Black Lory Care Sheet

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Scientific Facts

Common Name:Black Lory  
Scientific Name:Chalcopsitta atra
Life Span:18 years
Size:32 centimeters (13 in.)
Habitat:tropical forests, mangroves
Country of Origin:Papua New Guinea


The exotic black lory also well-known as “rajah lory” and sometimes as “red-quilled lory.” It is a blackish parrot about medium-size, with black bill, grey feet dark shade, and they show a long rounded tail, and on its under-tail, the color yellow and red is visible. Their sexes are similar. It is native to West Papua in Indonesia.

They are usually longing for the attention of humans as sometimes they are being left behind since their color is mainly black. Although they are sometimes being neglected, these birds are very temperate, and they love living in a rough house. Noise can be a factor, and they express their aggressive side, especially when they are breeding.

Physical Description


One of the uncommonness in the world of parrots is nearly 100% a blackbird. The Black Lory’s under tail is red and yellow. Young birds have red markings on their feathers scattered throughout the plumage and vary between three subspecies.

The Black Lory or C. Atra along with their cousins, the Yellow-streaked C. Sintillata sintillata, a very beautiful lory that has a dark green body set out, bright red on their forehead, lores, thighs, underwings and the underside of the tail. The green parts of the plumage are bounded with electric yellow flashing color; and the mostly dark brown colored parrot, the Duivenbode’s C. duivenbode. On their heads. There is a golden yellow ring around the face, but the forehead is yellow. Underwings and thighs are colored bright yellow, and there you can see a violet or blue patch on their lower back. These three parrots probably are among the greatest of pets.

Sub-species and Distribution of the Black Lory

  • Chalcopsitta atra atra: They are a form of Western New Guinea– primarily black, especially in adults, and on end is violet or blue while their under-tail is colored with olive or yellow splashed with red, black eye-ring and skin at the base of the bill. The adult’s eye is orange or red while grey on the young.
  • Bernstein’s Black Lories (Chalcopsitta atra bernsteini): Limited to the Misool Island, a province of Indonesia in Western New Guinea. It has red or purple markings on both their forehead and thighs but less evident in females, and they have darker blue buttocks.
  • Rajah Lories (Chalcopsitta atra insignis): From Eastern Vogelkop, Western New Guinea, and some are in Adjacent Amberpon Island, Onin, Bomberai Peninsulas- the adults have their face reddish along with their shoulders, thighs, and underwings while the young ones have blackface and forehead, their lores are stained red, and the thighs are red less bright.

Black Lories as Pets

The Black Lori, Chalcopsitta atra, as you can see, is the least colorful member of and, if not a very colorful genus. And that made them consequently the unpopular though it is equally as interesting as the other members of the genus.

These parrots are valued for their friendly and playful personality that contrasts their dark appearance. When you play-pretend with them like wrestling, tickling them, and doing the playful tricks, you’ll love and enjoy every minute you have with your precious Black Lory. They often snuggle up to you to have a nap and rest when they feel they are tired from all the playing. As an owner of Black Lory, there is no hesitation that these birds are perfect pets and companions. If you had a chance, don’t doubt and see it yourself all the great things a Black Lory has to compromise.

Native Region or Natural Habitat

Most of the common Black Lory takes place in the westernmost part of West Papua- the Indonesian part of New Guinea. The Rajah Lories are found in the western Vogelkop, while Bernsteins are found on the islands of Misool, Batanta, and Salawati, off the coast.

They are inhabiting an open habitat that includes many coastal plantations, natural in grassy savannah, and forest edge also in mangroves to sustain a lot of plant life because plants are essential to the life of birds. Others are in the Nypa palm forest, you can also see them in dryland forest, and freshwater swamp, and even very open inhibited forest on limestone. Birds are disappearing from most of those places during the wet season because birds are being fed in the dry season. You can see them way up high of 200m or 656 ft.

Behavior or Temperament

Black Lories have their place to the gentlest and best-natured of the rest of the lories. They are easily controlled so the future owners won’t have a hard time disciplining a Black Lory. Their obvious disadvantage is the sharp cries they often produce. Not everybody can tolerate them because they are noisy birds and aggressive, especially during the breeding time or other moments that excite them, but their personalities can greatly overcome those negative traits. Some of the handfed young birds of the species are highly demanded as pets.

Here are the behavior qualities of a Black Lory:

  • ·  They possess a friendly and playful personality. So you have no excuse as a bird lover not to play and spend time with them.
  • They are irresistible because of their charm, and surely you’ll have fun with them.
  • They enjoy being tickled by your hand because Black Lory desires the attention of humans, so they felt loved when you touch them.
  • They are overwhelming birds because they like to hunch to their owners after their tiring play.
  • They may be noisy and aggressive, but it is easy to control them because they are easily controlled.

