Green Rosella

Quick Facts

Length: 32 cm
Height: -
Weight: 140 grams
Colour: -
Habitat: Prefers dense moist forests and savanna woodlands.
Food: Seeds of grasses, shrubs and trees. Fruits, buds, flowers, nectar, insects and larvae.
Predators: -
Status: Secure in Tas, Vic and WA. Not present in all other states and territories

The Green Rosella is Australia's largest rosella. It is a medium-sized parrot with a broad tail. The upperparts are dark, mottled green and black, in contrast with the yellow head, neck and underbody. When flying the bright yellow body is very obvious. There are distinct blue cheek patches, a red band across the forehead, and blue shoulder patches. Females are slightly duller, while juveniles are mainly green. Their flight is strong and swift with only slight undulations. Also called the Tasmanian Rosella, or Yellow-bellied, Mountain or Green Parrot.

The similar but smaller Eastern Rosella is the only other rosella in Tasmania and it has a mostly red head, neck and breast and a white cheek patch.

The Green Rosella is restricted to Tasmania and the Bass Straight islands.

The Green Rosella prefers dense moist forests and savanna woodlands, but can be found in most Tasmanian habitats except treeless moorlands and cleared farmlands.

Green Rosellas are mainly sedentary but may wander looking for food and water. Juveniles may gather in large flocks and wander over large areas.

The Green Rosella eats mainly the seeds of grasses, shrubs and trees; fruits, buds and flowers; nectar; insects and larvae. It feeds both on the ground and in trees. It is inconspicuous when feeding on the ground, but noisy and prominent when disturbed.

Breeding of the Green Rosella is not well known. They lay their eggs in a hollow of a trunk, limb or spout (broken dead limb) of a tree, usually an eucalypt. They may compete with Common Starlings for hollows. The nest hollow is lined with wood dust and the birds chew at the entrance to the hollow to widen it. The female may spend several weeks in the hollow before laying and she alone incubates, leaving the nest only to be fed by the male.

The Green Rosella may cause damage to apple orchards and, though protected, may be controlled under a licence system.

Author: Rosalyn Plunkett
Last Updated: Friday 6th September, 2013
BirdLife Australia -


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