Ian’s Bird of the Week – Little Grassbird

Little Grassbird (Megalurus gramineus) by Ian

Little Grassbird (Megalurus gramineus) by Ian

Ian’s Bird of the Week – Little Grassbird ~ by Ian Montgomery

Newsletter – 7/3/2011

As well as the Baillon’s Crake, Pentland Dam produced another skulker, the Little Grassbird uncommon in North Queensland and usually heard rather seen – it has a distinctive, mournful three-note whistle.

I had prior warning, thank you again Len and Chris, so when a small dark bird – darker than another skulker present in the wetland, the Australian Reed-Warbler – appeared briefly, I got the camera ready in case it reappeared. It did eventually, and I got couple of quick shots before it disappeared for good.
Little Grassbird (Megalurus gramineus) by Ian

Little Grassbird (Megalurus gramineus) by Ian

The Little Grassbird is distributed quite widely in Australia, mainly in the eastern half of the mainland and Tasmania, though it does occur also in southern Western Australia and patchily through the Northern Territory as far as Kununurra across the border in northern Western Australia. Despite the name ‘Grassbird’, it occurs mainly in dense wetlands, though its only close Australian relative, the Tawny Grassbird http://www.birdway.com.au/sylviidae/tawny_grassbird/index.htm , is more flexible in its habitats.

Conventionally, the Grassbirds have been regarded as one of the Old World Warblers, family Sylviidae http://www.birdway.com.au/sylviidae/index.htm , though most bird taxonomists now accept that this family is a rather heterogeneous collection. Christidis & Boles, 2008, split it into a number of separate families and put the Grassbirds in a new one, the Megaluridae that also includes the Australian Songlarks and the Spinifexbird, while the Reed-Warblers also got their own family, the Acrocephalidae http://www.birdway.com.au/sylviidae/australian_reed_warbler/index.htm .
Best wishes

Ian Montgomery, Birdway Pty Ltd,
454 Forestry Road, Bluewater, Qld 4818
Phone: 0411 602 737 +61-411 602 737
Preferred Email: ian@birdway.com.au
Website: http://birdway.com.au

Lee’s Addition:

Ian just keeps coming up with his neat birds of the week. I am thankful that Ian lets me reproduce his newsletter on the blog. The birds he is exposing us to are fantastic and trust you enjoy them as much as I do. Many of his birds are from there in Australia and most of us will never get to travel to Australia to see those birds. So, continue to read his reports and do visit <a href=”http://birdway.com.au“>his website, Birdway, to see his many magnificent photos. Also look at the Birds of the Week here.

He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth; (Psalms 104:14 KJV)

The Little Grassbird is in the Locustellidae Family.

See Ian’s other Birds of the Week


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