Family Honeyeaters (Meliphagidae)

Least Concern

Crimson Chat (Epthianura tricolor)


French: Epthianure tricolore German: Scharlachtrugschmätzer Spanish: Eptianuro tricolor

Ephthianura [sic] tricolor


, 1841,

Australia, ‘Hab.?’ = Peel River, New South Wales, Australia




Australia, mainly in interior, also coastal Western Australia and South Australia; few records from N tropics.

Descriptive notes

11–13 cm; 9–14 g. Distinctive Australian chat with scarlet or reddish uppertail-coverts in all plumages. Male in breeding plumage has forehead, crown and nape... read more


Mournful “tee-whee” or strong oscillating calls given by territorial male, also bill-clicking in... read more


Open chenopod shrublands, or shrublands dominated by acacia (Acacia, especially mulgas),... read more

Food and feeding

Eats insects, including beetles (Coleoptera), grasshoppers (Orthoptera), bugs (Hemiptera), butterflies (Lepidoptera) and ants (Hymenoptera... read more


Usually Jul/Aug–Nov/Dec, sometimes in other months after good rainfall in arid regions. Breeds in pairs; both sexes take part in nest... read more


Highly nomadic, local numbers fluctuating enormously. Seasonal trends poorly understood and... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Locally common. Densities of up to 3·7 birds/ha recorded at L Disappointment, in Western Australia. Successfully bred in captivity.

Recommended citation

Matthew, J. (2020). Crimson Chat (Epthianura tricolor). 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 27 January 2020).