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Brilliant Birds

Rufous Fantail

Australia’s most colourful fantail is the charming and charismatic rufous fantail. In this rainforest, it arrives in October as a summer breeding migrant from northern Australia. Here it breeds and both the male and female attend to the nest construction and care of the young. The nest is superbly sculpted from soft bark bound with spider webs, and moulded into a smooth goblet-shaped cup. Their calls are a very highly pitched ‘tsit tsit’, often described as sounding like a squeaky wheel. They are easily seen displaying acrobatics along the rainforest track, as if performing on cue.

(Illustration by Margaret Collins)

Rhipidura rufifrons 15 - 16cm

rufous fantail

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