Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Australia - Pale-headed Rosella (Platycercus adscitus)

Pale-headed Rosella (Platycercus adscitus).

Sent by Gayle, a postcrosser from Brisbane, Australia.

This is from Wikipedia : The Pale-headed Rosella (Platycercus adscitus), is a broad-tailed parrot of the genus Platycercus native to northeastern Australia. It is a moderate-size parrot with a pale yellow head, predominantly white cheeks, scalloped black and gold back and pale blue underparts. Two subspecies are recognised, although some authorities consider it to be conspecific with the Eastern Rosella of southeastern Australia.

Found in open woodland, it feeds on seeds and fruit. As with other rosellas, the Pale-headed Rosella nests in hollows of large trees. It readily adapts to aviculture and is sold as a cagebird.

The Pale-headed Rosella was first described by English ornithologist John Latham in 1790. There are two subspecies, the better known palliceps (eastern Queensland), known as the Blue-cheeked Rosella, and adscitus (Cape York Peninsula). Its closest relative is the Eastern Rosella, which replaces it in southeastern Australia. Hybrids of the two taxa have been recorded where their ranges meet in northeastern New South Wales and southeastern Queensland. Some consider the two conspecific; this would add another three subspecies.

Other common names occasionally seen include Mealy Rosella, Moreton Bay Rosella, Blue Rosella, and Blue-cheeked Rosella for the northern subspecies. The term White-cheeked Rosella has been used for a species or superspecies combining the Pale-headed and Eastern forms.

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