Dean M. Chriss
Greater Sulfur Crested Cockatoo, Dandenong Ranges National Park, Victoria, Australia

Greater Sulfur Crested Cockatoo, Victoria, Australia

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The Greater Sulfur Crested Cockatoo (Cacatua galerita) is the largest and best known of all Cockatoos. They are native to eastern Australia from Cape York to Tasmania, and have been introduced to places like Indonesia, and the Palau Islands. Greater Sulfur Crested Cockatoos are white with some tail feathers and underside of the wings colored yellow. When alarmed the cockatoo's crest opens up like a fan. These are large birds that measure about twenty inches in length and weigh about two pounds (0.9 kg). This species has become a pest around urban and suburban areas because it often uses its powerful bill to destroy timber decking and siding on houses. Feeding normally takes place in groups, with one or more members watching for danger from a nearby perch.

The bird in this image was acting as such a lookout while the rest of his flock fed nearby. The sexes can be distinguished by the color of their eyes. Males have very dark blackish eyes, while the female's eyes are more brown. The bird shown here is a male, and was photographed in Dandenong Ranges National Park, Victoria, Australia.