Family Fantails (Rhipiduridae)

Least Concern

Friendly Fantail (Rhipidura albolimbata)


French: Rhipidure familier German: Hochland-Fächerschwanz Spanish: Abanico amistoso

Rhipidura albo-limbata


, 1874,

Hatam, New Guinea


Sometimes treated as monotypic#R; races apparently differ only in non-geographical characters based on altitude (lorentzi smaller and paler). Two subspecies tentatively recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • R. a. albolimbata Salvadori, 1874 – mountains of NW, N & E New Guinea.
  • R. a. lorentzi van Oort, 1909 – Snow Mts and Central Highlands, in C New Guinea.
  • Descriptive notes

    14–15 cm; 9–11 g. Male has upperparts sooty black, back greyer, side of head greyish-black; white streak from side of forehead to above orbit; ear-coverts with... read more


    Song a sequence of alternately ascending and descending high-pitched notes; series of clear, short... read more


    Forest, mainly in more open lower to middle levels, occasionally in canopy, and forest edge; also... read more

    Food and feeding

    Insects. Prey captured almost entirely by flycatching in middle and upper storeys of forest. Searches for insects while perched, holding... read more


    Nest-building in early Apr, nestlings in late Sept, and fledglings in late Mar and Aug; thus, breeds at least middle to late wet season and... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Generally common to fairly common. Tame species, often approaching humans.

    Recommended citation

    Boles, W. (2019). Friendly Fantail (Rhipidura albolimbata). 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 19 November 2019).