Kingdom - Animalia
Phylum - Chordata
Class - Aves
Order - Psittaciformes
Family - Psittaculidae(Loriinae)
Genus - Chalcopsitta (atra)

Black Lory


The Black Lory, Chalcopsitta atra also known as Rajah Lory or Red-quilled Lory is a medium-sized, up to 30cm long, blackish parrot with black bill, dark grey feet and long rounded tail. It has yellow and red undertail. Both sexes are similar.
Scientific Info
Scientific Name - Chalcopsitta atra
Type - Bird
Diet - Omnivore
Size - 32 cm (12.5 in)
Weight - 230-260g (8-9.1 oz)
Life Span - One specimen lived over 17.5 years in captivity
Colour - black, rump violet/blue,undertail olive/yellow washed with red, bare black eye-ring, black skin
Skin Type - Feathers
Habitat - lowland forests,Edges of forests, coastal savannah and mangroves.
Average Clutch Size - 2

This species has a very large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.


Rainbow Lorikeet

location of origin

An Indonesian endemic, the Black Lory is distributed to open habitat and lowland forests of Western New Guinea and surrounding islands. There are two distinct population of the Black Lory. The eastern bird population Chalcopsitta atra insignis have reddish face, shoulder, thigh and underwings while the western population and nominate form Chalcopsitta atra atra of West Irian Jaya are mainly black.


The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as locally common (del Hoyo et al. 1997).The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

Housing Requirements:

n Australian aviaries it would be best to give each pair a large aviary of their own. Not to be housed with other birds due to their aggressive nature.

  • A suspended cage is the preferred housing for these birds. Overseas breeding is done in suspended cages of 3 metres in length, 1 metre wide and 1 metre high (10 x 3.5 x 3.5 feet).

  • Can be housed in a parrot style aviary of about 4 metres long, 1 metre wide and 2.1 metres high (12 x 3.5 x 7 feet). The floor should be concrete and easily cleaned. The aviary flights need double wiring between the flights to avoid aggression and injury to other birds. If space allows the pairs should not be housed side by side. It is preferable to have a different species between pairs.

  • These are active and sometimes noisy birds that like branches to chew, along with other activity items to keep them active and entertained. These birds love to play with the "play gym" toys that are offered to the pet birds. Physical and mental activity should be encouraged and this may be beneficial to a healthy breeding pair.

  • All fixtures, fittings, floor, feed and water bowls must easy to clean and done so on a regular basis. Don't forget to clean any areas of the wire mesh, walls, perches etc that are contaminated by the food mixes. A simple hosing with water may not be adequate, so be prepared to use a brush to remove any dried on food.

  • These birds love to bathe in the water and as many birds leave some wet or dry mix in the water bowl, the automatic water systems that flush out the water bowl on a regular basis can be the best water system. These systems do not replace the regular manual cleaning of the water bowls. Stainless steel utensils are ideal.

Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Diet / Feeding:

Natural foods in the wild include flowers, nectar, pollen, fruits, insects and insect larvae.The black capped lory requires a typical Lory diet. Wet and dry lory mix plus fruits and vegetables. Some will consume some livefood such as mealworms.


A basic overview only. Dimensions are typical / average and can vary widely, influenced by the owner's preferences and the birds preferences. Parent bird's preferences can also be influenced by the size and type of nest-box / log in which the bird was hatched and reared. If space allows, offering a choice of sizes and types of logs or nest-boxes, and placed in various locations within the aviary, can allow the parent birds to make their own choice. Once a pair has chosen a specific nest-box/log and been successful in it, offer that one to them each breeding season. Try and keep that one for their exclusive use. Once a pair has chosen its log or nest-box, the other ones can generally be removed. If the "spare" boxes are to be removed and moved to another flight, ensure the log / nest-box is cleaned to ensure the receptacle has the minimal contamination of mites, parasites and pathogens.

Log / Nest-box:

  • Length / depth 400 mm (or approx. 16 inches)

  • Log internal diameter approx. 250 mm. (or approx. 10 inches)

  • Nest-box internal dimensions approx.250 mm square (or approx. 10 inches square)

  • Diameter of entrance hole approx. 75 mm (or approx. 3 inches)

  • Inspection hole (square or round) 100 mm (or approx 4 inches)

  • A removable top / lid can be a useful access point for inspections and for cleaning.

  • Location and height of log / nest-box

  • Angle of log or nest box

Nesting log / nest-box material:

Decomposed non-toxic saw dust, wood shavings or other suitable material/s.

R. Low recommends an inverted "L" shaped nestbox for Lories and many parrots.

The nest box is left in the aviary or suspended cage year round as Lories and lorikeets will roost in the nest during the non-breeding season.

Timber nest-boxes generally require a climbing structure attached inside the box below the entrance hole. Both logs and nests need an entrance hole/opening about 100 mm (about 4 inches) from the top. The exact size of the entrance hole depends on the size of the species. Many species of parrots like the entrance hole to be just big enough to squeeze through. An appropriate size entrance hole will help to give the birds a feeling of security and confidence to effectively start and raise a clutch of young.

The Black Lory will roost in the nest year round. Young non breeding birds will roost in the nest year round.

Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory
Black Lory

  • Egg Colour White.

  • Clutchper year 2 - 3.

  • Eggs per nest 2.

  • Incubation approx. 24 - 25 days.

  • Fledge approx. 10 weeks.

  • Independent approx. another 6 - 8 weeks.

Young are fed by the parents for about 2 weeks after they leave the nest.Pairs of the Black Lory can be extremely aggressive at breeding time.The young can be leg rung at age of 16-18 days.

  • Details
  • Indonesia -Indonesian
  • Papua New Guinea -Western New Guinea

Scroll To Top