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Palm Cockatoo

The Palm Cockatoo, Probosciger aterrimus, is a large black parrot of the cockatoo family. It is found in northern Queensland and New Guinea. It can also be found in Cape York, although it is threatened there due to habitat loss. They are in high demand for the pet trade due to its unusual appearance.

It measures around 21.6 to 23.6 inches in length and weighs between 1.1 and 2.2 lbs. It is a distinctive bird with a large crest and one of the largest bills of any parrot (only the Hyacinth Macaw’s is larger). The bill is also unusual as the lower and upper mandibles do not meet for much of its length, allowing the tongue to hold a nut against the top mandible while the lower mandible works to open it. The Palm Cockatoo also has a distinctive red gape that changes color when the bird is alarmed or excited.

The Palm Cockatoo makes four different kinds of vocalizations. It also has a unique display where the bird drums a large branch against a dead bough or tree, creating a loud noise that can be heard up to 330 feet away.

Alfred Hitchcock once used one to play an “evil bird” in one of his movies due to their striking and unusual appearance.

Palm Cockatoo


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