Williy-wagtail.JPG (27977 bytes)Willie Wagtail (Rhipidura leucophrys): is one of Australia’s best known native birds.

The Willie Wagtail is between 190-215 millimetres long. The upper body is black with white underparts. The head has white eyebrows with a white whisker mark.

Willie Wagtails are observed singly, in pairs or family groups. At Yallaroo we only see Willie Wagtails singly or in pairs.

Their flight is usually quick and direct with slight undulation.

Willie Wagtails are found in many habitats except dense forest, including the Nullarbor Plain and Simpson Desert in Central Australia. They are frequently observed close to human habitation.

The nest is a shallow cup, usually on small horizontal branches and often near the nests of Magpie Larks (Pee Wees). They will also nest in sheds and other buildings. Sometimes the nests are situated in close proximity to corrugated iron roofs. In very warm weather the eggs, in these nests, have been known to cook.

In some breeding seasons two or three broods may be raised. Eggs are 2-4, light creamy-buff to yellowish-white with spots.

Insects figure prominently in their diet.

Willie Wagtails are found throughout mainland Australia and possibly northern Tasmania. The species is also found in Indonesia, New Guinea and the Solomon Islands.

The individual photographed is one of a pair that frequently visits Yallaroo.

 

Wildlife