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Chattering Lory Lorius garrulus
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
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This species is undergoing a rapid population decline that is projected to continue as a direct result of habitat loss and human exploitation for the cagebird trade. It therefore qualifies as Vulnerable.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.

30 cm. Forest-dwelling parrot. Predominantly red, mantle sometimes with traces of yellow spotting. Orange bill, darker at base. Dull green thighs and wings. Yellow bend of wing and underwing-coverts. Dark green tail tip. Similar spp. Violet-necked Lory Eos squamata is smaller with red-and-black wings and violet nape and neck collar. Female Eclectus Parrot Eclectus roratus has large black, bill and purple patches on belly and mantle. Voice Distinctive, loud, nasal bray given frequently in flight. Also loud, disyllabic call, sometimes given in series from an exposed perch.

Distribution and population
Lorius garrulus is endemic to North Maluku, Indonesia, where it is known from Morotai, Rau, Halmahera, Widi, Ternate, Bacan and Obi (BirdLife International 2001). It is locally common, but rare near settlements and plantations. In 1991-1992, the population was estimated at 46,360-295,540 birds, with trappers potentially removing c.10% annually, a clearly unsustainable rate of harvest. However, in 1994, 52,500 individuals (39,600-69,900) were estimated in only 1,060 km2 of forest on Halmahera, suggesting a higher population than initially calculated. Very high densities can apparently be sustained in primary rainforest: this habitat at Miaf yielded an estimate of 149.0 (116.6-190.4) birds per km2.

Population justification
A population size of 46,000-295,000 individuals was estimated by Lambert (1993a, b) although subsequent work in 1994 suggests the population may at that time have been considerably higher.

Trend justification
Data from the UNEP-WCMC CITES trade database shows that legal trade declined through the 1990s and ceased in 2003, with an average of 1915 birds taken per year between 1984-2008 (three generations). Poaching figures of around 2,800 birds were recorded in 2007 (Anon, 2008). Assuming an average rate of 5,000 birds taken annually for trade (legal and illegal), and based on the 1992 population estimate of 45,000-300,000 individuals a decline of 34%-95% over 25 years (three generations) may have occurred; however, based on density estimates of up to 149 birds/km2 the population is now thought to have been significantly underestimated, and taking this into account a decline of 30-50% over three generations is estimated to have taken place.

It occurs up to 1,050 m, most commonly in montane forest, rarely in gardens and coconut plantations, although this may reflect variations in trapping pressure rather than habitat preference. Moreover, while it is tolerant of logging, the highest densities are to be found in primary forest. It is a canopy species, occasionally descending to the lower canopy to feed, and typically nesting in holes in very tall trees.

The main threat stems from trapping for the cage-bird trade. This is the most popular bird exported from east Indonesia, largely owing to its strong imitative abilities. Several thousand individuals were legally taken from the wild annually during the 1980s and early 1990s, although the true figure was probably much higher. Legal trade declined through the 1990s and ceased in 2003 (Poulsen et al. 1999); however, illegal trade continues: in 2007 around 2,800 were recorded as poached and in 2008, 60 were recorded in trade in Javan bird markets (R. Nursahid per J. Gilardi in litt. 2009). Forests within its range were largely intact at the outset of the 1990s, but exploitation by logging companies for economically valuable timber has become intensive. Important nesting-trees are targeted for extraction because of their large size, and with logging roads greatly facilitating access for trappers, this represents an increasingly significant combination of threats.

Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix II. In 2002, ProFauna Indonesia, in collaboration with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) from the UK, launched a report to publicise the numbers of parrots trapped in North Maluku in 2001 (R. Tri Prayudhi in litt. 2008). This was followed by campaigns conducted by ProFauna Indonesia, supported by Yayasan KAMU, a local NGO. In 2008, a further report was launched by ProFauna Indonesia, again with the support of the RSPCA, to raise awareness of the capture and smuggling of parrots from North Halmahera (R. Tri Prayudhi in litt. 2008). A healthy population occurs in 167,300 ha of forest at Lalobata and Ake Tajawe on Halmahera which was declared a national park in 2004, although illegal logging and bird trapping have continued (Anon 2008). Since August 2007, a project has been aiming to effectively manage the protected area, by building capacity for effective management, monitoring illegal trade and raising public awareness and support (Anon 2008). Conservation Actions Proposed
Conduct long-term research into its population size, age structure, ranging behaviour and the relative effects of different threats. Monitor trade. Initiate a conservation awareness campaign. Increase anti-poaching and anti-smuggling operations, perhaps through improved patrolling by the Indonesian Navy or maritime police (R. Tri Prayudhi in litt. 2008).

Anon. 2008. Help for the endemic parrots of Halmahera, Indonesia. Cyanopsitta: 21.

BirdLife International. 2001. Threatened birds of Asia: the BirdLife International Red Data Book. BirdLife International, Cambridge, U.K.

IUCN. 2015. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015-4. Available at: (Accessed: 19 November 2015).

Lambert, F. R. 1993. Trade, status and management of three parrots in the North Moluccas, Indonesia: White Cockatoo Cacatua alba, Chattering Lory Lorius garrulus and Violet-eared Lory Eos squamata. Bird Conservation International 3: 145-168.

Lambert, F.; Wirth, R.; Seal, U. S.; Thomsen, J. B.; Ellis-Joseph, S. 1993. Parrots: an action plan for their conservation 1993-1998.

Poulsen, M. K.; Lambert, F. R.; Cahyadin, Y. 1999. Evaluation of the proposed Lalobata Ake Tajawe National Park: in the context of biodiversity conservation priorities on Halmahera. PKA / Birdlife International Indonesia Programme, Bogor.

Further web sources of information
Detailed species accounts from the Threatened birds of Asia: the BirdLife International Red Data Book (BirdLife International 2001).

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Bird, J., Davidson, P., Mahood, S., Symes, A., Taylor, J. & Tobias, J.

Gilardi, J., Nursahid, R. & Prayudhi, R.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S. & Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Lorius garrulus. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Chattering lory (Lorius garrulus) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Vulnerable
Family Psittacidae (Parrots)
Species name author (Linnaeus, 1758)
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 25,000 km2
Country endemic? Yes
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species