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White-winged Fairywren

A male White-winged Fairywren perches at the top of a thorny bush
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Scientific Name: Malurus leucopterus

Size: 11 to 13 cm

What does it look like?

The male White-winged Fairywren is spectacularly coloured, even more so when assessed against the backdrop of reddish soil of the interior. The cobalt blue mixed with white and brown is very distinctive. Females and immatures are less colourful, being predominantly greyish-brown with pale lores, orange-brown bill and a blue wash to the tail. Non-breeding males resemble the female, but have a black bill. On two offshore islands (Barrow and Dirk Hartog) of Western Australia, the male’s rich blue colour is replaced with black.

Where is it found?

It occurs in a broad central band throughout most of Australia, from west of the dividing range to islands off the west coast of Western Australia.

What are its habitats & habits?

The White-winged Fairywren is widespread in drier areas of lignum, saltbush and other low shrubs, where its high-pitched trill typically betrays its presence.

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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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