View from the Zoo: Valentine joins rest of flock in Lost Kingdom
Here at Flamingo Land zoo we have our own love story playing out.
Valentine, our fledgling rainbow lorikeet chick has just taken his first tentative flight into the walk-through aviary at Lost Kingdom where he has joined the rest of the flock.
Hatched on February 14, Valentine is the first chick ‘born’ to proud parents, Mr and Mrs Lori Keet.
We do however hope that he will not be the last. Like people, rainbow lorikeets are monogamous, which means that they pair for life (or at least for a long time) and with a life expectancy of over 20 years, staff at the zoo are hoping that these two love birds will produce plenty more youngsters in the future.
Rainbow lorikeets are members of the parrot family and are found mainly along the eastern coastal regions of Australia.
They eat fruit, pollen and nectar and have a highly specialised tongue that looks like a powder brush to help them deal with this diet. As they flit between flowers in search of a sugary meal, they play an important role in pollinating the rainforest plants in much the same way as bees do in the UK.
If you want to get a close look at a lorikeet tongue, then you can purchase a small tub of specially prepared nectar in the Lorikeets of the Lost Kingdom aviary and feed these adorable little birds from your hand. You never know, you may even have a visit from Valentine himself.