April 12, 2024

Archie Wertheim

Technology Integration and Foundations for Effective Leadership

Rainbow-Colored Bird Escapes Zoo in Most Obvious Way Possible

2 min read
Rainbow-Colored Bird Escapes Zoo in Most Obvious Way Possible

A rainbow lorikeet in mid-flight.

A rainbow lorikeet in mid-flight.
Image: sompreaw (Shutterstock)

The U.K.’s Colchester Zoo is trying to bring home the least sneaky animal escapee possible: a rainbow lorikeet. The brightly colored bird made its daring getaway last weekend by simply hitching a ride onto a visitor as they were about to leave its enclosure.

The rainbow lorikeet (Trichoglossus moluccanus) is a medium-sized species of parrot native to Australia. Unlike some other colorful birds, both males and females have a similar appearance, featuring a mix of blue, orange, green, and yellow feathers. Native populations of the bird are healthy, though it has become a pest in parts of Western Australia where it was illegally introduced to in the 1960s.

This particular rainbow lorikeet pulled off its escape on Saturday. The Colchester Zoo has a walk-in enclosure where members of the public can interact with and even feed birds like the rainbow lorikeet with a cup of nectar. At some point, the bird landed on a visitor just as they were exiting the area. The visitor reportedly called for a zookeeper to get the bird off, but the parrot fled before help arrived. The staff then chased after it as it flew from tree to tree. At one point, they even managed to get close enough to the bird using ladders to try coaxing it down, but the feathery fugitive eluded them and eventually left the zoo entirely.

Zoo staff have continued to hold out hope that the bird will return of its own accord, but as of now, it remains on the lam.

“We put all remaining birds in their outside enclosure so that she could hopefully hear their vocalizations and return, and also left a crate and nectar out overnight, but she didn’t come back,” the zoo said in its last statement, released Wednesday. “Staff remain on watch today and we will continue to do everything we can to get the lorikeet back safely.”

If Flaco the owl—the Eurasian eagle-owl that escaped New York’s Central Park Zoo last February—is any example, this elusive rainbow lorikeet has the potential to turn into a social media sensation (to this day, Flaco is free and has apparently become a peeping tom).

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