It is exciting to find a flock of Long Billed Corellas a long way from their usual territory. It is also special to see in the wild, a species that is not normally widely dispersed and is not a common bird population.
The Corella Family:
The white Little Corella has a pink patch at its beak and yellow under its tail and is well known around Queensland. The Long Billed Corella is found in Victoria and a small coastal area in New South Wales and Queensland’s Gold Coast. The center of main distribution for this species is south-west Victoria.
It was exciting to find a flock of approximately 30 Long Billed Corella, called a “family party”, at Maryborough Queensland this week.
Identifying the Long Billed Corella:
Looking at the front and back view of the Long Billed Corella the important identifying features are:
the top part of the beak significantly overhanging the lower beak;
the pink colouring around the throat;
and a very pale yellow under the tail.
Whilst the Little Corella has a beak with only a slight overhang, no pink at the throat and sulphur yellow markings under the tail.
They are noisy birds:
These birds are noisy! Their calls are discordant which makes them seem even noisier! They have a high pitched call in flight and a streaking alarm call.
Sentinel warning system:
Corella feed on the ground using their long bills to dig up the roots and bulbs on which they feed. While the main flock feeds on the ground a few remain in the tree to keep lookout and warn of danger. Corellas are about 37cm in size and nest in tree hollows.
Breeding time is August to December. Sighting these birds in Maryborough at this time may mean they will breed in this locality. Male and female birds share the incubation of their eggs (usually two). The female sits on the eggs during the night and the male sits during the day for 24 days. The parents then share the care of the hatchlings for 7 weeks in the nest and 3 weeks after they leave the nest.
What an exciting find!
Enjoy and write me back a comment, I would love that!