Speech and Sounds

One of the disadvantages of owning a Black Lory, and probably the only one, is the possible noise level of their Black Lories. During feeding time or when the birds are excited, the birds will be aggressive, and they will be excited to eat that they will come to the point that they will scream or cry repetitively until they are given their food.

That is why doesn’t make them suitable for apartments. On the other hand, these Black Lories are also skilled as talkers. So do not be surprised to overhear a few words speak in a fun voice repeatedly. It’s like they have magic because even though they are loud and loves to scream, their wonderful personality is still prevailing in the end.


When it comes to the housing of a Black Lory, you should at least have a room or space for their so-called toys also for branches of trees, food, water, and dishes for them to enjoy their life inside their house even though they can’t move out of it.

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Here’s a quick guide of a Black Lory’s housing:

  • You should provide them adequate space for them to move freely, walk around, and exercise their wings.
  •  A single Lory needs a minimum cage size: 36” H x 48” L x 24.”
  •  To accommodate a pair of Lory, the dimension is required to have 36” H x 60” L x 36.”
  •  Easy-care flooring is recommended because these birds have the tendency to squirt a fairly liquid, and they are exerting force to release it. Therefore you also had to have a washable wall and unprotected carpet.
  • While on choosing an acrylic cage, you need to see if it is standard and high-quality powder-coated and as large as space you will allow because it is best for them and can also take it outside and hosed it down when you have to clean it.
  •  Birdcage with a well-drained floor over a concrete base is advisable.


The majority of their diet of Lories consists of nectar, flowers, fruits, pollen, and seeds. You can buy commercial feeds for them too since there are several commercial feeds available out there. Some owners of Lories failed to understand the nutritional needs of these birds, and many are shivering before they die because of their ailments.

It is now easy to feed these kinds of parrots as most of the time, it needs you to add some water or sometimes fed dry. A dry diet is not advisable because you need to add some fruits on their diet and a lot of freshwaters. This type of diet is proposed by professional nutritionists to meet the required dietary inclusions. Whereas you should have just 15% of iron to their food so that they can do well to avoid them experiencing having gout where they will suffer kidney and liver problems for they are provided plenty of protein and full beans.

Another type of diet for Lories is home-made nectar, and it is best. Lories love honey and some vegetables, also a lot of fruits, but avoid avocados and pomegranates because they have been impacted by pomegranate. And aside from nectars, you supplement them some flowers, marigold, dandelions like that, but you make sure it is pesticide-free for them to be healthy because organic is the best.

How to Address Your Lory’s Screaming

Black Lories are loud and high-pitched most of the time at dawn as what the other birds also do. And that simply shows that your birds are healthy.

  • Do not give attention to them when they are screaming. Leave the room instead of looking at them or going to them. Good to praise your bird when it stops screaming within a few seconds before you go to them. Everyone in the house should to this regularly
  • Teach them whistling or whispering. Let your bird learn that on their own. You will see the result afterward that your noisy bird became a pleasant bird that makes appropriate sounds
  •  Give a reward for showing good behavior. Toys, fruits, or cuddle them out of their cage will do.

Teaching Your Lory to Talk

It is best to set your bird’s mood in a good mood, and you must have a friendly ambiance so that your bird won’t be shy. Make sure that you know your bird, and the bird knows you as well to build that trust. Birds should also follow the routines made by the owner so that when it is still young, they are already learning

Here are the things you need to consider when teaching your lory how to talk:

  • Good Health: To reach its full potential to talk, the bird should be perfectly healthy. Therefore, condition your bird’s health by giving the right food and environment.
  • Intelligence: Black lory is intelligent, amongst others. They are able to mimic sounds and phrases.
  • Love and Trust: Lories only talk when trust and love are built between him and his owner. If these two are absent, then the lory will not utter anything like it has nothing to tell you. 
  • Care, Patience, and Time. Giving more time and showing care leads to faster learning. 
  • Daily Routine: Making routines make birds happy and safe. Lessons should be a part of their schedule of that routine, and playing for a short time helps your bird to talk. 
  • Young Birds: Ages from 2 to 5 years old. Young years is the easiest time for the birds to learn. This time they learn their parent’s language.


1st Lesson

You need to show your bird and make them feel that they are loved by having them feel the warmth coming from you. 1st is by tickling their neck from behind the same way how its parents trained them in their nest. A simple way to give a love signal from the owners to the birds the same as how you do the thing to humans. By that, you can now teach birds to say basic and simple words. Like when you are going to tickle their neck, you say “I love you” so that the bird will take that action as a token of love. And as you kiss the beak. You say “kiss,” and the bird will take that as you show them your love. Do it repeatedly as necessary until your bird distinguish certain words and actions. And after, teach them with mentioning their name so that they are aware

2nd Lesson

After teaching basic words and gestures, you now get into deeper their cognitive behavior. You simply say words good morning and goodnight during the time of the day; address foods they are going to eat especially their favorites; teach them the basic actions like hop or come to go near to you or your arms and “scratch” when you are going to do it to them.

