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Eastern Whipbird

Eastern Whipbird

Familiar whip-like call in the forest

The Eastern Whipbird call is a familiar sound of the forest. Did you know it is two birds making the call? One bird makes the first part of the call and the other producing the second part, which is called antiphonal calling. The male makes the whip crack and the female usually follows with a sharp 'choo-choo'.

Eastern Whipbirds are dark olive-green above, with a long tail, and a grey-white belly. The head and breast are black, with a broad white patch on the side of the face and a black crest. The eye is pale cream and the bill is black. Young whip birds are generally duller, with a smaller crest.

Eastern Whipbirds live in wet habitats, including rainforest, eucalypt forest and dense scrub near watercourses, in dense vegetation near the ground.  They feed on insects and other small invertebrates, which are caught on the ground by bill.

A breeding pair of Eastern Whipbirds occupies a territory, which is defended year-round, with the mates staying together for many years. The female makes a cup nest of sticks and bark, which is lined with finer grasses, and placed in dense vegetation near the ground. The female incubates the eggs and the young birds are fed by both parents.