Xenicidae


Xenicidae

▪ bird family
formerly  Acanthisittidae,  

      bird family of the order Passeriformes; its members are commonly known as New Zealand wrens. The three living species are the rock wren (Xenicus gilviventris) and the rare bush wren (X. longipes) on South Island and, common to both islands, the rifleman (Acanthisitta chloris). A fourth species, the Stephen Island wren (X. lyalli), was discovered in 1894 by a lighthouse keeper and killed soon afterward by his cat. Nine specimens, brought home by the cat, were sent to the British Museum. This may have been the only flightless passerine bird; certainly its distribution—less than one square mile on an island in Cook Strait—was astonishingly limited.

      Xenicids are tiny birds of stout build, with a nuthatch-like bill and an extremely short tail. They vaguely resemble pittas, with which they may share ancestry. The rifleman, only eight centimetres (three inches) long, has brown and yellow plumage suggesting the uniform of an early-day British rifle corps. It is a tree-creeping species found mainly in beech forest. The bush wren is also an arboreal insect eater. The rock wren feeds chiefly in mountains on open slopes. Both wrens bob up and down vigorously on alighting, and the rifleman is a constant wing quiverer.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Xenicidae — Naujosios Zelandijos pitos statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas atitikmenys: lot. Acanthisittidae; Xenicidae angl. New Zealand wrens vok. Maorischlüpfer; Neuseeland Pittas; Neuseeland Schlüpfer rus. новозеландские крапивники; новозеландские… …   Paukščių pavadinimų žodynas

  • Xenicidae — noun alternative names for the family comprising the New Zealand wrens • Syn: ↑family Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisittidae • Hypernyms: ↑bird family • Member Holonyms: ↑Oscines, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • xenicidae — xe·nic·i·dae …   English syllables

  • family Xenicidae — noun alternative names for the family comprising the New Zealand wrens • Syn: ↑Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisittidae • Hypernyms: ↑bird family • Member Holonyms: ↑Oscines, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • passeriform — /pas euhr euh fawrm , peuh ser euh /, adj. of or pertaining to the order Passeriformes; passerine. [ < NL Passeriformes, equiv. to L passer sparrow + iformes IFORMES] * * * ▪ bird Introduction also called  passerine  or  perching bird     any… …   Universalium

  • Acanthisitta — noun a genus of Xenicidae • Syn: ↑genus Acanthisitta • Hypernyms: ↑bird genus • Member Holonyms: ↑Xenicidae, ↑family Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisi …   Useful english dictionary

  • genus Acanthisitta — noun a genus of Xenicidae • Syn: ↑Acanthisitta • Hypernyms: ↑bird genus • Member Holonyms: ↑Xenicidae, ↑family Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisittidae …   Useful english dictionary

  • genus Xenicus — noun type genus for the Xenicidae • Syn: ↑Xenicus • Hypernyms: ↑bird genus • Member Holonyms: ↑Xenicidae, ↑family Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisittidae …   Useful english dictionary

  • Xenicus — noun type genus for the Xenicidae • Syn: ↑genus Xenicus • Hypernyms: ↑bird genus • Member Holonyms: ↑Xenicidae, ↑family Xenicidae, ↑Acanthisittidae, ↑family Acanthisitt …   Useful english dictionary

  • Acanthisittidae — noun alternative names for the family comprising the New Zealand wrens • Syn: ↑Xenicidae, ↑family Xenicidae, ↑family Acanthisittidae • Hypernyms: ↑bird family • Member Holonyms: ↑Oscines, ↑ …   Useful english dictionary


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