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21

Rufous Fantail

(Rhipidura rufifrons)
Alternate name(s): "Rufous Flycatcher", "Rufous-fronted Fantail"
Size: 14-16 cm; wing span 18-22 cm
Weight: 10 g (average)

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Rufous Fantail at Wikipedia .

Click here for classification information

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

Race "rufifrons"

ADULT

Frontal view of an adult Rufous Fantail (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[DFA Road, Ensay North, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2016]

Lateral view of an adult Rufous Fantail (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Mellick Minjie Road, Victoria State Park, VIC, January 2016]

Lateral view of a Rufous Fantail (photo courtesy of C. Kellenberg)
[Gibraltar Range NP, NSW, January 2009]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Lateral view of a (possibly immature) Rufous Fantail
[Dorrigo NP, NSW, January 2011]

Here the (possibly immature) Rufous Fantail is seen fanning not only its tail, but also its wings
[Dorrigo NP, NSW, January 2011]

Race "intermedia"

ADULT

Frontal view of a Rufous Fantail (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Julatten, QLD, July 2013]

Lateral view of a Rufous Fantail (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)
[O'Reilly's Plateau, Lamington NP, Gold Coast, QLD, in October 2015]

Breeding information

Breeding season: Sep - Apr Eggs: 2 - 3 Incubation period: 14 - 15 days Fledging age: 16 - 18 days

The breeding season of Rufous Fantails depends on geographic latitude. The core breeding season ranges from October to February.

Nest building: Female & male Incubation: Female & male Dependent care: Female & male

Nest

"bungobittah", "malunna" = nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Bowl with tail Material: Soft inner bark, spider webs Height above ground: 0.5 - 3 m

Some nests have been found higher, up to 7 m above ground level.

Rufous Fantail near its nest with a begging chick inside (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[DFA Road, Ensay North, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2016]

Rufous Fantail leaving its nest after having fed the chick (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[DFA Road, Ensay North, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2016]

Eggs

"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 17 x 14 mm Colour: Creamy, with mid-brown speckles Shape: Tapered oval

Behaviour

Social behaviour: Territorial Mobility: Dispersive/migratory Elementary unit: Solitary/pair

It appears that food competition between Rufous Fantails and Grey Fantails is insignificant, given that they have been found nesting right next to each other contemporaneously (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[DFA Road, Ensay North, East Gippsland, VIC, December 2016]

Food, Diet

Like all other members of the Rhipidura family known to us, Rufous Fantails are insect hunters.

Call(s)/Song

For this species we have recorded the following call(s)/song. The interpretation of their meaning is our own; comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome.

ruffant_20161217_2.mp3 rufifrons (Ctl NSW) Various © MD
ruffant_20150328.mp3 rufifrons (N NSW) Various © MD
ruffant_20150328_2.mp3 rufifrons (N NSW) Various © MD

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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