Family Fantails (Rhipiduridae)

Least Concern

Chestnut-bellied Fantail (Rhipidura hyperythra)


French: Rhipidure à ventre roux German: Braunbauch-Fächerschwanz Spanish: Abanico ventrirrufo

Rhipidura hyperythra

G. R. Gray

, 1858,

Aru Islands


Race muelleri, synonymized with nominate by some authors#R, intergrades with castaneothorax in E. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • R. h. muelleri A. B. Meyer, 1874 – W & C New Guinea E to Astrolabe Bay, S to Trans-Fly area and Okasa (Eastern Highlands); Yapen I.
  • R. h. hyperythra G. R. Gray, 1858 – Aru Is.
  • R. h. castaneothorax E. P. Ramsay, 1879 – SE New Guinea (E from Huon Peninsula and, in S, from Angabunga R).
  • Descriptive notes

    14–15 cm; 10–11·5 g. Nominate race has face and upperparts dark bluish-grey, crown darker; short supercilium, line on ear-coverts and malar stripe white;... read more


    Includes series of short rising and falling whistled notes; c. 8 short descending high-pitched... read more


    Hill forest to c. 1370 m, locally to 1750 m; also in lowlands in vicinity of hills and locally in... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects. Forages mainly in more open middle strata, but ranges from lower to upper storeys. Prey obtained by means of flycatching (25... read more


    Nest with eggs in mid-Sept, nestlings in late Apr, bird at nest in late Nov, juvenile mid-Sept, fledgling being fed early Dec, also nest... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common to common in most of range. Maximum abundance near upper limit of altitudinal range; rare and often absent in lowland floodplains.... read more

    Recommended citation

    Boles, W. (2020). Chestnut-bellied Fantail (Rhipidura hyperythra). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 24 January 2020).