Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database


For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
 
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Extinct
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Other EPBC Act Plans Plan for the Eradication of Rabbits and Rodents on Subantarctic Macquarie Island (Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS), 2007a) [Threat Abatement Plan].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Declaration under s178, s181, and s183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of threatened species, List of threatened ecological communities and List of threatening processes (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000) [Legislative Instrument].
 
List of Migratory Species (13/07/2000) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000b) [Legislative Instrument].
 
List of Migratory Species - Amendment to the list of migratory species under section 209 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (26/11/2013) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2013af) [Legislative Instrument].
 
State Government
    Documents and Websites
TAS:Macquarie Island Nature Reserve and World Heritage Area Management Plan (Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS), 2006) [Management Plan].
TAS:Summary of Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Plan - Part A Overview March 2007 (Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS), 2007) [State Species Management Plan].
TAS:Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project Plan (Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS), 2008a) [Management Plan].
TAS:Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae erythrotis (Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island), Macquarie Island Parakeet): Species Management Profile for Tasmania's Threatened Species Link (Threatened Species Section (TSS), 2014um) [State Action Plan].
State Listing Status
TAS: Listed as Extinct (Threatened Species Protection Act 1995 (Tasmania): September 2012 list)
Non-statutory Listing Status
NGO: Listed as Extinct (The Action Plan for Australian Birds 2010)
Scientific name Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae erythrotis [26035]
Family Psittacidae:Psittaciformes:Aves:Chordata:Animalia
Species author  
Infraspecies author (Wagler, 1832)
Reference  
Distribution map Species Distribution Map not available for this taxon.
Illustrations Google Images

Scientific name: Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae erythrotis

Common name: Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island)

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) is an accepted subspecies of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae) (del Hoyo et al. 1997; Higgins 1999).

Red-crowned Parakeet subspecies from Norfolk Island and New Caledonia are now described as a separate species (i.e. the Norfolk Island Green Parrot (C. cooki) and the New Caledonian Parakeet (Cayanoramphus saisetti)) (Boon et al. 2001).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was a medium-sized green parrot (length about 27 cm). The head was bright green with a crimson cap and eye-stripe. The upperparts were bright to dark yellowish-green with a scarlet patch on either side of the rump (usually concealed by the wings when resting), and a greenish-blue leading edge to the wings. The eyes were yellow or red, and the bill was black with a pearly base. Sexes appeared similar, but the female was smaller (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Higgins 1999; Oliver 1955).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was endemic to Macquarie Island, in the Southern Ocean (Higgins 1999). It was last recorded in 1890 (Taylor 1979). There are no current captive populations of this subspecies and none have been reintroduced into the wild. Other Red-crowned Parakeet subspecies are kept in captivity (Higgins 1999).

From a species perspective, the Red-crowned Parakeet occurs as several small populations on islands in the south-west Pacific Ocean and the Southern Ocean, mainly centred on New Zealand and the outlying islands of the Kermadec, Chatham, Auckland and Antipodes (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Higgins 1999; Oliver 1955; Taylor 1975, 1985; Triggs & Daugherty 1996).

There are six accepted subspecies of the Red-crowned Parakeet, two of which are extinct. The only subspecies that occurred in Australia are the extinct Red-crowned Parakeet (Lord Howe Island) (Cyanoramphus novazelandiae subflavescens) and the extinct Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) (Garnett & Crowley 2000; Hindwood 1940; Taylor 1985).

Most populations of the Red-crowned Parakeet have declined since the 19th century (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Higgins 1999; Oliver 1955), although most are currently stable and the species, as a whole, is not considered threatened (del Hoyo et al. 1997).

There have not been any comprehensive surveys for the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island). There have, however, been a number of ornithological surveys on Macquarie Island since the subspecies became extinct (e.g. Mackenzie 1968; Terauds et al. 2006).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was formerly considered common (Forshaw & Cooper 2002; Oliver 1955; Taylor 1979). It occurred as a single population on Macquarie Island, but has not been seen since 1890 (Taylor 1979). It is unknown if the subspecies occurred as solitary birds or in flocks.

Though the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) population is said to have been common (Forshaw & Cooper 2002; Oliver 1955; Taylor 1979), no extreme fluctuations in population numbers were reported. In other subspecies however, fluctuations in population numbers have been reported (del Hoyo et al. 1997).

