Family Parrots (Psittacidae)

Critically Endangered

Swift Parrot (Lathamus discolor)


French: Perruche de Latham German: Schwalbensittich Spanish: Periquito migrador

Psittacus Discolor


, 1790,

New South Wales, Australia


Describer previously given as J. White#R. Monotypic.


Tasmania, breeding mostly along SE coast. Winters in SE & E Australian mainland from SE South Australia to SE Queensland, especially in C Victoria#R.

Descriptive notes

25 cm; 50–74 g. Green, with forehead and front of face, chin and throat red outlined with yellow except for deep blue patch on mid-crown; underwing-coverts, undertail-... read more


Commonest vocalization a distinctive double note "chit-chit" and longer twittering series of the... read more


In breeding season eucalypt forest, especially those with blue gum (Eucalyptus globulus),... read more

Food and feeding

Pollen and nectar, especially from Eucalyptus blossoms, in particular blue gum, but also Banksia and Xanthorrhoea... read more


Oct–Jan. Nest in hole 7–20 m up in tree, usually a mature or senescent blue gum, often semi-colonially, sometimes with ... read more


Austral migrant, moving to Australian mainland Jan–May, a few birds remaining in Tasmania... read more

Status and conservation

CRITICALLY ENDANGERED. CITES II. Restricted-range species: present in Tasmania EBA. Breeding and wintering distributions vary considerably from year to year in response to... read more

Recommended citation

Collar, N., Sharpe, C.J. & Boesman, P. (2019). Swift Parrot (Lathamus discolor). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 14 December 2019).