Family Fairy-wrens (Maluridae)


Mallee Emu-wren (Stipiturus mallee)


French: Queue-de-gaze du mallee German: Malleeborstenschwanz Spanish: Maluro del Mallee

Stipiturus mallee

A. J. Campbell

, 1908,

Mallee district = Hopetoun district, west Victoria, Australia


Has been treated as conspecific with S. malachurus. Often considered conspecific with S. ruficeps, but DNA evidence supports their separation as sister-species#R#R. Monotypic.


Mallee region of SE South Australia (S of Murray R) and NW Victoria.

Descriptive notes

13·5–15 cm; 6–7 g. Male has crown unstreaked pale rufous, ear-coverts blue with black streaking, hindneck and upperparts mid olive-brown, streaked black;... read more


High-pitched twittering reel. Contact call a high-pitched “tree”; alarm a louder “trrt”.


Confined to uncleared, low eucalypt (Eucalyptus) mallee woodland with understorey of... read more

Food and feeding

Poorly known. Eats insects, apparently also seeds. Forages rapidly through shrubs and clumps of Triodia, generally within 0... read more


Sept–Nov. Appears to breed as pairs, and probably territorial, but confirmation required. Nest built by female, a domed oval... read more


Resident. No studies of marked birds; reported as dispersing at least 6 km into vegetation burnt 3... read more

Status and conservation

ENDANGERED. Previously listed as Vulnerable. Restricted-range species: present in South-east ­Australia EBA. Total population thought to number only c. 3000 individuals... read more

Recommended citation

Rowley, I. & Russell, E. (2018). Mallee Emu-wren (Stipiturus mallee). 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 11 December 2018).