Yellow-billed Lorikeet


Yellow-billed Lorikeet

Yellow-billed Lorikeet 21–23 cm; 41–62 g. Bill yellow; head olive-green, shading to russet on the hind crown, with light yellow streaks on the crown and dense pale greenish streaks on the face below eye;
back and wings green, but wings mostly red below; throat and center of both breast and belly red; sides of the breast to lower belly and vent light green; tail green above with outer feathers basally red, yellow-orange below and at tips.
 Immature duller with less red on underparts. Race major larger and paler, facial streaks yellow.

Editor’s Note: This article requires further editing work to merge existing content into the appropriate Subspecies sections. Please bear with us while this update takes place.

Yellow-billed Lorikeets from W & C New Guinea (Snow Mts E to Sepik R region) are sometimes awarded race medius, but better treated within major. Two subspecies were recognized.



Neopsittacus musschenbroekii musschenbroekii Scientific name definitions

NW New Guinea (mountains of Vogelkop Peninsula).

Neopsittacus musschenbroekii major Scientific name definitions

mountains of W, C, and E New Guinea from Snow Mts E to the Huon Peninsula and Owen Stanley Range.


Editor’s Note: Additional distribution information for this taxon can be found in the ‘Subspecies’ article above. In the future, we will develop a range-wide distribution article.


Mid-montane (e.g. Nothofagus-Podocarpus) forest, edge, secondary growth, and clearings, chiefly 1560–2660 m; seem to prefer disturbed areas and groves of casuarinas in garden areas.

Yellow billed Lorikeet

Diet and Foraging

Yellow-billed Lorikeet eats Schefflera fruits were recorded, also other fruits, berries, small hard seeds, caterpillars, and lerps; also flowers of tall eucalypts and of weeds at ground level.

Sounds and Vocal Behavior

Quite vocal. Mainly high-pitched shrill notes such as “tseet!” (also heard in flight) and similar-sounding more modulated variations. Also a double-note “tsee-chew” and chattering “chi-chi-chi-chi”.


Sept–Jan on a circumstantial basis; however, evidence for around Jun, with a juvenile and post-breeding male in late Aug. Yellow-billed Lorikeet Nest reportedly in a hole in the tree, with two eggs (two eggs in captivity).

Conservation Status

Not globally threatened. CITES II. Common; one of few mid-montane birds to have profited from human clearance of forest, being numerous in cleared areas around villages.

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