Most of Australia
Savanna woodlands, open grasslands, forested areas and croplands
Wild: Seeds, weeds, vegetable matter, fruit, grain
Zoo: Bird chow, greens, carrot, fruit
Incubation: About 30 days
Clutch: 2 to 5 eggs
The back, wings and tail are light gray. The head, neck and under-sides are pink. The male has an iris this is almost black, while that of the female is reddish-brown. The beak is a light horn color. Length is about 13-1/2 inches. Galahs usually move in flocks of varying size, and often these are large, containing hundreds of birds. They are found mostly in open, lightly-timbered country. They sometimes engage in aerial acrobatics during a rainstorm, and at sunset before settling down to roost. They feed mostly on the ground, and consume a wide variety of fare. They are very noisy, and fly wildly about, often seeming to race speeding cars as they zoom alongside. Breeding pairs remain as a unit within the flock. They mate for life. Young birds fly very well, but their landings are described as the “crash-landing” variety. The natural call of the Galah is harsh and grating. The natural breeding season lasts from July to December in southern Australia, and in the tropical north the birds nest after the wet season, from about February to June. The usual nesting site is a hollow limb or a hole in a tree, standing near water. Nests have been found in holes in cliffs. The hollow is lined with gum leaves, and the birds strip off the bark around the entrance hole, exposing the smooth wood beneath. This habit may be to provide a less easily-climbed surface, and so discourage the attentions of goannas (Varanus lizards). Both sexes incubate in turns. After 6 to 8 weeks fledglings have to fend for themselves. Also known as a Rose-breasted Cockatoo. Because of the damage they do to crops, the Galah is not a protected species. They are extremely popular cage-birds, and often become proficient talkers.
Where in the Zoo?
I can be found in the Conservation Education Programs at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo.