Scarlet robin

Petroica multicolor

SUBFAMILY

Petroicinae

TAXONOMY

Muscicapa multicolor Gmelin, 1789, Norfolk Island. Eighteen subspecies.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

French: Miro ecarlate; German: Scharlachschnäpper; Spanish: Tordo Australiano Carmin.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

5 in (13 cm); 0.4-0.5 oz (12-14 g). Some subspecies are smaller. Black throat, bill, and upperparts; white forehead, wing coverts, and under tail coverts.

DISTRIBUTION

Southwestern and southeastern Australia, including Tasmania, Kangaroo Island, and Norfolk Island. Widespread in the Pacific, including Fiji, Samoa, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, and Bougainville.

HABITAT

Dry eucalypt forests and woodlands, with some understory. Forests, edges, clearings, and gardens on Pacific islands.

BEHAVIOR

Perches in a conspicuous location, although usually quiet, and may flick wings and raise and lower tail, perhaps when agitated. Territorial in breeding season and wandering more widely at other times. Song is pretty, trilling "wee-cheedalee-dalee"; also makes ticking calls.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Mostly pounces onto ground from a low branch for insects and spiders. Also sallies for flying insects in warm weather and gleans from branches and occasionally foliage.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Breeding season from August to January, with repeated attempts. Nest is made from bark and lichen and is placed in a tree fork or sometimes a shallow cavity. Usually three eggs in a clutch. Female is fed by male on nest, and both parents feed young. Incubation and fledging periods last about 15 days. Only 10% of nests succeeded in one New South Wales study.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Common in many areas but has declined in agricultural regions due to habitat loss. Norfolk Island subspecies is classified as Vulnerable.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS A popular bird with bird watchers. ♦

0 0

Post a comment