Variegated Fairy-Wrens: Nature’s Tiny Wonders in a World of Vivid Elegance.PhamTrung – News 77

Variegated Fairy-Wrens: Nature’s Tiny Wonders in a World of Vivid Elegance.PhamTrung – News 77

Wearing an iridescent pale blue helmet and a tail that is always cocked and ready for action this a bird that stands out wherever he is!

Meet the Variegated Fairy-wren

Photo Courtesy of James Niland / CC BY 2.0

The variegated fairywren (Malurus lamberti) measures 14-15 cm (5.5-6 inches) in length, weighing in at 6-11 grams (0.21-0.39 oz). These birds display a high degree of sexual dimorphism where the males adopt brilliantly iridescent blue and chestnut plumage which contrasts beautifully with his black and grey to brown. When in breeding plumage he also exhibits striking blue ear coverts, a black throat, and nape, a royal blue upper back, chestnut shoulders, and a blue to grey tail. His wings are grey to brown and his belly is white.


Photo Courtesy of PaulBalfe / CC BY 2.0

Females are predominantly brown to grey in color, she has a red-brown bill and bright rufous lores.

Juvenile birds tend to look more like female birds.


Photo Courtesy of James Niland / CC BY 2.0

This bird lives in various diverse habitats in eastern Australia.


Photo Courtesy of Lip Kee / CC BY-SA 2.0

Variegated fairywren likes to live in and around scrubland areas with lots of vegetation to provide cover. They have been seen hiding in mammal burrows to avoid the hottest part of the day. They have also been seen in suburban gardens that provide plenty of shelter.


Photo Courtesy of Lip Kee / CC BY-SA 2.0

These birds are primarily insectivorous and forage around and under the shelter of scrubby vegetation across 90% of continental Australia.


Photo Courtesy of Lip Kee / CC BY-SA 2.0

Breeding for the Variegated fairywren occurs from spring through to late summer when they build a dome-shaped nest from grass and spider webs around 1 meter (3.3 feet) above ground in thick vegetation. Within a clutch of three to four matte white eggs are laid with red to brown splotches. The female incubates her eggs for 14 to 16 days after which the young are fed hatch are fed by the parents and family helpers for about 1 month.


Photo Courtesy of gary_leavens / CC BY-SA 2.0

This bird is regarded as of Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.


Photo Courtesy of JJ Harrison  / CC BY-SA 4.0

You can watch this bird right here in the video below:

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