Black grasswren

Amytornis housei

TAXONOMY

Amytornis housei Milligan, 1902, central Kimberleys, Western Australia.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Amytis noir; German: Schwarzkehl-Grasschlupfer; Spanish: Ratona de la Hierba Negra.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

8.3 in (21 cm); female 0.83-0.98 oz (23.5-27.9 g), male 1.0-1.1 oz (29.0-31 g). A large, dark grasswren, with rusty back and long, broad tail.

DISTRIBUTION

Rare and local in the Kimberley Division of northwestern Western Australia.

HABITAT

Found among tumbled sandstone outcrops and gorges, in spinifex and scrub.

BEHAVIOR

Poor fliers, and move about in groups by hopping among tussocks. Song is low-pitched and includes buzzing notes and trills.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Forage mostly on ground for invertebrates and seeds of various grasses.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Breeding biology is poorly known.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Although not threatened by IUCN criteria, it is rare and local in distribution. May be threatened by frequent fires.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦

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