There are no records of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) cross-breeding with other species in the wild. Populations of other subspecies on the Chatham and Auckland Islands occasionally hybridise with the closely-related Yellow-crowned Parakeet (Cyanoramphus auriceps) (Flack 1976; Nixon 1994; Taylor 1975, 1985).

Macquarie Island was designated a Wildlife Sanctuary in 1933 (Anon. 1987), declared a Nature Reserve in 1978 (Anon. 1987), inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1997 and included on the National Heritage List in 2007 (DEWHA 2008zzo).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) inhabited coastal tussock grasslands on subantarctic Macquarie Island (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Taylor 1979).

Nothing is known of the sexual maturity, life expectancy and natural mortality of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island). Age of sexual maturity in populations of other subspecies is also unknown (Higgins 1999), though one juvenile female was seen behaving as mated pair with a male just one week after reaching independence (Greene 1990), and captive birds are said to breed when they are less than one year old (Higgins 1999).

Little is known of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) diet, but they are said to have fed on crustaceans and other small invertebrates (Oliver 1955; Taylor 1979).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was terrestrial (Forshaw & Cooper 1981) and is said to have foraged on the seashore, taking invertebrates from piles of beach-cast seaweed (Oliver 1955; Taylor 1979).

Given its endemism, the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was probably sedentary. However, parakeets were twice seen flying over the sea, away from Macquarie Island (Falla 1937). It has been suggested that they may have been flying to nearby offshore islets, or been blown out to sea by squalls (Forshaw & Cooper 2002). Other subspecies are sedentary or resident (Higgins 1999), though birds occurring on archipelagoes may fly between neighbouring islands, sometimes covering up to 40 km over water (Taylor 1985). However, most movements are shorter, usually covering several hundred metres or a few kilometres (Fleming 1939; Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Higgins 1999; Taylor 1985).

There is nothing known of the home ranges or territories of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island). In some subspecies of the Red-crowned Parakeet, pairs establish breeding territories which are centred around the roosting sites and nest sites, and are defended before and during the breeding season, though territorial behaviour has not been recorded in all subspecies (Greene 1990; Taylor 1985).

The Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) would have been quite distinctive as it was the only parrot which occurred on Macquarie Island (Taylor 1979).

There is no information regarding the detectability of the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island). Other subspecies are quiet and unobtrusive and extremely difficult to detect, as their green plumage is well camouflaged among the foliage. They are usually located by the noise of their foraging activities and occasional calls. Once detected they are tame and easily approached (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Higgins 1999).

The main threat to the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) was predation by feral Cats (Felis catus), whose numbers increased dramatically following the introduction and population explosion of Rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) (Taylor 1979). Large numbers of Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) were also killed for food by sealers in the 19th century. Predation by Rats (Rattus rattus) was also a problem (Forshaw & Cooper 1981; Oliver 1955; Taylor 1975).

A translocation program may be suitable for the reintroduction of the Red-crowned Parakeet (or Norfolk Island Green Parrot) to Macquarie Island. Although unsuccessful translocation programs have been trialed for the Norfolk Island Green Parrot (Garnett & Crowley 2000; Hermes et al. 1986), similar programs have been successful for the Red-crowned Parakeet in New Zealand. These programs have been successful with as few as 15 birds, but programs with less than 150 birds cause genetic bottlenecks. Low hatchling success in the New Zealand program may be the result of inbreeding depression or poor nest box design (Oritz-Catedral & Brunton 2008).

Eradication programs are ongoing on Macquarie Island. Cats were eradicated in 2002, the Weka (Gallirallus australis) in 1988 and a program to eradicate Rats, Rabbits and Mice (Mus musculus) is ongoing (Tas. PWS 2009)

Key management documents that may be relevant to the Red-crowned Parakeet (Macquarie Island) include:

  • Plan for the Eradication of Rabbits and Rodents on Subantarctic Macquarie Island (Tas. PWS 2007a)
  • Macquarie Island Nature Reserve and World Heritage Area Management Plan 2006 (Tas. PWS 2006)
  • Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Plan - Part A Overview March 2007 (Tas. PWS 2007)
  • Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project Plan July 2008 (Tas. PWS 2008a).

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Uncategorised:Uncategorised:threats not specified Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae erythrotisin Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gm) [Internet].

