Variegated or Red-winged Fairy-wrens?

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freedomknight's picture
Variegated or Red-winged Fairy-wrens?

I have trouble working out whether these are Variegated or Red-winged Fairy-wrens.

Photo A was taken in Kings Park, Perth.

Photo B and C taken at Serpentine Dam. Perth.

Araminta's picture

I stick my neck out. I think it is a Red-winged Faity-wren, simply because the photo is taken in WA, and that's the place you find them!


laza's picture

Tough question mate

Considering the location overlaps Variegated, Red Wing and Blue brested areas.

I say the second photo is Red Wing Fairy Wren due to lighter blue crown and lighter ear converts.

The first one I couldnt say whether its blue brested or Variegated

Dont take life too seriously, it never ends well

sue818's picture

Nothing like confusing the issue but my thoughts (which could be entirely wrong)

1  a Variegated because of the lilac just noticable in the curve in front of the shoulder

2  The most difficult because I think the pale colour may be the over-exposure. So I suggest a Blue-breasted Fairy-wren as the chestnut shoulder patch is not extensive and the chest has a deep blue tinge. I could be entirely wrong and Laza may have it correct as I have not seen many of them.

3  a Splendid Fairywren in eclipse because of the blue tail and bluish wing

Remember this is just my opinion but I have tried to explain why I would come to that conclusion. Still a great discussion point.


freedomknight's picture

I showed the first photo to a guy at BirdLife Western Australia and he said it was a Variegated.

He did not see the other 2 photos but suggested the second could be a Red wing because of the locality.

I thought the 3rd was a Splendid too.

These Fairy Wrens make it so hard especially when you try to identify the females.

A good article at Birdlife Australia titled "Fifty shades of brown: identifying female fairy-wrens" is quite helpful but I still get lost.

Thanks friends for your feedback

Cheers Keith

Perth, West Australia

AJ Anderson
AJ Anderson's picture

1. Purple-backed (formerly variegated) Fairywren. 

2. Red-winged Fairywren.

3. Dull male Splendid Fairywren.

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