Quick, Low-Flying Birds

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mackka's picture
Quick, Low-Flying Birds

Hey, I don't really know anything about birds but I had a quick question. I was wondering if anybody knows what those very small, brown birds are called that you often see flying very close to the ground in groups in parks, etc. around Sydney. When they're on the ground, they move in quick little jumps.

mackka's picture

Thanks Denis. I don't think its either of those. I'm pretty sure these are more slender than the sparrow and definitely don't have the bright red of the finch. Also, they don't appear to be playing to cover but rather zip around all over the place close to the ground at high speed. I imagine that they're feeding...perhaps trying to spot insects or seeds on the ground.

They have a very quite distinctive shape in flight that I think I might have trouble describing. Pretty certain they have a wedge-shaped tail also.

Birdfreak's picture

Hi Mackka,

they could be Superb Fairy-Wrens. In Winter the males lose their brilliant blue plumage and go a light brown colour. They are quite small and have a little upward facing tail feathers. They stay in groups like you said so they could be what you've seen.

If the park you've seen them in has areas of dense undergrowth that could be another factor.


bushanwater's picture

I'm thinking perhaps Nutmeg Finches. otherwise wondering how small. What birds do you knwo that are a similar size??

See Yez

booshkie's picture

The low flying in parks made me think of Welcome Swallows.

But doing it in groups, and the hopping aspect makes me think Nutmeg Mannikin.

They just look pale brown at a distance, but up close...


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