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Splendid Fairywren

A Male Splendid Fairywren overlooking an edge

Male (breeding)

Non-breeding male Splendid Fairy-wren searching for insects under a log

Male (non-breeding)

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Scientific Name: Malurus splendens

Size: around 14 cm

What does it look like?

The Splendid Fairywren male’s breeding plumage is striking, consisting almost entirely of pale and dark blue, although some subspecies have a broad black bands across the breast, at the base of the tail and from the bill to behind the eye. There are four subspecies currently recognised and differ slightly in plumage. The female and non-breeding male are brown above and pale buff below, with a long slight fanned tail, which is pale blue in the female and darker in the male. The female also has a orange brown bill and eye patch. 

Where is it found?

It is widely distributed throughout southern and central Australia, from the WA coast to central NSW and Qld, but is absent from Tas. 

What are its habitats & habits?

The Splendid Fairywren favours drier woodlands and shrublands where it feeds on small insects, mostly obtained on the ground. Its range overlaps with several other fairywren species. 

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Front cover of Australia's Birdwatching Megaspots book showing a picture of an Eastern Spinebill

This species features in my book Australia’s Birdwatching Megaspots

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