LCN Partners
Learn More: About Lories

Vividly colored and full of energy, lories are unique among the parrot family. Know as Loriinae, this family group is usually divided into two classes of birds, lories and lorikeets.

Lories are larger, heavier-bodied birds with squared-off tails whereas lorikeets are more slender, with longer, tapering tails. Most lories are very brightly colored and have plumage and glossy feathers in rainbow hues. They are know to display great agility due to their strong feet and legs.

Nectar-eating Parrots?
Lories have specialized brush-tipped tongues for feeding on nectar and soft fruits from as many as 5,000 species of plants. The tip of their tongues have tufts of papillae (extremely fine hairs), which collect the nectar and pollen. Due to their high energy diet they have been observed to be hyperactive and clownish in personality, both in captivity and in the wild.

Status and Threats
Lories are widely distributed throughout the region of Australasia, including South-eastern Asia, Polynesia, Papua New Guinea and Australia.

Several species face threats that affect their populations in the wild. These threats will vary by location but may include pressures from hunting activities (for their plumage), changes in habitat (due to agriculture, logging, or other forms of alteration), capture for the pet trade (although illegal in many countries) and introduced predators (such as rats, cats and stoats).

Learn more about lories by visiting any of these websites:

WPT Parrot Encyclopedia - Lory Species
Academic Research - Google Scholar
Wikipedia - Lories and Lorikeets


lory tongue

Illustration of a lorikeet tongue
Lydekker, R. 1895 The Royal Natural History. Volume 4. Frederick Warne and Co. (from

Tahati lorikeets

Blue Lorikeets (Vini peruviana) from Tahiti
© McCormack, Gerald (2007) Cook Islands Biodiversity Database, Version 2007.2. Cook Islands Natural Heritage Trust, Rarotonga. Online at