Fantails (Rhipiduridae)

New Zealand Fantail (Rhipidura fuliginosa) - HBW 11, p. 225

French: Rhipidure à collier German: Neuseelandfächerschwanz Spanish: Abanico Maorí
Other common names: North Island Fantail (placabilis); South Island Fantail (nominate); Chatham Island Fantail (penitus); Pied Fantail(!) (pied morph); Black Fantail(!) (black morph)

Taxonomy: Muscicapa fuliginosa Sparrman, 1787, South Island, New Zealand.
Forms a superspecies with R. hyperythra, R. albolimbata, R. albiscapa and R. phasiana. Often considered conspecific with R. albiscapa but differs markedly in vocalizations. In past, commonly treated as including R. phasiana, but that form now almost universally treated as a separate species on basis of morphology, voice, clutch size and habitat. Extinct race cervina (Lord Howe I) has sometimes been considered a full species, but seems more appropriately treated as a well-marked race of present species. Three extant subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • placabilis Bangs, 1921 - N New Zealand: North I and adjacent islands (Three Kings Is, Hen and Chickens Is, Mokohinau Is, and islands of Little Barrier, Great Barrier, Mayor, Kapiti).
  • fuliginosa (Sparrman, 1787) - S New Zealand: South I, Stewart I and adjacent islands.
  • penita Bangs, 1911 - Chatham Is (Chatham, Pitt, Southeast).