Anon (1987). Macquarie Island Nature Reserve Visitor's Handbook. Hobart, Tasmania: Tasmanian National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Boon, W.M., C.H. Daugherty & G.K. Chambers (2001). The Norfolk Island Green Parrot and New Caledonian Red-crowned Parakeet are distinct species. Emu. 101:113-121.

del Hoyo, J., A. Elliott & J. Sargatal, eds. (1997). Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 4, Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Barcelona, Spain: Lynx Edicions.

Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) (2008zzo). Macquarie Island - World Heritage. [Online]. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/heritage/places/world/macquarie/index.html.

Falla, R.A. (1937). British Australian and New Zealand Antarctic Research Expedition Report. Series B, Vol. 2, Birds.

Flack, J.A.D. (1976). Hybrid parakeets on the Mangere Islands, Chatham Group. Norornis. 23:253-255.

Fleming, C.A. (1939). Birds of the Chatham Islands. Emu. 38:380-413.

Forshaw, J.M. & W.T. Cooper (1981). Parrots of the World. Melbourne, Victoria: Lansdowne.

Garnett, S.T. & G.M. Crowley (2000). The Action Plan for Australian Birds 2000. [Online]. Canberra, ACT: Environment Australia and Birds Australia. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/action/birds2000/index.html.

Greene, T.C. (1990). Breeding Biology of New Zealand Parakeets on Little Barrier Island. Unpublished report. Wellington, New Zealand: New Zealand Department of Conservation.

Hermes, N., O. Evans & B. Evans (1986). Norfolk Island birds: a review. Notornis. 33:141-149.

Higgins, P.J. (ed.) (1999). Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds. Volume Four - Parrots to Dollarbird. Melbourne: Oxford University Press.

Hindwood, K.A. (1940). The birds of Lord Howe Island. Emu. 40:1-86.

MacKenzie, D. (1968). The birds and seals of the Bishop and Clerk Islets, Macquarie Island. Emu. 67:241-245.

Nixon, A.J. (1994). Feeding ecology of hybridizing parakeets on Mangere Island, Chatham Islands. Notornis. 41:5-18.

Oliver, W.R.B. (1955). New Zealand Birds. Wellington, New Zealand: Reed.

Oritz-Catedral, L. & D.H. Brunton (2008). Clutch parameters and reproductive success of a translocated population of red-crowned parakeet (Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae). Australian Journal of Zoology. 56:389-393.

Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS) (2006). Macquarie Island Nature Reserve and World Heritage Area Management Plan. [Online]. Hobart, Tasmania: Department of Tourism, Arts and the Environment. Available from: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/index.aspx?base=6182.

Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS) (2007). Summary of Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Plan - Part A Overview March 2007. [Online]. Hobart, Tasmania: Department of Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/index.aspx?base=6186.

Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS) (2007a). Plan for the Eradication of Rabbits and Rodents on Subantarctic Macquarie Island. [Online]. Hobart: Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/heritage/publications/protecting/macquarie-rabbit-eradication-plan.html.

Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS) (2008a). Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project Plan. [Online]. Hobart, Tasmania: Department of Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/?base=10516.

Tasmania Parks & Wildlife Service (Tas. PWS) (2009). Macquarie Dispatch - Macquarie Island Pest Eradication Project Newsletter. 4. [Online]. Available from: http://www.parks.tas.gov.au/file.aspx?id=16250.

Taylor, R.H. (1975). Some ideas on speciation in New Zealand parakeets. Notornis. 22:110-121.

Taylor, R.H. (1979). How the Macquarie Island Parakeet became extinct. New Zealand Journal of Ecology. 2:42-45.

Taylor, R.H. (1985). Status, habits and conservation of Cyanoramphus parakeets in the New Zealand region. Moors, P.J., ed. Conservation of Island Birds. 3:195-211. International Council for Bird Preservation (ICBP) Technical Publication.

Terauds, A., R. Gales, G.B. Baker & R. Alderman (2006). Foraging areas of Black-browed and Grey-headed Albatrosses breeding on Macquarie Island in relation to marine protected areas. Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems. 16:133-146.

Triggs, S.J. & C.H. Daugherty (1996). Conservation and genetics of New Zealand parakeets. Bird Conservation International. 6:89-101.

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Cyanoramphus novaezelandiae erythrotis in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Thu, 24 Jul 2014 10:31:47 +1000.