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Flush behaviour, catchability and morphometrics of the Ground Parrot Pezoporus wallicus in south-eastern Queensland


The flush behaviour of the Ground Parrot is described, and the success rates of several netting methods are compared. While netting at nests was the most successful, dusk and group netting yielded the highest capture rates among methods that can be used year round. Of the 115 parrots banded, 35 were chicks (9% retrap rate) and 80 were free-flying birds (28% retrap rate). All recaptures were in the same areas as originally banded, indicating a highly sedentary nature of young birds (<3 months old) and subadults/adults (>7 months). Immigration and emigration of young birds (3-7 months) occurred in the autumn. Annual survivorship of birds banded as free-flying individuals was 60 per cent. Four age classes were recognized (chick, juvenile, subadult and adult). Ageing was based on a combination of plumage characters and iris colour. Ground Parrots may be sexed by culmen length but more data are needed. The species exhibits four of the five morphological features correlated with a granivorous existence.

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