Botanical garden orchids, parakeets and jays

This video from the botanical garden in Leiden, the Netherlands, is about a 2010 orchids exhibition there.

In the botanical garden hothouses, 6,000 tropical orchids grow.

On our way to the garden, two ring-necked parakeets sat in a tree along the canal. They were eating fruits.

In the pond near the garden entrance, mallards and coots swimming. A jackdaw on the bank.

Two jays on a hedge in front of the hothouse buildings. Magpies there as well.

After the reconstruction of the hothouses, the two tropical aquariums have inhabitants again. In the aquarium to the left, crystal red shrimps. And glowlight rasbora fish. And threadfin rainbowfish.

Also cherry barb fish.

This is a cherry barb video.

In the aquarium at the right: golden zebra loach; pearl gourami; and honey gourami.

The aquariums mimic Asian fresh water environments.

To the left, the orchid hothouses. Prosthechea cochleata was flowering. So was a Dendrochilum species.

Still further to the left is the Victoria amazonica hall. The reconstruction of the hall is finished, but this biggest water-lily species in the world is not back yet; still in a nursery pond. When it will be back, it will share the hall with the world’s smallest flowering plants, Wolffia, which are there already.

Goldfish swam in the Victoria amazonica pond. Is the catfish, which used to be here before reconstruction, back?

Near the astronomical observatory, Coprinellus flocculosus fungi.

Many beechnuts. Saffron flowers.

A grey heron on the lawn.

Near the source of the stream: candlestick fungus.

On a tree a ring-necked parakeet. And a great spotted woodpecker climbing upwards.

Crocus goulimyi flowers.

As we leave, a great crested grebe swims and dives in the pond near the entrance/exit.

The ring-necked parakeet


This ring-necked parakeet is at a feeder. The originally African and Asian bird species is becoming widespread in Europe.

Originally posted on NatureBase:

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Australian galahs back in Avifauna zoo

An Avifauna keeper, very happy with the return of the galah parrots; photo: Avifauna

Translated from the Alphen CC site in the Netherlands:

August 27, 2013 13:18

Alphen aan den Rijn – After two days of searching, Avifauna Bird Park has back two galah cockatoos which had flown away Sunday afternoon during a bird free flight demonstration. An observant inhabitant of Woubrugge saw the birds sitting and called the park.

Avifauna says they are overjoyed about the return of the birds. ,,Thanks to all the media attention, because someone recognized the birds from the pictures.”

The park has reunited the birds with their carers.

Tropical parrot drives English combine harvester

This video is called Birds of Peru: Blue and yellow macaws – Ara ararauna.

Blue-and-yellow macaws are a big South American parrot species. I saw them flying in their native Suriname; and in Avifauna zoo.

Recently, one made news headlines in England.

From the South West News Service:

Farmers stunned after finding lost parrot… that started steering their COMBINE HARVESTER

August 21, 2013

Two farmers who picked up an exotic bird in a field where stunned after it started steering – their COMBINE HARVESTER.

Farm workers Mark Wells and Andrew Barber, both 40, were harvesting wheat when they spotted a flash of bright color.

The pair jumped off their vehicle and were surprised to see a macaw among the stalks, which they assumed must be a lost pet.

The lost macaw found by farmers Mark Wells and Andrew Barber pictured as it started driving their combine harvester

They lifted the bird back into the cab of their combine and started up the engine.

Mark and Andrew were then amazed when the bird sat on Andrew’s lap and clamped hold of the wheel in his beak – and started steering.

The creature directed the combine all the way across the field and back to the farmers’ truck.

After being so struck with the macaw they nicknamed Rio, Mark decided to take the bird home until its owners can be traced.

Mark’s wife, Georgie Wells, 38, said: “It was amazing. They couldn’t beli[e]ve it when Rio started steering.

“It’s odd enough to find a bird like that just hopping around a field in England. But to stumble across a bird which can steer a combine harvester is crazy.

“Needless to say we haven’t been able to stop laughing about it. Rio is a naturally operator, maybe he can have a job on the farm?”

Rio was spotted in the evening at around 5pm as Mr Barber and Mr Andrews were finishing up for the day at the farm.

Mark and George, who are contractors working on George E Gittus & Sons farm, said the bird was clearly hungry and dehydrated.

He stayed with the Wells at their home in Horringer, Suffolk, from Friday until Monday – where he was given their SPARE ROOM.

Mark and Georgie, who have two children, then took the exotic bird to a vet to be checked over, then handed him to a specialist breeder in the area who has an aviary.

Mrs Wells said: “Rio was shy at first, but soon began to fly around the house, where he began to repeatedly say ‘hello’ and ‘hi’ to everyone.

“He stayed in the spare room until we could take him to a local parrot handler. In the meantime we fed him treats like banana and peanut butter on toast.”

