Family Woodswallows and Butcherbirds (Artamidae)

Least Concern

Masked Woodswallow (Artamus personatus)


French: Langrayen masqué German: Maskenschwalbenstar Spanish: Artamo enmascarado

Ocypterus personatus


, 1841,

southern and western Australia#R


Most closely related to A. superciliosus; the two form a clade distinct from the other Australian members of the genus#R. Monotypic.


Mainland Australia (mainly inland of Great Divide, irregular to E & SE).

Descriptive notes

18–20 cm; 25·5–42 g. A sexually dimorphic woodswallow. Male has face and throat black, bordered at rear by white crescent; crown and upperparts, including... read more


Loud musical "chrrt" or "chapp-chapp", also softer "chrrup" sounds;... read more


Inland shrublands, open woodland and adjacent farmland.

Food and feeding

Largely insectivorous; feeds also on nectar, particularly in N of range (in austral winter). Insects taken mostly in air, during trawling... read more


Season Jul–Mar (mainly Sept–Dec), mostly in S half of Australia. Nests solitarily, also in loose colony with nests 10 m apart;... read more


Highly nomadic, most making post-breeding movement N into N parts of Australia, and returning S to... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Widespread and common, but locally irregular, throughout its range. Has bred King I, in Bass Strait.

Recommended citation

Rowley, I. & Russell, E. (2020). Masked Woodswallow (Artamus personatus). 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 February 2020).