Australia is known, among other names, as the Land of the Parrot. There is a tremendous range of parrot species here, including rosells, corellas, cockatoos, galahs, and budgerigars (many of which have been described in previous posts). But the thing that really surprised me is that they are everywhere. Perhaps I had this idea because of all those National Geographic specials I saw growing up, where parrots always seemed to exist in tropical rainforests, but parrots, at least in Australia, know no such limits. Yes, I did see plenty of parrots in Australia’s rainforests, but I also saw them in the cool, green, mountainous reaches of Tasmania, in the chilly, snow-capped Victorian Alps, and in surprising numbers in the arid Outback regions.
Of course, by the time I was heading north for a second visit to the Northern Territory, I was no longer surprised by parrots, but I have never ceased to be delighted by them. At one spot we stopped, amid the desert oaks (which are in reality casuarinas, not oaks), we startled a large flock of pink and gray galahs, who swirled into the air at our approach. You’ll need to click on the image below, to enlarge it, in order to see the galahs at all, and even then they aren’t all that clear, as they were in motion—but it makes the point that Australian parrots happily make their homes in places other than rainforests.
2 responses to “The Land of the Parrot”
I’ve never heard of Australia being referred to as Land of the Parrot, but aside from the feathered species, any retail area in the CBD during school holidays would contribute to that reputation muchly 😉
I’ve encountered Land of the Parrot a number of times and places, but one never knows how widely or currently an expression is used. However, your parrots are clearly of great interest. An entire episode of the popular TV program Nature was dedicated to Australia’s parrots—which are apparently among the continent’s toughest survivors.
The website for the Nature episode has some fun images, for those who don’t live in Oz and haven’t seen the variety or numbers of parrots. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/parrots-in-the-land-of-oz/introduction/712/