New South Wales, Australia.
Races fall into four groups, the “black-backed tibicen group” (NW, N & E Australia), “white-backed hypoleuca group” (SE Australia and Tasmania), single-taxon “western or varied dorsalis group” (SW Australia), and single-taxon “papuana group” (New Guinea); groups formerly treated as representing three distinct species, but little congruence found between morphological and genetic variation. Races intergrade extensively: eylandtensis with terraereginae in C & S Northern Territory and NW Queensland, and latter race with all others (nominate, tyrannica, telonocua) where ranges meet; in SC Australia confusing intergradation involving telonocua, terraereginae, tyrannica and eylandtensis; and dorsalis intergrades with longirostris over broad region of S Western Australia from Shark Bay E to SW edge of Great Victoria Desert. Proposed race finki (Horseshoe Bend, on Finke R, in Northern Territory) refers to an intergrading population between eylandtensis and presumably terraereginae, and terraereginae itself sometimes synonymized with nominate#R; leuconota (South Australia) likewise relates to an intergrade. With so much complex intergradation and often races differing only in size, recognition of so many races may be inappropriate; further study required. Nine subspecies provisionally recognized.
Introduced to New Zealand and Fiji.
Food and feeding
Status and conservation
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