Family Thornbills (Acanthizidae)

Least Concern

Green-backed Gerygone (Gerygone chloronota)


French: Gérygone à dos vert German: Grünrückengerygone Spanish: Gerigón dorsiverde

Gerygone chloronotus


, 1843,

Port Essington, Northern Territory, Australia


Species name is a latinized Greek adjective and must therefore agree with feminine gender of genus, chloronota. Race darwini may intergrade with nominate; cinereiceps and aruensis poorly differentiated, and sometimes synonymized with nominate#R. Four subspecies currently recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. c. cinereiceps (Sharpe, 1886) – hills and lowlands of mainland New Guinea, and West Papuan Is.
  • G. c. aruensis Büttikofer, 1893 – Aru Is.
  • G. c. chloronota Gould, 1843 – N Northern Territory (Arnhem Land S to lower Victoria and Roper River drainages), including Tiwi Is and Groote Eylandt, in N Australia.
  • G. c. darwini Mathews, 1912 – N Western Australia (from King Sound E to Cambridge Gulf) and adjacent W Northern Territory (E to Victoria R).
  • Descriptive notes

    9·5–11 cm, c. 6·5 g (Australian races); 7·5–8·3 cm (New Guinea races). Small gerygone with distinctive greyish head, no tail spots.... read more


    Song a rapid, thin musical “choopi choopi choopi” on rising scale, repeated... read more


    In Australia, mainly riparian and monsoon vine forests and thickets, also mangroves and relict... read more

    Food and feeding

    Prey includes spiders (Araneae), cockroach egg sacs (Blattodea), beetles (Coleoptera), bugs (Hemiptera), wasps (Hymenoptera) and... read more


    Little known. Recorded in Mar–Oct in Australia. Nest built by both sexes, a compact oval dome with short “tail”, side... read more



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Fairly common but unobtrusive; easily missed if not singing. Common, but patchily distributed, in New Guinea. Local in Australia.

    Recommended citation

    Gregory, P. (2019). Green-backed Gerygone (Gerygone chloronota). 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 16 February 2019).