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 LC    Splendid Fairy-wren* Id (Atlas): 532
    Malurus splendens Endemic

Description (2)
Image of Splendid Fairy-wren (Male)
 

Other Names (World)
Splendid Fairywren, Splendid Fairy-wren, Splendid Wren, Banded Wren, Superb Warbler, Banded Superb Warbler, Black-backed Blue Wren (melanotus), Black-backed Fairy-Wren (melanotus), Black-backed Fairywren (melanotus), Turquoise Fairy-wren (musgravi), Turquoise Fairywren (musgravi), Turquoise Wren (musgravi), Blue Wren, Blue Fairy-wren, Blue Wren, Mormon Wren, Spendid Wren, Splendid Blue Wren, White's Blue Wren

Family
Maluridae (Fairy-wrens and Allies)

Size
13 - 14 cm

First Described (Guide)
(Quoy and Gaimard, 1830)

Derivation
Mal-ür'-us - Gk, malacos, soft; Gk, oura, tail: splen'-dens - L., shining

Abundance (Guide)
C

Locally quite common. Sedentary or locally nomadic.

Habitat
Dense shrublands or woodlands of acacia, low, mediums and tall mallee eucalypt shrublands with a dense understorey of shrubs.

Range (Guide)
Australia (B).

Image of Range of Splendid Fairy-wren
 
Southern Australia generally, except the south-east.
 
Rarity Status
Currently this species is not classified as a rarity in this country OR information has not been updated.

Population
Estimated population is unknown (2010).

Status LC
Probably secure.

For more information see BirdLife International Species Factsheet.

Habits
Usually in pairs or small family groups, with brown-plumaged birds dominating.

Food
Insects, mainly bettles and ants. Occasionally some plant material.

Voice
Song includes a tremulous trill. Also extremely high-pitched, short, vibrating trills, a loud whistled trill. A weak 'trrip' and soft 'sreee' contact calls.



Xeno-Canto Sound Files (more (10)...)

 
Splendid Fairywren (Malurus splendens splendens) [XC166673]
     by John Graff from Kulunilup Swamp, Western Australia, Australia (song)

 
Splendid Fairywren (Malurus splendens) [XC334640]
     by Marc Anderson from Gluepot, South Australia, Australia (call, song)

Breeding Season (Guide)
September - January.

J F M A M J J A S O N D
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   
   


Nest
Domed, with a side-entrance near the top, composed of dry grass, lined with feathers, fine grass and fur, placed near the ground in tangled grass or a low bush.

Eggs (Guide)
Usually 3, sometimes 4 or 2; white, spotted with red-brown; long-oval; about 17 x 14 mm. Incubation: 13 - 16 days; by female.

Young
Altricial, nidicolous. Fledge in 12 - 14 days.

Subspecies
Forms a superspecies with Superb Fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus); these two, together with Purple-crowned Fairy-wren (Malurus coronatus), constitute the "Australian blue group". Subspecies originally treated as constituting three separate species, but interbreed wherever they meet. Birds from central Australia long referred to as subspecies callainus, but type specimen for that name is apparently an intergrade, and therefore taxonomically unidentifiable; name replaced by musgravi. As many as seven subspecies described from early collections, but later studies have shown that most represent clinal variation, e.g. whitei (described from interior New South Wales) is regarded as representing part of clinal variation of melanotus, and aridus (interior of Western Australia) is now included within nominate.

The following 4 subspecies are recognised:

  • splendens (Quoy and Gaimard, 1830)
  •   -  South-western WA north to southern Pilbara and east to the western fringe of the Great Victoria and Gibson Deserts.
  • melanotus Gould, 1841
  •   -  Central and western Murray - Darling Basin, north to Copper Basin Watershed, Gowan Ranges and around Bollon, Qld.
  • musgravi Mathews, 1922
  •   -  Central Australia north to Tanami - Tennant Creek, NT, west to the eastern fringe of the Great Sandy, Gibson and Great Victoria Deserts, WA, south to northern Eyre Peninsula, SA and east to the western fringe of the Flinders Ranges, Lower Lake Eyre Basin and Simpson Desert. Synonmous with callainus?.
  • emmottorum Schodde and Mason, 1999
  •   -  Central uplands of the upper Cooper - Diamantina Basin, Qld.

Similar Species
Females, juveniles and immature non-breeding males with females, juvenlies and immature non-breeding males of Red-winged Fairy-wren (Malurus elegans), Variegated Fairy-wren (Malurus lamberti) and Blue-breasted Fairy-wren (Malurus pulcherrimus).

Compare Images


References
See References.

The Field Guide to the Birds of Australia Pizzey, G., and Knight, E., 1997, Angus & Robertson, Sydney ISBN 0 207 19691 5
Field Guide to Australian Birds Morecombe, M., 2000, Steve Parish Publishing Pty Ltd. ISBN 1 876282 10 X
Field Guide to the Birds of Australia Simpson, K., and Day, N., 1999, 6th Edition, Viking ISBN 0 670 87918 5
Reader's Digest Complete Book of Australian Birds 1988, 2nd Edition, Reader's Digest ISBN 0 949819 99 9
What Bird is That? 1984, Revised Edition, Angus & Robertson, Sydney ISBN 0 207 14846 5
Handbook of Australian, New Zealand & Antarctic Birds 1990 - , Oxford University Press, Melbourne ISBN 0 19 553244 9


Files:
JPG files for Splendid Fairy-wren (Malurus splendens) - 2 filesMP3 files for Splendid Fairy-wren (Malurus splendens) - 1 files


More Information

BirdLife International

For more information about the Splendid Fairy-wren see... Show Articles BirdLife International Species Factsheet.


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