The Golden-shouldered Parrot is famed for its bright jewel-like colouring. A totem species for the Olkola people of central Cape York, it is known as ‘Alwal’ in Olkola language.
This iconic bird was once seen in large flocks across the cape, but it’s estimated there are now only between 780 and 1,100 individuals left in the bush. These brightly coloured birds have an interesting place to raise their young – nesting in conical termite mounds that can take up to 50 years to build.
Alwal is at high risk from larger predatory birds that ambush the ground-foraging parrot from nearby woody vegetation.
This bushgift supports Bush Heritage’s work with Olkola Land Managers, restoring traditional fire regimes to maintain the grassy flats and open woodlands that the parrots need in order to survive and thrive.