The Red-backed Fairywren (Malurus melanocephalus) is a species of passerine bird in the Maluridae family. It is endemic to Australia and can be found near rivers and coastal areas along the northern and eastern coastlines from the Kimberley in the northwest to the Hunter Region in New South Wales. Like other fairywrens, this species displays marked sexual dimorphism. The male adopts a striking breeding plumage, with a black head and upperparts and tail, and brightly coloured red back and brown wings. The female has brownish upperparts and paler underparts. The male in eclipse plumage and the juvenile resemble the female. Some males remain in non-breeding plumage while breeding. Two subspecies are recognised; the nominate form melanocephalus of eastern Australia has a longer tail and orange back, and the short-tailed form cruentatus from northern Australia has a redder back.
Tags: Wildlife and nature
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