Little Grassbird

Did you know?

The Little Grassbird will move into temporary swamplands after rains in inland areas.

Calls
Plaintive three-note call: 'tu-peeeee-peeeee'; also variety of rapid chattering notes.
Facts and Figures
Research Species: 
No
Average size: 
14cm
Average weight: 
12g
Breeding season: 
August to January
Clutch Size: 
3 to 5
Conservation Status
Federal: 
NSW: 
NT: 
QLD: 
SA: 
TAS: 
VIC: 
WA: 
Basic Information
Scientific Name: 
Featured bird groups: 
Atlas Number: 
522
What does it look like?
Description: 

The Little Grassbird is a small, unobtrusive dark brown-grey bird. It has a grey-brown head with a pale eyebrow, chin and throat and the crown and cheeks are streaked dark grey. The upper body is brown-grey, streaked dark grey, the dark wing feathers are edged with white and the paler grey underbody is also streaked. Young birds are more uniform grey with finer streaking.

Similar species: 

The related Tawny Grassbird, M. timoriensis, is similar, but the Little Grassbird is smaller, not as rufous, with a dark-streaked crown and streaked underparts. Another similar bird is the Striated Fieldwren or Calamanthus, Calamanthus (Sericornis) fulignosus, which differs in having more yellowish underparts, and a more distinctive white eyebrow.

Where does it live?
Distribution: 

The Little Grassbird is found across eastern Australia and Tasmania, inland to central Australia and in south-western Australia. It is also found in New Guinea.

Habitat: 

The LIttle Grassbird is found in swamps and marshes, preferring thick reed beds, and will occur in temporary wetlands after rains.

Seasonal movements: 

Nomadic but no regular migration.

What does it do?
Feeding: 

The Little Grassbird eats insects and other small arthropods, usually remaining in the dense cover of grasses and swamp vegetation.

Breeding: 

The Little Grassbird builds a deep cup nest of reeds and coarse grasses, lined with feathers, hidden in thick reedy vegetation.

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