Fun Black Fantail Facts For Kids

Chandrayan Choudhury
Oct 20, 2022 By Chandrayan Choudhury
Originally Published on Aug 31, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Read in the article some interesting black fantail facts.

In this article, we shall be reading about a bird that lives on the islands surrounding New Zealand. The name of this bird is the New Zealand fantail. There is another bird named black fantail (Rhipidura atra) and that bird lives in New Guinea.

New Zealand fantail (Rhipidura fuliginosa) are small birds who are native to the islands of New Zealand. They are mostly dark in color. The dorsal or backside of their body is brown and gray colored and their ventral or belly side is orange colored.

The black fantail is the black subspecies of this bird that are totally black in color. They have a white throat and have white patches over their eyes. They inhabit both forests and towns so the native people can commonly see them.

They have a strong beak and a beautiful fan like tail. The breeding season depends on which native New Zealand island they belong to.

They are short lived birds and live till they are two to five years old. These birds with dull feathers are insectivorous and prey on (catch) insects for feeding purposes. They belong to a family, genus Rhipiduridae and Rhipidura.

This is just the beginning. Further in the article, we have many interesting and funny facts about this bird which will amaze you for sure.

And if you like reading random bird facts then follow these references to pink cockatoo facts and red birds of paradise facts pages.  

Black Fantail Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a black fantail?

The New Zealand fantail (Rhipidura fuliginosa) is a bird species that is found mainly in New Zealand. It has four subspecies namely and a black morph, known as the black fantail.

What class of animal does a black fantail belong to?

The New Zealand fantail belongs to the class, order, family, and genus of Aves, Passeriformes, Rhipiduridae, and Rhipidura respectively. Their scientific name is Rhipidura fuliginosa. There is another black fantail bird (related looks) that lives in New Guinea and the scientific name of that bird is Rhipidura atra.

How many black fantails are there in the world?

New Zealand fantail birds fall under the conservation status of Least Concern. That means they inhabit their natural habitat in adequate numbers. So counting their world population exactly is very tough. They are living happily in this world.

Where does a black fantail live?

New Zealand black fantail is mainly a wild bird. They are mainly native to the forest areas of the island country. They are sometimes seen in the urban also. They sometimes come to the urban and can be seen in the parks and open spaces.

What is a black fantail's habitat?

New Zealand's black fantail habitat range is spread across the whole forest areas. They live in the forests, scrublands and can be often seen in urban environments also. They exist up to an elevation of 0.93 miles (1500 m) from the ground level.

Who do black fantails live with?

There is no proper information available on who they exactly live with. But they are considered more to be nonsocial or solitary birds.

How long does a black fantail live?

Fantail birds are known to have a short lifespan. They may live up to the age of two to five years.

How do they reproduce?

Common black fantails are oviparous animals. The breeding season in these species is considered at different times of the year depending on their habitat.

New Zealand flagtail birds living on the North Island have their breeding or nesting season between the months of August and March. Birds living in the South Island have their breeding season from the month of September to January. And birds from Chatham Island breed and do nesting from October to January.

At the arrival of their breeding season, these birds start making their nests in trees at a high spot. After mating, the female birds lay two to five eggs which are pale in color. The laid eggs may go through an incubation period of two weeks.

The young birds become sexually mature at or around two months of age. Some brood parasites like cuckoos lay their eggs in their nest.

What is their conservation status?

According to IUCN Red List and other authorized sources, New Zealand fantails are considered under the conservation status of Least Concern. They live in the North, South, and Chatham islands of New Zealand near the Australian continent.

Black Fantail Fun Facts

What do black fantails look like?

New Zealand fantails are small birds who are one of the common species to see in their habitat. They are mostly rufous in color. Their upper body is mostly gray brown (rufous) in color.

The lower body color is nearly related to orange. Their throat is white in color. And there is a trace of white color on their forehead.

It is more like a white spot over their eyes. On their ventral body, one can see dark colored bands.

Their head is round in shape and grey colored. They have small legs and a big fan like tail. As the name (fantail) suggests, these birds have tails, when opened, that seem like a hand fans.

The feathers on the tails are mostly dark colored. The New Zealand fantail is mainly divided into two subspecies based on their body color. One is pied and the other is total black in color.

New Zealand fantail Rhipidura fuliginosa

How cute are they?

The black fantail birds are very cute and adorable in nature. Because of their small form and adorable appearance, they are liked by all. The black fantail is overall black in color and is often confused with the black fantail from New Guinea.

How do they communicate?

New Zealand fantail species from the North, South, and Chatham islands are highly territorial. When a foreign bird invades their territory, they with their high pitched harsh calls and aggressive behavior, chase them out of their territory. Otherwise, they communicate with each other through tweets.

How big is a black fantail?

Fantails are common small bird species of New Zealand's islands. They are not very big or heavy. Their average size is close to 6.3 in (16 cm) and their weight range is close to 0.37–0.51 oz (10.5-14.5 g).

How fast can a black fantail fly?

The exact flying speed of the New Zealand fantail (both pied and black fantail) is still unknown. Though they are small animals who perch on trees are very agile and clumsy. Anyone can normally see them flying from tree to tree at a good speed.

How much does a black fantail weigh?

Black fantails are common birds whom someone can see open in the wild in New Zealand. They are little birds who are 6.3 in (16 cm) long and their average weight is found between 0.37–0.51 oz (10.5-14.5 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no specific names assigned to the black fantail male and female birds. They are commonly known as fantails only.

What would you call a baby black fantail?

Like any other bird baby, a fantails baby is also known as a chick.

What do they eat?

These birds from the genus Rhipidura are primary insectivores. The black fantail diet mainly depends on small invertebrates. They mainly eat small insects. Their eating habit is similar to the willie wagtail.

Wagtail and fantail eat both small and big insects. They catch big insects with their claws and attack them repeatedly with their beak. They remove the indigestible parts like wings and eat the insects. They also eat fruits.

Are they poisonous?

No, fantails are not poisonous at all. They are small birds with dark feathers who are only dangerous when they are preying. They cause no harm to humans.

Would they make a good pet?

Not really. Black fantail (bird from the Rhipiduridae family) are specifically wild birds that you can't catch easily. They belong to the forest areas and keeping them in a confined habitat will cause adverse effects on them.

Did you know...

The word 'black fantail' means that the tail of the bird is black in color and seems like a fan.

Fantails are not rare species of bird. There are different species of fantails living in the world.

The Maori people believe that fantails are unlucky. If a fantail enters into a house, it is more probably that someone from that house may die soon.

What is unique about black fantails?

Black fantails and pied fantails are the two subspecies of the New Zealand fantails. The black fantail is often confused with the black fantails from New Guinea (Rhipidura atra) because of the related looks. However the New Zealand black fantail is famous for its sweet tweets and unusual flying styles.

Are black fantails endangered?

No. Black fantails are species of Least Concern and are living happily in this world.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these great green macaw facts and secretary bird facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable black fantail coloring pages.

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Written by Chandrayan Choudhury

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English Language and Literature

Chandrayan Choudhury picture

Chandrayan ChoudhuryBachelor of Arts specializing in English Language and Literature

Skilled content writer Chandrayan has a passion for producing compelling and engaging content. With an excellent command of the English language and a talent for research and proofreading, Chandrayan has honed his skills through years of experience in the industry. Chandrayan is currently pursuing a Bachelor's degree in English Language and Literature from Tripura University, demonstrating his dedication to the craft of writing. 

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