|Subject:||Tricky little customer - NZ's smallest bird - Rifleman (film)|
|From:||David Rees <>|
|Date:||Fri, 1 Dec 2017 12:08:33 +0000|
The Rifleman is one of just two extent members of the ancient endemic passerine family the New Zealand Wrens. It's a sad to reflect that prior to the arrival of Humans it appears that where were 7 species of these birds there! The last one to go extinct was the Bush Wren in about 1972. Fortunately, this one seems to be a survivor.
If you have not experienced this bird, think tiny tiny, smaller than a fairy-wren minus its tail. That and its hyperactive nature, living on moss and plant covered tall trees in gloomy forest makes it a hard bird to get a good view off.
Interestingly it accepts nest boxes, of the sort familiar to European gardeners for Blue Tits and the like. This fact gives you a chance to have a good look at this engaging little bird. Males are green on the crown and back and the females more brown green and striated - both can be seen here attending to a couple of well grown chicks in the box.
This particular box was beside a path in the grounds of NZ's National Wildlife Centre at Mount Bruce. They carried on regardless, oblivious of people walking by, given their nature, most visitors were oblivious of them to! Did not come with a big sign telling people to look at them.
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