Amytornis striatus Gould, 1840, Liverpool Plains, New South Wales, Australia. Three subspecies.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
French: Amytis strié; German: Streifengrasschlüpfer; Spanish: Ratona de la Hierba Rayada.
5.7-6.9 in (14.5-17.5 cm); male 0.56-0.78 oz (16-22 g). Sexes similar but female has chestnut flanks.
Widely scattered populations across Australia. A. s. rowleyi is confined to a small area of central Queensland, A. s. whitei is found in Western Australia. A. s. striatus has at least four disjunct populations from New South Wales to Western Australia.
Found on spinifex-covered sandplains and rocky hills, sometimes with shrubby vegetation, of the arid interior.
Poor fliers; hop about with tail cocked over open ground, or with tail horizontal when moving through dense vegetation. They are found singly or in small family groups. Melodious song of trills and whistles.
Forage mostly on the ground, taking insects, particularly ants and beetles, and seeds. They have been reported eating cactus flowers, and foraging by moonlight.
Breeding biology is virtually unknown for wild birds. Clutch is two or three red-spotted, white eggs. No helpers at the nest have been reported.
Not threatened. Adversely affected by clearing for agriculture, introduced herbivores, and overgrazing, as well as predation by introduced cats and foxes, and by extensive fires.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS None known. ♦
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