Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

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Image Details

3000 x 2053 pixels
2387 KBs

Maegan Oberhardt

born 1997

Australian

Red-tailed Black Cockatoo

2021

57 x 39 cms | 22 1/4 x 15 1/4 ins
Fumage & Watercolour

Our native parrots are truly special and so beautiful! I love that the females of this species are more stunning than the males, though from an artist’s perspective - far more difficult to draw. This lady is older but just like a fine wine, she only gets more captivating with age. To put the scorch through all the yellow details in her feathers would be too high a risk of burning a hole through the paper (!) -  So for this one I’ve used Yellow Ochre and some Crimson Red watercolour to bring out her sunset colours.

Known as Banks’ Black Cockatoo, it was named for Joseph Banks who toured with Captain James Cook on the HMS Endeavour as they explored the coastline of Australia in 1770. The Red-tailed Black Cockatoo is the largest species of cockatoo endemic to the mainland. It’s regal crown, glossy black plumage, and colourful tail are iconic! The female is unusual in the bird world as she is more colourful than her male counterpart with yellow, orange, and red scalloping throughout her head, body, and wings. Although the species flourishes in many regions, it is the south eastern subspecies that has not adapted to the habitat losses caused by human activity. As an ecological specialist, it relies on specific natural vegetation for food. Efforts are underway to support an increase of populations.

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