Ugly start for stunners
THE fabled ugly duckling is facing some stiff competition from the latest clutch of parrots hatched at Perth Zoo.
The chicks, aged between one and four weeks, are not much to look at right now, but just like the fairytale it won’t be long before they mature into some of the most stunning birds on the planet.
The Sunday Times visited Perth Zoo this week to photograph three species of parrot as they slowly emerged from their nesting boxes.
The colourful purple crowned lorikeets will not develop their distinctive purple headdress until they are about eight weeks old, and will become brighter and more vibrant as they reach adulthood. Native to southern Australia, they are vocal birds that make a continuous “zit-zit” sound when flying.
As a chick, the regent parrot is easily identified by its bright orange beak.
By the time it reaches maturity at seven weeks it will resemble a rainbow, with bright green and yellow feathers and blue-tipped wings with red patches.
Just 10 days old at the time they were photographed, the elegant parrot chicks were seen opening their eyes for the time during the photo shoot.
Known for their ability to fly very high and drop straight down from a considerable height, they will each develop green and blue plumage.
Face only a mum could love: This little elegant parrot is just over a week old and is yet to develop his beautiful plumage. Insets: A pair of purple crowned lorikeets at two and four weeks old.