Victoria’s Riflebird

Victoria's Riflebird clasping to a tropical tree trunkWhat does it look and sound like? Of the four birds of paradise found in Australia, three are Riflebirds.  Each are somewhat similar in plumage, the males being glossed black, subtly tinged with iridescent purple and blue-green, while the females are predominantly brown. Thankfully, the ranges of each species do not overlap, thus making identification much easier. All Riflebirds have short square tails, and long, downwardly curved bills. A loud, explosive ‘yaaas’,  sometimes given twice, is the characteristic call.

Where does it live? The Victoria’s Riflebird is found at the base of Cape York Peninsula, Queensland.

What are its habitats and habits? Riflebirds inhabit rainforests, where they use their bills to probe into crevices in search of insects and their larvae.  Berries and fruits are also taken. All Riflebirds share the characteristic courtship display, whereby the male selects a perch in the sunlight and arches his wings above his head. He the tilts his head back and moves it in a mechanical fashion, to highlight the metallic colours of his throat.

Scientific name: Lophorina victoriae

Do you want to know the best places to go to see this species? Check out our book “Australia’s Birdwatching Megaspots” – available for purchase through our secure online store