasionally be aggressive to each other; enjoys bathing.
  • Breeding behavior: breeding period from May to August; nests in tree hollows, rotten stumps of coconut palms, niches at the base of palm fronds or decayed coconuts still hanging from tree at more than 10 m from ground; also uses abandoned nests of other birds, occasionally several pairs nest in one palm; clutch 2 eggs; incubation around 3 weeks; egg measures 19.4 x 17.2 mm.
  • Breeding in aviculture: achieved several times; clutch usually 2 eggs; incubation 25 days; female mostly broods after laying second egg; fledging period 9 weeks; young often not correctly reared and must then be hand-reared; additional animal protein during breeding; young independent at 13 weeks.
Social Behavior
  • in small groups of 3 or more birds outside breeding season; mostly detected by calls as difficult to see in foliage; continuously climbing around branches; not shy; flight swift and direct; whirring wingbeats audible accompanied by metallic sounding contact calls.
  • inside flight 4 x 2 x 2 m; minimum temperature 20°C; should only be allowed into an outside flight on very warm summer days; aviary must allow very strict hygiene; roosting box 10 x 10 x 30 cm.
  • lory feed of honey, pollen, brewer's yeast, oat flakes, multi-grain flakes, vitamins and mineral supplements; regular vitamin C; softened rusk or biscuit; various soft fruit, particularly mango, banana, pear, pomegranate and grape; occasionally small quantities of insects; regular supply of fresh branches with buds, flowers and leaves.