Farmers Mark and Andrew were packing wheat when they spotted the lost macaw.

They were stunned when the bird latched his beak onto the wheel and steered the Claas lexion 600 combine harvester for 20 minutes.

Mark said: “Andrew saw Rio before I did and I thought he’d gone mad when he said there was a multicoloured bird in the field.

“The macaw tried to steal the combine harvester.

“He latched onto Andrew’s leg and wouldn’t let go like he was trying to pull him off the combine.

“We picked it up and got him onto the combine harvester with us. We managed to get him off Andrew’s leg and onto his lap.

“He then latched his beak onto the steering wheel and refused to let go for twenty minutes as we drove around the field.

“Andrew took his hands off the steering wheel and let Rio steer us. We were in hysterics and just couldn’t stop laughing.

“Andrew has been saying he wants a hands free for a while – maybe now he’s found it.

“We got to try parrot steering instead of power steering.”

Cockatoos solve puzzle

This video says about itself:

July 3, 2013

A species of Indonesian parrot can solve complex mechanical problems that involve undoing a series of locks one after another, revealing new depths to physical intelligence in birds.

A team of scientists from Oxford University, the University of Vienna, and the Max Planck Institute, report in PLOS ONE a study in which ten untrained Goffin’s cockatoos [Cacatua goffini] faced a puzzle box showing food (a nut) behind a transparent door secured by a series of five different interlocking devices, each one jamming the next along in the series.

See also ScienceDaily on this.

And here.

And here.

And here.

Rare Australian night parrot rediscovered

This video from Australia says about itself:

The Night Parrot – Flying back from the brink

May 6, 2009

The Night Parrot (Pezoporos occidentalis) is one of Australia’s ‘lost’ species. It was first discovered in 1845, and named in 1861. But since that time numbers have dwindled and sightings have been so rare that the bird was at one stage thought to be extinct. We hope you enjoy this short presentation. CFZ Australia

From Wildlife Extra:

Night parrot, the Holy Grail of Australian birding, has been found

Night Parrot emerges from the shadows

July 2013. Legendary Australian naturalist John Young has apparently found the holy grail of Australian bird watching, the elusive and long-sought after Night parrot. Young has, he claims, several photos and even a short video of the bird. He has not yet revealed the location of the sightings as it would no doubt create a great rush to see the bird.

Night parrot

In September 2006, Robert ‘Shorty’ Cupitt, the ranger-on-duty of Diamantina National Park in south-west Queensland, was grading an interior road of the reserve when the blade of his vehicle exposed the yellow underbelly of a bird he didn’t recognise. It was a deceased Night Parrot – only the second specimen to be found in nearly 100 years, coming after the celebrated discovery of a road killed bird south of nearby Boulia in 1990.

There has always been some controversy over the bird’s existence, and it has been thought on at least one occasion that the Night parrot might have become extinct (If it had ever existed). It is thought to live in some extremely remote locations in Queensland, and for the population to number no more than 250 birds.

BirdLife Australia congratulates John Young for obtaining the first ever photographs of the elusive Night Parrot. Long regarded as the ghost bird of the outback, there has been no definitive evidence of live Night Parrots since the 1880s.

Critically Endangered

“The Night Parrot is one of 12 Australian parrots listed as endangered or critically endangered, meaning that without action they are at high risk of extinction”, said Samantha Vine, Head of Conservation at BirdLife Australia.


“Once this sighting is confirmed, it is vital that swift action be taken to ensure the conservation of this unique species”, Vine added. “The known threats to the Night Parrot of predation by cats and degradation of habitat by land clearing, fire and feral animals now need to be managed through the implementation of a species Recovery Plan.”

The Night Parrot is the holy grail of bird watching and while every bird watcher will want to see this bird, BirdLife Australia respects the decision to not publicly divulge the location as welfare of the birds is paramount.

For further information on the Night Parrot see the Birdlife fact sheet.

A LIVE NIGHT PARROT has reportedly been photographed in western Queensland for the first time since the species was discovered more than 150 years ago: here.

This video from Australia says about itself:

Jan 6, 2013

Trailer for the forthcoming film Glimpses And Specimens From The Land Of The Night Parrot.

Here is another night parrot video.

Night parrot: tantalising clues revealed: here.

See also here.

The Night Parrot Saga Continues: here.

Ring-necked parakeets flying

This video from the USA says about itself:

Deanna Dee

The largest North American population of naturalized Rose-ringed Parakeets, Psittacula krameri, lives in Bakersfield, CA.

This is video I took of this Parakeet in the tree in my backyard today. I am Blessed with these BEAUTIFUL birds every day. ENJOY!

This morning, a group of six ring-necked parakeets (aka: rose-ringed parakeets) flew past my window, calling.