Australian Robins Petroicidae

Class: Aves Order: Passeriformes Family: Petroicidae Number of species: 35 species

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PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Australian robins are small, plump birds with large heads and short tails. They have long legs and strong feet, which allow the birds to have an upright stance. They have small bills with bristles on them, which helps them catch insects. Most of them have short tails, but the scrub robins have longer ones to help them balance as they feed on the ground. The scrub robin is also the only species that nests and forages, searches for food, on the ground.

The coloring of Australian robins differs among species. Some are all black or black with distinctive white stripes on their lower backs. Others are gray with yellow or red undersides. Still others have grayish brown backs and whitish undersides.

GEOGRAPHIC RANGE

Australian robins can be found in India, Southeast Asia, Micronesia, Indonesia, New Zealand, and Australia.

HABITAT

Most Australian robins live in forests and woodlands, but scrub robins live in semi-arid scrub, dry areas with short trees and shrubs. Some species live in mangroves and eucalyptus (yoo-kah-LIP-tus) forests. Some Australian robins can be found nesting in trees and bushes along cultivated fields.

DIET

Australian robins eat insects, spiders, earthworms, and sometimes even leeches, crabs, and mollusks.

phylum class subclass order monotypic order suborder family

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