Trichoglossus haemotodus and all hybrids

Rainbow lorikeet

Family: Psittaculidae

Origin: Australia

 Rainbow lorikeet in tree branches looking sideways at camera.
Native bird species such as the tūī, bellbird, and hihi, compete for the same food sources.

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Aotea — Exclusion
  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Brightly coloured, long tailed parrot with blue head, red beak, orange-yellow breast and green wings, back and tail. Weighs between 75-157 grams.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment:

  • you must not release any rainbow lorikeet from containment within the Auckland region
  • you must not move any rainbow lorikeet to Aotea/Great Barrier Island group
  • you must not breed, distribute or release any rainbow lorikeet on Aotea/Great Barrier Island group
  • you will not be allowed to breed, distribute or sell any rainbow lorikeet within the Auckland region from 1 September 2022 - Until then you will still require a permit from the Department of Conservation.


Forest edges, urban areas, gardens, orchards.

Impact on environment

Aggressively competes with native nectar-feeding birds, potential reservoirs for parrot diseases.



If you have pet lorikeets, make sure they’re securely contained to avoid accidental escapes. If you are no longer able to look after your pet rainbow lorikeet, find someone who is prepared to give it a lifetime home, or contact a relevant pet shop or animal rescue organisation to get it rehomed.

Never release a rainbow lorikeet into the wild – your pet may be unable to find the food and shelter it needs, and it also puts our native species at risk.

If you see a rainbow lorikeet in the wild, please report it to Auckland Council at

Rainbow lorikeet close up in tree amongst leaves.
Native to parts of Australia.
Rainbow lorikeet looking towards camera.
Rainbow lorikeets look very similar to the more common eastern rosella.