3rd Lesson

Now, this is the finale where you are going to do it in a complex way. Like, let them learn while listening and watching. You can use someone talking on the phone and say words from time to time so that the bird will get jealous. In that way, your pet will get a partner in your family and do what you have shown.

Availability: Where to Get One?

For those who want to have Black Lory, you can visit pet shops and if there’s available black lory. If not, you may search online sites and see if they are selling this bird.

How to Care

Once they take their first bath, they won’t be able to get enough of it.

  • Cage. Choose a big cage for lory. The bigger the cage, the happier your lory is. Provide your lory with a lot of toys, food and water dishes, perches, and wide space for them. You should have water and food on both sides. The perches should not be so near the food containers. It should be moved outdoors for fresh air and sunlight.
  • Diet. A well-balanced diet gives them a good foundation for their health. They are fed on soft fruits and nectars. They use tongues to get the nectar. Again, they don’t eat seeds, but sometimes the insect larvae will do. There are some nectar replacements available in the market. Also, give them supplements along with veggies and fruits. Mix vitamins into their water every after 2 to 3 days.
  • Let your pet stay in another cage and have it adapt naturally before you introduce new birds to the cage. Give them 2 weeks allotment for their adaptation. 
  • Hygiene. Once they take their first bath, they won’t be able to get enough of it, so avail them of their favorite toys. Take the leftovers and old food, do it regularly. Change their water daily. 
  • Deworming. Have your birds take vitamins in several weeks. Deworming is best done every six months. 
  • Lice & Mites. Parasites are likely to attack birds. Lice and mite spray helps you to kill them. When you spray, spray on everything inside the cage, even the bird, but make sure not to spray on their eyes. 
  • Training. Train them in a calm and quiet situation. Don’t give them stress after taking them home. Spend more time with your bird until you get their love and trust
  • Breeding. They breed easily and get mature 8 months later. Both sexes look the same.

Keeping Your Lory Safe, Happy and Healthy 

  • Give them a lot of attention.
  • Provide high-quality food, particularly fresh and pesticide-free including fruits and vegetables. 
  • Make sure that they have clean and fresh water. 
  • Daily, change the water and food containers. 
  • Haze them up by misting, bathing, or showering.


What a Veterinarian Looks for in a Healthy Lory

  • Dry and open nares,
  • Clear and bright eyes,
  • Alert and erect posture, 
  • Smooth beak,
  • Body free from bumps or lumps,
  • Smooth and bright feathers

Common Disorders of Lories

The majority of these diseases are due to malnutrition. Bring your pets to the vet regularly to prevent diseases.

  • Hemochromatosis
  • Fungal infections
  • Liver disease
  • Circovirus
  • Reproductive disorders
  • Parasites
  • Obesity
  • Injuries
  • Bacterial infections

Treating Beak and Feather Disease

Recognizing the Symptoms

1. See if there might be bleeding on their missing feathers on the wings and tail, especially for feathers that fall out so easily.

2. If your bird is infected, it affects the bird’s flying ability; it will not fly well.  

3. See if there’s any discoloration; therefore, you must know your bird’s coloration, especially on their yellow feathers, and check if the tails or feathers have any yellow patches. 

4. A drop in bird’s vocal activity could mean something so monitor if they are depressed.

5. Observe for secondary symptoms like vomiting, difficulty in eating, loss of weight, and green mucus. 

6. Have your bird undergo a test. 


1. Separate the infected birds for at least 2 months with enough distance to prevent being harmed.

2. Give nutritional supplements to somehow suppress the virus. But still, isolate them from infected ones. 

3. Heat them with an infrared light because feather loss can lower the body temperature of the bird.

4. Take your bird to the vet to treat the secondary infections.

FAQ Section

Do lories fart?

They do fart sometimes.

Is lory a type of parrot?

Yes, they are arboreal parrots.

How do you know if parrots like you?

They do vocalization to show that they are happy in you and your home.

Do birds get cold?

Like humans, yes, they get cold too. They depend on their feathers during winter; the more they fluff, the more they feel the heat.

Which birds are easy to tame?

Parrots. Black Lorries are easily trained and controlled with enough training and time.

What’s the smartest bird?

Parrots are one of the most intelligent as they have the biggest HVCs.

Can Lory birds talk?

Yes, with proper training that can lead them to learn good vocabulary and talk.

What does black lory usually eat aside from commercial feeds?

They eat fruits and vegetables and sometimes larvae.

Do they have emotions?

Yes, just like humans. They often get jealous when their owner talks to someone on the phone, and they also find a member of the family to talk to.

Why makes a Black Lory noisy?

They usually scream when they get excited, especially when there’s food.

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