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Passeriformes > Acanthisittidae

Rifleman

Acanthisitta chloris

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Identification

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New Zealand’s smallest bird. Tiny endemic wren with fragmented distribution across both islands. Extinct on Stewart Island. Often found in patches of mature forest and scrub. Constantly moving across tree trunks and within the canopy. More common in higher-altitude beech forest. Males are smaller, with bright green on the head and back. Females are mainly yellowish-brown. Note the short wings, the stumpy tail, and the slender, upturned black bill. Utters an almost constant high-frequency “zipt,” “pip,” or “chuck” calls while foraging that are often inaudible to people. Distinguished from South Island Wren by smaller size and shorter legs; rarely feeds on forest floor. Habitats unlikely to overlap.

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Rifleman

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